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Need some advice on Athens for arrival on September 1st

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Phoenix, Arizona
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Need some advice on Athens for arrival on September 1st

My wife and I arrive in Athens on September 1st from a Windstar cruise and will be spending 3 full days in Athens. First, what is the best way to get from the port (Piraeus?) to the Hilton hotel? Secondly, could someone craft their idea of an itinerary for 3 days? In addition to seeing the traditional sights I was thinking of a day trip to Hydra.

Your help would be greatly appreciated!!

Thessaloniki, Greece
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1. Re: Need some advice on Athens for arrival on September 1st

hi.

the most relaxed way to get to hilton is by taxi.

yes, day trip to hydra is a very good idea as well as a day trip to delphi to see some of the inner land.

by the way athens hilton is superb.

Phoenix, Arizona
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2. Re: Need some advice on Athens for arrival on September 1st

I appreciate the quick response to my request. Any itinerary ideas or should I focus on the typical sites to visit?

Any other ideas or suggestions are truly welcome and appreciated.

Lastly, is September 1st through the 4th a good time to visit? I know many of the US travelers will have already departed since most schools start around this time frame. Is the weather at this time around 85 degrees Farenheit?

As you can see, lots of questions and looking for lots of suggestions. Looking forward to our visit in Athens!!

Philadelphia
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3. Re: Need some advice on Athens for arrival on September 1st

Here is the very good Athens tourist information website

http://www.athensinfoguide.com/wts.htm

It gives suggestions for priorities if you have 2 days, 3 days etc. It also has a SPLENDID map of central athens in color. I suggest you print it out and ZOOM it up as a color xerox blow-up because it is VERY clear.

The website also explains their new "hop-on-hop-off" public sightseeing bus" #400 which costs 5Euro, you pay on the bus. There is a map of its itinerary. I took it last year (as research,with some 'newbies' -- I have been to Athens 8 times). I found that the route doubled back a lot. However, the ticket is good for 24 hours, and a 400 bus comes every 30 minutes and so it was useful as a 'hop-on-hop-off' way to get to the Arch. Museum & other sites without having to take a taxi or a Metro or walk your legs off.

Phoenix, Arizona
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4. Re: Need some advice on Athens for arrival on September 1st

Travelerjan, thanks for the great info. Looking forward to this portion of our trip.

Anybody else out there with some suggestions for our trip to Athens on September 1st with respect to suggested itineries, must sees, must go to restaurants, etc.

Your suggestions and advice are very welcome.

Thanks in advance.

New York, NY
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5. Re: Need some advice on Athens for arrival on September 1st

As has been pointed out, the easiest way to get from Piraeus to the Hilton is by taxi. However, you can also take the Metro from Piraeus to Megaro Mousikis, which is the station across from the Hilton. Take line 1 (the green line) to Monastiraki station, and change there to the blue line headed towards Doukissis Plakentias and the airport for the remainder of your trip to Megaron Mousikis. The metro is very inexpensive, clean and comfortable, but if you will be dragging luggage and such along or just feel too worn out after the trip, a taxi is a good idea. It might not be a bad idea to call the Hilton and inquire what the usual rate is for a taxi from Piraeus, and then to mention this to your driver before your trip, to ensure you don't get overcharged :)

As far as an itinerary goes, three days should be enough time to do something like the following:

Day 1: Ancient sights. See the Acropolis and all the ancient sights around it, walk through Plaka and Monastiraki, walk through the National Garden to the first Olympic stadium, Syndagma Square and so on.

Day 2: Day trip to Hydra, Aegina or Spetses. Inquire at your hotel about available trips. Boats leave from Piraeus in the morning and arrive back in the evening.

Day 3: Maybe a museum and shopping whirlwind. Athens has many beautiful museums, such as the National Archaeological Museum, the Benaki Museum, etc. You can also hit the stores in Kolonaki, Ermou St., the Attica Department store, the flea markets in Monastiraki, stores around Omonia Sq., etc. There are some days where stores are open until the evening and other days where stores close early, so inquire in your hotel upon arrival so you can plan accordingly.

The Athens Hilton also has a really nice restaurant, Milos, though it is quite pricey. Reservations may be required but it is one of the best restaurants in Athens. Milos has also opened successful restaurants in New York, Montreal and some other cities.

Another alternate possibility is to daytrip to Cape Sounion from Athens, or to go to the coastal region (Glyfada, Voula or Vouliagmeni) for a day at the beach and to enjoy the cafes and restaurants there.

There is also a large American style (but with European stores) mall, aptly named "The Mall", which is right by the Nerantziotisa station off of Line 1 of the Metro.

Thission and Psirri are two very up and coming areas with trendy bars and restaurants...something reminiscent of Greenwich Village or the Meatpacking district in NYC....an interesting contrast from the more traditional, touristy spots in Plaka.

The Hilton should have some free brochures and magazines listing events going on in the Athens area. There is also a magazine that will probably be available at foreign language newsstands and maybe at the Hilton as well, Odyssey Magazine, which publishes a summer guide to Athens in english, and lists interesting places in Athens beyond the usual ancient ruins, museums and Plaka. For instance, there is a very large zoo in Athens which is accessible by Metro. Finding some off the beaten path stuff like that wouldn't hurt :)

Athens is very easy to get around, so even in just three days, there is a lot that you can see. September is a busy time in Athens, since most Greeks are returning from their vacations and getting back to their usual routines...work, school, etc., but it is still summer-like and there's plenty of tourists, the beaches are still crowded and so on. It's a big city though so crowds are prevalent any time of the year but are never really out of hand.

Phoenix, Arizona
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6. Re: Need some advice on Athens for arrival on September 1st

Neo11, thank you so much!! This, in addition to the previous post is exactly what I was looking for.

I am truly looking forward to Athens as a great way to finish our cruise on the Wind Spirit.

If anybody has anymore restaurant recommendations to round out what has already been posted would be most welcome.

Once again, thanks for your advice and recommendations!!

Phoenix, Arizona
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7. Re: Need some advice on Athens for arrival on September 1st

Neo11, thank you so much!! This, in addition to the previous post is exactly what I was looking for.

I am truly looking forward to Athens as a great way to finish our cruise on the Wind Spirit.

If anybody has anymore restaurant recommendations to round out what has already been posted would be most welcome.

Once again, thanks for your advice and recommendations!!

Phoenix, Arizona
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12 posts
54 reviews
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8. Re: Need some advice on Athens for arrival on September 1st

Does anybody have any recommendations for good tavernas that we can go to for lunch while we are in Athens?

New York City, New...
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9. Re: Need some advice on Athens for arrival on September 1st

After reading about this place numerous times here, I finally found it (Thanks, Nick:) and even returned for a 2nd visit:) It's called Scholarhio..We got off the Acropolis station which you'll note from there, taking a left, leads you to the pathway (walkway) taking you to the Acropolis....it's a straight walk (no right either) for a couple minutes past the shops, etc....This is like a 'tapas' (Greek version is 'meze') taverna, where they come out with a dozen + small app plates of fabulous Greek food...you get to pick and choose which ones on the spot....great way of tasting/experiences real local fare:) Think you'll Enjoy!

Phoenix, Arizona
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10. Re: Need some advice on Athens for arrival on September 1st

Thanks, Litsa.

Does anybody else have some recommendations?

Thanks in advance.