Essential Travel Guide to Athens, Greece [2024]

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Many people visit Athens for the history and archaeology, of course. The Pantheon and other Roman ruins in the city are astounding. The views from the top of the Acropolis are unbelievable. And then there’s the food. Don’t forget about the incredible foodie experiences that will introduce you to the amazing food in Athens.

To show you the best side of Athens, we’ve put together this essential travel guide to Athens. It will help you start planning your trip by showing you the hotels we recommend, neighborhoods we love, things to do, and places to eat and drink in the Athens.

» Check out these 12 Best Greek Islands for Couples.

Athens Greece

These are not only some of the top things to do, see, eat and drink in Athens, they are also some of our personal favorites. It is an awesome city, plus it’s easy and safe to walk around.

»» Seeing more of Greece? Be sure to check out our Greece travel guide, the most incredible places to see in Greece, as well as what to do in Santorini. We also have a guide to traveling by ferry to the islands.

Are you planning your trip to Athens?

If you’re traveling to Athens, ensure you have lodging and tours booked ahead of time! Below are some of our top picks to help you plan!

Where to Stay in Athens:

  1. The Pinnacle Athens (5-star luxury hotel, amazing views from rooftop terrace)
  2. MET34 Athens (In Syntagma Square, breakfast included)
  3. Athens Gate Hotel (Opposite the Temple of Olympian Zeus, free breakfast)

Best Tours and Experiences in Athens:

  1. Acropolis Museum + Acropolis tickets (Skip-the-line entrance to the museum)
  2. The Athens Pass (Acropolis museum, Acropolis & Archaeological Sites: Combo Ticket, and city tour audio guide included)
  3. Tickets for Athens Bike Tour: Ride and Bite (2.5 hour bike ride, including food)

What To Do in Athens

Most visitors who are new to Athens are interested in checking out the Acropolis and the Parthenon first. It will take you a full day to walk around the hillside citadel and the other well-preserved 5th century landmarks, like Ancient Agora and Keramikos Cemetery. You can visit these archaeological sites with one multi-site ticket.

After seeing the ruins of the mighty Roman empire, you’ll want to visit the Acropolis Museum and the National Archaeological Museum to fill in the picture of what life was like in ancient Athens.

Parthenon on the Acropolis in Athens

For neighborhoods, the two you can’t miss are Plaka and Monastiraki. These two areas are bustling with people and filled with restaurants, coffee shops and bars. Make sure you save time for an afternoon Frappe (very popular cold coffee). In Monastiraki be sure to stop by the Varvakios Agora market to explore the indoor and outdoor market stalls.

We also recommend booking yourself an Athens food tour to become acquainted with all the delicious food and drinks of Athens. 


With so many great things to do in Athens, you really need to set up a good itinerary before you leave, to make sure you fit everything in.  You can pre-book some of the activities listed in our shortcut travel guide to Athens (below), by using the links below for Viator and GetYourGuide. (Note: They are affiliate links for which we receive a small commission.)

There are so many things to do in Athens that you will surely never run out. Here’s a great plan for a long weekend in Athens.

Tours To Book:

Where to Stay in Athens

NEW Hotel in Athens
NEW Hotel in Athens

Most visitors will want to stay near the ancient ruins so they can easily get to and walk around the historical sites. That’s very easy to do in Athens and it puts you right in the middle of the action of the city, so I highly recommend doing just that. Since there are many parts of the city that are accessible to the historic sites, you can branch out a bit and still walk to everything.

Here are our hotel recommendations. You can use the links below to read reviews or book your hotel (these are affiliate links, for which we receive a small commission):

  • New Hotel (near Syntagma Square): Lovely design hotel with in-room balconies, within walking distance of the main squares. Read Reviews  |  Book a Stay 
  • AVA Hotel & Suites Athens: Just a very short walk from the Acropolis, shopping and restaurants. Rooms are spacious, clean, and beautifully appointed.  Read Reviews  |  Book a Stay
  • Electra Metropolis Athens: Incredible views of the Acropolis from the rooftop terrace, and some rooms. Nice rooms and great service. Read Reviews  |  Book a Stay

Need more options? Check out these Hotels in Athens, Greece

View from our balcony at NEW Hotel in Athens
View from our balcony at NEW Hotel in Athens (photo by Savored Journeys)

How to Get to Athens

Athens International Airport, Eleftherios Venizelos, is one of the most organized and modern airports in the world. It is well connected with public transport, so it’s easy to get there from anywhere in Athens. Many direct flights from  abroad arrive in Athens.

Once you’re at the airport, you can take Metro Line 3, which connects the airport to the city center. Trains run every 30 minutes, 7 days a week from 6:30 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. The trip from/to the Airport to Syntagma Square station (which is likely where you’ll be staying) takes about 40 minutes.

Book a Transfer

The fastest way to get to the city is by taxi, but you might prefer to use Welcome Pickups instead. We like to pre-book a transfer service, so we know someone will be waiting for us at the airport and we’ll be able to go directly where we want without delay.

With Welcome Pickups, you can book a private transfer for the same price as getting a taxi from the line. Both cost 38€. The drivers are skilled, English-speaking and will monitor your flight for delays. It’s the clear winner. Book your transfer in advance here.

⇒ Planning to do some island hopping? Check out our guide to the Greek Island Ferries: How to Take the Athens to Santorini Ferry.

Essential Travel Guide to Athens

Essential Travel Guide to Athens
Shortcut Travel Guide to Athens, Greece


Be Prepared For Travel
Planning is the most important part of any successful trip. Do it the easy way:

🧳 Travel Packing List | ✔️ Why You Need Travel Insurance | ✈️ What to Do Before You Leave Home

Essential Travel Guide to Athens, Greece [2024]

14 thoughts on “Essential Travel Guide to Athens, Greece [2024]

  1. Annie says:

    Wow, what a detailed graphic! I look forward to checking some of this out, like Montastriaki since it’s a neighborhood for everyone 🙂

  2. chrysoula says:

    As a local in Athens, I totally approve your guide!Taf is one of my fave places for a drink or coffee too!

  3. Meg Jerrard says:

    Love the infographic, thanks for the downloadable PDF! I’m interested to get to Athens and would love to explore Greece, though I don’t know what to expect from Athens itself. Have heard mixed reviews that it’s a very dirty city, but is a great base for exploring the surrounds. Only one way to find out I guess!

  4. Christina says:

    That’s a cool infographic, Laura. It’s an easy and quick reference at a glance. Nicely done.

  5. Himanshu says:

    Ohh, i really like the idea of presenting. It’s very informative and at the same time very engaging. Would try to do the same.

  6. Mags says:

    So jealous! I’ve always wanted to go to Greece. Such an amazing history. Hopefully I’ll get there and be able to use this guide soon!

  7. Vicki Louise says:

    What a fab guide and awesome graphic! You’ve covered so much and that it’s available in pdf for is great! Well done!

  8. Sue Reddel says:

    Great idea to compile an infographic with tips on visiting Athens! Bookmarking for our next visit to Greece.

  9. The Son Of Thom says:

    not been to Athens since I was kid and I would love to go back and probably enjoy the history of the city a bit more now I am older

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