Think of Athens and the first things that spring to mind are ancient ruins and camera-toting crowds (before they hotfoot it to the island-bound ferries at the port of Piraeus, that is). It’s true, the Acropolis is ever present and during summer the city thrums with schools of holidaymakers. But there’s much more to the Greek capital than temples and tourists.
The team behind Monocle magazine looked beyond the admittedly awe-inspiring Parthenon and explored the city’s modernist marvels, from circular school to colonnaded embassy. They ’ve combed the cobbled streets for independent boutiques offering straw hats, hand-thrown ceramics and golden jewellery – all proudly “Made in Greece”. When you’re feeling peckish, choose between traditional family-run tavernas and contemporary restaurants spicing up classic Greek dishes.
Attica is a region of riches and, of course, some of the nearby islands are simply too good to miss – so they’ve included a short and sharp list of our top stopovers. For now, though, strap up your sandals and allow them to introduce you to this chaotic but ever-so-charismatic city.
About The Monocle Travel Guide Series:
Monocle reports from around the globe in print, on radio, and online. As its editors and correspondents dart from city to city, they get to know the best places to rest their heads, stretch their limbs, and kick back with a contact in a hard-to-find cocktail bar. That information is now available in Monocle’s Travel Guide Series: a line-up of titles that speaks to you in an informed but informal way about everything from architecture to art, late-night bars to early-morning markets.
These are books that go beyond the traditional tourist beats to make sure you get the best out of a city—no matter how short your stay. Designed to be compact and collectable, they are also discerning; Monocle’s team won’t list a hundred places to eat but they will tell you where’s best for everything from some tasty fast food to something truly celebratory.