With the current Greek economic crisis well underway and several recent strikes locking down the city, we didn’t really know what to expect in Athens. After talking to people before our trip, some thought the city might be full of crime, others thought it could be devoid of people and businesses and even more thought we may get great prices due to our timing. We found a city running smoothly, full of tourists, ruins and crazy drivers.
However, we did find plenty of graffiti and people who didn’t pay for the metro (although, we did). And after our visit, we saw on the news there was a rally while we were there…we would never have known.
The highlight for us was not the Acropolis, although, the sweeping views of Athens were special even if the temples were in varying states of disrepair.
Had we had a chance to see a show at the Odeon, we may have had another view (Liza Minnelli has performed).
We thought the tour of the Panathenaic Stadium gave us the true feeling of competing in the games and was the best value of any tour we’ve taken. The entire stadium is made out of marble, completely reconstructed from the first revival of the Olympics in 1896. We got to spend time in the tunnel the athletes used to enter the field which, of course, gave me goosebumps…I’m getting closer!
We said goodbye to Toni and Omarr in Athens. Of course, we used the Greek meal as a chance to drink a bottle of wine to toast the fact we each found the only other young couple on the cruise!