Being in Athens was like sipping on a huge cup of culture and even though I’m a self confessed beach bunny when it comes to favouring the type of trip I take, I feel like Athens has changed my mind on that. Participating in Greece Photo Workshops was a great way to see the city, a packed itinerary was put together (justifying my previous claim of six to eight hours of walking a day) and it was totally welcomed. From the very first day of visiting the Acropolis to ending the trip over good food and drinks at Mavro Provato, the Greece Photo Workshop team made sure there was no alleyway left unexplored or landmark un-photographed.
What to See
Some of my favourite places to visit were of course, the Acropolis, but also the museum as it was a lot more interesting re-learning about what I was looking at, rather than racking my brain for old history lesson facts from years (and years) ago. If you have access to a car on an upcoming trip, you have to go to Sounion, (about an hour’s drive South West of the city) to visit the Temple of Poseidon. It’s so beautiful and being by the coast line and ocean gives you such a different dynamic to being in the city.
Another highlight had to be heading up via the funicular railway (only abour €5 for a single ticket) to Mount Lycabettus for the most incredible view of Athens. It’s also quite fun hiking down and working up an appetite for some pizza or a Greek salad in Kolonaki.
Where to Go
If you’re like me and live for pretty doors and a bit of originality, you have to visit the old neighbourhood of Plaka. Grab a coffee to-go and just walk around, there’s more than enough to keep you enchanted there. I also fell in love with Monastiraki, so many Greek and Roman ruins to keep you fascinated as well as some Ottoman mosques and wonderful views of The Acropolis from everywhere. It’s also an area well known for flea markets and shopping. I bought two of pairs of sandals (pretty enough to rival AGS) for just €20 each!
Where to Eat
When it comes to food, there was never a bad meal. I loved eating at Nice N’ Easy because they had quinoa and kale on the menu, but Rock N’ Balls was also a favourite due to the lively atmosphere and everything meat-ball related (with veggie options too), and for something a little more upscale and refined, Cookoovaya was the perfect place for a relaxing dinner.
I had such a lovely time in Athens and even though I’m well on my way to trip number 5 (or 6?) in just three months, this one is going to be a memorable one for me. I can’t wait to be back in Greece to explore the islands next time and I’d love yo say a huge thank you to Greece Photo Workshops and Discover Greece for all their generous hospitality as well as Aegean Airlines for flying us out.
Less than a year ago I visited Athens for the first time, but unfortunately I barely got to see the city, so when I was invited along on a trip to do a photography workshop with Carrie, I was already putting it in my schedule before I could reply to say “yes, please”.
We arrived in Athens about a week ago and checked in to our hotel, Divani Caravel to prepare for a full four days of exploring every corner the capital had to offer. Our hotel was set in a lovely and quiet area of town but also within walking distance to local restaurants such as Cookoovaya. Each day was packed full of something new to visit or experience and naturally we started with the Acropolis and continued on to visit the historic landmarks, as well as some of the old neighbourhoods and more upscale part of town, Kolonaki. Our days consisted of about six to eight hours of walking with a lot of information to take in, so I set off making sure I was fully equipped with my V Water (for natural boosts of vitamins), a fully charged camera and the comfiest shoes I could style.
Other than not being able to master a single word correctly in Greek, I got to see so much of Athens that I feel like a full blown Athenian, it also helps that the wonderful team behind Greece Photo Workshops were so much fun to hang out with that I genuinely feel as though I have left behind some great friends in this beautiful city. Some of my highlights from the trip, as well as a short list of recommendations for food, atmosphere and what to see and do will be featured in my upcoming posts.
For now, I’m keeping it short and sweet with a few shots of some the characterful corners in the old neighbourhood of Plaka, the pretty streets of Kolonaki (marble, everywhere! ) and one of my favourite features about Athens, the bright and beautiful orange trees that are plotted all over the city.
One of my favourite things about living in Dubai is having the beach so close by. A mere ten minute drive from my house means there’s never an excuse not to have the sand beneath my toes anytime I wish, but I have to be honest, ever since I moved here from London, I haven’t found myself at the beach as much as I would like to be, but when Reem is in town it’s a different story. We are at Kite Beach every weekend and most cheat days to indulge in one of our favourite burgers at Salt.
Usually there’s a huge queue and we’re not very good at waiting for food so our trick is to head there just before the sun starts to set when it’s a lot less busy than it would be at night. Seriously you have to try this place, go for the chicken Cheeto’s burger (yes, Cheeto’s in your burger), pair it with fries and their home-made lemonade and you can thank me later.
I’ll be talking about Kite Beach and my favourite things to do there in our Dubai Guide coming soon!