The Acropolis of Athens

The Acropolis of Athens, the most famous of the many acropolises in Greece, is situated approximately 500 feet above the coastal section of the city, on a flat, seven acre section of craggy limestone, offering stunning views of Athens and beyond.

Construction of the buildings was completed in just fifty years during the mid 5th century BC, although excavations of the area indicate that it was inhabited as early as 4000 BC. Over the years, it has survived wars, invasions, and earthquakes. During the Morean War between the Venetians and Ottomans in the 17th century, the Ottomans stored gun powder in the area. When the Venetians learned about the gunpowder they attacked, causing serious damage. It survived all this, and is still standing strong today.

The Pantheon

Along the hike up to the ruins you’ll see the Theater Dionysus the home of the Greek Tragedy, Odeon of Herodes Atticus, and other structures in various shapes and forms.

Odeon of Herodes Atticus

Restoration of the buildings began in 1975.

Almost there!

Once we reached the top, oh my, I was completely blown away to be in the presence of such an iconic place! Even the hundreds of visitors couldn’t quench my excitement. We took our time, wandered around, and theTravelsketcher got the opportunity to do a sketch.

Sketch courtesy of theTravelsketcher

The Propylaia

Temple of Athena Nike

The Erechtheion

On the way down, a man in front of us had some heated words (in Greek) with one of the workers who was continually reminding people not to touch the marble pillars. He walked a few feet away from her and immediately placed his hand directly on a pillar, and glanced back in her direction. She was looking in the other direction at that point. He was an older man, not a child or angst teenager, old enough to know better; sheesh! Incidentally, the marble used in the construction came from Mount Pentelicus about ten miles away. It had to be mined, hauled all that distance, then up the steep hill to its final resting place.

Over the years the Acropolis of Athens has served as a fortress, military base, and a major religious center for the worship of the goddess Athena, the patron deity of Athens. It became a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1987.

The path is well worn and slippery in places, so be sure to wear sturdy shoes. In fact, an elderly man walking not far from me, fell hard and landed flat on his front side. He was quite large and it took several of us to help him up. He insisted he was fine, but he fell hard. So be sure to use caution and watch your step.

Tickets run about 30€ each (that’s with our senior citizen discount) but are well worth the price. There is an elevator for those needing it. Be sure to bring water, as most of the approximately 30 minute hike is steep and exposed to full sun.

Leaving Athens

Seeing the Acropolis of Athens has been on my bucket list for years, and it did not disappoint. Have you been to the Acropolis? Even if you haven’t, I would love to hear from you.

Wishing you grand adventures,

Tricia

22 thoughts on “The Acropolis of Athens

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  1. That is such an amazing sight. I’m in awe of the statues at the Temple of Athena Nike – still in great condition after so many centuries! Your last photo of the sun rays over the sea is doing justice to the magic of the Acropolis!

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  2. Tricia, your comment about the obstinant older man was similar to an older man at the hospital yesterday. He was using the electronic kiosk to check in and the gal came over and asked him if he needed help and he responded VERY sarcastically and the poor gal was left speechless. I was inches away from upbraiding him for his exceedingly poor response but held back. I regretted later not coming to her aid as her job would not allow her to be anything other than apologetic. Customer service is such a tough assignment and I would fail utterly. But those pictures are so wonderful, thanks for sharing.

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  3. I LOVED Athens – the Acropolis truly is one of the most special sites in the world. The man touching the marble sounds like a grade A jerk. And I hope the elderly man who fell over was OK – my husband actually fell over on our visit but that was because it was snowing and he fell on the ice!

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  4. Enjoyed your perspective on this truly iconic site, Tricia. I must have read dozens of blogs on the Acropolis over the years, but I think each one brings something new to the table. Some lovely details here, such as the sunlight dancing off the stone and plant life springing from the cracks. Are their wild turtles around the place?! Your closing sunset shot is magnificent.

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  5. Amazing pictures Tricia! I never knew about the columns in the shape of women. I am amazed at the incredible detail they were able to achieve with ancient tools.

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    1. Thanks Don! I’m glad you enjoyed the post! It truly is a spectacular place, and the attention to detail, like you say with just ancient tools, makes it even more amazing. It’s good to hear from you; I hope you’re doing well.

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  6. I have to begin with your last and thoroughly awe inspiring sunset photo. Ahhh–lovely! You’ve captured several FABULOUS sunset shots on your journeys! I was on my own the first time I visited The Acropolis; a history teacher wanting to quietly experience all the magnificence . I bought fresh tomatoes, bread, and a bottle of water and just sat on a rock, soaked it all in, and felt like time had stopped. As for the jerk you’re encountered, at least we know that jerks appear across all cultures. Wish I’d been there to trip him. As for the gentleman who fell, what he will remember is the kindness of strangers. Just take a moment and think all the amazing sights you’ve seen on just this last trip. Wow!

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    1. Thanks Shirley! I love your description of your visit to the Acropolis; what an amazing place for a picnic! It takes all types to make the world go round, as they say; and that includes jerks. Thanks again reading and commenting!

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  7. Athens is one of those cities that I have a hard time wrapping my brain around such an extensive history. Such incredible architecture- especially the Athena statue holding up the building! Shame on that man for deliberately breaking the rules. It makes me want to slap his hand and say ‘don’t touch that!’ and then follow it up with ‘if you’re going to act like a child then I’m going to treat you like a child’. I really wish someone would have done that to him.

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  8. Great post! I was there this summer and despite the renovations, it was truly impressive to see such old buildings stand tall, overlooking the whole city. Athens truly is a wonderful city with an incredibly rich history! Thanks for sharing!

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