My favorite way to explore a city is by walking, mapless hours spent following my curiosities. In Athens, each corners invites you with romantic streets covered in graffiti, old peeling buildings with bright, climbing flowers and apartments hiding behind crayola-colored awnings. Small hills show just enough over the edge to make you want to see what’s on the other side and next thing you know you’ve walked nearly all the hours of the day, perfectly consumed.
I love Athens for its pockets. An urge to turn can lead you down a sleepy residential street and suddenly land you upon bustling squares filled with people having coffee, smoking cigarettes and just hanging out. Old churches, buildings in ruin and funky, cool neighborhoods wrap themselves around Acropolis, the center and greatest landmark of Athens.
An accidental climb up a hill suddenly pulled me out of the city and elevated me to stunning, sweeping views of old and new Athens. Paths leading up take you away from the noise, the people, the city life and make space for the flooding thoughts and awe that accompany seeing such ancient places. The hill softly ascends as if the Greek Gods themselves are lifting you over the urban metropolis below inviting you to see what Athens and it’s people are really built on. With a perfect view of Acropolis, staring at such ancient wonders in quiet contemplation easily fills hours.