I'm in Athens for TBEX 2014 and since there were no sessions scheduled for today, I decided to wander around Greece's capital without any type of guidebook or Lonely Planet. Just me and my spontaneity. And my Google maps app.
I started today with breakfast on the roof terrace of Hotel Adonis which is located smack in the middle of the Plaka area. Although nothing to write home about, the view I had with my morning coffee was second to none.
I nipped out at around noon just as the morning rain started to clear away. I popped into the most random shop i'd ever seen called Armogosart, selling all kinds of antique furniture, paper theatre puppets, and metal lucky charms. The shop owner must have been happy to see a customer as she couldn't stop explaining the meaning of all the trinkets on sale. Of course I had to buy a lucky charm from her. It would've been rude not to.
Then I went to the Kimolia Art Cafe around the corner for one of those Greek frappe coffees. Something I've grown extremely accustomed to over the last few days.
Somehow I ended up on a street that looked a bit shabby, so I took a turn into a street with fantastic street art and murals. There were some lovely, bohemian sidewalk cafes strewn about and lots of industrial looking bars. Looking on Google maps now, this was the Psirri area and looked like things are hip and happening when the sun goes down.
Feeling a tad peckish, I headed across the busy Ermou street and found a nice lunch spot along the train line on Adrianou. There are a bunch of restaurants here all looking out onto the Temple of Hephaestus and the Ancient Agora of Athens with the Acropolis towering behind it.
After lunch I continued my walk along the Roman Agora and down the touristy Pritaniou street, ending up at Hadrian's archway.Attracted by the massive pillars behind the arch, I walked around to the entrance of the archaeological site and had a little look at what once was the temple of Olympian Zeus.
I returned back into Plaka and somehow ended up at the hotel again. Where I've come full circle and sitting on the roof terrace writing my blog post, overlooking the Acropolis. with a glass of red wine this time.
Looking for more tips on things to do in Athens? Check out the Nomadic Notes blog for more awesome tips.