How To Spend a Holiday Weekend in Athens
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A few weeks before going to Barbados, my cousin and I found a glitch fare from NYC to Athens, Greece for under $200 and purchased it without any questions.

With her coming back from a mini Euro-trip only weeks before and me planning to go to Thailand for 10 days in December, we decided to just go for Labor Day weekend. I planned on going solo, but it worked out for us to go together again.

As short as it was, we did exactly what we wanted to do. Read more about how we spent 3 days in Athens, Greece and additional things to do on a trip to Athens.

Where to Stay in Athens

We stayed at the Athens Atrium Hotel which was about 3 hours from the city center and close to a local park, restaurants, and a grocery store.

If you are a traveler that likes to save money and take transportation, the Athens Atrium Hotel is very close to the metro station. We did a combination of taking taxis, Uber, and using pickup service provided by our tours to get around. Read about more options of where to stay in Athens from Places of Juma.

Athens Itinerary Day 1: Travel, Check-in, Sightseeing, Dinner, and a Show

Our flight left Friday evening and we arrived in Athens around 10 AM. As mentioned, I initially planned to go solo, so I booked a round-trip taxi service with Welcome Pickups recommended by our hotel, the Athens Atrium Hotel. A photo of the driver was sent via email, he was on time and the service was generally convenient.

Since our room wasn’t ready until 2 PM, we took an Uber ride to the city center and walked around to familiarize ourselves with the city. The drive was no more than 10 minutes and cost only 4 Euros.

After taking a (3-hour) power nap, we went to Hotel Amalia Athens to get a pickup for the Athens Night Sightseeing Tour with Greek Dinner Show. The tour was pretty much what we saw earlier, but with a detailed history of the sites from a local guide. It concluded with a dinner show at Tavern Kalokerinos in Pláka. In addition to the good food, the entertainment was great. There was singing, dancing with audience participation, and our favorite: dish breaking.

Dancing at dinner in Athens
Dining Entertainment in Athens
Dinner in Athens

Athens Itinerary Day 2: Acropolis, Temple of Poseidon, Cape Sounion, and Saronic Islands Tour

On Sunday we split up for solo exploration. My cousin took a 12-hour tour of the Saronic Islands (Hydra, Poros, and Aegina) and I stayed in Athens. My cousin’s seatmate on the plane recommended the Saronic island tour instead of going to Mykonos and Santorini and she loved it. The pics were so pretty, I kind of wish I went with her.

Saronic Island Tour from Athens
Saronic Island Tour from Athens

Since I stayed in Athens and my tour was scheduled for the afternoon, I decided to go to the Acropolis of Athens and Panathenaic Stadium. Both tours were self-guided and I was in awe of the architecture. It was really unbelievable that I was seeing sites I’d read about since elementary school with my own eyes. I highly recommend getting to the Acropolis when it opens to avoid crowds.

If you have time to learn more, visit the New Acropolis Museum which is a short walk away. It only costs 5 Euros more and is filled with a lot of information. Panathenaic Stadium was just as cool. It hosted the first modern-day Olympics in 1896 and was the only stadium in the world built of marble.

Acropolis of Athens
Olympic Stadium Greece

After lunch in Pláka, my afternoon was spent riding to the Southeast to Cape Sounion and the temple of Poseidon. We were able to get a history of the site on our way, but the temple was similar to the top of the Acropolis of Athens. 

With the long ride and the similarities, it’s a tour that could be skipped. If the tour included beach time, I would’ve been more pleased. The views of Cape Sounion were beautiful though.

Cape Sounion
Cape Sounion Poseidon tour
Cape Sounion Poseidon tour

Athens Itinerary Day 3: Morning Trip to Pláka, Check-out, and Airport

I purchased most gifts on my solo exploration, but my cousin didn’t. After breakfast in the hotel, we headed to Pláka which is the old historical neighborhood of Athens for souvenirs. We went into several shops along the way and it was good for us to get so many gifts for such a cheap price.

Shopping in Plaka
Shopping in Plaka

The 3 days in Athens was my quickest international trip taken, but we had an amazing time. The food, people, and experience were great; it felt like a dream when we got home. I will definitely go back for a longer stay in the outer islands for a cruise.

How To Spend a Holiday Weekend in Athens

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  1. I’m amazed you two were able to do so much in so little time. I would’ve thought I needed more time to enjoy myself, but you proved this to be wrong. Great read! Awesome pics!

  2. The pics were beautiful and I’m amazed you two did so much in so little time. I would feel like I needed more time to enjoy myself, but you proved that to be wrong! Great read.

  3. I had no idea you only went for a wkd! That’s a long flight but what a great deal! You made the right choice in going to the Acropolis. That’s the main reason I went to Athens. Your pics are beautiful!

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