After an amazing 9 months spent living in Athens, Greece, I have laid out the complete master list from A to Z for those of you considering it as holiday stop or even something more permanent.
What to expect...
Greek is tough, unlike most languages and not the easiest to pick up. So downloading Google Translate and using it was my best way of making things like Public Transportation or restaurant menus a more manageable independent task. But as you spend time or if you've gathered any Greek from before the trip, the simplest gestures in their language are always more appreciated than you'd expect. Give it a try! Also to note, theft is a common issue around parts of the city, keep your belongings hidden in the trunk of your car and hold on tight to your belongings, especially in places where the crowds pick up!
Hello/Goodbye - geia sas (γεια σας)
Good Morning - Kaliméra (Καλημέρα)
Good Night - kalinychta (καληνυχτα)
How are you? - Pós eísai (Πώς είσαι)
What are you doing? - ti káneis (τι κάνεις)
Where is... - pou einai (που είναι)
Thank you - Efcharistó (Ευχαριστώ)
Yes please - nai parakaló (ναι παρακαλώ)
No - óchi (όχι)
Car (highly recommended for flexible exploring up and down the coastline - can be taken on certain ferries)
Metro (greater Athens area - connects to the airport station)
Bus (most used, widespread form of trans)
Tram (runs city center down the coastline ending in Voula)
Ferry (trans to the islands)
Where to stay...
Airbnb is a great way to get an original taste of Athens city life.
If you haven't signed up to use Airbnb before, by using this code ( https://www.airbnb.com/c/taylorm3247?currency=USD ) you will get $40 off your home booking. And get $15 to use toward an experience worth $50 or more.
The Margi Hotel* is a great hotel near to the beach if you are looking for the option to stay outside the hustle and bustle.
Where to eat...
There is a food revolution going on in Athens and some of its best food can be found scattered down the coastline of the Attica. From delectable homemade pastries, bad to the bone brunches, mouth-watering souvlaki to butchered meats that melt in your mouth, here are my all-time favorite places to get into the Athens food scene.
Lets talk FOOD:
Order the Greek classics anywhere - -
Greek salad - sounds basic but the freshness of the feta, olive, and veggies is unlike anywhere else!
Souvlaki - in gyro form is always a staple item*
Loukoumades - bite-sized fluffy sweet honey puffs (the Greek version of donuts), which are deep fried to golden and crispy perfection and traditionally served soaked in hot honey
Freddo [on ice] Espresso
Freddo [on ice with frothed milk] Cappuccino
Wine - if you get the chance, test out all the different regions around Greece - known for their dry red and whites
Restaurants + Foodie Locations --
Tailor Made Microroastery
Taf @ The Art Foundation
Tom's Flagship Athens
Pere Ubu, Glyfada
Charlie's Espresso Bar - the cutest little dog friendly spot in Glyfada
Latraac - a backyard skate bowl with bumping music, summer parties and some freakin' delish egg and bacon on pancakes, slow service but people don't go here in a rush
Diporto* - this secret underground restaurant has a traditional greek fixed menu with barrel poured wines; homemade, ridiculously affordable and TO DIE FOR!
ERGON House Athens
Papillon Bistrot Athens
7 Sins Gastro Pub
Dry & Raw, Voula - THE best butchery by day turned COOLEST electro-house playing, speakeasy meat restaurant by night that I've ever been to in my entire life. A MUST TRY if you have a car since it's just outside city center.*
Must Try Rooftops + Cocktail Bars:
Cinque wine & Deli
City ZEN All Day Bar
Hotel Grande Bretagne - perfect sunset view through the Acropolis
Couleur Locale - This is my favorite spot in Athens that I took all my visitors to; fabulous cocktails, rooftop, and view of the Acropolis.
e&0 Athens - on top of the Marriot
Did someone say party...?
Astir Beach Club, Vouliagmeni
Krabo Beach Club, Vouliagmeni
Marina Zeas street, Pireas
The area you want to head to is called Kolonaki, the hub for Athens prime nightlife.
Rock and Roll Athens - this place is a classic! A place for revival of the 80s, 90s, and early 2000s!
Cinderella - discotheque
Bogart's - mixture of hip hop, house, rap, English and Greek music
Dybbuk - electronic
Opus - in Glyfada, a mixture of hip hop, house, rap, English and Greek music
What to see & do...
Beach clubs - see the "By Day" list above (my all time favorite was Krabo)
Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center*
Mount Lycabettus - A church and bar/restaurant sits at the top overlooking the entire greater Athens region; you can walk, drive, or take a cable car up to the top*
Acropolis of Athens - Parthenon
Temple of Olympian Zeus
National Garden - Archaeology Museum
Charming neighborhoods of Plaka and Anafiotika
Syntagma Square - changing of the guards
Lake Vouliagmeni - salt water lake near the sea that stays between 22-24 degrees celsius year round!
SHOPPING* - Glyfada is the place to be for any and all shopping
Temple of Poseidon* - if you have a car and extra time to spare, this is my TOP tourist recommendation, the culture mixed with the views are breathtaking!
Forgot to pack something...?
Run into any pharmacy (lit up with a green cross), multiple LIDL's can be found, or the numerous supermarkets scattered around the city.