10 August 2023

Arrival in Athens

Tap/click here to get updates by email.

I arrived in Athens by overnight ferry from Leros, where I left my fabulous hosts, Dave and Paula, after a week's sailing.

There is s free shuttle bus from the port of Piraeus to the metro station. The metro is clean, modern and equipped with escalators from street to platform, so I had no problems with my heavy bag. I got from ferry to hotel in under an hour.

My hotel is in the cheap-and-cheerful category: a simple, clean, rather old-fashioned room, but with all I need, including air conditioning. It's in the Plaka neighbourhood right next to the Acropolis. I recommend it.

Rooftop terrace, Hotel Phaedra

Day 1

I walked all the way round the Acropolis to get a feel for the neighbourhood. There are thousands of souvenir and ice-cream shops, of course, and grand terraces with mist-spraying fans, but if you go just a few metres off the main drag there are plenty of discreet tavernas and bars that are worth a stop.

The Acropolis, Athens

After more than a week in Greece it was about time I tried a gyros. I chose To Neoklassiko as my pork provider, with mixed results. The meat was very tasty, as was the accompanying mix of onion, pepper, tomato and sauce. The bread, however, was soggy – straight from the microwave – and the wine undrinkable. I abandoned it and had a beer. 

The staff were friendly and efficient. When I commented on the wine I was told they've been serving the same for 15 years. Maybe it's just me.

On my way home, I stumbled across what turns out to be an Athens institution: Brettos Bar. Founded as a distillery in 1909, it is now a thriving cocktail bar. I tried the Mediterraneo cocktail (ouzo, mandarin liqueur, fresh lemon juice, orange juice). Well impressed!

Mediterraneo cocktail

Tomorrow, Friday, I'll take a bus tour to get a better feel for the geography of the city.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Please sign your comment. Thanks!