Joe Figg’s holiday in Athens: First stop, The Acropolis

DSC_0612 Greece was amazing. The Hellenic country is filled with beautiful landscapes and a plethora of ancient history. For me, 5 days wasn’t nearly enough time to enjoy all the aspects of Greece. Even in my limited time, I still managed to take in the sites of Athens and even managed to make it out to Cape Sounio. I landed in Athens on February 15th and the X-95 bus driver refused to take us all the way to Syntagma. He dropped us about a mile out and a little marooned. The Greeks were having an anti-austerity protest in Syntagma Square, and so, I would just have to push through a few thousand people to get to where I was going. The locals were more then happy to point me in the right direction.

DSC_0034 I kept the Acropolis at my back to ensure I was heading due north, and I knew by the view of the Acropolis in the night sky where my first destination was going to be. Sure it was the obvious pick, but I was new to Greece and it was the easiest landmark to find.

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The walk up to the acropolis was filled with ancient statues and memorial stones. I was on a mission to reach the summit, but the South Slope itself held some treasures I wasn’t expecting. As I walked upon the Dionysus Theater I stopped to sit among the stadium seating and imagined what it must have felt like to enjoy ancient Greek culture.

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The Dionysus Theater was built around the 5th century B.C.E. It is a very simple open-air theater where the Greeks would put on performances. These performances were held mostly as competitions that could be won by different performing acts. The theater is built of Aktites, a stone local to Piraeus.

DSC_0093The second theater I encountered was the theater of Odeon of Herodes Atticus. This theater was built somewhere in the 2nd century A.D. and to my understanding is still used today during the Athens festivals in Greece. This theater is well maintained and is constantly up kept. It unfortunately was under construction when I arrived, and I could only snap pictures from above the theater.

DSC_0098As I passed through the Propylaia and entered the Acropolis, I was struck with awe that was inspired by the Ionic marble pillars, and massive marble steps, that lead into the Acropolis. This entryway gave you a true sense of the grandeur of Greek and Athenian culture.

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Though much of the Acropolis was under major construction, the Erechtheion and the Parthenon were open and available for photographs. The Erechtheion was the first building that caught my interest during my approach to the Legendary Parthenon. The Erechtheon is one of the more impressive temples in the Acropolis and was build around 406 B.C.E., only a few years before the Spartans sacked the city of Athens.

DSC_0126The Parthenon is the epic building that probably comes to mind when someone mentions the Athens Acropolis. This epic monument was built around 430 B.C.E. and is a tribute to the Goddess Athena. The Parthenon houses about 50 massive, and very impressive, columns. This building was also under massive construction though I was still able to snap a few good photos. The Acropolis was a wonderful place to spend my first day in Athens, and a great way to gear up for the rest of my Greek adventures. Well, there are plenty more Athens posts to come, but for now, here are the rest of my Acropolis photos.

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