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Athens museums - 3 years later

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Milan, Italy
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Athens museums - 3 years later

Hi all,

nearly 3 years after my first trip to Athens (which was an unforgettable experience mainly thanks to the excellent advice from the superb local expert Nick), I'm going there again for a weekend next month (11th to 13th January), as an extension to a business trip in town.

Last time I was unable to visit some museums I was interested in, partly for time constraints, partly due to staff shortage or strikes which made it necessary to close them or part of them.

In particular, I'm interested in the Cycladic art museum and the Byzantine museum (which I've never visited), and in paying a second visit to the NAM, hoping to see also those sections that were closed last time.

Are the museums I mentioned completely open in this period, or are these hard times still (partly) affecting their opening?

Thanks

New York City, New...
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1. Re: Athens museums - 3 years later

Hey and welcome DottIng:-) Am sure Nick and others will kick in with updated info.. I was at the NAM in Oct and there were still sections closed off! I've been there dozens of times throughout the years and can never get enough.. same with the New Akropolis Museum.. been there 3 times and can't wait to go back;-) The small Cyclades Museum appeared to be running OK.. it's tiny but like they say.. wonderful things come in small packages;-) Have you visited the Benaki?! So many wonderful Museums in this City ~ Sigh:-) Have a great weekend.. and EnjOY!

Milan, Italy
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2. Re: Athens museums - 3 years later

Hi Litsa!

Sure, last time I visited Benaki and the New Acropolis Museum, greatly enjoying both of them.

I also did the full tour of the archaeological sites that come with the Acropolis' ticket, climbed the Lykavittou and Philopappou hills ... and had masticha chicken at Tzitzikas kai Mermigas, so I had the full experience ;-)

Athens, Greece
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3. Re: Athens museums - 3 years later

Hi DottIng :)

Cycladic Art Museum is a private museum and is open as normal. Opening hours here: www.cycladic.gr/frontoffice/portal.asp…

NAM seems to have some problems three years now. Around 40% of the museum is closed down and it seems they are rolling around a bit which halls are closed. In general, among else, ancient Greek Sculpture section remains open, as the Santorini frescoes Hall.

Last time i visited the vase collection and the copper artifacts collection, as the Roman sculpture were closed. There is a possiblity sections that were closed during your last visit will be closed this time too.

I assume you have visited the new Acropolis Museum? Or not? If not, it's a big must-see.

Byzantine and Christian Museum also seem to has some problems. I have visited it two times last year, one some halls were closed, other time it was fully open. I can call them tommorow to see what's the pattern now.

May i make an additional suggestion? If you finally visit NAM, do give some time also visiting the Epigraphic Museum. It;s the same building as the NAM but the ground floor, with entrance on the pdestrian allery at the right side of the buidling. I 'd invest some time there too, especially to see the Troizina sign. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Epigraphical_Museum

Please do ask us to recheck opening hours nearer to your visit, especially regarding NAM and Byzantine, in case they change anything last minute.

At last, my best and most sincere wishes for a great return visit :)

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4. Re: Athens museums - 3 years later

I hope you'll find the Byzantine and Christian Museum open. It's a beautiful museum with a wonderful collection, but it seems to be prone to closures due to financial restrictions. The last couple of times I tried, albeit three or so years ago, it was closed. Check when you get there and hope for the best.

You'd be extremely lucky to see the sections of the NAM that you missed. In January the vase collection, the bronze collection, and the Egyptian collection are likely to be closed: on everyone of my January visits they've been closed. Certain to be open will be the main sculpture collection on the ground floor, and the middle of the three collections of prehistoric antiquities - the room with the Mycenean finds; also the Thera collection upstairs is always open, I believe. But if you want to see the pottery and the bronzes, I think you'll be disappointed, as I have been on several visits.

I'd be very surprised if the Cycladic Museum was closed: I've never known it to be. As a well-endowed private museum, it isn't subject to the restrictions of the national museums.

Edit: snap! Nick was posting while I was writing. Our posts seem to agree. Sorry about the NAM - what a pity it is. The vase collection is stupendous.

Edited: 08 December 2012, 22:21
Milan, Italy
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5. Re: Athens museums - 3 years later

Hi there, Nick, so nice to speak to you again!

I recall that when I visited NAM most of the ground floor was open - except maybe a couple of minor halls - while the whole vase collection on the upper floor was closed; I could see the Santorini frescoes too, so it seems the situation is exactly the same as on my last visit. But still, it will be great to visit again.

Of course I visited the new Acropolis Museum!

I'll keep my fingers crossed for the Christian and Byzantine museum: that's the one I'm mostly looking forward to (I was so disappointed I couldn't see it last time!)

Thanks also to you, Alabastron.

Edited: 08 December 2012, 22:24
New York City, New...
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6. Re: Athens museums - 3 years later

..Well, if you had masticha chicken at Tzitzikas.. then you certainly had the full experience;-) It's turned out to be one of my very fave dishes and always look forward to in once in Athens.. can't find it anywhere else! Keep us posted.. keep enjoyin'

Melbourne, Australia
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7. Re: Athens museums - 3 years later

Last year I spent nearly half a day at the Kerameikos Archaeological Museum. The museum was breathtaking, as was the large outside area full of wonderful statues, etc. A definite must, and not one that seems to be mentioned in a lot of guidebooks. On the way is a very moving monument to the Jews who lost their lives in the holocaust

London, United...
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8. Re: Athens museums - 3 years later

The Kerameikos museum is indeed very good, with an excellent collection of pottery (and the site itself is the most atmospheric in all Athens, if you haven't yet been to it). The Agora Museum also has interesting pottery, and the two might console you for (again) missing the vase collection at the NAM.

Milan, Italy
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9. Re: Athens museums - 3 years later

Thanks Dale and Alabastron,

I have been to Kerameikos and Agora (sites+museums) on my previous visit in 2010, taking advantage of the combined ticket for Acropolis and the other archaeological sites.

I indeed loved those places and Kerameikos in particular was my favourite after the Acropolis.

Milan, Italy
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10. Re: Athens museums - 3 years later

I was thinking I might hit the Benaki museum of Islamic art (which appears to be in the nearabouts of Kerameikos), if some of the public museums I am planning to see are closed. Would that be recommended?

I am planning to visit lots of museums because I think that on 11th January it may be a bitt too cold to stay in the open air all day long, even in warm Athens!