Athens–Day One

During our 4-day stay in Athens, we are staying at Hotel Attalos in the Old Town area. It is a 6-story stucco building with a rooftop bar that overlooks the Acropolis. The sight of it lit up at night is breathtaking!

We were told that of the 11 million people of Greek, almost half live in Athens, and the majority of them seem to smoke and drive around! The smell of cigarette smoke and diesel fuel is pervasive. There are, however, pedestrian-only shopping areas and those are delightful–lined with stores and outdoor cafes.

We walked thru one of those areas today, Ermou Street, and enjoyed a delectable lunch of grilled plevrotous (oyster mushrooms) in a balsamic cream, grilled Haloumi cheese (from Crete) drizzled with honey and sesame, and Dakas rusko, a version of crostini topped with fresh mint.

The street is divided by an 11th century Byzantine church, shown below.

After our afternoon siesta, to get relief from the heat in addition to resting, we had dinner at Mandra, an estiatorio in the Psyrri, a local neighborhood that had been recommended by an internet friend as her fave. The food was superb, and there was live music!

We ended the day by enjoying ouzo at our hotel rooftop bar while gazing at the golden lit Acropolis….

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