Athens

Athens

Overview
Athens (ˈ; , Athína, aˈθina, Katharevousa
Katharevousa
Katharevousa , is a form of the Greek language conceived in the early 19th century as a compromise between Ancient Greek and the Modern Greek of the time, with a vocabulary largely based on ancient forms, but a much-simplified grammar. Originally, it was widely used both for literary and official...

: Ἀθῆναι, Athine, Ancient Greek
Ancient Greek
Ancient Greek is the stage of the Greek language in the periods spanning the times c. 9th–6th centuries BC, , c. 5th–4th centuries BC , and the c. 3rd century BC – 6th century AD of ancient Greece and the ancient world; being predated in the 2nd millennium BC by Mycenaean Greek...

: Ἀθῆναι, Athēnai), is the capital
Capital City
Capital City was a television show produced by Euston Films which focused on the lives of investment bankers in London living and working on the corporate trading floor for the fictional international bank Shane-Longman....

 and largest city of Greece
Greece
Greece , officially the Hellenic Republic , and historically Hellas or the Republic of Greece in English, is a country in southeastern Europe....

. Athens dominates the Attica region and is one of the world's oldest cities, as its recorded history
Recorded history
Recorded history is the period in history of the world after prehistory. It has been written down using language, or recorded using other means of communication. It starts around the 4th millennium BC, with the invention of writing.-Historical accounts:...

 spans around 3,400 years. Classical Athens
Classical Athens
The city of Athens during the classical period of Ancient Greece was a notable polis of Attica, Greece, leading the Delian League in the Peloponnesian War against Sparta and the Peloponnesian League. Athenian democracy was established in 508 BC under Cleisthenes following the tyranny of Hippias...

 was a powerful city-state
Polis
Polis , plural poleis , literally means city in Greek. It could also mean citizenship and body of citizens. In modern historiography "polis" is normally used to indicate the ancient Greek city-states, like Classical Athens and its contemporaries, so polis is often translated as "city-state."The...

. A centre for the arts, learning and philosophy
Philosophy
Philosophy is the study of general and fundamental problems, such as those connected with existence, knowledge, values, reason, mind, and language. Philosophy is distinguished from other ways of addressing such problems by its critical, generally systematic approach and its reliance on rational...

, home of Plato
Plato
Plato , was a Classical Greek philosopher, mathematician, student of Socrates, writer of philosophical dialogues, and founder of the Academy in Athens, the first institution of higher learning in the Western world. Along with his mentor, Socrates, and his student, Aristotle, Plato helped to lay the...

's Academy
Platonic Academy
The Academy was founded by Plato in ca. 387 BC in Athens. Aristotle studied there for twenty years before founding his own school, the Lyceum. The Academy persisted throughout the Hellenistic period as a skeptical school, until coming to an end after the death of Philo of Larissa in 83 BC...

 and Aristotle
Aristotle
Aristotle was a Greek philosopher and polymath, a student of Plato and teacher of Alexander the Great. His writings cover many subjects, including physics, metaphysics, poetry, theater, music, logic, rhetoric, linguistics, politics, government, ethics, biology, and zoology...

's Lyceum, it is widely referred to as the cradle
Cradle of Civilization
The cradle of civilization is a term referring to any of the possible locations for the emergence of civilization.It is usually applied to the Ancient Near Eastern Chalcolithic , especially in the Fertile Crescent , but also extended to sites in Armenia, and the Persian Plateau, besides other Asian...

 of Western civilization and the birthplace of democracy
Democracy
Democracy is generally defined as a form of government in which all adult citizens have an equal say in the decisions that affect their lives. Ideally, this includes equal participation in the proposal, development and passage of legislation into law...

, largely due to the impact of its cultural and political achievements during the 5th and 4th centuries BC on the rest of the then known European continent
Europe
Europe is, by convention, one of the world's seven continents. Comprising the westernmost peninsula of Eurasia, Europe is generally 'divided' from Asia to its east by the watershed divides of the Ural and Caucasus Mountains, the Ural River, the Caspian and Black Seas, and the waterways connecting...

.
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Timeline

490 BC   The Battle of Marathon takes places between the forces of the Persian Empire and those of Athens

338 BC   A Macedonian army led by Philip II defeated the combined forces of Athens and Thebes in the Battle of Chaeronea, securing Macedonian hegemony in Greece and the Aegean.

322 BC   Battle of Crannon between Athens and Macedon.

86 BC   Lucius Cornelius Sulla, at the head of a Roman Republic army, enters Athens, removing the tyrant Aristion who was supported by troops of Mithridates VI of Pontus.

1687   The Parthenon in Athens is partially destroyed by an explosion caused by the bombing from Venetian forces led by Morosini who are besieging the Ottoman Turks stationed in Athens.

1687   The Parthenon in Athens is partially destroyed by an explosion caused by the bombing from Venetian forces led by Morosini who are besieging the Ottoman Turks stationed in Athens.

1859   The first modern revival of the Olympic Games takes place in Athens, Greece.

1863   Danish Prince Wilhelm arrives in Athens to assume his throne as George I, King of the Hellenes.

1896   In Athens, the opening of the first modern Olympic Games is celebrated, 1,500 years after the original games are banned by Roman Emperor Theodosius I.

1901   Bloody clashes take place in Athens following the translation of the Gospels into demotic Greek.

1906   The 1906 Summer Olympics, not now recognized as part of the official Olympic Games, open in Athens.

1917   King Alexander assumes the throne of Greece after his father Constantine I abdicates under pressure by allied armies occupying Athens.

1941   World War II: The Greek government and King George II evacuate Athens before the invading Wehrmacht.

1941   World War II: German troops enter Athens.

 
Encyclopedia
Athens (ˈ; , Athína, aˈθina, Katharevousa
Katharevousa
Katharevousa , is a form of the Greek language conceived in the early 19th century as a compromise between Ancient Greek and the Modern Greek of the time, with a vocabulary largely based on ancient forms, but a much-simplified grammar. Originally, it was widely used both for literary and official...

: Ἀθῆναι, Athine, Ancient Greek
Ancient Greek
Ancient Greek is the stage of the Greek language in the periods spanning the times c. 9th–6th centuries BC, , c. 5th–4th centuries BC , and the c. 3rd century BC – 6th century AD of ancient Greece and the ancient world; being predated in the 2nd millennium BC by Mycenaean Greek...

: Ἀθῆναι, Athēnai), is the capital
Capital City
Capital City was a television show produced by Euston Films which focused on the lives of investment bankers in London living and working on the corporate trading floor for the fictional international bank Shane-Longman....

 and largest city of Greece
Greece
Greece , officially the Hellenic Republic , and historically Hellas or the Republic of Greece in English, is a country in southeastern Europe....

. Athens dominates the Attica region and is one of the world's oldest cities, as its recorded history
Recorded history
Recorded history is the period in history of the world after prehistory. It has been written down using language, or recorded using other means of communication. It starts around the 4th millennium BC, with the invention of writing.-Historical accounts:...

 spans around 3,400 years. Classical Athens
Classical Athens
The city of Athens during the classical period of Ancient Greece was a notable polis of Attica, Greece, leading the Delian League in the Peloponnesian War against Sparta and the Peloponnesian League. Athenian democracy was established in 508 BC under Cleisthenes following the tyranny of Hippias...

 was a powerful city-state
Polis
Polis , plural poleis , literally means city in Greek. It could also mean citizenship and body of citizens. In modern historiography "polis" is normally used to indicate the ancient Greek city-states, like Classical Athens and its contemporaries, so polis is often translated as "city-state."The...

. A centre for the arts, learning and philosophy
Philosophy
Philosophy is the study of general and fundamental problems, such as those connected with existence, knowledge, values, reason, mind, and language. Philosophy is distinguished from other ways of addressing such problems by its critical, generally systematic approach and its reliance on rational...

, home of Plato
Plato
Plato , was a Classical Greek philosopher, mathematician, student of Socrates, writer of philosophical dialogues, and founder of the Academy in Athens, the first institution of higher learning in the Western world. Along with his mentor, Socrates, and his student, Aristotle, Plato helped to lay the...

's Academy
Platonic Academy
The Academy was founded by Plato in ca. 387 BC in Athens. Aristotle studied there for twenty years before founding his own school, the Lyceum. The Academy persisted throughout the Hellenistic period as a skeptical school, until coming to an end after the death of Philo of Larissa in 83 BC...

 and Aristotle
Aristotle
Aristotle was a Greek philosopher and polymath, a student of Plato and teacher of Alexander the Great. His writings cover many subjects, including physics, metaphysics, poetry, theater, music, logic, rhetoric, linguistics, politics, government, ethics, biology, and zoology...

's Lyceum, it is widely referred to as the cradle
Cradle of Civilization
The cradle of civilization is a term referring to any of the possible locations for the emergence of civilization.It is usually applied to the Ancient Near Eastern Chalcolithic , especially in the Fertile Crescent , but also extended to sites in Armenia, and the Persian Plateau, besides other Asian...

 of Western civilization and the birthplace of democracy
Democracy
Democracy is generally defined as a form of government in which all adult citizens have an equal say in the decisions that affect their lives. Ideally, this includes equal participation in the proposal, development and passage of legislation into law...

, largely due to the impact of its cultural and political achievements during the 5th and 4th centuries BC on the rest of the then known European continent
Europe
Europe is, by convention, one of the world's seven continents. Comprising the westernmost peninsula of Eurasia, Europe is generally 'divided' from Asia to its east by the watershed divides of the Ural and Caucasus Mountains, the Ural River, the Caspian and Black Seas, and the waterways connecting...

. Today a cosmopolitan metropolis, modern Athens is central to economic, financial, industrial, political and cultural life in Greece and it is rated as an Alpha world city
Global city
A global city is a city that is deemed to be an important node in the global economic system...

. In 2008, Athens was ranked the world's 32nd richest city by purchasing power and the 25th most expensive in a UBS
UBS AG
UBS AG is a Swiss global financial services company headquartered in Basel and Zürich, Switzerland, which provides investment banking, asset management, and wealth management services for private, corporate, and institutional clients worldwide, as well as retail clients in Switzerland...

 study.

The Greek capital has a population of 655,780 (796,442 back in 2004) within its administrative limits and a land area of 39 km² (15 sq mi). The urban area
Urban area
An urban area is characterized by higher population density and vast human features in comparison to areas surrounding it. Urban areas may be cities, towns or conurbations, but the term is not commonly extended to rural settlements such as villages and hamlets.Urban areas are created and further...

 of Athens (Greater Athens and Greater Piraeus) extends beyond the administrative municipal city limits
City limits
The terms city limits and city boundary refer to the defined boundary or border of a city. The area within the city limits is sometimes called the city proper. The terms town limits/boundary and village limits/boundary mean the same as city limits/boundary, but apply to towns and villages...

, with a population of 3,074,160 (in 2011), over an area of 412 km² (159 sq mi). According to Eurostat
Eurostat
Eurostat is a Directorate-General of the European Commission located in Luxembourg. Its main responsibilities are to provide the European Union with statistical information at European level and to promote the integration of statistical methods across the Member States of the European Union,...

, the Athens Larger Urban Zone (LUZ) is the 7th most populous LUZ in the European Union
European Union
The European Union is an economic and political union of 27 independent member states which are located primarily in Europe. The EU traces its origins from the European Coal and Steel Community and the European Economic Community , formed by six countries in 1958...

 (the 4th most populous capital city of the EU
European Union
The European Union is an economic and political union of 27 independent member states which are located primarily in Europe. The EU traces its origins from the European Coal and Steel Community and the European Economic Community , formed by six countries in 1958...

) with a population of 4,013,368 (in 2004).

The heritage of the classical era
Classical Greece
Classical Greece was a 200 year period in Greek culture lasting from the 5th through 4th centuries BC. This classical period had a powerful influence on the Roman Empire and greatly influenced the foundation of Western civilizations. Much of modern Western politics, artistic thought, such as...

 is still evident in the city, represented by a number of ancient monument
Ancient monument
An ancient monument is an early historical structure or monument worthy of preservation and study due to archaeological or heritage interest. In the United Kingdom it is a legal term, differing from the American term National Monument in being far more numerous and always man-made...

s and works of art, the most famous of all being the Parthenon
Parthenon
The Parthenon is a temple on the Athenian Acropolis, Greece, dedicated to the Greek goddess Athena, whom the people of Athens considered their virgin patron. Its construction began in 447 BC when the Athenian Empire was at the height of its power. It was completed in 438 BC, although...

, widely considered a key landmark of early Western civilization
Western culture
Western culture, sometimes equated with Western civilization or European civilization, refers to cultures of European origin and is used very broadly to refer to a heritage of social norms, ethical values, traditional customs, religious beliefs, political systems, and specific artifacts and...

. The city also retains a vast variety of Roman
Roman Greece
Roman Greece is the period of Greek history following the Roman victory over the Corinthians at the Battle of Corinth in 146 BC until the reestablishment of the city of Byzantium and the naming of the city by the Emperor Constantine as the capital of the Roman Empire...

 and Byzantine
Byzantine Empire
The Byzantine Empire was the Eastern Roman Empire during the periods of Late Antiquity and the Middle Ages, centred on the capital of Constantinople. Known simply as the Roman Empire or Romania to its inhabitants and neighbours, the Empire was the direct continuation of the Ancient Roman State...

 monuments, as well as a smaller number of remaining Ottoman
Ottoman Empire
The Ottoman EmpireIt was usually referred to as the "Ottoman Empire", the "Turkish Empire", the "Ottoman Caliphate" or more commonly "Turkey" by its contemporaries...

 monuments projecting the city's long history across the centuries. Athens is home to two UNESCO World Heritage Sites, the Acropolis of Athens
Acropolis of Athens
The Acropolis of Athens or Citadel of Athens is the best known acropolis in the world. Although there are many other acropoleis in Greece, the significance of the Acropolis of Athens is such that it is commonly known as The Acropolis without qualification...

 and the medieval Daphni Monastery
Daphni Monastery
Dafní or Daphní is a monastery 11 km north-west of downtown Athens in Chaidari, south of Athinon Avenue . It is situated near the forest of the same name, on the Sacred Way that led to Eleusis...

. Landmarks of the modern era, dating back to the establishment of Athens as the capital of the independent Greek state in 1833, include the Hellenic Parliament
Hellenic Parliament
The Hellenic Parliament , also the Parliament of the Hellenes, is the Parliament of Greece, located in the Parliament House , overlooking Syntagma Square in Athens, Greece....

 (19th century) and the Athens Trilogy consisting of the National Library of Greece
National Library of Greece
The National Library of Greece is situated near the center of city of Athens. It was designed by the Danish architect Theophil Freiherr von Hansen, as part of his famous Trilogy of neo-classical buildings including the Academy of Athens and the original building of the Athens...

, the Athens University
National and Kapodistrian University of Athens
The National and Kapodistrian University of Athens , usually referred to simply as the University of Athens, is the oldest university in Southeast Europe and has been in continuous operation since its establishment in 1837. Today, it is the second-largest institution of higher learning in Greece,...

 and the Academy of Athens
Academy of Athens (modern)
The Academy of Athens is Greece's national academy, and the highest research establishment in the country. It was established in 1926, and operates under the supervision of the Ministry of Education...

. Athens was the host city of the first modern-day Olympic Games
1896 Summer Olympics
The 1896 Summer Olympics, officially known as the Games of the I Olympiad, was a multi-sport event celebrated in Athens, Greece, from April 6 to April 15, 1896. It was the first international Olympic Games held in the Modern era...

 in 1896, and 108 years later it welcomed home the 2004 Summer Olympics
2004 Summer Olympics
The 2004 Summer Olympic Games, officially known as the Games of the XXVIII Olympiad, was a premier international multi-sport event held in Athens, Greece from August 13 to August 29, 2004 with the motto Welcome Home. 10,625 athletes competed, some 600 more than expected, accompanied by 5,501 team...

. Athens is home to the National Archeological Museum, featuring the world's largest collection of ancient Greek antiquities, as well as the new Acropolis Museum
Acropolis Museum
The Old Acropolis Museum was an archaeological museum located in Athens, Greece on the archeological site of Acropolis. It is built in a niche at the eastern edge of the rock and most of it lies beneath the level of the hilltop, making it largely invisible. It was considered one of the major...

.

Etymology


In Ancient Greek
Ancient Greek
Ancient Greek is the stage of the Greek language in the periods spanning the times c. 9th–6th centuries BC, , c. 5th–4th centuries BC , and the c. 3rd century BC – 6th century AD of ancient Greece and the ancient world; being predated in the 2nd millennium BC by Mycenaean Greek...

, the name of Athens was: atʰɛ̂ːnai, related tο the name of the goddess Athena
Athena
In Greek mythology, Athena, Athenê, or Athene , also referred to as Pallas Athena/Athene , is the goddess of wisdom, courage, inspiration, civilization, warfare, strength, strategy, the arts, crafts, justice, and skill. Minerva, Athena's Roman incarnation, embodies similar attributes. Athena is...

 (Attic
Attic Greek
Attic Greek is the prestige dialect of Ancient Greek that was spoken in Attica, which includes Athens. Of the ancient dialects, it is the most similar to later Greek, and is the standard form of the language studied in courses of "Ancient Greek". It is sometimes included in Ionic.- Origin and range...

  [atʰɛːnâː] and Ionic
Ionic Greek
Ionic Greek was a subdialect of the Attic–Ionic dialect group of Ancient Greek .-History:Ionic dialect appears to have spread originally from the Greek mainland across the Aegean at the time of the Dorian invasions, around the 11th Century B.C.By the end of the Greek Dark Ages in the 5th Century...

  [aˈtʰɛːnɛː]).
In Homeric Greek
Homeric Greek
Homeric Greek is the form of the Greek language that was used by Homer in the Iliad and Odyssey. It is an archaic version of Ionic Greek, with admixtures from certain other dialects, such as Aeolic Greek. It later served as the basis of Epic Greek, the language of epic poetry, typically in...

 the city's name was in the singular
Grammatical number
In linguistics, grammatical number is a grammatical category of nouns, pronouns, and adjective and verb agreement that expresses count distinctions ....

 form then changed in the plural, like those of (Thēbai
Thebes, Greece
Thebes is a city in Greece, situated to the north of the Cithaeron range, which divides Boeotia from Attica, and on the southern edge of the Boeotian plain. It played an important role in Greek myth, as the site of the stories of Cadmus, Oedipus, Dionysus and others...

), (Mukēnai
Mycenae
Mycenae is an archaeological site in Greece, located about 90 km south-west of Athens, in the north-eastern Peloponnese. Argos is 11 km to the south; Corinth, 48 km to the north...

), and (Delphoi
Delphi
Delphi is both an archaeological site and a modern town in Greece on the south-western spur of Mount Parnassus in the valley of Phocis.In Greek mythology, Delphi was the site of the Delphic oracle, the most important oracle in the classical Greek world, and a major site for the worship of the god...

).

An etiological myth explaining how Athens acquired this name was well known among ancient Athenians and even became the theme of the sculpture on the West pediment of the Parthenon
Parthenon
The Parthenon is a temple on the Athenian Acropolis, Greece, dedicated to the Greek goddess Athena, whom the people of Athens considered their virgin patron. Its construction began in 447 BC when the Athenian Empire was at the height of its power. It was completed in 438 BC, although...

. Both Athena
Athena
In Greek mythology, Athena, Athenê, or Athene , also referred to as Pallas Athena/Athene , is the goddess of wisdom, courage, inspiration, civilization, warfare, strength, strategy, the arts, crafts, justice, and skill. Minerva, Athena's Roman incarnation, embodies similar attributes. Athena is...

 and Poseidon
Poseidon
Poseidon was the god of the sea, and, as "Earth-Shaker," of the earthquakes in Greek mythology. The name of the sea-god Nethuns in Etruscan was adopted in Latin for Neptune in Roman mythology: both were sea gods analogous to Poseidon...

 requested to be patrons of the city and to give their name to it, so they competed with one another for the honor, offering the city one gift each. Poseidon produced a salt water spring
Spring (hydrosphere)
A spring—also known as a rising or resurgence—is a component of the hydrosphere. Specifically, it is any natural situation where water flows to the surface of the earth from underground...

 by striking the ground with his trident, symbolizing naval power. Athena created the olive tree, symbolizing peace
Olive branch
The olive branch in Western culture, derived from the customs of Ancient Greece, symbolizes peace or victory and was worn by brides.-Ancient Greece and Rome:...

 and prosperity
Prosperity
Prosperity is the state of flourishing, thriving, good fortune and/or successful social status. Prosperity often encompasses wealth but also includes others factors which are independent of wealth to varying degrees, such as happiness and health....

. The Athenians, under their ruler Cecrops
Cecrops I
Cecrops was a mythical king of Athens who is said to have reigned for fifty-six years. The name is not of Greek origin according to Strabo, or it might mean 'face with a tail': it is said that, born from the earth itself, he had his top half shaped like a man and the bottom half in serpent or...

, accepted the olive tree and named the city after Athena.

Since the official abandonment of Katharevousa
Katharevousa
Katharevousa , is a form of the Greek language conceived in the early 19th century as a compromise between Ancient Greek and the Modern Greek of the time, with a vocabulary largely based on ancient forms, but a much-simplified grammar. Originally, it was widely used both for literary and official...

 Greek in the 1970s, the demotic Αθήνα (Athína / [aˈθina]) has become the city's official name in place of .

The city is often referred to as τὸ κλεινὸν ἄστυ, its nickname in Greek, which means in English the Glorious City.

History


The oldest known human presence in Athens is the Cave of Schist which has been dated to between the 11th and 7th millennium BC. Athens has been continuously inhabited for at least 7000 years.
By 1400 BC the settlement had become an important centre of the Mycenaean
Mycenaean Greece
Mycenaean Greece was a cultural period of Bronze Age Greece taking its name from the archaeological site of Mycenae in northeastern Argolis, in the Peloponnese of southern Greece. Athens, Pylos, Thebes, and Tiryns are also important Mycenaean sites...

 civilization and the Acropolis was the site of a major Mycenae
Mycenae
Mycenae is an archaeological site in Greece, located about 90 km south-west of Athens, in the north-eastern Peloponnese. Argos is 11 km to the south; Corinth, 48 km to the north...

an fortress whose remains can be recognised from sections of the characteristic Cyclopean walls. Unlike other Mycenaean centers, such as Mycenae
Mycenae
Mycenae is an archaeological site in Greece, located about 90 km south-west of Athens, in the north-eastern Peloponnese. Argos is 11 km to the south; Corinth, 48 km to the north...

 and Pylos
Pylos
Pylos , historically known under its Italian name Navarino, is a town and a former municipality in Messenia, Peloponnese, Greece. Since the 2011 local government reform it is part of the municipality Pylos-Nestoras, of which it is the seat and a municipal unit. It was the capital of the former...

, it is not known whether Athens suffered destruction in about 1200 BC, an event often attributed to a Dorian invasion, and the Athenians always maintained that they were "pure" Ionia
Ionia
Ionia is an ancient region of central coastal Anatolia in present-day Turkey, the region nearest İzmir, which was historically Smyrna. It consisted of the northernmost territories of the Ionian League of Greek settlements...

ns with no Dorian element. However, Athens, like many other Bronze Age settlements
Bronze Age collapse
The Bronze Age collapse is a transition in southwestern Asia and the Eastern Mediterranean from the Late Bronze Age to the Early Iron Age that some historians believe was violent, sudden and culturally disruptive...

, went into economic decline for around 150 years following this.

Iron Age
Iron Age
The Iron Age is the archaeological period generally occurring after the Bronze Age, marked by the prevalent use of iron. The early period of the age is characterized by the widespread use of iron or steel. The adoption of such material coincided with other changes in society, including differing...

 burials, in the Kerameikos and other locations, are often richly provided for and demonstrate that from 900 BC onwards Athens was one of the leading centers of trade and prosperity in the region. The leading position of Athens may well have resulted from its central location in the Greek world, its secure stronghold on the Acropolis and its access to the sea, which gave it a natural advantage over inland rivals such as Thebes and Sparta
Sparta
Sparta or Lacedaemon, was a prominent city-state in ancient Greece, situated on the banks of the River Eurotas in Laconia, in south-eastern Peloponnese. It emerged as a political entity around the 10th century BC, when the invading Dorians subjugated the local, non-Dorian population. From c...

.

By the 6th century BC, widespread social unrest led to the reforms of Solon
Solon
Solon was an Athenian statesman, lawmaker, and poet. He is remembered particularly for his efforts to legislate against political, economic and moral decline in archaic Athens...

. These would pave the way for the eventual introduction of democracy
Democracy
Democracy is generally defined as a form of government in which all adult citizens have an equal say in the decisions that affect their lives. Ideally, this includes equal participation in the proposal, development and passage of legislation into law...

 by Cleisthenes
Cleisthenes
Cleisthenes was a noble Athenian of the Alcmaeonid family. He is credited with reforming the constitution of ancient Athens and setting it on a democratic footing in 508/7 BC...

 in 508 BC. Athens had by this time become a significant naval power with a large fleet, and helped the rebellion of the Ionian cities
Ionian Revolt
The Ionian Revolt, and associated revolts in Aeolis, Doris, Cyprus and Caria, were military rebellions by several regions of Asia Minor against Persian rule, lasting from 499 BC to 493 BC...

 against Persia
Achaemenid Empire
The Achaemenid Empire , sometimes known as First Persian Empire and/or Persian Empire, was founded in the 6th century BCE by Cyrus the Great who overthrew the Median confederation...

n rule. In the ensuing Greco-Persian Wars
Greco-Persian Wars
The Greco-Persian Wars were a series of conflicts between the Achaemenid Empire of Persia and city-states of the Hellenic world that started in 499 BC and lasted until 449 BC. The collision between the fractious political world of the Greeks and the enormous empire of the Persians began when Cyrus...

 Athens, together with Sparta, led the coalition of Greek states that repelled the Persians, defeating them decisively at Marathon
Battle of Marathon
The Battle of Marathon took place in 490 BC, during the first Persian invasion of Greece. It was fought between the citizens of Athens, aided by Plataea, and a Persian force commanded by Datis and Artaphernes. It was the culmination of the first attempt by Persia, under King Darius I, to subjugate...

 in 490 BC and crucially at Salamis
Battle of Salamis
The Battle of Salamis was fought between an Alliance of Greek city-states and the Persian Empire in September 480 BCE, in the straits between the mainland and Salamis, an island in the Saronic Gulf near Athens...

 in 480 BC.


The decades that followed became known as the Golden Age of Athenian democracy, during which time Athens became the leading city of Ancient Greece
Ancient Greece
Ancient Greece is a civilization belonging to a period of Greek history that lasted from the Archaic period of the 8th to 6th centuries BC to the end of antiquity. Immediately following this period was the beginning of the Early Middle Ages and the Byzantine era. Included in Ancient Greece is the...

, with its cultural achievements laying the foundations of Western civilization
Western culture
Western culture, sometimes equated with Western civilization or European civilization, refers to cultures of European origin and is used very broadly to refer to a heritage of social norms, ethical values, traditional customs, religious beliefs, political systems, and specific artifacts and...

. The playwrights Aeschylus
Aeschylus
Aeschylus was the first of the three ancient Greek tragedians whose work has survived, the others being Sophocles and Euripides, and is often described as the father of tragedy. His name derives from the Greek word aiskhos , meaning "shame"...

, Sophocles
Sophocles
Sophocles is one of three ancient Greek tragedians whose plays have survived. His first plays were written later than those of Aeschylus, and earlier than or contemporary with those of Euripides...

 and Euripides
Euripides
Euripides was one of the three great tragedians of classical Athens, the other two being Aeschylus and Sophocles. Some ancient scholars attributed ninety-five plays to him but according to the Suda it was ninety-two at most...

 all lived and worked in Athens during this time, as did the historians Herodotus
Herodotus
Herodotus was an ancient Greek historian who was born in Halicarnassus, Caria and lived in the 5th century BC . He has been called the "Father of History", and was the first historian known to collect his materials systematically, test their accuracy to a certain extent and arrange them in a...

 and Thucydides
Thucydides
Thucydides was a Greek historian and author from Alimos. His History of the Peloponnesian War recounts the 5th century BC war between Sparta and Athens to the year 411 BC...

, the physician Hippocrates
Hippocrates
Hippocrates of Cos or Hippokrates of Kos was an ancient Greek physician of the Age of Pericles , and is considered one of the most outstanding figures in the history of medicine...

, and the philosopher Socrates
Socrates
Socrates was a classical Greek Athenian philosopher. Credited as one of the founders of Western philosophy, he is an enigmatic figure known chiefly through the accounts of later classical writers, especially the writings of his students Plato and Xenophon, and the plays of his contemporary ...

. Guided by Pericles
Pericles
Pericles was a prominent and influential statesman, orator, and general of Athens during the city's Golden Age—specifically, the time between the Persian and Peloponnesian wars...

, who promoted the arts and fostered democracy, Athens embarked on an ambitious building program that saw the construction of the Acropolis of Athens
Acropolis of Athens
The Acropolis of Athens or Citadel of Athens is the best known acropolis in the world. Although there are many other acropoleis in Greece, the significance of the Acropolis of Athens is such that it is commonly known as The Acropolis without qualification...

 (including the Parthenon
Parthenon
The Parthenon is a temple on the Athenian Acropolis, Greece, dedicated to the Greek goddess Athena, whom the people of Athens considered their virgin patron. Its construction began in 447 BC when the Athenian Empire was at the height of its power. It was completed in 438 BC, although...

), as well as empire-building via the Delian League
Delian League
The Delian League, founded in circa 477 BC, was an association of Greek city-states, members numbering between 150 to 173, under the leadership of Athens, whose purpose was to continue fighting the Persian Empire after the Greek victory in the Battle of Plataea at the end of the Greco–Persian Wars...

. Originally intended as an association of Greek city-states to continue the fight against the Persians, the league soon turned into a vehicle for Athens' own imperial ambitions. The resulting tensions brought about the Peloponnesian War
Peloponnesian War
The Peloponnesian War, 431 to 404 BC, was an ancient Greek war fought by Athens and its empire against the Peloponnesian League led by Sparta. Historians have traditionally divided the war into three phases...

 (431-404 BC), in which Athens was defeated by its rival Sparta
Sparta
Sparta or Lacedaemon, was a prominent city-state in ancient Greece, situated on the banks of the River Eurotas in Laconia, in south-eastern Peloponnese. It emerged as a political entity around the 10th century BC, when the invading Dorians subjugated the local, non-Dorian population. From c...

.

By the end of Late Antiquity
Late Antiquity
Late Antiquity is a periodization used by historians to describe the time of transition from Classical Antiquity to the Middle Ages, in both mainland Europe and the Mediterranean world. Precise boundaries for the period are a matter of debate, but noted historian of the period Peter Brown proposed...

 the city experienced decline followed by recovery in the second half of the Middle Byzantine Period (9th–10th centuries AD), and was relatively prosperous during the Crusades
Crusades
The Crusades were a series of religious wars, blessed by the Pope and the Catholic Church with the main goal of restoring Christian access to the holy places in and near Jerusalem...

, benefiting from Italian trade. In 1453 it was conquered by the Ottoman Empire
Ottoman Empire
The Ottoman EmpireIt was usually referred to as the "Ottoman Empire", the "Turkish Empire", the "Ottoman Caliphate" or more commonly "Turkey" by its contemporaries...

 and entered a long period of decline.

Following the Greek War of Independence
Greek War of Independence
The Greek War of Independence, also known as the Greek Revolution was a successful war of independence waged by the Greek revolutionaries between...

, Athens was chosen as the capital of the newly independent Greek state in 1834, largely due to historical and sentimental reasons. At the time it was a town of modest size built around the foot of the Acropolis. The first King of Greece, Otto of Bavaria, commissioned the architects Stamatios Kleanthis and Gustav Schaubert to design a modern city plan fit for the capital of a state.

The first modern city plan consisted of a triangle defined by the Acropolis
Acropolis
Acropolis means "high city" in Greek, literally city on the extremity and is usually translated into English as Citadel . For purposes of defense, early people naturally chose elevated ground to build a new settlement, frequently a hill with precipitous sides...

, the ancient cemetery of Kerameikos and the new palace of the Bavarian king (now housing the Greek Parliament), so as to highlight the continuity between modern and ancient Athens. Neoclassicism, the international style of this epoch, was the architectural style through which Bavarian, French and Greek architects such as Hansen, Klenze, Boulanger or Kaftantzoglou designed the first important public buildings of the new capital. In 1896 Athens hosted the first modern Olympic Games
Olympic Games
The Olympic Games is a major international event featuring summer and winter sports, in which thousands of athletes participate in a variety of competitions. The Olympic Games have come to be regarded as the world’s foremost sports competition where more than 200 nations participate...

. During the 1920s a number of Greek refugees, expelled from Asia Minor
Anatolia
Anatolia is a geographic and historical term denoting the westernmost protrusion of Asia, comprising the majority of the Republic of Turkey...

 after the Greco-Turkish War (1919-1922)
Greco-Turkish War (1919-1922)
The Greco–Turkish War of 1919–1922, known as the Western Front of the Turkish War of Independence in Turkey and the Asia Minor Campaign or the Asia Minor Catastrophe in Greece, was a series of military events occurring during the partitioning of the Ottoman Empire after World War I between May...

, swelled Athens' population; nevertheless it was most particularly following World War II
World War II
World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

, and from the 1950s and 1960s, that the population of the city exploded, and Athens experienced a gradual expansion in all directions. In the 1980s it became evident that smog from factories and an ever increasing fleet of automobiles, as well as a lack of adequate free space due to congestion, had evolved into the city's most important challenge. A series of anti-pollution measures taken by the city's authorities in the 1990s, combined with a substantial improvement of the city's infrastructure (including the Attiki Odos
Attiki Odos
Attiki Odos is a privately owned toll motorway in Greece. The Proastiakos high-speed suburban rail is set almost entirely in the median of the motorway, along its main section. The motorway's numbers are 6 for the main section, 64 for the Hymettus Beltway and 65 for the Aigaleo Beltway...

 motorway, the expansion of the Athens Metro
Athens Metro
The Athens Metro is an underground rapid transit system serving Athens, the capital city of Greece. It was constructed and owned by Attiko Metro S.A. and operated until 2011 by Attiko Metro Etaireia Leitourgias S.A....

, and the new Athens International Airport), considerably alleviated pollution and transformed Athens into a much more functional city. In 2004 Athens hosted the 2004 Summer Olympics
2004 Summer Olympics
The 2004 Summer Olympic Games, officially known as the Games of the XXVIII Olympiad, was a premier international multi-sport event held in Athens, Greece from August 13 to August 29, 2004 with the motto Welcome Home. 10,625 athletes competed, some 600 more than expected, accompanied by 5,501 team...

 with great success.

Geography


Athens sprawls across the central plain of Attica
Attica
Attica is a historical region of Greece, containing Athens, the current capital of Greece. The historical region is centered on the Attic peninsula, which projects into the Aegean Sea...

 that is often referred to as the Athens or Attica Basin (Greek
Modern Greek
Modern Greek refers to the varieties of the Greek language spoken in the modern era. The beginning of the "modern" period of the language is often symbolically assigned to the fall of the Byzantine Empire in 1453, even though that date marks no clear linguistic boundary and many characteristic...

: Λεκανοπέδιο Αττικής). The basin is bounded by four large mountains: Mount Aegaleo
Egaleo
Aegaleo, commonly Aigaleo or Egaleo is a municipality west of Athens, Greece, situated west of the Cephissos river and southeast of Mount Egaleo...

 to the west, Mount Parnitha
Parnitha
Mount Parnitha is a densely forested mountain range north of Athens, the highest on the peninsula of Attica, with an elevation of 1,413 m and a summit known as Karavola...

 to the north, Mount Penteli
Penteli, Greece
Penteli is a town and a municipality in the North Athens regional unit, Attica, Greece. It belongs to the Athens metropolitan area and Athens' Megalo Daktylo. One of its city halls is located next to the central square. About 80% of the non-urban land consists of Penteliko Mountain...

 to the northeast and Mount Hymettus
Hymettus
Hymettus, also Hymettos is a mountain range in the Athens area, East Central Greece. It is also colloquially known as Trellos or Trellovouno , a name of uncertain origin...

 to the east. Beyond Mount Aegaleo lies the Thriasian plain
Thriasian Plain
The Thriasian Plain is a plain in western Attica, immediately to the west of Athens, in Greece. It is bounded by Mount Egaleo to the east, Mount Parnitha to the north, Mount Pateras to the west, and the Bay of Eleusina to the south.-History:...

, which forms an extension of the central plain to the west. The Saronic Gulf
Saronic Gulf
The Saronic Gulf or Gulf of Aegina in Greece forms part of the Aegean Sea and defines the eastern side of the isthmus of Corinth. It is the eastern terminus of the Corinth Canal, which cuts across the isthmus.-Geography:The gulf includes the islands of; Aegina, Salamis, and Poros along with...

 lies in the southwest. Mount Parnitha is the tallest of the four mountains (1413 m (4,636 ft)) and it has been declared a national park
National park
A national park is a reserve of natural, semi-natural, or developed land that a sovereign state declares or owns. Although individual nations designate their own national parks differently A national park is a reserve of natural, semi-natural, or developed land that a sovereign state declares or...

.

Athens is built around a number of hills. Lycabettus
Mount Lycabettus
Mount Lycabettus, also known as Lycabettos, Lykabettos or Lykavittos , is a Cretaceous limestone hill in Athens, Greece. At 277 meters above sea level, the hill is the highest point in the city that surrounds it. Pine trees cover its base, and at its peak are the 19th century Chapel of St...

 is one of the tallest hills of the city proper and provides a view of the entire Attica Basin. The geomorphology of Athens is deemed to be one of the most complex in the world due to its mountains and causes a temperature inversion
Inversion (meteorology)
In meteorology, an inversion is a deviation from the normal change of an atmospheric property with altitude. It almost always refers to a temperature inversion, i.e...

 phenomenon which, along with the failure of the Greek Government to control industrial pollution, is responsible for the air pollution problems the city has recently faced. This issue is not characteristic of Athens alone; for intsance, Los Angeles
Los Ángeles
Los Ángeles is the capital of the province of Biobío, in the commune of the same name, in Region VIII , in the center-south of Chile. It is located between the Laja and Biobío rivers. The population is 123,445 inhabitants...

 and Mexico City
Mexico City
Mexico City is the Federal District , capital of Mexico and seat of the federal powers of the Mexican Union. It is a federal entity within Mexico which is not part of any one of the 31 Mexican states but belongs to the federation as a whole...

 also suffer from similar geomorphology inversion problems.

Climate


Athens has a subtropical Mediterranean climate
Mediterranean climate
A Mediterranean climate is the climate typical of most of the lands in the Mediterranean Basin, and is a particular variety of subtropical climate...

 (Köppen
Köppen climate classification
The Köppen climate classification is one of the most widely used climate classification systems. It was first published by Crimea German climatologist Wladimir Köppen in 1884, with several later modifications by Köppen himself, notably in 1918 and 1936...

 Csa) and receives just enough annual precipitation to avoid Köppen's BSh (semi-arid climate) classification. The dominant feature of Athens climate is alternation between prolonged warm and dry summers and mild, wet winters. With an average of 414.1 millimetres (16.3 in) of yearly precipitation, rainfall occurs largely between the months of October and April. July and August are the driest months, where thunderstorms occur sparsely once or twice a month. Winters are cool and rainy, with a January average of 8.9 °C (48 °F); in Nea Filadelfeia
Nea Filadelfeia
Nea Filadelfeia is a suburb in the northern part of Athens, Greece. Since the 2011 local government reform it is part of the municipality Filadelfeia-Chalkidona, of which it is the seat and a municipal unit....

 and 10.3 °C (50.5 °F) in Hellinikon; Snowstorms are infrequent but can cause significant disruption when they occur. Snowfalls are more frequent in the northern suburbs of the city.

Mount Parnitha
Parnitha
Mount Parnitha is a densely forested mountain range north of Athens, the highest on the peninsula of Attica, with an elevation of 1,413 m and a summit known as Karavola...

 creates a rainshadow for the city, as a result of which precipitation is typically lower than in other parts of the Balkans; for a typical comparison, Tirana
Tirana
Tirana is the capital and the largest city of Albania. Modern Tirana was founded as an Ottoman town in 1614 by Sulejman Bargjini, a local ruler from Mullet, although the area has been continuously inhabited since antiquity. Tirana became Albania's capital city in 1920 and has a population of over...

 receives over three times more rainfall and Shkodra about five times as much. Daily average highs for July have been measured at 33.5 °C (92.3 °F) at Nea Filadelfeia
Nea Filadelfeia
Nea Filadelfeia is a suburb in the northern part of Athens, Greece. Since the 2011 local government reform it is part of the municipality Filadelfeia-Chalkidona, of which it is the seat and a municipal unit....

 weather station, but other parts of the city may be even warmer, in particular western parts partially due to industrialization or mainly due to various natural reasons (knowledge of which we have at least from the mid 19th century). Temperatures often surpass 38 °C (100 °F) during the city's notorious heatwaves.

The city of Athens is affected by the urban heat island
Urban heat island
An urban heat island is a metropolitan area which is significantly warmer than its surrounding rural areas. The phenomenon was first investigated and described by Luke Howard in the 1810s, although he was not the one to name the phenomenon. The temperature difference usually is larger at night...

 effect in some areas which is caused by human activity, altering its temperatures compared to the surrounding rural areas, that has detrimental effects on energy usage, expenditure for cooling, and health. The urban heat island of the city has been found partially responsible also for alterations of the climatological temperature time-series of specific Athens meteorological stations due to its impact on the temperatures and the temperatures trends recorded by some meteorological stations. On the other hand specific meteorological stations such as the National Garden station and Thiseio meteorological station are less affected or do not experience the urban heat island

Athens holds the World Meteorological Organisation record for the highest temperature ever being recorded in Europe of 48 °C (118.4 °F) which was recorded in Elefsina
Eleusina
Eleusina is a town and municipality in West Attica, Greece. It is situated about 18 km northwest from the centre of Athens. It is located in the Thriasian Plain, at the northernmost end of the Saronic Gulf. It is the seat of administration of West Attica regional unit...

 and Tatoi suburbs of Athens on 10 July 1977.
Below are the meteorological data for the northern suburb of Nea Filadelfeia

Government


Athens became the capital
Capital City
Capital City was a television show produced by Euston Films which focused on the lives of investment bankers in London living and working on the corporate trading floor for the fictional international bank Shane-Longman....

 of Greece in 1834, following Nafplion
Nafplion
Nafplio is a seaport town in the Peloponnese in Greece that has expanded up the hillsides near the north end of the Argolic Gulf. The town was the first capital of modern Greece, from the start of the Greek Revolution in 1821 until 1834. Nafplio is now the capital of the peripheral unit of...

 which was the provisional capital from 1829. In addition, the municipality of Athens is the capital of the Attica region. Athens can refer either to the municipality of Athens or to the entire Athens Urban Area
Urban area
An urban area is characterized by higher population density and vast human features in comparison to areas surrounding it. Urban areas may be cities, towns or conurbations, but the term is not commonly extended to rural settlements such as villages and hamlets.Urban areas are created and further...

, which makes up the "City of Athens" that sprawls across the Attica Basin.

Attica Region


The Athens Metropolitan Area sprawling over 2928.717 km² (1,131 sq mi) is located within the 3808 km² (1,470 sq mi) Attica region. The region encompasses the most populated region of Greece, reaching 3,812,330 inhabitants in 2011, while it is however, one of the smallest regions in the country.

The Attica region itself is split into eight regional units, out of which the first four form Greater Athens, while the regional unit of Piraeus forms Greater Piraeus. Together they make up the contiguous built up urban area
Urban area
An urban area is characterized by higher population density and vast human features in comparison to areas surrounding it. Urban areas may be cities, towns or conurbations, but the term is not commonly extended to rural settlements such as villages and hamlets.Urban areas are created and further...

 of the Greek capital, spanning over 412 km² (159 sq mi).
  • North Athens (Urban Area)
  • West Athens (Urban Area)
  • Central Athens (Urban Area)
  • South Athens (Urban Area)
  • East Attica
    East Attica
    East Attica is one of the regional units of Greece. It is part of the region of Attica. The capital of the regional unit is the town of Pallini. The regional unit covers the eastern part of the agglomeration of Athens, and also the rural area to its east....

     (Metropolitan area)
  • Piraeus (Urban Area)
  • Islands
  • West Attica
    West Attica
    West Attica is one of the regional units of Greece. It is part of the region of Attica. The capital of the regional unit is the town of Elefsina. The regional unit covers the western part of the agglomeration of Athens, and the area to its west....

     (Metropolitan Area)


Until 2010, the first four regional units above also made up the abolished Athens Prefecture
Athens Prefecture
The Athens Prefecture was one of the prefectures of Greece. It was part of the Attica region and the Athens-Piraeus super-prefecture. The capital of the prefecture was the city of Athens. After Lefkada Prefecture it was the second-smallest in Greece, but was the most populous and most densely...

, what is referred to as Greater Athens, which was the most populous of the Prefectures of Greece
Prefectures of Greece
During the first administrative division of independent Greece in 1833–1836 and then again from 1845 until their abolition with the Kallikratis reform in 2010, the prefectures were the country's main administrative unit...

 at the time, accounting for 2,664,776 people (in 2001), within an area of 361 km² (139 sq mi).

Athens Municipality


The municipality
Municipality
A municipality is essentially an urban administrative division having corporate status and usually powers of self-government. It can also be used to mean the governing body of a municipality. A municipality is a general-purpose administrative subdivision, as opposed to a special-purpose district...

 of Athens is the most populous in Greece, with a population of 655,780 people (in 2011) and an area of 39 km² (15 sq mi). The current mayor of Athens is Giorgos Kaminis
Giorgos Kaminis
Georgios Kaminis is an American Greek professor of constitutional law, and mayor of Athens since December 29 2010. He was the Greek Ombudsman from April 2003 until September 2010.-Early life:...

. It is divided into seven municipal districts. The 7-district division is mainly used for administrative purposes. For Athenians the most popular way of dividing the city proper is through its neighbourhoods such as Pagkrati
Pangrati
Pangrati or Pagkrati is a neighborhood in the Municipality of Athens, Greece. It is bordered by the Kolonaki neighborhood to the north, the Kaisariani Municipality to the east, the Vyronas Municipality to the south, and the Mets neighborhood to the west. It is not to be confused as a separate...

, Ambelokipi, Exarcheia
Exarcheia
Exarcheia, alternatively spelled as Exarchia, Exarheia and Exarhia , is the name of a neighborhood in downtown Athens, Greece close to the historical building of the National Technical University of Athens. The Exarcheia region is famous as a stomping ground for Greek anarchists...

, Patissia
Patissia
Patissia is a neighborhood of central Athens, Greece.It is split in two neighbourhoods: Ano Patissia and Kato Patissia . The main streets of Patissia are Patision Av. and Acharnon Av....

, Ilissia
Ilissia
- Notable people :*Nikko Patrelakis, musician...

, Petralona
Petralona
Petralona is a neighborhood of Athens, Greece located between Thiseio and Kallithea. Athenians refer to Petralona either as Ano Petralona or Kato Petralona, where Ano Petralona is the area between the hill of Filopappou and the railway and Kato Petralona the area between the railway and Piraeus...

, Koukaki
Koukaki
Koukaki is a southeast neighbourhood of the Municipality of Athens, Greece.-Location:The general area of Koukaki borders from the north with Makrygianni neighbourhood and the historical district of Plaka , the Municipality of Kallithea and Petralona neighbourhood from the south, Neos Kosmos...

 and Kypseli
Kypseli, Athens
Kypseli is a neighbourhood which forms much of the 6th municipal department in the centre of Athens, the capital of Greece. The population of the area is 147,500.-Boundaries:...

, each with its own distinct history and characteristics.

Greater Athens consists of the central municipality of Athens and 34 more municipalities, which are divided in the four regional units mentioned above.
Municipalities of Greater Athens
Central Section: 1. City of Athens  2. Dafni
Dafni–Ymittos
Dafni–Ymittos is a municipality in the Central Athens regional unit, Attica, Greece. The seat of the municipality is the town Dafni.-Municipality:...

 
3. Ilioupoli
Ilioupoli
Ilioupoli is a suburb in the south-southeastern part of metropolitan Athens, Greece.The area was made up of farmlands to the west and the central part and the rocky areas of the Hymettus to its east. Mixed farming was common in the western part. Much of the agricultural production that time was...

 
4. Vyronas
Vyronas
Vyronas is a suburb in the northeastern part of Athens, Greece. The city is named after George Gordon Byron, 6th Baron Byron, the famous English poet and writer, who is a national hero of Greece...

 
5. Kaisariani
Kaisariani
Kaisariani , also Kessariani, is a suburb in the eastern part of Athens, Greece. Kaisariani is located about 7 km from downtown Athens, about 4 km SW of Katechaki Avenue 4 km from the Hymettus Ring , which forms part of the Attiki Odos private superhighway network, and 6 km S...

 
6. Zografou
Zografou
Zografou is a suburb in the eastern part of Athens, Greece. It is located about 5 km from downtown Athens, 2 km SW of Katechaki Avenue, 4 km from the Hymettus Ring forming part of the Attiki Odos private superhighway network, and 3 km E of Kifissias Avenue...

 
7. Galatsi
Galatsi
Galatsi , called in Katharevousa Galatsion , is a northern suburb of Athens, Greece, and a municipality of the Attica region. Until the mid-20th century, the area was mainly made up of farmlands but due to the continuous expansion of the Greek capital, Galatsi was rapidly urbanised and has come to...

 
8. Filadelfeia
Filadelfeia–Chalkidona
Filadelfeia–Chalkidona is a municipality in the Central Athens regional unit, Attica, Greece. The seat of the municipality is the town Nea Filadelfeia.-Municipality:...

EWLINE
West Section:
29. Egaleo
Egaleo
Aegaleo, commonly Aigaleo or Egaleo is a municipality west of Athens, Greece, situated west of the Cephissos river and southeast of Mount Egaleo...

30. Agia Varvara
Agia Varvara
Agia Varvara The area was mainly made up of farmlands. Mixed farming was common. Urban development replaced much of the farmlands between the 1940s and the 1970s. Today, most of the municipality are urbanized or residential. The rocky landscape of Aigaleo with a few bushes and pine forests lies to...

31. Chaidari
Chaidari
Chaidari , is a suburb in the west northwestern part of Athens, Greece. The two mountaintops of Aigaleo lies to the north and south...

32. Peristeri
Peristeri
Peristeri is a suburban municipality in Athens, Greece, located about 5 km NW of the downtown area. The municipality is bordered by the Cephissus/Cephissos River, Athinon Avenue , Chaidari in the west and Petroupoli in the northwest, with a size of around...

33. Petroupoli
Petroupoli
Petroupoli is a suburb in the northwestern part of Athens Metropolitan Area, in Greece. The two peaks of Mount Aigaleo lie to the north and west of the suburb, and is located ESE of Eleusis, S of the Attiki Odos , W of Kifissou Avenue Petroupoli (Greek modern: Πετρούπολη, Katharevousa:...

34. Ilio
Ilio, Greece
Ilion is a suburb in the west-northwest part of Athens, Greece. The two mountaintops of Aigaleo lie to the west. It is also located east-southeast of Eleusis, south of Attiki Odos , west and southwest of Kifissou Avenue , and north of Piraeus and Poseidonos Avenue...

n
35. Agioi Anargyroi
Agioi Anargyroi
Agioi Anargyroi is a suburb in the northern part of Athens, Greece, named for Saints Cosmas and Damian...

 – Kamatero
Kamatero
Kamatero , is a suburb northwest of Athens, Greece. Since the 2011 local government reform it is part of the municipality Agioi Anargyroi-Kamatero, of which it is a municipal unit...

EWLINE
North Section:
9. Nea Ionia
Nea Ionia
Nea Ionia is a northern suburb of Athens, Greece, and a municipality of the Attica region. It has a surface train station . The suburb was named after Ionia, the region in Anatolia from which many Greeks migrated in the 1920s following the Population exchange between Greece and Turkey. It is...

10. Irakleio
Irakleio, Attica
Irakleio is a suburb in the northern part of Athens, Greece, and a municipality of the Attica region. Irakleio is divided into three parts, Palaio Irakleio, Neo Irakleio and Ano Irakleio. The name dates back to ancient times. The name during the Ottoman Empire until the Greek War of...

11. Metamorfosi
Metamorfosi
Metamorfosi is a suburb in the northern part of Athens, Greece, and a municipality of the Attica region...

12. Lykovrysi
Lykovrysi
Lykovrysi , is a suburb in the northern part of Athens, Greece. Since the 2011 local government reform it is part of the municipality Lykovrysi-Pefki, of which it is a municipal unit....

 - Pefki
Pefki
Pefki , is a suburb in the northeastern area of Athens, Greece. Since the 2011 local government reform it is part of the municipality Lykovrysi-Pefki, of which it is the seat and a municipal unit.-Geography:...

13. Kifissia
Kifissia
Kifissia or Kifisia is one of the most expensive northern suburbs of Athens, mainly accessed via Kifissias Avenue, running all the way from central Athens up to Theseos Avenue in the suburb of Nea Erythraia. It has traditionally been home to the major Greek political families...

14. Penteli
Penteli, Greece
Penteli is a town and a municipality in the North Athens regional unit, Attica, Greece. It belongs to the Athens metropolitan area and Athens' Megalo Daktylo. One of its city halls is located next to the central square. About 80% of the non-urban land consists of Penteliko Mountain...

15. Amarousio
Marousi
Marousi , alternative forms: Maroussi, Amarousion, and Amaroussion, is a suburban city NE of Athens, Greece. The Athens Olympic Sports Complex, the largest sports complex in Greece, is also located here; its main street is Kifisias Avenue, and also contains four ISAP train stations and two of the...

16. Vrilissia
Vrilissia
Vrilissia is a mildly urbanized northeastern suburb and a municipality of the North Athens regional unit, in the Attica region. It is located at the southwestern accessible foot of the Penteli Mountain, from which it was named after as the ancient name of the mountain was Vrilissos...

17. Ag. Paraskevi
Agia Paraskevi
Agia Paraskevi , is a suburb of Athens, Greece, in the northeast of Athens, about nine kilometers away from the city centre. It is linked to Athens by Mesogeion Avenue, a major road in the greater Athens area. It is a municipality within Attica region....

18. Cholargos
Cholargos
Cholargos is a suburb of Athens, Greece, located northeast of the city center and about 6 kilometers away from Syntagma square. Since the 2011 local government reform it is part of the municipality Papagou-Cholargos, of which it is the seat and a municipal unit.It is accessed by Messogion Avenue...

 - Papagou
Papagou
Papagou is a suburb in the northeastern part of Athens, Greece. The city is named after Marshal Alexandros Papagos, a Greek Army General who served in the Second World War...

19. Chalandri
Chalandri
Chalandri or Halandri is a northern suburb in Athens, Greece, and a municipality of the Attica region...

20. Filothei
Filothei
Filothei is a green, affluent northeastern suburb of Athens, Greece, consisting mainly of hillside villas, relatively close to the Olympic Stadium...

 - Psychiko
Psychiko
Psychiko is a suburb of Athens, Greece. Since the 2011 local government reform it is part of the municipality Filothei-Psychiko, of which it is the seat and a municipal unit.Psychiko is located to the south of the Olympic stadium...

South Section: 21. Glyfada
Glyfada
Glyfada is a suburb of Athens, situated in the southern parts of the Athens Metropolitan Area. The area, which is home to many of Greece's millionaires, ministers and celebrities, stretches out from the foot of the Hymettus mountain and reaches out to embrace the Saronic Gulf. It is the largest of...

  22. Argyroupoli
Elliniko–Argyroupoli
Elliniko–Argyroupoli is a municipality in the South Athens regional unit, Attica, Greece. The seat of the municipality is the town Argyroupoli.-Municipality:...

  23. Alimos
Alimos
Alimos is an affluent suburb in the south-southwestern part of Athens, Greece, also known as Kalamaki . Poseidonos Avenue runs in the western part of Alimos, with the Hymettus mountain to the east meeting mainly grassland, while areas to the north of Argyroupoli are forested...

  24. Agios Dimitrios
Agios Dimitrios
Agios Dimitrios is a suburb in the southern part of Athens, Greece. Several main roads pass through the city. It is also linked to Katechaki, Vouliagmenis Avenue to the east, Poseidonos Avenue Agios Dimitrios (Greek: Άγιος Δημήτριος meaning Saint Demetrius) is a suburb in the southern part of...

  25. Nea Smyrni
Nea Smyrni
Nea Smyrni is a southern suburb of Athens, Greece. Nea Smyrni is located about 5 km SW of downtown Athens, about 5 km SW of Kifissias Avenue, W of Vouliagmenis Avenue, about 6 km E of Piraeus, and NE of Poseidonos Avenue....

  26. Faliro
Palaio Faliro
Palaio Faliro is a suburb in the southern part of Athens, Greece. The area is famous for its beaches , forming Athens' nearest beach and Piraeus' only beach...

  27. Kallithea
Kallithea
Kallithea is the 8th largest municipality in Greece and the 4th biggest in the Athens urban area...

  28. Moschato
Moschato–Tavros
Moschato–Tavros is a municipality in the South Athens regional unit, Attica, Greece. The seat of the municipality is the town Moschato.-Municipality:...



The municipalities of Greater Athens along with the municipalities within Greater Piraeus
Piraeus
Piraeus is a city in the region of Attica, Greece. Piraeus is located within the Athens Urban Area, 12 km southwest from its city center , and lies along the east coast of the Saronic Gulf....

 (regional unit of Piraeus) form the Athens Urban Area, while the larger metropolitan area includes several additional suburbs and towns surrounding the dense urban area
Urban area
An urban area is characterized by higher population density and vast human features in comparison to areas surrounding it. Urban areas may be cities, towns or conurbations, but the term is not commonly extended to rural settlements such as villages and hamlets.Urban areas are created and further...

 of the Greek capital.

Cityscape


Architecture


The city of Athens contains a variety of different architectural style
Architectural style
Architectural styles classify architecture in terms of the use of form, techniques, materials, time period, region and other stylistic influences. It overlaps with, and emerges from the study of the evolution and history of architecture...

s, ranging from Greco-Roman
Greco-Roman world
The Greco-Roman world, Greco-Roman culture, or the term Greco-Roman , when used as an adjective, as understood by modern scholars and writers, refers to those geographical regions and countries that culturally were directly, protractedly and intimately influenced by the language, culture,...

, Neo-Classical
Neoclassical architecture
Neoclassical architecture was an architectural style produced by the neoclassical movement that began in the mid-18th century, manifested both in its details as a reaction against the Rococo style of naturalistic ornament, and in its architectural formulas as an outgrowth of some classicizing...

, to modern. They are often to be found in the same areas, as Athens is not marked by a uniformity of architectural style. Many of the most prominent buildings of the city are either Greco-Roman or neo-classical in styling. Some of the neo-classical structures to be found are public buildings erected during the mid-19th century, under the guidance of Theophil Freiherr von Hansen and Ernst Ziller
Ernst Ziller
Ernst Moritz Theodor Ziller was a Saxon architect who later became a Greek national, and in the late 19th and early 20th centuries was a major designer of royal and municipal buildings in Athens, Patras and other Greek cities.- Buildings :* Presidential Mansion, Athens* National Theatre of...

, and include the Athens Academy
Academy of Athens (modern)
The Academy of Athens is Greece's national academy, and the highest research establishment in the country. It was established in 1926, and operates under the supervision of the Ministry of Education...

, Athens City Hall, Greek Parliament
Hellenic Parliament
The Hellenic Parliament , also the Parliament of the Hellenes, is the Parliament of Greece, located in the Parliament House , overlooking Syntagma Square in Athens, Greece....

, Old Parliament
Old Parliament House, Athens
The Old Parliament building at Stadiou Street in Athens, housed the Greek Parliament between 1875 and 1932. It now houses the country's National Historical Museum .-History:...

 (1875–1932) (Now the National Historical Museum), University of Athens
National and Kapodistrian University of Athens
The National and Kapodistrian University of Athens , usually referred to simply as the University of Athens, is the oldest university in Southeast Europe and has been in continuous operation since its establishment in 1837. Today, it is the second-largest institution of higher learning in Greece,...

, and Zappeion
Zappeion
The Zappeion is a building in the National Gardens of Athens in the heart of Athens, Greece. It is generally used for meetings and ceremonies, both official and private.-Constructing the Zappeion:...

 Hall.

Beginning in the 1930s, the International style
International style (architecture)
The International style is a major architectural style that emerged in the 1920s and 1930s, the formative decades of Modern architecture. The term originated from the name of a book by Henry-Russell Hitchcock and Philip Johnson, The International Style...

 and other architectural movements such as Bauhaus
Bauhaus
', commonly known simply as Bauhaus, was a school in Germany that combined crafts and the fine arts, and was famous for the approach to design that it publicized and taught. It operated from 1919 to 1933. At that time the German term stood for "School of Building".The Bauhaus school was founded by...

 and Art Deco
Art Deco
Art deco , or deco, is an eclectic artistic and design style that began in Paris in the 1920s and flourished internationally throughout the 1930s, into the World War II era. The style influenced all areas of design, including architecture and interior design, industrial design, fashion and...

 began to exert an influence on almost all Greek architects, and many buildings both public and private were constructed in accordance with these styles. Localities with a great number of such buildings include Kolonaki
Kolonaki
Kolonaki , literally "Little Column" is a neighborhood in central Athens, Greece. It is located on the southwestern slopes of Lycabettus hill.Kolonaki is a wealthy, chic and upmarket district, and a fashionable meeting area...

, and some areas of the centre of the city; neighbourhoods developed in this period include Kypseli
Kypseli, Athens
Kypseli is a neighbourhood which forms much of the 6th municipal department in the centre of Athens, the capital of Greece. The population of the area is 147,500.-Boundaries:...

.

In the 1950s and 1960s during the vast extension and development of Athens, modern architecture played a very important role. The centre of Athens was largely rebuilt, leading to the demolition of a number of neoclassical buildings. The architects of this era employed materials such as glass, marble and aluminium, while some blended modern and classical elements. After World War II
World War II
World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

, internationally known architects to have designed and built in the city included Walter Gropius
Walter Gropius
Walter Adolph Georg Gropius was a German architect and founder of the Bauhaus School who, along with Ludwig Mies van der Rohe and Le Corbusier, is widely regarded as one of the pioneering masters of modern architecture....

, with his design for the US Embassy, and, amongst others, Eero Saarinen
Eero Saarinen
Eero Saarinen was a Finnish American architect and industrial designer of the 20th century famous for varying his style according to the demands of the project: simple, sweeping, arching structural curves or machine-like rationalism.-Biography:Eero Saarinen shared the same birthday as his father,...

, in his postwar design for the east terminal of the Ellinikon Airport
Ellinikon International Airport
Ellinikon International Airport , sometimes spelled Hellinikon was the international airport of Athens, Greece for sixty years up until 2001 when it was replaced by the new Athens International Airport. It is located south of Athens, and just west of Glyfada...

.

Notable Greek architects of the 1930s–1960s included Konstantinos Doxiadis
Konstantinos Apostolos Doxiadis
Constantinos Apostolou Doxiadis , was a Greek architect and town planner. He became world wide known as the lead architect of Islamabad, the new capital of Pakistan, and later as the father of Ekistics...

, Dimitris Pikionis
Dimitris Pikionis
Dimitri Pikionis or Demetrios Pikionis was a major Greek architect of the 20th century and had a considerable influence in Contemporary Greek Architecture...

, Pericles A. Sakellarios
Pericles A. Sakellarios
Perikles A. Sakellarios , was one of the leading figures in Greek architecture between 1936 and 1985.- Biography :Born in Corfu – Greece on 13 September 1905, first son of Aristidis Sakellarios and Thalia Mavrogianni....

, Aris Konstantinidis
Aris Konstantinidis
Aris Konstantinidis 1913 Athens - 1993 in Athens, was a notable Greek architect of modernism in Greece.Aris Konstantinidis was born in Athens and studied architecture in the Technical University of Munich from 1931 to 1936, where he came into contact with the architectural concept of the Modern...

 and others.

Neighborhoods



The municipality of Athens, the city center of the Athens Urban Area, is divided into several districts: Omonoia
Omonoia Square
Omonoia Square is a central square in Athens. It marks the northern corner of the downtown area defined by the city plans of the 19th century, and is one of the city's principal traffic hubs...

, Syntagma
Syntagma Square
Syntagma Square , is located in central Athens, Greece. The Square is named after the Constitution that King Otto was forced to grant the people after a popular and military uprising, on September 3, 1843....

, Exarcheia
Exarcheia
Exarcheia, alternatively spelled as Exarchia, Exarheia and Exarhia , is the name of a neighborhood in downtown Athens, Greece close to the historical building of the National Technical University of Athens. The Exarcheia region is famous as a stomping ground for Greek anarchists...

, Agios Nikolaos, Neapolis, Lykavittos
Mount Lycabettus
Mount Lycabettus, also known as Lycabettos, Lykabettos or Lykavittos , is a Cretaceous limestone hill in Athens, Greece. At 277 meters above sea level, the hill is the highest point in the city that surrounds it. Pine trees cover its base, and at its peak are the 19th century Chapel of St...

, Lofos Strefi, Lofos Finopoulou, Lofos Filopappou, Pedion Areos
Pedion tou Areos
The Pedion tou Areos or Pedion Areos is one of the largest public parks in Athens, Greece. It is also the name of the wider neighbourhood.-Park:...

, Metaxourgeio
Metaxourgeio
Metaxourgeio or Metaxourgio is a neighborhood of Athens, Greece. The neighborhood is located north of the historical center of Athens, between Kolonos to the east and Kerameikos to the west, and north of Gazi. Metaxourgeio is frequently described as a transition neighborhood...

, Aghios Kostantinos, Larissa Station, Kerameikos, Psiri
Psiri
Psiri ; formerly known as Ψύρα, Psyra or Ψυρίη, Psyrii) is a gentrified neighbourhood in Athens, Greece, today known for its restaurants, bars, live music tavernas, and small number of hotels....

, Monastiraki
Monastiraki
Monastiraki is a flea market neighborhood in the old town of Athens, Greece, and is one of the principal shopping districts in Athens. The area is home to clothing boutiques, souvenir shops, and specialty stores, and is a major tourist attraction in Athens and Attica for bargain shopping...

, Gazi
Gazi, Athens
Gazi is a neighborhood of Athens, Greece. It surrounds the old Athens gasworks, which is currently an industrial museum and exhibition space, widely known as Gazi, next to Keramikos and close to the Acropolis....

, Thission
Thiseio
Thiseio, also Thisseio, Thisio and Thissio is the name of a neighborhood in downtown Athens, Greece, northwest of the Acropolis, 1.5 km southwest of downtown, and 1 km southwest of city hall; its name derives from the Temple of Hephaestus, also known as Τhiseio, as it was, in earlier times,...

, Kapnikarea
Church of Panaghia Kapnikarea
The Church of Panaghia Kapnikarea or just Kapnikarea is a Greek Orthodox church one of the oldest churches in Athens.- History :It is estimated that the church was built some time in the 11th century, perhaps around 1050...

, Aghia Irini, Aerides, Anafiotika, Plaka
Plaka
Pláka is the old historical neighborhood of Athens, clustered around the northern and eastern slopes of the Acropolis, and incorporating labyrinthine streets and neoclassical architecture. Plaka is built on top of the residential areas of the ancient town of Athens...

, Acropolis
Acropolis
Acropolis means "high city" in Greek, literally city on the extremity and is usually translated into English as Citadel . For purposes of defense, early people naturally chose elevated ground to build a new settlement, frequently a hill with precipitous sides...

, Pnyka
Pnyx
The Pnyx is a hill in central Athens, the capital of Greece. It is located less than west of the Acropolis and 1.6 km south-west of the centre of modern Athens, Syntagma Square.-The site:...

, Makrygianni, Lofos Ardittou, Zappeion
Zappeion
The Zappeion is a building in the National Gardens of Athens in the heart of Athens, Greece. It is generally used for meetings and ceremonies, both official and private.-Constructing the Zappeion:...

, Aghios Spyridon, Pangrati
Pangrati
Pangrati or Pagkrati is a neighborhood in the Municipality of Athens, Greece. It is bordered by the Kolonaki neighborhood to the north, the Kaisariani Municipality to the east, the Vyronas Municipality to the south, and the Mets neighborhood to the west. It is not to be confused as a separate...

on, Kolonaki
Kolonaki
Kolonaki , literally "Little Column" is a neighborhood in central Athens, Greece. It is located on the southwestern slopes of Lycabettus hill.Kolonaki is a wealthy, chic and upmarket district, and a fashionable meeting area...

, Dexameni, Evaggelismos, Gouva, Aghios Ioannis, Neos Kosmos
Neos Kosmos, Athens
For the Greek influenced newspaper in Australia, see Neos Kosmos Neos Kosmos is the name of a neighborhood in the southwestern part of the city of Athens, Greece, near to the historic centre. Neos Kosmos is linked with the Syngrou Avenue to the south.It has two Attiko Metro subway stations, Neos...

, Koukaki
Koukaki
Koukaki is a southeast neighbourhood of the Municipality of Athens, Greece.-Location:The general area of Koukaki borders from the north with Makrygianni neighbourhood and the historical district of Plaka , the Municipality of Kallithea and Petralona neighbourhood from the south, Neos Kosmos...

, Kynosargous, Fix, Ano Petralona, Kato Petralona, Rouf, Votanikos
Votanikos
Votanikos is a subdivision located 3 km west of the downtown part of the Greek capital of Athens. The area is named after a nearby botanical garden situated to the southwest . The eastern part are residential, the western part are forested and industrialized. The subdivision has no squares but...

, Profitis Daniil, Akadimia Platonos
Akadimia Platonos
Akademia Platonos is a subdivision located 3 km west-northwest of the downtown part of the Greek capital of Athens. The area is named after the Plato's Academy. The area are is densely populated, with people mainly living in eight to ten storey buildings...

, Kolonos
Colonus
In classical Greece Hippeios Colonus was a deme about to the northwest of Athens, near Plato's Academy. There is also the Agoraios Kolonos , a hillock by the Athens Agora on which the temple of Hephaestus still stands.Hippeios Colonus held a temple of Poseidon and a sacred grove to the...

, Kolokynthou, Attikis Square, Lofos Skouze, Sepolia, Kypseli
Kypseli, Athens
Kypseli is a neighbourhood which forms much of the 6th municipal department in the centre of Athens, the capital of Greece. The population of the area is 147,500.-Boundaries:...

, Aghios Meletios, Nea Kypseli, Gyzi, Polygono, Ampelokipoi, Panormou-Gerokomeio, Pentagono, Ellinorosson, Kato Filothei
Filothei
Filothei is a green, affluent northeastern suburb of Athens, Greece, consisting mainly of hillside villas, relatively close to the Olympic Stadium...

, Ano Kypseli, Tourkovounia-Lofos Patatsou, Lofos Elikonos, Koliatsou, Thymarakia, Kato Patisia, Treis Gefyres, Aghios Eleftherios, Ano Patisia
Ano Patissia
Ano Patissia is a neighbourhood in Athens, Greece, and home of the Ano Patissia station.-Commerce:Near the ISAP station there are many businesses, including a large Internet cafe and billiard centre, many banks and companies,as also and one of the largest schools in Greece,Lycée Léonin.Further from...

, Kypriadou, Prompona, Aghios Panteleimonas, Pangrati
Pangrati
Pangrati or Pagkrati is a neighborhood in the Municipality of Athens, Greece. It is bordered by the Kolonaki neighborhood to the north, the Kaisariani Municipality to the east, the Vyronas Municipality to the south, and the Mets neighborhood to the west. It is not to be confused as a separate...

, Goudi, Ilisia, Kaisariani
Kaisariani
Kaisariani , also Kessariani, is a suburb in the eastern part of Athens, Greece. Kaisariani is located about 7 km from downtown Athens, about 4 km SW of Katechaki Avenue 4 km from the Hymettus Ring , which forms part of the Attiki Odos private superhighway network, and 6 km S...



  • Omonoia, Omonoia Square
    Omonoia Square
    Omonoia Square is a central square in Athens. It marks the northern corner of the downtown area defined by the city plans of the 19th century, and is one of the city's principal traffic hubs...

    , is the oldest square in Athens. It is surrounded by hotels and fast food outlets, and contains a train station used by the Athens Metro
    Athens Metro
    The Athens Metro is an underground rapid transit system serving Athens, the capital city of Greece. It was constructed and owned by Attiko Metro S.A. and operated until 2011 by Attiko Metro Etaireia Leitourgias S.A....

     and the Ilektrikos, appropriately named Omonoia Station
    Omonoia station
    Omonoia station is a subway station in Omonoia square of Athens used by Attiko Metro and ISAP.The first station opened 1895 but had been completely redesigned until 1930 as a Metro station. In 2000 the additional platforms for Line 2 was opened....

    . The square often becomes the focus for celebration of sporting victories, as seen after the country's winning of the Euro 2004 and the Eurobasket 2005 tournaments.

  • Metaxourgeio is a neighborhood of Athens, Greece. The neighborhood is located south of the historical center of Athens, between Kolonos to the east and Kerameikos to the west, and north of Gazi. Metaxourgeio
    Metaxourgeio
    Metaxourgeio or Metaxourgio is a neighborhood of Athens, Greece. The neighborhood is located north of the historical center of Athens, between Kolonos to the east and Kerameikos to the west, and north of Gazi. Metaxourgeio is frequently described as a transition neighborhood...

     is frequently described as a transition neighborhood. After a long period of abandonment in the late 20th century, the area is acquiring a reputation as an artistic and fashionable neighborhood due to the opening of many art galleries, museums, and trendy restaurants and cafes.[1] Moreover, local efforts to beautify and invigorate the neighborhood have reinforced a budding sense of community and artistic expression. Anonymous art pieces containing quotes and sayings in both English and Ancient Greek have begun springing up throughout the neighborhood, containing statements such as "Art for arts sake" (Τεχνη τεχνης χαριν). Guerilla gardening has also helped to beautify this area, taking advantage of the ample sunshine in Greece.

  • Psiri and Gazi - The reviving Psiri
    Psiri
    Psiri ; formerly known as Ψύρα, Psyra or Ψυρίη, Psyrii) is a gentrified neighbourhood in Athens, Greece, today known for its restaurants, bars, live music tavernas, and small number of hotels....

      neighbourhood – a.k.a. Athens's "meat packing district" – is dotted with renovated former mansions, artists' spaces, and small gallery areas. A number of its renovated buildings also now host a wide variety of fashionable bars, making it a hotspot for the city in the last decade, while a number of live music restaurants known as "rebetadika", after rebetiko
    Rebetiko
    Rebetiko, plural rebetika, , occasionally transliterated as Rembetiko, is a term used today to designate originally disparate kinds of urban Greek folk music which have come to be grouped together since the so-called rebetika revival, which started in the 1960s and developed further from the early...

    , a unique form of music that blossomed in Syros
    Syros
    Syros , or Siros or Syra is a Greek island in the Cyclades, in the Aegean Sea. It is located south-east of Athens. The area of the island is . The largest towns are Ermoupoli, Ano Syros, and Vari. Ermoupoli is the capital of the island and the Cyclades...

     and Athens from the 1920s until the 1960s, are also to be found. Rebetiko is admired by many, and as a result rebetadika are often crammed with people of all ages who will sing, dance and drink till dawn. The Gazi
    Gazi, Athens
    Gazi is a neighborhood of Athens, Greece. It surrounds the old Athens gasworks, which is currently an industrial museum and exhibition space, widely known as Gazi, next to Keramikos and close to the Acropolis....

      area, one of the latest in full redevelopment, is located around a historic gas factory, now converted into the Technopolis cultural multiplex, and also includes artists' areas, a number of small clubs, bars and restaurants, as well as Athens' nascent "Gay Village
    Gay village
    A gay village is an urban geographic location with generally recognized boundaries where a large number of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people live or frequent...

    ". The metro's system recent expansion to the western suburbs of the city has brought easier access to the area since spring 2007, as the blue line now stops at Gazi (Kerameikos station).

  • Syntagma, Syntagma Square
    Syntagma Square
    Syntagma Square , is located in central Athens, Greece. The Square is named after the Constitution that King Otto was forced to grant the people after a popular and military uprising, on September 3, 1843....

    , (/Constitution Square), is the capital's central and largest square, lying adjacent to the Greek Parliament
    Hellenic Parliament
    The Hellenic Parliament , also the Parliament of the Hellenes, is the Parliament of Greece, located in the Parliament House , overlooking Syntagma Square in Athens, Greece....

     (the former Royal Palace) and the city's most noted hotels
    Grande Bretagne
    The Grande Bretagne is a luxury city hotel in Greece, one of the most luxurious in southeastern Europe. It is located in central Athens immediately adjacent to Syntagma Square, on the corner of Vasileos Georgiou A' and Panepistimiou Streets, and is now part of "The Luxury Collection" hotel chain,...

    . Ermou Street, an approximately one kilometer-long pedestrian road connecting Syntagma Square
    Syntagma Square
    Syntagma Square , is located in central Athens, Greece. The Square is named after the Constitution that King Otto was forced to grant the people after a popular and military uprising, on September 3, 1843....

     to Monastiraki, has traditionally been a consumer paradise for both Athenians and tourists. Complete with fashion shops and shopping centres
    Shopping mall
    A shopping mall, shopping centre, shopping arcade, shopping precinct or simply mall is one or more buildings forming a complex of shops representing merchandisers, with interconnecting walkways enabling visitors to easily walk from unit to unit, along with a parking area — a modern, indoor version...

     promoting most international brands, it now finds itself in the top 5 most expensive shopping streets in Europe, and the tenth most expensive retail street in the world. Nearby, the renovated Army Fund building in Panepistimiou Street includes the "Attica" department store
    Department store
    A department store is a retail establishment which satisfies a wide range of the consumer's personal and residential durable goods product needs; and at the same time offering the consumer a choice of multiple merchandise lines, at variable price points, in all product categories...

     and several upmarket designer stores.


  • Plaka, Monastiraki, and Thission - Plaka
    Plaka
    Pláka is the old historical neighborhood of Athens, clustered around the northern and eastern slopes of the Acropolis, and incorporating labyrinthine streets and neoclassical architecture. Plaka is built on top of the residential areas of the ancient town of Athens...

     , lying just beneath the Acropolis
    Acropolis
    Acropolis means "high city" in Greek, literally city on the extremity and is usually translated into English as Citadel . For purposes of defense, early people naturally chose elevated ground to build a new settlement, frequently a hill with precipitous sides...

    , is famous for its plentiful neoclassical architecture
    Neoclassical architecture
    Neoclassical architecture was an architectural style produced by the neoclassical movement that began in the mid-18th century, manifested both in its details as a reaction against the Rococo style of naturalistic ornament, and in its architectural formulas as an outgrowth of some classicizing...

    , making up one of the most scenic districts of the city. It remains a traditionally prime tourist destination with a number of picturesque taverna
    Taverna
    Taverna refers to a small restaurant serving Greek cuisine, not to be confused with "tavern". The Greek word is ταβέρνα and is originally derived from the Latin word taberna...

    s, live performances and street salesmen. Nearby Monastiraki
    Monastiraki
    Monastiraki is a flea market neighborhood in the old town of Athens, Greece, and is one of the principal shopping districts in Athens. The area is home to clothing boutiques, souvenir shops, and specialty stores, and is a major tourist attraction in Athens and Attica for bargain shopping...

     , for its part, is well known for its string of small shops and markets, as well as its crowded flea market
    Flea market
    A flea market or swap meet is a type of bazaar where inexpensive or secondhand goods are sold or bartered. It may be indoors, such as in a warehouse or school gymnasium; or it may be outdoors, such as in a field or under a tent...

     and tavernas specialising in souvlaki
    Souvlaki
    Souvlaki or souvlakia is a popular Greek fast food consisting of small pieces of meat and sometimes vegetables grilled on a skewer. It may be served on the skewer for eating out of hand, in a pita sandwich with garnishes and sauces, or on a dinner plate, often with fried potatoes...

    . Another district notably famous for its student-crammed, stylish cafés is Theseum
    Temple of Hephaestus
    The Temple of Hephaestus, also known as the Hephaisteion or earlier as the Theseion, is the best-preserved ancient Greek temple; it remains standing largely as built. It is a Doric peripteral temple, and is located at the north-west side of the Agora of Athens, on top of the Agoraios Kolonos hill....

     or Thission , lying just west of Monastiraki. Thission is home to the ancient Temple of Hephaestus
    Temple of Hephaestus
    The Temple of Hephaestus, also known as the Hephaisteion or earlier as the Theseion, is the best-preserved ancient Greek temple; it remains standing largely as built. It is a Doric peripteral temple, and is located at the north-west side of the Agora of Athens, on top of the Agoraios Kolonos hill....

    , standing atop a small hill. This area also has a picturesque 11th Century Byzantine church, as well as a 15th Century Ottoman mosque.

  • Exarcheia
    Exarcheia
    Exarcheia, alternatively spelled as Exarchia, Exarheia and Exarhia , is the name of a neighborhood in downtown Athens, Greece close to the historical building of the National Technical University of Athens. The Exarcheia region is famous as a stomping ground for Greek anarchists...

     , located north of Kolonaki, has a mixed reputation as the recent or current location of the city's anarchist
    Anarchism
    Anarchism is generally defined as the political philosophy which holds the state to be undesirable, unnecessary, and harmful, or alternatively as opposing authority in the conduct of human relations...

     scene and as a culturally active student quarter with many cafés, bars and bookshops. Exarcheia is home to the Athens Polytechnic
    National Technical University of Athens
    The National Technical University of Athens , sometimes simply known as Athens Polytechnic, is among the oldest and most prestigious higher education institutions of Greece....

     and the National Archaeological Museum; it also contains numerous important buildings of several 20th-century styles: Neoclassicism
    Neoclassicism
    Neoclassicism is the name given to Western movements in the decorative and visual arts, literature, theatre, music, and architecture that draw inspiration from the "classical" art and culture of Ancient Greece or Ancient Rome...

    , Art Deco
    Art Deco
    Art deco , or deco, is an eclectic artistic and design style that began in Paris in the 1920s and flourished internationally throughout the 1930s, into the World War II era. The style influenced all areas of design, including architecture and interior design, industrial design, fashion and...

     and Early Modernism
    Modern architecture
    Modern architecture is generally characterized by simplification of form and creation of ornament from the structure and theme of the building. It is a term applied to an overarching movement, with its exact definition and scope varying widely...

     (including Bauhaus
    Bauhaus
    ', commonly known simply as Bauhaus, was a school in Germany that combined crafts and the fine arts, and was famous for the approach to design that it publicized and taught. It operated from 1919 to 1933. At that time the German term stood for "School of Building".The Bauhaus school was founded by...

     influences).

  • Kolonaki
    Kolonaki
    Kolonaki , literally "Little Column" is a neighborhood in central Athens, Greece. It is located on the southwestern slopes of Lycabettus hill.Kolonaki is a wealthy, chic and upmarket district, and a fashionable meeting area...

      is the area, at the base of Lycabettus hill
    Mount Lycabettus
    Mount Lycabettus, also known as Lycabettos, Lykabettos or Lykavittos , is a Cretaceous limestone hill in Athens, Greece. At 277 meters above sea level, the hill is the highest point in the city that surrounds it. Pine trees cover its base, and at its peak are the 19th century Chapel of St...

    , is full of boutiques catering to well-heeled customers by day, and bars and more fashionable restaurants by night, but at other points also a wide range of art galleries and museums. This is often regarded as one of the more prestigious areas of the capital.


Suburbs



The Athens Metropolitan Area consists of 58 (excluding the Islands regional unit municipalities) densely populated municipalities, sprawling around the municipality of Athens (the city center) in virtually all directions. According to their geographic location in relation to the city of Athens, the suburbs are divided into four zones; the northern suburbs (including Ekali
Ekali
Ekali is an exclusive suburban community of Athens -- just about 20 km to the north of the city. Ekali sits between the Athenian plain and the Penteli mountains. The plain is to the west; the forests at the foot of the Penteli mountain range lie to the east...

, Nea Erythrea
Nea Erythraia
Nea Erythraia , is a suburb in the northeastern part of Athens, Greece. Since the 2011 local government reform it is part of the municipality Kifisia, of which it is a municipal unit....

, Agios Stefanos, Drosia
Drosia
Drosia is a rather exclusive suburb in Attica, Greece -- just about 22 km north of Athens. Since the 2011 local government reform it is part of the municipality Dionysos, of which it is a municipal unit....

, Dionysos
Dionysus
Dionysus was the god of the grape harvest, winemaking and wine, of ritual madness and ecstasy in Greek mythology. His name in Linear B tablets shows he was worshipped from c. 1500—1100 BC by Mycenean Greeks: other traces of Dionysian-type cult have been found in ancient Minoan Crete...

, Kryoneri
Kryoneri, Attica
Kryoneri is a community of the Greek prefecture of Attica. Since the 2011 local government reform it is part of the municipality Dionysos, of which it is a municipal unit.Kryoneri is a rather exclusive suburb of Athens...

, Kifissia
Kifissia
Kifissia or Kifisia is one of the most expensive northern suburbs of Athens, mainly accessed via Kifissias Avenue, running all the way from central Athens up to Theseos Avenue in the suburb of Nea Erythraia. It has traditionally been home to the major Greek political families...

, Maroussi
Marousi
Marousi , alternative forms: Maroussi, Amarousion, and Amaroussion, is a suburban city NE of Athens, Greece. The Athens Olympic Sports Complex, the largest sports complex in Greece, is also located here; its main street is Kifisias Avenue, and also contains four ISAP train stations and two of the...

, Pefki
Pefki
Pefki , is a suburb in the northeastern area of Athens, Greece. Since the 2011 local government reform it is part of the municipality Lykovrysi-Pefki, of which it is the seat and a municipal unit.-Geography:...

, Lykovrisi, Heraklio, Glyka Nera
Glyka Nera
Glyka Nera , is a suburb in the northeastern part of Athens, Greece. Since the 2011 local government reform it is part of the municipality Paiania, of which it is a municipal unit....

, Vrilissia
Vrilissia
Vrilissia is a mildly urbanized northeastern suburb and a municipality of the North Athens regional unit, in the Attica region. It is located at the southwestern accessible foot of the Penteli Mountain, from which it was named after as the ancient name of the mountain was Vrilissos...

, Melissia
Melissia
Melissia , is a suburb in the northeastern part of Athens, Greece. The origin of the name comes from its beehives. Since the 2011 local government reform it is part of the municipality Penteli, of which it is the seat and a municipal unit....

, Pendeli, Halandri
Chalandri
Chalandri or Halandri is a northern suburb in Athens, Greece, and a municipality of the Attica region...

, Aghia Paraskevi
Agia Paraskevi
Agia Paraskevi , is a suburb of Athens, Greece, in the northeast of Athens, about nine kilometers away from the city centre. It is linked to Athens by Mesogeion Avenue, a major road in the greater Athens area. It is a municipality within Attica region....

, Psychiko
Psychiko
Psychiko is a suburb of Athens, Greece. Since the 2011 local government reform it is part of the municipality Filothei-Psychiko, of which it is the seat and a municipal unit.Psychiko is located to the south of the Olympic stadium...

 and Filothei
Filothei
Filothei is a green, affluent northeastern suburb of Athens, Greece, consisting mainly of hillside villas, relatively close to the Olympic Stadium...

); the southern suburbs, (including Kalamaki
Alimos
Alimos is an affluent suburb in the south-southwestern part of Athens, Greece, also known as Kalamaki . Poseidonos Avenue runs in the western part of Alimos, with the Hymettus mountain to the east meeting mainly grassland, while areas to the north of Argyroupoli are forested...

, Nea Smirni, Agios Dimitrios
Agios Dimitrios
Agios Dimitrios is a suburb in the southern part of Athens, Greece. Several main roads pass through the city. It is also linked to Katechaki, Vouliagmenis Avenue to the east, Poseidonos Avenue Agios Dimitrios (Greek: Άγιος Δημήτριος meaning Saint Demetrius) is a suburb in the southern part of...

, Palaio Faliro
Palaio Faliro
Palaio Faliro is a suburb in the southern part of Athens, Greece. The area is famous for its beaches , forming Athens' nearest beach and Piraeus' only beach...

, Elliniko
Ellinikon
Ellinikon is a suburb of Athens, Greece. Since the 2011 local government reform it is part of the municipality Elliniko-Argyroupoli, of which it is a municipal unit....

, Glyfada
Glyfada
Glyfada is a suburb of Athens, situated in the southern parts of the Athens Metropolitan Area. The area, which is home to many of Greece's millionaires, ministers and celebrities, stretches out from the foot of the Hymettus mountain and reaches out to embrace the Saronic Gulf. It is the largest of...

,, Voula
Voula
Voula is a town and former municipality in East Attica, Greece. Since the 2011 local government reform it is part of the municipality Vari-Voula-Vouliagmeni, of which it is the seat and a municipal unit.Voula is a southern suburb of Athens...

 Argyroupoli, Ilioupoli
Ilioupoli
Ilioupoli is a suburb in the south-southeastern part of metropolitan Athens, Greece.The area was made up of farmlands to the west and the central part and the rocky areas of the Hymettus to its east. Mixed farming was common in the western part. Much of the agricultural production that time was...

 and the southernmost suburb of Vouliagmeni
Vouliagmeni
Vouliagmeni is a seaside town and former municipality 20 km south of Athens, Greece. Since the 2011 local government reform it is part of the municipality Vari-Voula-Vouliagmeni, of which it is a municipal unit. Its population was 6,442 at the 2001 census. Vouliagmeni is among the most...

); the eastern suburbs, (including Acharnes
Acharnes
Acharnes is a suburb of Athens, Greece. It is the most populous municipality in East Attica. Much of the area north of the area are the forested Parnitha ranges and the parkland. The municipality is north of the Greater Ring of Athens. It is located about 10 km due north of Athens.In...

, Zografou
Zografou
Zografou is a suburb in the eastern part of Athens, Greece. It is located about 5 km from downtown Athens, 2 km SW of Katechaki Avenue, 4 km from the Hymettus Ring forming part of the Attiki Odos private superhighway network, and 3 km E of Kifissias Avenue...

, Vyronas
Vyronas
Vyronas is a suburb in the northeastern part of Athens, Greece. The city is named after George Gordon Byron, 6th Baron Byron, the famous English poet and writer, who is a national hero of Greece...

, Kaisariani
Kaisariani
Kaisariani , also Kessariani, is a suburb in the eastern part of Athens, Greece. Kaisariani is located about 7 km from downtown Athens, about 4 km SW of Katechaki Avenue 4 km from the Hymettus Ring , which forms part of the Attiki Odos private superhighway network, and 6 km S...

, Cholargos
Cholargos
Cholargos is a suburb of Athens, Greece, located northeast of the city center and about 6 kilometers away from Syntagma square. Since the 2011 local government reform it is part of the municipality Papagou-Cholargos, of which it is the seat and a municipal unit.It is accessed by Messogion Avenue...

 and Papagou
Papagou
Papagou is a suburb in the northeastern part of Athens, Greece. The city is named after Marshal Alexandros Papagos, a Greek Army General who served in the Second World War...

; and the western suburbs (including Peristeri
Peristeri
Peristeri is a suburban municipality in Athens, Greece, located about 5 km NW of the downtown area. The municipality is bordered by the Cephissus/Cephissos River, Athinon Avenue , Chaidari in the west and Petroupoli in the northwest, with a size of around...

, Ilion
Ilio, Greece
Ilion is a suburb in the west-northwest part of Athens, Greece. The two mountaintops of Aigaleo lie to the west. It is also located east-southeast of Eleusis, south of Attiki Odos , west and southwest of Kifissou Avenue , and north of Piraeus and Poseidonos Avenue...

, Egaleo
Egaleo
Aegaleo, commonly Aigaleo or Egaleo is a municipality west of Athens, Greece, situated west of the Cephissos river and southeast of Mount Egaleo...

, Petroupoli
Petroupoli
Petroupoli is a suburb in the northwestern part of Athens Metropolitan Area, in Greece. The two peaks of Mount Aigaleo lie to the north and west of the suburb, and is located ESE of Eleusis, S of the Attiki Odos , W of Kifissou Avenue Petroupoli (Greek modern: Πετρούπολη, Katharevousa:...

 and Nikaia
Nikaia, Attica
Nikaia is a suburb in the northern part of Piraeus, Greece. Since the 2011 local government reform it is part of the municipality Nikaia-Agios Ioannis Rentis, of which it is the seat and a municipal unit.-Geography:...

).

The Athens city coastline, extending from the major commercial port of Piraeus
Piraeus
Piraeus is a city in the region of Attica, Greece. Piraeus is located within the Athens Urban Area, 12 km southwest from its city center , and lies along the east coast of the Saronic Gulf....

 to the southernmost suburb of Varkiza
Varkiza
Varkiza , also Alianthos is a partly urbanised area forming part of the municipality of Vari-Voula-Vouliagmeni in southern Attica, located east of the Megalo Daktylo...

 for some 25 km (15.5 mi), is also connected to the city centre by a tram
Tram
A tram is a passenger rail vehicle which runs on tracks along public urban streets and also sometimes on separate rights of way. It may also run between cities and/or towns , and/or partially grade separated even in the cities...

.

In the northern suburb of Maroussi, the upgraded main Olympic Complex
Athens Olympic Sports Complex
The Olympic Athletic Center of Athens "Spiros Louis" or OACA , is a sport facilities complex located at Marousi, northeast Athens, Greece...

 (known by its Greek acronym OAKA) dominates the skyline. The whole area has been redeveloped according to a design by the Spanish architect Santiago Calatrava
Santiago Calatrava
Santiago Calatrava Valls is a Spanish architect, sculptor and structural engineer whose principal office is in Zürich, Switzerland. Classed now among the elite designers of the world, he has offices in Zürich, Paris, Valencia, and New York City....

, with steel arches, landscaped gardens, fountains, futuristic glass, and a landmark new blue glass roof which was added to the main stadium. A second Olympic complex, next to the sea at the beach of Kallithea
Kallithea
Kallithea is the 8th largest municipality in Greece and the 4th biggest in the Athens urban area...

 (Faliron), also features modern stadia, shops and an elevated esplanade. Work is underway to transform the grounds of the old Athens Airport – named Hellinikon
Ellinikon International Airport
Ellinikon International Airport , sometimes spelled Hellinikon was the international airport of Athens, Greece for sixty years up until 2001 when it was replaced by the new Athens International Airport. It is located south of Athens, and just west of Glyfada...

 – in the southern suburbs, into one of the largest landscaped parks in Europe, to be named the Hellenikon Metropolitan Park
Hellenikon Metropolitan Park
Hellenikon Metropolitan Park as it has been named, will be a large urban park located in Hellinikon, Athens, Greece. The park will provide Athens with a much needed ecological boost. When finished the park will be the largest in Europe....

.

Many of the southern suburbs (such as Alimos
Alimos
Alimos is an affluent suburb in the south-southwestern part of Athens, Greece, also known as Kalamaki . Poseidonos Avenue runs in the western part of Alimos, with the Hymettus mountain to the east meeting mainly grassland, while areas to the north of Argyroupoli are forested...

, Palaio Faliro
Palaio Faliro
Palaio Faliro is a suburb in the southern part of Athens, Greece. The area is famous for its beaches , forming Athens' nearest beach and Piraeus' only beach...

, Elliniko
Ellinikon
Ellinikon is a suburb of Athens, Greece. Since the 2011 local government reform it is part of the municipality Elliniko-Argyroupoli, of which it is a municipal unit....

, Voula
Voula
Voula is a town and former municipality in East Attica, Greece. Since the 2011 local government reform it is part of the municipality Vari-Voula-Vouliagmeni, of which it is the seat and a municipal unit.Voula is a southern suburb of Athens...

, Vouliagmeni
Vouliagmeni
Vouliagmeni is a seaside town and former municipality 20 km south of Athens, Greece. Since the 2011 local government reform it is part of the municipality Vari-Voula-Vouliagmeni, of which it is a municipal unit. Its population was 6,442 at the 2001 census. Vouliagmeni is among the most...

 and Varkiza
Varkiza
Varkiza , also Alianthos is a partly urbanised area forming part of the municipality of Vari-Voula-Vouliagmeni in southern Attica, located east of the Megalo Daktylo...

) host a number of sandy beaches, most of which are operated by the Greek National Tourism Organisation and require an entrance fee, which is not excessive in most cases. Casinos operate on both Mount Parnitha, some 25 km (16 mi) from downtown Athens, (accessible by car or cable car) and the nearby town of Loutraki
Loutraki
Loutraki is a seaside resort located 84 km W of Athens and 4 km NE of Corinth in the Prefecture of Corinthia, Greece. Loutraki is the seat of the municipality Loutraki-Perachora. The town is well-known for its vast natural springs and its therapeutic spas.-History:In antiquity a town...

 (accessible by car via the Athens – Corinth
Corinth
Corinth is a city and former municipality in Corinthia, Peloponnese, Greece. Since the 2011 local government reform it is part of the municipality Corinth, of which it is the seat and a municipal unit...

 National Highway, or the suburban rail service (Proastiakos
Proastiakos
Proastiakós , is the name used for the suburban services of TrainOSE, servicing Greece's three largest cities: Athens, Thessaloniki and Patras; providing them with modern commuter rail links, towards their suburbs and also towards other cities and towns located around them.The service, operated by...

)).

Parks and Zoos


Parnitha National Park is punctuated by well-marked paths, gorges, springs, torrents and caves dotting the protected area. Hiking and mountain-biking in all four mountains remain popular outdoor activities for many residents of the city. The National Garden of Athens was completed in 1840 and is a green refuge of 15.5 hectares in the center of the Greek capital. It is to be found between the Parliament and Zappeion
Zappeion
The Zappeion is a building in the National Gardens of Athens in the heart of Athens, Greece. It is generally used for meetings and ceremonies, both official and private.-Constructing the Zappeion:...

 buildings, the latter of which maintains its own garden of seven hectares.

Parts of the city centre have been redeveloped under a masterplan called the Unification of Archeological Sites of Athens, which has also gathered funding from the EU to help enhance the project. The landmark Dionysiou Aeropagitou street has been pedestrianised, forming a scenic route. The route starts from the Temple of Olympian Zeus at Vasilissis Olgas Avenue, continues under the southern slopes of the Acropolis near Plaka
Plaka
Pláka is the old historical neighborhood of Athens, clustered around the northern and eastern slopes of the Acropolis, and incorporating labyrinthine streets and neoclassical architecture. Plaka is built on top of the residential areas of the ancient town of Athens...

, and finishes just beyond the Temple of Hephaestus
Temple of Hephaestus
The Temple of Hephaestus, also known as the Hephaisteion or earlier as the Theseion, is the best-preserved ancient Greek temple; it remains standing largely as built. It is a Doric peripteral temple, and is located at the north-west side of the Agora of Athens, on top of the Agoraios Kolonos hill....

 in Thiseio
Thiseio
Thiseio, also Thisseio, Thisio and Thissio is the name of a neighborhood in downtown Athens, Greece, northwest of the Acropolis, 1.5 km southwest of downtown, and 1 km southwest of city hall; its name derives from the Temple of Hephaestus, also known as Τhiseio, as it was, in earlier times,...

. The route in its entirety provides visitors with views of the Parthenon
Parthenon
The Parthenon is a temple on the Athenian Acropolis, Greece, dedicated to the Greek goddess Athena, whom the people of Athens considered their virgin patron. Its construction began in 447 BC when the Athenian Empire was at the height of its power. It was completed in 438 BC, although...

 and the Agora
Ancient Agora of Athens
The Ancient Agora of Athens is the best-known example of an ancient Greek agora, located to the northwest of the Acropolis and is bounded on the south by the hill of the Areopagus and on the west by the hill known as the Colonus Agoraeus.-History:The agora in Athens had private housing, until it...

 (the meeting point of ancient Athenians), away from the busy city centre.

The hills of Athens also provide green space. Lycabettus
Mount Lycabettus
Mount Lycabettus, also known as Lycabettos, Lykabettos or Lykavittos , is a Cretaceous limestone hill in Athens, Greece. At 277 meters above sea level, the hill is the highest point in the city that surrounds it. Pine trees cover its base, and at its peak are the 19th century Chapel of St...

, Philopappos hill
Philopappos Monument
The Philopappos Monument is an ancient Greek mausoleum and monument dedicated to Gaius Julius Antiochus Epiphanes Philopappos or Philopappus, , a prince from the Kingdom of Commagene...

 and the area around it, including Pnyx
Pnyx
The Pnyx is a hill in central Athens, the capital of Greece. It is located less than west of the Acropolis and 1.6 km south-west of the centre of modern Athens, Syntagma Square.-The site:...

 and Ardettos hill, are planted with pines and other trees, with the character of a small forest rather than typical metropolitan parkland. Also to be found is the Pedion tou Areos
Pedion tou Areos
The Pedion tou Areos or Pedion Areos is one of the largest public parks in Athens, Greece. It is also the name of the wider neighbourhood.-Park:...

 (Field of Mars) of 27.7 hectares, near National Archaeological Museum.

The biggest zoo of the city is the Attica Zoological Park
Attica Zoological Park
Attica Zoological Park, is a private zoo located in the Athens suburb of Spata, Greece. The zoo is home to about 2000 animals representing 400 species, and is open 365 days per year....

, a 20-hectare (49-acre) private zoo located in the suburb of Spata. The zoo is home to about 2000 animals representing 400 species, and is open 365 days per year.
Smaller zoos exist within public gardens or parks, such as the zoo within the National Garden of Athens.

Demographics



The municipality of Athens has an official Population of 655,780 while along with the four regional units that make up what is referred to as Greater Athens, had a combined population of 2,625,090. They together with the regional unit of Piraeus (Greater Piraeus) make up the dense urban area
Urban area
An urban area is characterized by higher population density and vast human features in comparison to areas surrounding it. Urban areas may be cities, towns or conurbations, but the term is not commonly extended to rural settlements such as villages and hamlets.Urban areas are created and further...

 of Athens which reached a total population of 3,074,160 inhabitants in 2011.
The ancient site of Athens is centred on the rocky hill of the acropolis. In ancient times the port of Piraeus
Piraeus
Piraeus is a city in the region of Attica, Greece. Piraeus is located within the Athens Urban Area, 12 km southwest from its city center , and lies along the east coast of the Saronic Gulf....

 was a separate city, but it has now been absorbed into forming a part of the Athens Urban Area. The rapid expansion of the city (which continues even today) was initiated in the 1950s and 1960s, because of the transition of Greece from an agricultural to an industrial nation
Developed country
A developed country is a country that has a high level of development according to some criteria. Which criteria, and which countries are classified as being developed, is a contentious issue...

. The expansion is now particularly toward the East and North East (a tendency greatly related to the new Eleftherios Venizelos International Airport and the Attiki Odos
Attiki Odos
Attiki Odos is a privately owned toll motorway in Greece. The Proastiakos high-speed suburban rail is set almost entirely in the median of the motorway, along its main section. The motorway's numbers are 6 for the main section, 64 for the Hymettus Beltway and 65 for the Aigaleo Beltway...

, the freeway that cuts across Attica
Attica
Attica is a historical region of Greece, containing Athens, the current capital of Greece. The historical region is centered on the Attic peninsula, which projects into the Aegean Sea...

). By this process Athens has engulfed many former suburbs and villages in Attica, and continues to do so. Throughout its long history, Athens has experienced many different population levels. The table below shows the historical population of Athens in recent times.
Year City population Urban population Metro population
1833 4,000
1870 44,500
1896 123,000
1921 (Pre-Population exchange) 473,000
1921 (Post-Population exchange
Population exchange between Greece and Turkey
The 1923 population exchange between Greece and Turkey was based upon religious identity, and involved the Greek Orthodox citizens of Turkey and the Muslim citizens of Greece...

)
718,000
1971 867,023
1981 885,737
1991 772,072 3,444,358
2001 745,514 3,165,823 3,761,810
2011 655,780 3,074,160 3,737,550

Details


The large City Center of the Greek capital falls directly within the municipality of Athens, which is the largest in population size in Greece
Greece
Greece , officially the Hellenic Republic , and historically Hellas or the Republic of Greece in English, is a country in southeastern Europe....

. Piraeus
Piraeus
Piraeus is a city in the region of Attica, Greece. Piraeus is located within the Athens Urban Area, 12 km southwest from its city center , and lies along the east coast of the Saronic Gulf....

 also forms a significant city center on its own, within the Athens Urban Area and being the second largest in population size within it, with Peristeri
Peristeri
Peristeri is a suburban municipality in Athens, Greece, located about 5 km NW of the downtown area. The municipality is bordered by the Cephissus/Cephissos River, Athinon Avenue , Chaidari in the west and Petroupoli in the northwest, with a size of around...

 and Kallithea
Kallithea
Kallithea is the 8th largest municipality in Greece and the 4th biggest in the Athens urban area...

 following.

The Athens Urban Area today, consists of 40 municipalities, 35 of which make up, what is referred to as the Greater Athens municipalities located within 4 regional units (regional units of: North Athens, West Athens, Central Athens, South Athens); and a further 5, which make up the Greater Piraeus municipalities, located within the regional unit of Piraeus as mentioned above. The densely built up urban area
Urban area
An urban area is characterized by higher population density and vast human features in comparison to areas surrounding it. Urban areas may be cities, towns or conurbations, but the term is not commonly extended to rural settlements such as villages and hamlets.Urban areas are created and further...

 of the Greek capital sprawls across 412 km² (159 sq mi) throughout the Attica Basin and has a total population of 3,074,160 (in 2011).

The Athens Metropolitan Area spans 2928.717 km² (1,131 sq mi) within the Attica region and includes a total of 58 municipalities, which are organized in 7 regional units (those outlined above, along with East Attica
East Attica
East Attica is one of the regional units of Greece. It is part of the region of Attica. The capital of the regional unit is the town of Pallini. The regional unit covers the eastern part of the agglomeration of Athens, and also the rural area to its east....

 and West Attica
West Attica
West Attica is one of the regional units of Greece. It is part of the region of Attica. The capital of the regional unit is the town of Elefsina. The regional unit covers the western part of the agglomeration of Athens, and the area to its west....

), having reached a population of 3,737,550 in 2011.

Culture and contemporary life



Archaeological hub


The city is one of the world's main centres of archaeological research
Archaeology
Archaeology, or archeology , is the study of human society, primarily through the recovery and analysis of the material culture and environmental data that they have left behind, which includes artifacts, architecture, biofacts and cultural landscapes...

. Apart from national institutions, such as Athens University
National and Kapodistrian University of Athens
The National and Kapodistrian University of Athens , usually referred to simply as the University of Athens, is the oldest university in Southeast Europe and has been in continuous operation since its establishment in 1837. Today, it is the second-largest institution of higher learning in Greece,...

, the Archaeological Society
Archaeological Society of Athens
The Archaeological Society of Athens is an independent learned society. Also termed the Greek Archaeological Society, it was founded in 1837, just a few years after the establishment of the modern Greek State, with the aim of encouraging archaeological excavations, maintenance, care and exhibition...

, several archaeological Museums (including the National Archaeological Museum, the Cycladic Museum
Goulandris Museum of Cycladic Art
The Nicholas P. Goulandris Foundation - Museum of Cycladic Art is one of the great museums of Athens. It houses a magnificent collection of artifacts of Cycladic art....

, the Epigraphic
Epigraphy
Epigraphy Epigraphy Epigraphy (from the , literally "on-writing", is the study of inscriptions or epigraphs as writing; that is, the science of identifying the graphemes and of classifying their use as to cultural context and date, elucidating their meaning and assessing what conclusions can be...

 Museum, the Byzantine
Byzantine Empire
The Byzantine Empire was the Eastern Roman Empire during the periods of Late Antiquity and the Middle Ages, centred on the capital of Constantinople. Known simply as the Roman Empire or Romania to its inhabitants and neighbours, the Empire was the direct continuation of the Ancient Roman State...

 Museum, as well as museums at the ancient Agora
Ancient Agora of Athens
The Ancient Agora of Athens is the best-known example of an ancient Greek agora, located to the northwest of the Acropolis and is bounded on the south by the hill of the Areopagus and on the west by the hill known as the Colonus Agoraeus.-History:The agora in Athens had private housing, until it...

, Acropolis
Acropolis Museum
The Old Acropolis Museum was an archaeological museum located in Athens, Greece on the archeological site of Acropolis. It is built in a niche at the eastern edge of the rock and most of it lies beneath the level of the hilltop, making it largely invisible. It was considered one of the major...

, and Kerameikos), the city is also home to the Demokritos
Democritus
Democritus was an Ancient Greek philosopher born in Abdera, Thrace, Greece. He was an influential pre-Socratic philosopher and pupil of Leucippus, who formulated an atomic theory for the cosmos....

 laboratory for Archaeometry
Archaeological science
Archaeological science, also known as archaeometry, consists of the application of scientific techniques to the analysis of archaeological materials. Archaeometry is now considered its own scientific field. The UK's Natural and Environmental Research Council provides funding for archaeometry...

 as well as several regional and national archaeological authorities that form part of the Greek Department of Culture
Minister for Culture (Greece)
The Ministry of Culture and Tourism is a government department of Greece entrusted with the preservation of the country's cultural heritage, the arts, as well as sports, through the subordinate General Secretariat for Sport...

. Additionally, Athens hosts 17 Foreign Archaeological Institutes which promote and facilitate research by scholars from their respective home countries. As a result, Athens has more than a dozen archaeological libraries and three specialized archaeological laboratories, and is the venue of several hundred specialized lectures, conferences and seminars, as well as dozens of archaeological exhibitions, per year. At any given time, Athens is the (temporary) home to hundreds of international scholars and researchers in all disciplines of archaeology.

Museums


The most important museums of Athens include: The National Archaeological Museum, the largest archaeological museum in the country, and one of the most important internationally, as it contains a vast collection of antiquities; its artifacts cover a period of more than 5,000 years, from late Neolithic Age
Neolithic
The Neolithic Age, Era, or Period, or New Stone Age, was a period in the development of human technology, beginning about 9500 BC in some parts of the Middle East, and later in other parts of the world. It is traditionally considered as the last part of the Stone Age...

 to Roman Greece
Roman Greece
Roman Greece is the period of Greek history following the Roman victory over the Corinthians at the Battle of Corinth in 146 BC until the reestablishment of the city of Byzantium and the naming of the city by the Emperor Constantine as the capital of the Roman Empire...

; The Benaki Museum
Benaki Museum
The Benaki Museum, established and endowed in 1930 by Antonis Benakis in memory of his father Emmanuel Benakis, is housed in the Benakis family mansion in downtown Athens, Greece...

 with its several branches for each of its collections including ancient, Byzantine, ottoman-era and Chinese art and beyond; The Byzantine and Christian Museum
Byzantine & Christian Museum
The Byzantine and Christian Museum is situated at Vassilissis Sofias Avenue in Athens, Greece. It was founded in 1914 and houses more than 25,000 exhibits with rare collections of pictures, scriptures, frescoes, pottery, fabrics, manuscripts and copies of artifacts from the 3rd century AD to the...

, one of the most important museums of Byzantine art
Byzantine art
Byzantine art is the term commonly used to describe the artistic products of the Byzantine Empire from about the 5th century until the Fall of Constantinople in 1453....

; The Numismatic Museum
Numismatic Museum of Athens
The Numismatic Museum in Athens is one of the most important museums of Greece and houses one of the greatest collections of coins, ancient and modern, in the world...

, housing a great collection of ancient and modern coins; The Museum of Cycladic Art
Goulandris Museum of Cycladic Art
The Nicholas P. Goulandris Foundation - Museum of Cycladic Art is one of the great museums of Athens. It houses a magnificent collection of artifacts of Cycladic art....

, home to an extensive collection of Cycladic art
Cycladic art
Cycladic art encompasses the visual art of the ancient Cycladic civilization, which flourished in the islands of the Aegean Sea from 3300 - 2000 BCE. Along with the Minoans and Mycenaeans, the Cycladic people are counted among the three major Aegean cultures...

, including the famous figurines made of white marble; and finally the New Acropolis Museum
Acropolis Museum
The Old Acropolis Museum was an archaeological museum located in Athens, Greece on the archeological site of Acropolis. It is built in a niche at the eastern edge of the rock and most of it lies beneath the level of the hilltop, making it largely invisible. It was considered one of the major...

, opened in 2009, and replacing the old museum on the Acropolis. The new museum has proved considerably popular; almost one million people visited during the summer period June–October 2009 alone. A number of smaller and privately owned museums focused on Greek culture and arts are also to be found.

Tourism


Athens has been a popular destination
Tourist destination
A tourist destination is a city, town, or other area that is dependent to a significant extent on the revenues accruing from tourism. It may contain one or more tourist attractions and possibly some "tourist traps."...

 for travelers since antiquity. Over the past decade, the city's infrastructure and social amenities have improved, in part due to its successful bid to stage the 2004 Olympic Games
2004 Summer Olympics
The 2004 Summer Olympic Games, officially known as the Games of the XXVIII Olympiad, was a premier international multi-sport event held in Athens, Greece from August 13 to August 29, 2004 with the motto Welcome Home. 10,625 athletes competed, some 600 more than expected, accompanied by 5,501 team...

. The Greek Government, aided by the EU
European Union
The European Union is an economic and political union of 27 independent member states which are located primarily in Europe. The EU traces its origins from the European Coal and Steel Community and the European Economic Community , formed by six countries in 1958...

, has funded major infrastructure projects such as the state-of-the-art Eleftherios Venizelos International Airport, the expansion of the Athens Metro
Athens Metro
The Athens Metro is an underground rapid transit system serving Athens, the capital city of Greece. It was constructed and owned by Attiko Metro S.A. and operated until 2011 by Attiko Metro Etaireia Leitourgias S.A....

 system, and the new Attiki Odos
Attiki Odos
Attiki Odos is a privately owned toll motorway in Greece. The Proastiakos high-speed suburban rail is set almost entirely in the median of the motorway, along its main section. The motorway's numbers are 6 for the main section, 64 for the Hymettus Beltway and 65 for the Aigaleo Beltway...

 Motorway.

Entertainment and performing arts


Athens is home to 148 theatrical stages, more than any other city in the world, including the famous ancient Odeon of Herodes Atticus
Odeon of Herodes Atticus
The Odeon of Herodes Atticus is a stone theatre structure located on the south slope of the Acropolis of Athens. It was built in 161 AD by Herodes Atticus in memory of his wife, Aspasia Annia Regilla...

, home to the Athens Festival
Athens Festival
Athens - Epidaurus Festival is an annual arts festival that takes place in Athens and Epidaurus, from May to October. It is one of the most famous festivals in Greece. The festival includes musical, theatrical and other cultural events....

, which runs from May to October each year. In addition to a large number of multiplexes, Athens plays host to a variety of romantic, open air garden cinemas. The city also supports a vast number of music venues, including the Athens Concert Hall
Athens Concert Hall
The Athens Concert Hall is a concert hall located in Athens, on Vassilissis Sofias Avenue....

 (Megaron Moussikis), which attracts world-famous artists all year round. The Athens Planetarium
Planetarium
A planetarium is a theatre built primarily for presenting educational and entertaining shows about astronomy and the night sky, or for training in celestial navigation...

, located in Andrea Syngrou Avenue
Andrea Syngrou Avenue
Andrea Syngrou Avenue is a major road in Athens, linking Poseidonos Avenue with the centre and other avenues. It is planned, built and later named for Andreas Syngros. It runs southwest to northeast. The Syngrou-Fix station of the Attiko Metro's Red Line is situated at the northeastern end of the...

 is one of the largest and best equipped digital planetaria in the world.

Sports


Athens has a long tradition in sports and sporting events, being home of the most important clubs in Greek sports
Sport in Greece
Greece has risen to prominence in a number of sporting areas in recent decades. Football in particular has seen a rapid transformation, with the Greek national football team winning the 2004 UEFA European Football Championship.Greek athletes have also achieved significant success and have won world...

 and having a large number of sports facilities. The city has also served as a host of several sports events of international notability.

Athens has hosted the Summer Olympic Games
Summer Olympic Games
The Summer Olympic Games or the Games of the Olympiad are an international multi-sport event, occurring every four years, organized by the International Olympic Committee. Medals are awarded in each event, with gold medals for first place, silver for second and bronze for third, a tradition that...

 twice, in 1896
1896 Summer Olympics
The 1896 Summer Olympics, officially known as the Games of the I Olympiad, was a multi-sport event celebrated in Athens, Greece, from April 6 to April 15, 1896. It was the first international Olympic Games held in the Modern era...

 and 2004
2004 Summer Olympics
The 2004 Summer Olympic Games, officially known as the Games of the XXVIII Olympiad, was a premier international multi-sport event held in Athens, Greece from August 13 to August 29, 2004 with the motto Welcome Home. 10,625 athletes competed, some 600 more than expected, accompanied by 5,501 team...

. The 2004 Summer Olympics inspired the development of the Athens Olympic Stadium
Olympic Stadium (Athens)
The Olympic Stadium "Spiros Louis" , is part of the Athens Olympic Sports Complex. It is named after the first modern Olympic marathon race winner in 1896, Spiros Louis.-History:...

, which has since gained a reputation as one of the most beautiful stadia in the world, and one of its most interesting modern monuments. The biggest stadium in the country, it has hosted two finals of the UEFA Champions League
UEFA Champions League
The UEFA Champions League, known simply the Champions League and originally known as the European Champion Clubs' Cup or European Cup, is an annual international club football competition organised by the Union of European Football Associations since 1955 for the top football clubs in Europe. It...

, in 1994 and 2007
2007 UEFA Champions League Final
The 2007 UEFA Champions League Final was an association football match between A.C. Milan of Italy and Liverpool F.C. of England on 23 May 2007 at the Olympic Stadium, Athens, Greece. The showpiece event was the final match of the 2006–07 season of Europe's premier cup competition, the UEFA...

. The other major stadium of Athens, located in Piraeus
Piraeus
Piraeus is a city in the region of Attica, Greece. Piraeus is located within the Athens Urban Area, 12 km southwest from its city center , and lies along the east coast of the Saronic Gulf....

 area, is the Karaiskakis Stadium
Karaiskakis Stadium
Karaiskakis Stadium is in the Neo Faliro area of Piraeus, Greece. It is the home ground of Olympiacos F.C. and is named after Georgios Karaiskakis , hero of the Greek War of Independence, who was mortally wounded near the area....

, a state-of-the-art sports and entertainment complex, host of the 1971 UEFA Cup Winners' Cup Final. In 2004 Greece's national soccer team won the UEFA Cup Finals in Portugal. They beat the host nation Portugal 1:0.

Athens has hosted the Euroleague final three times, the first in 1985 and second in 1993
FIBA European Championship 1992-93
The FIBA European Championship 1992–93 featured 41 competing teams from 33 different countries. The final of the competition was held on April 15, 1993 at the Peace and Friendship Stadium in Athens, Greece, with CSP Limoges defeating Benetton Treviso 59-55....

, both at the Peace and Friendship Stadium
Peace and Friendship Stadium
The Stadio Eirinis kai Filias , known as S.E.F., is a multi-use indoor sports arena that is located in Faliro, Piraeus, Athens, Greece. It is the central venue of the Faliro Coastal Zone Olympic Complex and is mostly known for being the long-time home court of the famous Euroleague basketball club...

, most known as SEF, one of the largest and most attractive indoor arenas in Europe, and the third in 2007
Euroleague 2006-07
The Euroleague is an international basketball club competition for elite clubs throughout Europe. The 2006-2007 season featured 24 competing teams from 13 different countries. The draw for the groups was held on September 14, 2006 in Athens. The competition began on October 24, 2006 at the Olympic...

 at the Olympic Indoor Hall
Olympic Indoor Hall
The O.A.C.A. Olympic Indoor Hall which is part of the Olympic Athletic Center of Athens "Spiros Louis" , was completed in 1995 and was the largest indoor venue in use for sporting events at the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens, Greece. It is located in the suburb of Maroussi...

. A large number of events in other sports such as athletics, volleyball
Volleyball
Volleyball is a team sport in which two teams of six players are separated by a net. Each team tries to score points by grounding a ball on the other team's court under organized rules.The complete rules are extensive...

, water polo
Water polo
Water polo is a team water sport. The playing team consists of six field players and one goalkeeper. The winner of the game is the team that scores more goals. Game play involves swimming, treading water , players passing the ball while being defended by opponents, and scoring by throwing into a...

 etc., has also been hosted in the capital's venues.

Athens is home to three prestigious European multi-sport clubs: Olympiacos
Olympiacos CFP
----Olympiacos Club of Fans of Piraeus, , , transliterated Olympiakos Sindesmos Filathlon Pireos, is the most popular multisport club and the most successful in Greece, based in Piraeus....

, Panathinaikos
Panathinaikos
Panathinaikos Athlitikos Omilos is a multi-sport club based in Athens, Greece. It has the shamrock as its official emblem and green and white as its colours...

, AEK Athens
Athletic Union of Constantinople
The Athletic Union of Constantinople , more commonly referred to as AEK or in European competitions as AEK Athens, is a sports club based in the city of Athens, Greece.The club was founded on 13 April 1924 in Athens by Greek refugees from...

. In football, Olympiacos have dominated the domestic competitions, Panathinaikos made it to the 1971 European Cup Final
1971 European Cup Final
The 1971 European Cup Final was a football match held at Wembley Stadium, London, on 2 June 1971, that saw Ajax of the Netherlands defeat Panathinaikos of Greece 2–0. An incredible comeback in the second leg of their semi-final against Red Star Belgrade meant Panathinaikos became the first Greek...

, while AEK Athens is the other member of the big three
P.O.K.
P.O.K. stands for Podosfairikes Omades Kentrou , which is Greek for Central Football Teams, meaning the football teams of Athens...

. These clubs also hold prominent basketball
Basketball
Basketball is a team sport in which two teams of five players try to score points by throwing or "shooting" a ball through the top of a basketball hoop while following a set of rules...

 departments; Panathinaikos and Olympiacos are among the top powers in European basketball, having won the Euroleague six times and once respectively, with AEK Athens being the first Greek team to win a European trophy in any team sports. Other clubs with great tradition in sports within Athens are Panionios
Panionios
Panionios GSS , the Pan-Ionian Gymnastic Association of Smyrna, is a Greek multi sport club founded in 1890. Originally based in Smyrna/Izmir, the club was uprooted in the population exchange between Greece and Turkey following the Asia Minor Catastrophe in 1922...

, Panellinios, Ethnikos Piraeus and Maroussi
Maroussi BC
Maroussi Athens B.C. , is a Greek professional basketball club that is based in Maroussi, a northern suburb of Athens, Greece. The club's full name is Gymnastikos Syllogos Amarousiou. The club competes in the Greek League. Its long-time owner was Armodios Vovos of the BVIC construction firm...

. Athenian clubs have also had significant domestic and international success in other sports. The Athens area encompasses a variety of terrain
Terrain
Terrain, or land relief, is the vertical and horizontal dimension of land surface. When relief is described underwater, the term bathymetry is used...

, notably hills and mountains rising around the city, and the capital is the only major city in Europe to be bisected by a mountain range
Mountain range
A mountain range is a single, large mass consisting of a succession of mountains or narrowly spaced mountain ridges, with or without peaks, closely related in position, direction, formation, and age; a component part of a mountain system or of a mountain chain...

. Four mountain ranges extend into city boundaries and thousands of miles of trails crisscross the city and neighbouring areas, providing exercise and wilderness access on foot
Hiking
Hiking is an outdoor activity which consists of walking in natural environments, often in mountainous or other scenic terrain. People often hike on hiking trails. It is such a popular activity that there are numerous hiking organizations worldwide. The health benefits of different types of hiking...

 and bike
Mountain biking
Mountain biking is a sport which consists of riding bicycles off-road, often over rough terrain, using specially adapted mountain bikes. Mountain bikes share similarities with other bikes, but incorporate features designed to enhance durability and performance in rough terrain.Mountain biking can...

. Beyond Athens and across the county a great variety of outdoor activities are available and popular, including skiing
Skiing
Skiing is a recreational activity using skis as equipment for traveling over snow. Skis are used in conjunction with boots that connect to the ski with use of a binding....

, rock climbing
Rock climbing
Rock climbing also lightly called 'The Gravity Game', is a sport in which participants climb up, down or across natural rock formations or artificial rock walls. The goal is to reach the summit of a formation or the endpoint of a pre-defined route without falling...

, hang gliding
Hang gliding
Hang gliding is an air sport in which a pilot flies a light and unmotorized foot-launchable aircraft called a hang glider ....

 and windsurfing. Numerous outdoor clubs serve these sports, including the Athens Chapter of the Sierra Club
Sierra Club
The Sierra Club is the oldest, largest, and most influential grassroots environmental organization in the United States. It was founded on May 28, 1892, in San Francisco, California, by the conservationist and preservationist John Muir, who became its first president...

, which leads over 4,000 outings annually in the area.

Education



Located on Panepistimiou Street
Panepistimiou Street
Panepistimiou Street is a major street in Athens that runs one way for non-transit vehicles since 2002 from Amalias Avenue, Syntagma Square and Vassilissis Sofias Avenue to Omonoia Square in which is now a pedestrian crossing and before an intersection...

, the old campus of the University of Athens
National and Kapodistrian University of Athens
The National and Kapodistrian University of Athens , usually referred to simply as the University of Athens, is the oldest university in Southeast Europe and has been in continuous operation since its establishment in 1837. Today, it is the second-largest institution of higher learning in Greece,...

, the National Library
National Library of Greece
The National Library of Greece is situated near the center of city of Athens. It was designed by the Danish architect Theophil Freiherr von Hansen, as part of his famous Trilogy of neo-classical buildings including the Academy of Athens and the original building of the Athens...

, and the Athens Academy
Academy of Athens (modern)
The Academy of Athens is Greece's national academy, and the highest research establishment in the country. It was established in 1926, and operates under the supervision of the Ministry of Education...

 form the "Athens Trilogy" built in the mid-19th century. Most of the university's workings have been moved to a much larger, modern campus located in the eastern suburb of Zografou
Zografou
Zografou is a suburb in the eastern part of Athens, Greece. It is located about 5 km from downtown Athens, 2 km SW of Katechaki Avenue, 4 km from the Hymettus Ring forming part of the Attiki Odos private superhighway network, and 3 km E of Kifissias Avenue...

. The second higher education institution in the city is the Athens Polytechnic School
National Technical University of Athens
The National Technical University of Athens , sometimes simply known as Athens Polytechnic, is among the oldest and most prestigious higher education institutions of Greece....

, found in Patission Street. This was the location where on 17 November 1973, more than 13 students were killed and hundreds injured inside the university during the Athens Polytechnic uprising
Athens Polytechnic uprising
The Athens Polytechnic uprising in 1973 was a massive demonstration of popular rejection of the Greek military junta of 1967-1974. The uprising began on November 14, 1973, escalated to an open anti-junta, anti-US and anti-imperialist revolt and ended in bloodshed in the early morning of November...

, against the military junta
Greek military junta of 1967-1974
The Greek military junta of 1967–1974, alternatively "The Regime of the Colonels" , or in Greece "The Junta", and "The Seven Years" are terms used to refer to a series of right-wing military governments that ruled Greece from 1967 to 1974...

 that ruled the nation from 21 April 1967 until 23 July 1974
Turkish invasion of Cyprus
The Turkish invasion of Cyprus, launched on 20 July 1974, was a Turkish military invasion in response to a Greek military junta backed coup in Cyprus...

. Another notable institution in Patission Street is the Athens University of Economics and Business, which is the oldest business school in Greece and the Agricultural University of Athens
Agricultural University of Athens
The Agricultural University of Athens is located in Athens, at the neighborhood of Votanikos.-Location:The University is located on the alluvian plain of the Kifisos river. Its address is 75 Iera Odos. It is bordered by Kavalas avenue, Spyrou Patsi Street, the bus depot of AUTO, and the FAGE factory...

 which lies at the west of city's center.

Environment


By the late 1970s, the pollution of Athens had become so destructive that according to the then Greek Minister of Culture
Minister for Culture (Greece)
The Ministry of Culture and Tourism is a government department of Greece entrusted with the preservation of the country's cultural heritage, the arts, as well as sports, through the subordinate General Secretariat for Sport...

, Constantine Trypanis, "...the carved details on the five the caryatids of the Erechtheum had seriously degenerated, while the face of the horseman on the Parthenon's west side was all but obliterated." A series of strict measures taken by the authorities of the city throughout the 1990s resulted in the improvement of air quality; the appearance of smog (or nefos as the Athenians used to call it) has become less common.
Widespread measures taken by the Greek authorities throughout the 1990s have improved the quality of air over the Attica Basin. Nevertheless, air pollution still remains an issue for Athens, particularly during the hottest summer days. In late June 2007, the Attica
Attica
Attica is a historical region of Greece, containing Athens, the current capital of Greece. The historical region is centered on the Attic peninsula, which projects into the Aegean Sea...

 region experienced a number of brush fires
2007 Greek forest fires
The 2007 Greek forest fires were a series of massive forest fires that broke out in several areas across Greece throughout the summer of 2007. The most destructive and lethal infernos broke out on August 23, expanded rapidly and raged out of control until August 27, until they were put out in early...

, including a blaze that burned a significant portion of a large forested national park in Mount Parnitha
Parnitha
Mount Parnitha is a densely forested mountain range north of Athens, the highest on the peninsula of Attica, with an elevation of 1,413 m and a summit known as Karavola...

, considered critical to maintaining a better air quality in Athens all year round. Damage to the park has led to worries over a stalling in the improvement of air quality in the city.

The major waste management efforts undertaken in the last decade (particularly the plant built on the small island of Psytalia) have improved water quality
Water quality
Water quality is the physical, chemical and biological characteristics of water. It is a measure of the condition of water relative to the requirements of one or more biotic species and or to any human need or purpose. It is most frequently used by reference to a set of standards against which...

 in the Saronic Gulf, and the coastal waters of Athens are now accessible again to swimmers. In January 2007, Athens faced a waste management problem when its landfill
Landfill
A landfill site , is a site for the disposal of waste materials by burial and is the oldest form of waste treatment...

 near Ano Liosia
Ano Liosia
Ano Liosia is a suburb and a former municipality in the northern part of the Athens agglomeration, Greece. Since the 2011 local government reform it is part of the municipality Fyli, of which it is the seat and a municipal unit....

, an Athenian suburb, reached capacity. The crisis eased by mid-January when authorities began taking the garbage to a temporary landfill.

Transport





The Athens Mass Transit System
Athens Mass Transit System
The Athens Mass Transit System is the largest mass transit system of Greece. The system serves all areas in Athens Metropolitan Area and other parts of Attica Region.-Companies:...

 consists of a large bus fleet, a trolleybus
Trolleybus
A trolleybus is an electric bus that draws its electricity from overhead wires using spring-loaded trolley poles. Two wires and poles are required to complete the electrical circuit...

 fleet that mainly serves the downtown area (city center), the city's Metro, a tram
Tram
A tram is a passenger rail vehicle which runs on tracks along public urban streets and also sometimes on separate rights of way. It may also run between cities and/or towns , and/or partially grade separated even in the cities...

 line connecting the southern suburbs to the city centre, and the Athens commuter rail service.

Athens Metro



The Athens Metro
Athens Metro
The Athens Metro is an underground rapid transit system serving Athens, the capital city of Greece. It was constructed and owned by Attiko Metro S.A. and operated until 2011 by Attiko Metro Etaireia Leitourgias S.A....

 is more commonly known in Greece as the Attiko Metro . While its main purpose is transport, it also houses Greek artifacts found during construction of the system. The Athens Metro supports an operating staff of 387 and runs two of the three metro lines; its two lines (red and blue, also referred to as lines 2 and 3) were constructed largely during the 1990s, and the initial sections opened in January 2000, while the lines run entirely underground. The metro network operates a fleet of 42 trains consisting of 252 cars, with a daily occupancy of 550,000 passengers.

The Red Line (line 2) runs from Aghios Antonios to Aghios Dimitrios
Agios Dimitrios
Agios Dimitrios is a suburb in the southern part of Athens, Greece. Several main roads pass through the city. It is also linked to Katechaki, Vouliagmenis Avenue to the east, Poseidonos Avenue Agios Dimitrios (Greek: Άγιος Δημήτριος meaning Saint Demetrius) is a suburb in the southern part of...

 and covers a distance of 11.6 km (7 mi). Extensions to both these lines are under construction, most notably westwards to Piraeus
Piraeus
Piraeus is a city in the region of Attica, Greece. Piraeus is located within the Athens Urban Area, 12 km southwest from its city center , and lies along the east coast of the Saronic Gulf....

, southwards to the Old Hellinikon Airport East Terminal
Ellinikon International Airport
Ellinikon International Airport , sometimes spelled Hellinikon was the international airport of Athens, Greece for sixty years up until 2001 when it was replaced by the new Athens International Airport. It is located south of Athens, and just west of Glyfada...

 (the future Metropolitan Park
Hellenikon Metropolitan Park
Hellenikon Metropolitan Park as it has been named, will be a large urban park located in Hellinikon, Athens, Greece. The park will provide Athens with a much needed ecological boost. When finished the park will be the largest in Europe....

), and eastward toward the easternmost suburb of Aghia Paraskevi
Agia Paraskevi
Agia Paraskevi , is a suburb of Athens, Greece, in the northeast of Athens, about nine kilometers away from the city centre. It is linked to Athens by Mesogeion Avenue, a major road in the greater Athens area. It is a municipality within Attica region....

. The eastern part is actually no extension per se, but rather an opening of new stations between the Ethniki Amyna
Ethniki Amyna station
Ethniki Amyna is an Athens Metro Blue Line station, situated close to the Ministry of National Defence and the Ministry of Transportation and Communications. When the Metro first opened, it served as the terminal station for all trains to that direction ....

 and Doukissis Plakentias stations. The spring 2007 extension from Monastiraki westwards, to Egaleo
Egaleo
Aegaleo, commonly Aigaleo or Egaleo is a municipality west of Athens, Greece, situated west of the Cephissos river and southeast of Mount Egaleo...

, connected some of the main night life
Nightlife
Nightlife is the collective term for any entertainment that is available and more popular from the late evening into the early hours of the morning...

 hubs of the city, namely the ones of Gazi (Kerameikos station) with Psirri (Monastiraki station) and the city centre (Syntagma station
Syntagma station
The Syntagma station of Attiko Metro is located at Syntagma Square in the center of Athens, Greece. It serves as a transfer point to the Blue Line with the Red Line . It also serves as a connection point to the Athens Tram. When the Metro first opened, the station was the terminal station for both...

).

The Blue Line (line 3) runs from the western suburbs, namely the Egaleo
Egaleo
Aegaleo, commonly Aigaleo or Egaleo is a municipality west of Athens, Greece, situated west of the Cephissos river and southeast of Mount Egaleo...

 station, through the central Monastiraki
Monastiraki
Monastiraki is a flea market neighborhood in the old town of Athens, Greece, and is one of the principal shopping districts in Athens. The area is home to clothing boutiques, souvenir shops, and specialty stores, and is a major tourist attraction in Athens and Attica for bargain shopping...

 and Syntagma stations to Doukissis Plakentias
Doukissis Plakentias station
Doukissis Plakentias, in Athens, Greece is an Attiko Metro Blue Line Station situated in Agia Paraskevi near Doukissis Plakentias Avenue. Named after the Duchess of Plaisance, a philhellene, who owned much of the land in this part of Athens, it is located near Attiki Odos, and serves as a...

 avenue in the northeastern suburb of Halandri
Chalandri
Chalandri or Halandri is a northern suburb in Athens, Greece, and a municipality of the Attica region...

, covering a distance of 16 km (10 mi), then ascending to ground level and reaching Eleftherios Venizelos International Airport, using the Suburban Railway infrastructure and extending its distance to 39 km (24 mi).

Electric railway (ISAP)


Not run by the Athens Metro, is the ISAP , the Electric Railway Company line, which for many years served as Athens' primary urban rail transport. This is today the Green Line (line 1) of the Athens Metro network as shown on maps, and unlike the red and blue routes running entirely underground, ISAP runs either above-ground or below-ground at different sections of its journey. The same operator run the original metro line from Piraeus to Kifisia; serving 22 stations, with a network length of 25.6 km (15.9 mi), an operating staff of 730 and a fleet of 44 trains and 243 cars. ISAP's occupancy rate numbers of 600,000 passengers daily.

The historic Green Line, is 25.6 km (16 mi) long, serving 24 stations, It forms the oldest line of the Athens metro network and for the most part runs at ground level, connecting the port of Piraeus
Piraeus
Piraeus is a city in the region of Attica, Greece. Piraeus is located within the Athens Urban Area, 12 km southwest from its city center , and lies along the east coast of the Saronic Gulf....

 with the northern suburb of Kifissia
Kifissia
Kifissia or Kifisia is one of the most expensive northern suburbs of Athens, mainly accessed via Kifissias Avenue, running all the way from central Athens up to Theseos Avenue in the suburb of Nea Erythraia. It has traditionally been home to the major Greek political families...

. The line is set to be extend to Agios Stefanos, a suburb located 23 km (14 mi) to the north of Athens, reaching to 36 km (22 mi).

Commuter/Suburban rail (Proastiakos)



The Athens commuter rail service, referred to as the "Proastiakós
Proastiakos
Proastiakós , is the name used for the suburban services of TrainOSE, servicing Greece's three largest cities: Athens, Thessaloniki and Patras; providing them with modern commuter rail links, towards their suburbs and also towards other cities and towns located around them.The service, operated by...

", connects Eleftherios Venizelos International Airport to the city of Corinth
Corinth
Corinth is a city and former municipality in Corinthia, Peloponnese, Greece. Since the 2011 local government reform it is part of the municipality Corinth, of which it is the seat and a municipal unit...

, 80 km (50 mi) west of Athens, via Larissa station, the city's central rail station and the port of Piraeus. The service is sometimes considered the fourth line of the Athens Metro. The commuter/suburban rail network currently extends to a length of 120 km (75 mi), and is expected to stretch to 281 km (175 mi) by 2010. The Proastiakos will be extended to Xylokastro west of Athens and Chalkida.

Altogether the urban and suburban railway system is managed by three different companies; namely ISAP (line 1), Attiko Metro (lines 2 & 3) and Proastiakós (line 4).

Buses


Ethel (Etaireia Thermikon Leoforeion), or Thermal Bus Company, is the main operator of buses in Athens. Its network consists of about 300 bus lines which span the entire Attica Basin, with an operating staff of 5,327, and a fleet of 1,839 buses. Of those 1,839 buses 416 run on compressed natural gas
Compressed natural gas
Compressed natural gas is a fossil fuel substitute for gasoline , diesel, or propane/LPG. Although its combustion does produce greenhouse gases, it is a more environmentally clean alternative to those fuels, and it is much safer than other fuels in the event of a spill...

, making up the largest fleet of natural gas-powered buses in Europe.

Besides being served by a fleet of natural-gas and diesel
Diesel engine
A diesel engine is an internal combustion engine that uses the heat of compression to initiate ignition to burn the fuel, which is injected into the combustion chamber...

 buses, the Athens metropolitan area is also served by trolleybus
Trolleybus
A trolleybus is an electric bus that draws its electricity from overhead wires using spring-loaded trolley poles. Two wires and poles are required to complete the electrical circuit...

es — or electric buses, as they are referred to in the name of the operating company. The network operated by Electric Buses of the Athens and Pireaus
Piraeus
Piraeus is a city in the region of Attica, Greece. Piraeus is located within the Athens Urban Area, 12 km southwest from its city center , and lies along the east coast of the Saronic Gulf....

 Region, or ILPAP
ILPAP
I.L.P.A.P. was a public Greek company, part of the general Athens Mass Transit System, responsible for the operation of the trolleybuses network...

 , consists of 22 lines with an operating staff of 1,137. All of the 366 trolleybuses are equipped to enable them to run on diesel in case of power failure
Power outage
A power outage is a short- or long-term loss of the electric power to an area.There are many causes of power failures in an electricity network...

.

Tram


Athens Tram SA operates a fleet of 35 vehicles, which serve 48 stations, employ 345 people with an average daily occupancy of 65,000 passengers. The tram network spans a total length of 27 km (17 mi) and covers ten Athenian suburbs. This network runs from Syntagma Square
Syntagma Square
Syntagma Square , is located in central Athens, Greece. The Square is named after the Constitution that King Otto was forced to grant the people after a popular and military uprising, on September 3, 1843....

 to the southwestern suburb of Palaio Faliro
Palaio Faliro
Palaio Faliro is a suburb in the southern part of Athens, Greece. The area is famous for its beaches , forming Athens' nearest beach and Piraeus' only beach...

, where the line splits in two branches; the first runs along the Athens coastline toward the southern suburb of Voula
Voula
Voula is a town and former municipality in East Attica, Greece. Since the 2011 local government reform it is part of the municipality Vari-Voula-Vouliagmeni, of which it is the seat and a municipal unit.Voula is a southern suburb of Athens...

, while the other heads toward the Piraeus
Piraeus
Piraeus is a city in the region of Attica, Greece. Piraeus is located within the Athens Urban Area, 12 km southwest from its city center , and lies along the east coast of the Saronic Gulf....

 district of Neo Faliro. The network covers the majority of the Saronic coastline. Further extensions are planned towards the major commercial port of Piraeus
Piraeus
Piraeus is a city in the region of Attica, Greece. Piraeus is located within the Athens Urban Area, 12 km southwest from its city center , and lies along the east coast of the Saronic Gulf....

. The expansion to Piraeus will include 12 new stations, increase the overall length of the tram by 5.4 km (3 mi), and increase the overall transportation network.

Eleftherios Venizelos International Airport


Athens is served by the state-of-the-art Eleftherios Venizelos International Airport (AIA) located near the town of Spata
Spata
Spata , is a town east of Athens, Greece. Since the 2011 local government reform it is part of the municipality Spata-Artemida, of which it is the seat and a municipal unit....

, in the eastern Messoghia plain, some 35 km (22 mi) east of Athens. The airport was awarded the "European Airport of the Year 2004" Award. Intended as an expandable hub for air travel in southeastern Europe
Balkans
The Balkans is a geopolitical and cultural region of southeastern Europe...

, it was constructed in a record 51 months costing 2.2 billion euros, and employing a staff of 14,000. An express bus service is provided, connecting the airport to the metro system, and 2 express bus services connect the airport to the port at Piraeus
Piraeus
Piraeus is a city in the region of Attica, Greece. Piraeus is located within the Athens Urban Area, 12 km southwest from its city center , and lies along the east coast of the Saronic Gulf....

 and the city centre respectively. Eleftherios Venizelos
Eleftherios Venizelos
Eleftherios Venizelos was an eminent Greek revolutionary, a prominent and illustrious statesman as well as a charismatic leader in the early 20th century. Elected several times as Prime Minister of Greece and served from 1910 to 1920 and from 1928 to 1932...

 accommodates 65 landings and take-offs per hour, with its 24 passenger boarding bridges, 144 check-in counters and broader 150000 m² (1,614,587 sq ft) main terminal, and a commercial area of 7000 m² (75,347 sq ft) which includes cafes, duty-free
Duty (economics)
In economics, a duty is a kind of tax, often associated with customs, a payment due to the revenue of a state, levied by force of law. It is a tax on certain items purchased abroad...

 shops, and a small museum. In 2007, the airport handled 16,538,390 passengers, an increase of 9.7% over the previous year of 2006. Of those 16,538,390 passengers, 5,955,387 passed through the airport for domestic flights, and 10,583,003 passengers travelled through for international flights. Beyond the dimensions of its passenger capacity, AIA handled 205,294 total flights in 2007, or approximately 562 flights per day.

Railways, highways and ferry connections


Athens is the hub of the country's national railway system (OSE), connecting the capital with major cities across Greece and abroad (Istanbul
Istanbul
Istanbul , historically known as Byzantium and Constantinople , is the largest city of Turkey. Istanbul metropolitan province had 13.26 million people living in it as of December, 2010, which is 18% of Turkey's population and the 3rd largest metropolitan area in Europe after London and...

, Sofia
Sofia
Sofia is the capital and largest city of Bulgaria and the 12th largest city in the European Union with a population of 1.27 million people. It is located in western Bulgaria, at the foot of Mount Vitosha and approximately at the centre of the Balkan Peninsula.Prehistoric settlements were excavated...

, and Bucharest
Bucharest
Bucharest is the capital municipality, cultural, industrial, and financial centre of Romania. It is the largest city in Romania, located in the southeast of the country, at , and lies on the banks of the Dâmbovița River....

). Ferries departing from the major port of Piraeus
Piraeus
Piraeus is a city in the region of Attica, Greece. Piraeus is located within the Athens Urban Area, 12 km southwest from its city center , and lies along the east coast of the Saronic Gulf....

 connect the city to the numerous Greek islands of the Aegean Sea
Aegean Sea
The Aegean Sea[p] is an elongated embayment of the Mediterranean Sea located between the southern Balkan and Anatolian peninsulas, i.e., between the mainlands of Greece and Turkey. In the north, it is connected to the Marmara Sea and Black Sea by the Dardanelles and Bosporus...

. There are two main highways; one heading towards the western city of Patras in Peloponessus
Peloponnese
The Peloponnese, Peloponnesos or Peloponnesus , is a large peninsula , located in a region of southern Greece, forming the part of the country south of the Gulf of Corinth...

 (GR-8A
Greek National Road 8A
Greek National Road 8A is a toll road running from Kifissou avenue, in Athens up to the northeast of Patras. It is a highway from Kifissou avenue up to Corinth, for about 85 km and the rest is an undivided highway with just one lane per direction. The total length is 215 km, but for the...

, E94
European route E94
European route E 94 is part of the International E-road network, which is a series of main roads in Europe.The E 94 starts in western Greece in Corinth, Greece and runs east through Megara and Eleusis and ends in the Greek capital of Athens at the Saronic Gulf in the east....

) and the other heading to the north, towards Greece's second largest city, Thessaloniki
Thessaloniki
Thessaloniki , historically also known as Thessalonica, Salonika or Salonica, is the second-largest city in Greece and the capital of the region of Central Macedonia as well as the capital of the Decentralized Administration of Macedonia and Thrace...

 (GR-1
Greek National Road 1
The Greek Motorway 1 is a motorway, partly under construction, and the 2nd longest in Greece. It is the principal north-south road connection in Greece, connecting the country's capital Athens with the regions of Thessaly and Macedonia, as well as the country's second largest city,...

, E75
European route E75
European route E 75 is part of the International E-road network, which is a series of main roads in Europe.The E 75 starts from Vardø, Norway in the Barents Sea and runs south through Finland, Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Serbia and Republic of Macedonia to Sitia, Greece on...

). From 2001 to 2004, a ring road toll-motorway (Attiki Odos) was gradually completed, extending from the western industrial suburb of Elefsina
Eleusina
Eleusina is a town and municipality in West Attica, Greece. It is situated about 18 km northwest from the centre of Athens. It is located in the Thriasian Plain, at the northernmost end of the Saronic Gulf. It is the seat of administration of West Attica regional unit...

 all the way to the Athens International Airport. The Ymittos
Ymittos
Ymittos , is a suburb of Athens, Greece. Since the 2011 local government reform it is part of the municipality Dafni-Ymittos, of which it is a municipal unit....

 Periphery Highway is a separate section of Attiki Odos
Attiki Odos
Attiki Odos is a privately owned toll motorway in Greece. The Proastiakos high-speed suburban rail is set almost entirely in the median of the motorway, along its main section. The motorway's numbers are 6 for the main section, 64 for the Hymettus Beltway and 65 for the Aigaleo Beltway...

 connecting the eastern suburb of Kaisariani
Kaisariani
Kaisariani , also Kessariani, is a suburb in the eastern part of Athens, Greece. Kaisariani is located about 7 km from downtown Athens, about 4 km SW of Katechaki Avenue 4 km from the Hymettus Ring , which forms part of the Attiki Odos private superhighway network, and 6 km S...

 to the northeastern town of Glyka Nera
Glyka Nera
Glyka Nera , is a suburb in the northeastern part of Athens, Greece. Since the 2011 local government reform it is part of the municipality Paiania, of which it is a municipal unit....

; this is where it meets the main part of the ring road. The span of the Attiki Odos in all is 65 km (40 mi).

Olympic Games



1896 Summer Olympics


1896 brought forth the revival of the modern Olympic Games, by Frenchman Pierre de Coubertin
Pierre de Coubertin
Pierre de Frédy, Baron de Coubertin was a French educationalist and historian, founder of the International Olympic Committee, and is considered the father of the modern Olympic Games...

. Thanks to his efforts, Athens was awarded the first modern Olympic Games. In 1896, the city had an approximate population of 123,000 and the event helped boost the city's international profile. Of the venues used for these Olympics, the Kallimarmaro Stadium, and Zappeion
Zappeion
The Zappeion is a building in the National Gardens of Athens in the heart of Athens, Greece. It is generally used for meetings and ceremonies, both official and private.-Constructing the Zappeion:...

 were most crucial. The Kallimarmaro is a replica of the ancient Athenian stadiums, and the only major stadium (in its capacity of 60,000) to be made entirely of white marble from Mount Penteli
Penteli, Greece
Penteli is a town and a municipality in the North Athens regional unit, Attica, Greece. It belongs to the Athens metropolitan area and Athens' Megalo Daktylo. One of its city halls is located next to the central square. About 80% of the non-urban land consists of Penteliko Mountain...

, the same material used for construction of the Parthenon
Parthenon
The Parthenon is a temple on the Athenian Acropolis, Greece, dedicated to the Greek goddess Athena, whom the people of Athens considered their virgin patron. Its construction began in 447 BC when the Athenian Empire was at the height of its power. It was completed in 438 BC, although...

.

1906 Summer Olympics



The 1906 Summer Olympics, or the 1906 Intercalated games, were held very successfully in Athens. The intercalated competitions were intermediate games to the internationally organized olympics
Olympic Games
The Olympic Games is a major international event featuring summer and winter sports, in which thousands of athletes participate in a variety of competitions. The Olympic Games have come to be regarded as the world’s foremost sports competition where more than 200 nations participate...

, and were meant to be organized in Greece. This idea later lost support from the IOC
International Olympic Committee
The International Olympic Committee is an international corporation based in Lausanne, Switzerland, created by Pierre de Coubertin on 23 June 1894 with Demetrios Vikelas as its first president...

 and these games were not made permanent.


2004 Summer Olympics



Athens was awarded the 2004 Summer Olympics on 5 September 1997 in Lausanne
Lausanne
Lausanne is a city in Romandy, the French-speaking part of Switzerland, and is the capital of the canton of Vaud. The seat of the district of Lausanne, the city is situated on the shores of Lake Geneva . It faces the French town of Évian-les-Bains, with the Jura mountains to its north-west...

, Switzerland
Switzerland
Switzerland name of one of the Swiss cantons. ; ; ; or ), in its full name the Swiss Confederation , is a federal republic consisting of 26 cantons, with Bern as the seat of the federal authorities. The country is situated in Western Europe,Or Central Europe depending on the definition....

, after having lost a previous bid to host the 1996 Summer Olympics
1996 Summer Olympics
The 1996 Summer Olympics of Atlanta, officially known as the Games of the XXVI Olympiad and unofficially known as the Centennial Olympics, was an international multi-sport event which was celebrated in 1996 in Atlanta, Georgia, United States....

, to Atlanta, United States. It was to be the second time Athens would have the honour of hosting the games, following the inaugural event of 1896. After an unsuccessful bid in 1990, the 1997 bid was radically improved, including an appeal to Greece's Olympic history. In the last round of voting, Athens defeated Rome with 66 votes to 41. Prior to this round, the cities of Buenos Aires
Buenos Aires
Buenos Aires is the capital and largest city of Argentina, and the second-largest metropolitan area in South America, after São Paulo. It is located on the western shore of the estuary of the Río de la Plata, on the southeastern coast of the South American continent...

, Stockholm
Stockholm
Stockholm is the capital and the largest city of Sweden and constitutes the most populated urban area in Scandinavia. Stockholm is the most populous city in Sweden, with a population of 851,155 in the municipality , 1.37 million in the urban area , and around 2.1 million in the metropolitan area...

 and Cape Town
Cape Town
Cape Town is the second-most populous city in South Africa, and the provincial capital and primate city of the Western Cape. As the seat of the National Parliament, it is also the legislative capital of the country. It forms part of the City of Cape Town metropolitan municipality...

 had already been eliminated from competition, having received fewer votes.

During the first three years of preparations, the International Olympic Committee
International Olympic Committee
The International Olympic Committee is an international corporation based in Lausanne, Switzerland, created by Pierre de Coubertin on 23 June 1894 with Demetrios Vikelas as its first president...

 had repeatedly expressed some concern over the speed of construction progress for some of the new Olympic venues. In 2000 the Organising Committee's president was replaced by Gianna Angelopoulos-Daskalaki
Gianna Angelopoulos-Daskalaki
Gianna Angelopoulos-Daskalaki is a Greek business woman. She is best known for being the president of the bidding and organizing committee for the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens, Greece...

, who was the president of the original Bidding Committee in 1997. From that point on, preparations continued at a highly accelerated, almost frenzied pace.

Although the heavy cost was criticized, estimated at $1.5 billion, as is usually the case with most Olympic cities, Athens was literally transformed into a more functional city that enjoys state-of-the-art technology both in transportation and in modern urban development
Urban planning
Urban planning incorporates areas such as economics, design, ecology, sociology, geography, law, political science, and statistics to guide and ensure the orderly development of settlements and communities....

. Some of the finest sporting venues in the world were created in the city, all of which were fully ready for the games. The games welcomed over 10,000 athletes from all 202 countries.

The 2004 Games were judged a huge success, as both security and organization were exceptionally good, and only a few visitors reported minor problems mainly concerning accommodation issues. The 2004 Olympic Games were described as Unforgettable, dream Games, by IOC President Jacques Rogge
Jacques Rogge
Jacques Rogge, Count Rogge , is a Belgian sports bureaucrat. He is the eighth and current President of the International Olympic Committee .-Life and career:...

 for their return to the birthplace of the Olympics, and for superbly meeting the challenges of holding the Olympic Games. The only observable problem was a somewhat sparse attendance of some early events. Eventually, however, a total of more than 3.5 million tickets were sold, which was higher than any other Olympics with the exception of Sydney
Sydney
Sydney is the most populous city in Australia and the state capital of New South Wales. Sydney is located on Australia's south-east coast of the Tasman Sea. As of June 2010, the greater metropolitan area had an approximate population of 4.6 million people...

 (more than 5 million tickets were sold there in 2000).

In 2008 it was reported that almost all of the Olympic venues had fallen into varying states of disrepair: according to those reports, 21 of the 22 facilities built for the games had either been left abandoned or are in a state of dereliction, with several squatter
Squatting
Squatting consists of occupying an abandoned or unoccupied space or building, usually residential, that the squatter does not own, rent or otherwise have permission to use....

 camps having sprung up around certain facilities, and a number of venues afflicted by vandalism
Vandalism
Vandalism is the behaviour attributed originally to the Vandals, by the Romans, in respect of culture: ruthless destruction or spoiling of anything beautiful or venerable...

, graffiti or strewn with rubbish. These claims, however, are disputed and likely to be inaccurate, as most of the facilities used for the Athens Olympics
2004 Summer Olympics
The 2004 Summer Olympic Games, officially known as the Games of the XXVIII Olympiad, was a premier international multi-sport event held in Athens, Greece from August 13 to August 29, 2004 with the motto Welcome Home. 10,625 athletes competed, some 600 more than expected, accompanied by 5,501 team...

 are either in use or in the process of being converted for post-Olympics use. The Greek Government has created a corporation, Olympic Properties SA, which is overseeing the post-Olympics management, development and conversion of these facilities, some of which will be sold off (or have already been sold off) to the private sector, while other facilities are still in use just as during the Olympics, or have been converted for commercial use or modified for other sports.

Twin towns – Sister cities


Athens is twinned with:
Athens, Georgia
Athens, Georgia
Athens-Clarke County is a consolidated city–county in U.S. state of Georgia, in the northeastern part of the state, comprising the former City of Athens proper and Clarke County. The University of Georgia is located in this college town and is responsible for the initial growth of the city...

, United States Barcelona
Barcelona
Barcelona is the second largest city in Spain after Madrid, and the capital of Catalonia, with a population of 1,621,537 within its administrative limits on a land area of...

, Spain (1999) Beijing
Beijing
Beijing , also known as Peking , is the capital of the People's Republic of China and one of the most populous cities in the world, with a population of 19,612,368 as of 2010. The city is the country's political, cultural, and educational center, and home to the headquarters for most of China's...

, People's Republic of China (2005) Beirut
Beirut
Beirut is the capital and largest city of Lebanon, with a population ranging from 1 million to more than 2 million . Located on a peninsula at the midpoint of Lebanon's Mediterranean coastline, it serves as the country's largest and main seaport, and also forms the Beirut Metropolitan...

, Lebanon Bethlehem
Bethlehem
Bethlehem is a Palestinian city in the central West Bank of the Jordan River, near Israel and approximately south of Jerusalem, with a population of about 30,000 people. It is the capital of the Bethlehem Governorate of the Palestinian National Authority and a hub of Palestinian culture and tourism...

, Palestinian Territories
Palestinian territories
The Palestinian territories comprise the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. Since the Palestinian Declaration of Independence in 1988, the region is today recognized by three-quarters of the world's countries as the State of Palestine or simply Palestine, although this status is not recognized by the...

 (1986) Bucharest
Bucharest
Bucharest is the capital municipality, cultural, industrial, and financial centre of Romania. It is the largest city in Romania, located in the southeast of the country, at , and lies on the banks of the Dâmbovița River....

, Romania Chicago
Chicago
Chicago is the largest city in the US state of Illinois. With nearly 2.7 million residents, it is the most populous city in the Midwestern United States and the third most populous in the US, after New York City and Los Angeles...

, United States (1997) Cusco
Cusco
Cusco , often spelled Cuzco , is a city in southeastern Peru, near the Urubamba Valley of the Andes mountain range. It is the capital of the Cusco Region as well as the Cuzco Province. In 2007, the city had a population of 358,935 which was triple the figure of 20 years ago...

, Peru (1991) Istanbul
Istanbul
Istanbul , historically known as Byzantium and Constantinople , is the largest city of Turkey. Istanbul metropolitan province had 13.26 million people living in it as of December, 2010, which is 18% of Turkey's population and the 3rd largest metropolitan area in Europe after London and...

, Turkey
Los Angeles
Los Ángeles
Los Ángeles is the capital of the province of Biobío, in the commune of the same name, in Region VIII , in the center-south of Chile. It is located between the Laja and Biobío rivers. The population is 123,445 inhabitants...

, United States (1984) Moscow
Moscow
Moscow is the capital, the most populous city, and the most populous federal subject of Russia. The city is a major political, economic, cultural, scientific, religious, financial, educational, and transportation centre of Russia and the continent...

, Russia Naples
Naples
Naples is a city in Southern Italy, situated on the country's west coast by the Gulf of Naples. Lying between two notable volcanic regions, Mount Vesuvius and the Phlegraean Fields, it is the capital of the region of Campania and of the province of Naples...

, Italy Nicosia
Nicosia
Nicosia from , known locally as Lefkosia , is the capital and largest city in Cyprus, as well as its main business center. Nicosia is the only divided capital in the world, with the southern and the northern portions divided by a Green Line...

, Cyprus (1988) Seoul
Seoul
Seoul , officially the Seoul Special City, is the capital and largest metropolis of South Korea. A megacity with a population of over 10 million, it is the largest city proper in the OECD developed world...

, South Korea (2006) Tirana
Tirana
Tirana is the capital and the largest city of Albania. Modern Tirana was founded as an Ottoman town in 1614 by Sulejman Bargjini, a local ruler from Mullet, although the area has been continuously inhabited since antiquity. Tirana became Albania's capital city in 1920 and has a population of over...

, Albania Washington, D.C.
Washington, D.C.
Washington, D.C., formally the District of Columbia and commonly referred to as Washington, "the District", or simply D.C., is the capital of the United States. On July 16, 1790, the United States Congress approved the creation of a permanent national capital as permitted by the U.S. Constitution....

, United States (2000) Yerevan
Yerevan
Yerevan is the capital and largest city of Armenia and one of the world's oldest continuously-inhabited cities. Situated along the Hrazdan River, Yerevan is the administrative, cultural, and industrial center of the country...

, Armenia (1993)

Partnerships

Belgrade
Belgrade
Belgrade is the capital and largest city of Serbia. It is located at the confluence of the Sava and Danube rivers, where the Pannonian Plain meets the Balkans. According to official results of Census 2011, the city has a population of 1,639,121. It is one of the 15 largest cities in Europe...

, Serbia (1966) Paris
Paris
Paris is the capital and largest city in France, situated on the river Seine, in northern France, at the heart of the Île-de-France region...

, France (2000) Santiago de Cali
Santiago de Cali
Santiago de Cali , simply referred to as Cali, is a city in western Colombia and the capital of the Valle del Cauca Department. With a population of 2.5 million, Cali is the third largest city in the country. It has one of the fastest growing economies and infrastructure in the country because...

, Colombia

Other locations named after Athens



  United States:
  • Athens, Alabama
    Athens, Alabama
    Athens is a city in Limestone County, Alabama, United States. As of the 2000 census, the population of the city is 18,967. According to the 2009 U.S. Census estimates, the city had a population of 24,234...

     (pop. 24,234)
  • Athens, Arkansas
    Athens, Arkansas
    Athens is an unincorporated community in Polk County, Arkansas, United States. It includes a number of historic places, including the following ones which are all listed on the National Register of Historic Places:...

  • Athens, California
    Athens, California
    Athens is an unincorporated community in Los Angeles County, California. It lies at an elevation of 171 feet . Athens is located in the South Los Angeles region, near the intersection of the Century and the Harbor freeways...

  • West Athens, California
    West Athens, California
    West Athens is a census-designated place in Los Angeles County, California, United States. The population was 8,729 at the 2010 census, down from 9,101 at the 2000 census. It is an unincorporated area within the 2nd Supervisorial District of Los Angeles County. West Athens is served by the Los...

     (pop. 9,101)
  • Athens, Georgia
    Athens, Georgia
    Athens-Clarke County is a consolidated city–county in U.S. state of Georgia, in the northeastern part of the state, comprising the former City of Athens proper and Clarke County. The University of Georgia is located in this college town and is responsible for the initial growth of the city...

     (pop. 114,983)
  • Athens, Illinois
    Athens, Illinois
    Athens is a city in Menard County, Illinois, United States. The population was 1,726 at the 2000 census, and 1,778 at a 2009 estimate. It is part of the Springfield, Illinois Metropolitan Statistical Area.-Geography:...

     (pop. 1,726)
  • New Athens, Illinois
    New Athens, Illinois
    New Athens is a village in St. Clair County, Illinois, United States. Based upon common usage, the 'A' is always sounded with a long vowel, rather than a short vowel, by its residents, unlike the most commonly used English pronunciation of the city in Greece....

     (pop. 2,620)
  • New Athens Township, St. Clair County, Illinois
    New Athens Township, St. Clair County, Illinois
    New Athens Township is located in St. Clair County, Illinois. The population was 2,620 at the 2000 census.- External links :****...

     (pop. 2,620)
  • Athens, Indiana
    Athens, Indiana
    Athens is an unincorporated hamlet in Henry Township, Fulton County, Indiana, originally called Hoover Station. The town's name is pronounced with a long a and stress on the first syllable...

  • Athens, Kentucky
    Athens, Kentucky
    Athens, Kentucky, United States, is a small unincorporated village in the rural services area of Lexington- Fayette Urban County to the east of Interstate 75. First settled in 1786 as the community of Cross Plains, the town was chartered as Athens in 1826 and had its own post office from that time...

  • Athens, Louisiana
    Athens, Louisiana
    Athens is a village in Claiborne Parish, Louisiana, United States. The population was 262 at the 2000 census.The Pilgrim's Pride poultry hatchery in Athens was designated for closure early in 2009, along with other company businesses in nearby Arcadia in Bienville Parish, Choudrant in Lincoln...

     (pop. 262)
  • Athens Township, Jewell County, Kansas
    Athens Township, Jewell County, Kansas
    Athens Township is a township in Jewell County, Kansas, USA. As of the 2000 census, its population was 74.-Geography:Athens Township covers an area of 39.47 square miles...

     (pop. 74)
  • Athens, Maine
    Athens, Maine
    Athens is a town in Somerset County, Maine, United States. The population was 847 at the 2000 census.-Geography:According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of , of which, of it is land and of it is water....

     (pop. 847)
  • Athens, Michigan
    Athens, Michigan
    Athens is a village in Calhoun County in the U.S. state of Michigan. The population was 1,111 at the 2000 census. The village is located in southern Athens Township, and is part of the Battle Creek, Michigan Metropolitan Statistical Area. It was settled in 1831.-Geography:According to the United...

     (pop. 1,111)
  • Athens Township, Michigan
    Athens Township, Michigan
    Athens Township is a civil township of southwest Calhoun County in the U.S. state of Michigan, about 15 miles south of Battle Creek. It is part of the Battle Creek, Michigan Metropolitan Statistical Area. As of the 2000 census, the township population was 2,571.-History:Euro-American settlers...

     (pop. 2,571)
  • Athens, Minnesota
    Athens, Minnesota
    Athens is an unincorporated community in Athens Township, Isanti County, Minnesota, United States.Isanti County Road 9 serves as a main route in the community. State Highway 65 is nearby....

  • Athens Township, Minnesota
    Athens Township, Minnesota
    Athens Township is a township in Isanti County, Minnesota, United States. The population was 2,322 at the 2000 census.-Geography:According to the United States Census Bureau, the township has a total area of , of which, of it is land and of it is water.The Cedar Creek Long-Term Ecological...

     (pop. 2,322)
  • Athens, Mississippi
    Athens, Mississippi
    Athens is an unincorporated community in Monroe County, Mississippi, United States.Athens is located at .Among the notable residents of Athens was attorney Samuel J...

  • Athens (town), New York
    Athens (town), New York
    Athens is a town in Greene County, New York, USA. The population was 4,089 at the 2010 census.The Town of Athens has a village also called Athens...

     (pop. 3,991)
  • Athens (village), New York
    Athens (village), New York
    Athens is a village in Greene County, New York, USA. The population was 1,668 at the 2010 census. The village is named after the classical city of Athens.The Village of Athens is in the eastern part of the Town of Athens, opposite the City of Hudson....

     (pop. 1,695)
  • Athens, Ohio
    Athens, Ohio
    Athens is the largest city in, and the county seat of, Athens County, Ohio, United States. It is located along the Hocking River in the southeastern part of Ohio. A historic college town, Athens is home to Ohio University and is the principal city of the Athens, Ohio Micropolitan Statistical Area. ...

     (pop. 21,909)
  • Athens County, Ohio
    Athens County, Ohio
    As of the census of 2000, there were 62,223 people, 22,501 households, and 12,713 families residing in the county. The population density was 123 people per square mile . There were 24,901 housing units at an average density of 49 per square mile...

     (pop. 62,223)
  • Athens Township, Athens County, Ohio
    Athens Township, Athens County, Ohio
    Athens Township is one of the fourteen townships of Athens County, Ohio, United States. The 2000 census found 27,714 people in the township, 6,680 of whom lived in the unincorporated portions of the township.-Geography:...

     (pop. 27,714)
  • Athens Township, Harrison County, Ohio
    Athens Township, Harrison County, Ohio
    Athens Township is one of the fifteen townships of Harrison County, Ohio, United States. The 2000 census found 520 people in the township, 187 of whom lived in the unincorporated portions of the township.-Geography:...

     (pop. 520)
  • New Athens, Ohio
    New Athens, Ohio
    New Athens is a village in Harrison County, Ohio, United States. The population was 342 at the 2000 census.During Morgan's Raid, a decisive Union victory in the Civil War in 1863, Confederate Brid. Gen...

     (pop. 342)
  • Athena, Oregon
    Athena, Oregon
    Athena is a city in Umatilla County, Oregon, United States.The population was 1,126 at the 2010 census. It is part of the Pendleton–Hermiston Micropolitan Statistical Area.-History:...

     (pop. 1270)
  • Athens, Pennsylvania
    Athens, Pennsylvania
    Athens is a borough in Bradford County, Pennsylvania, two miles south of the N. Y. State line on the Susquehanna and Chemung rivers. Population in 1900, 3,749; and in 1910, 3,796. The population was 3,415 at the 2000 census...

     (pop. 3,415)
  • Athens Township, Bradford County, Pennsylvania
    Athens Township, Bradford County, Pennsylvania
    Athens Township is a township in Bradford County, Pennsylvania, United States. The population was 5,058 at the 2000 census.-Geography:According to the United States Census Bureau, the township has a total area of , of which, of it is land and of it is water.Athens Township is bordered by New...

     (pop. 5,058)
  • Athens Township, Crawford County, Pennsylvania
    Athens Township, Crawford County, Pennsylvania
    Athens Township is a township in Crawford County, Pennsylvania, United States. The population was 775 at the 2000 census.-Geography:According to the United States Census Bureau, the township has a total area of , of which, of it is land and of it is water.-Demographics:As of the census of 2000,...

     (pop. 775)
  • Athens, Tennessee
    Athens, Tennessee
    Athens is a city in McMinn County, Tennessee, United States. It is the county seat of McMinn County and the principal city of the Athens Micropolitan Statistical Area, which is part of the larger Chattanooga-Cleveland-Athens Combined Statistical Area. The population was 13,220 at the 2000...

     (pop. 13,220)
  • Athens, Texas
    Athens, Texas
    Athens is a city in Henderson County, Texas, in the United States. As of the 2010 census, the city population was 12,710. It is the county seat of Henderson County. According to the Texas Legislature, Athens is the "Original Home of the Hamburger"...

     (pop. 11,297)
  • Athens, Vermont
    Athens, Vermont
    Athens is a town in Windham County, Vermont, United States. The population was 340 at the 2000 census.-Geography:According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 13.1 square miles , of which 13.0 square miles is land and 0.04 square mile is...

     (pop. 340)
  • Athens, West Virginia
    Athens, West Virginia
    Athens is a town in Mercer County, West Virginia, United States. The population was 1,102 at the 2000 census. It is part of the Bluefield, WV-VA micropolitan area which has a population of 107,578. It is the home of Concord University.-History:...

     (pop. 1,102)
  • Athens, Wisconsin
    Athens, Wisconsin
    Athens is a village in Marathon County, Wisconsin, United States. It is part of the Wausau, Wisconsin Metropolitan Statistical Area. The population was 1,095 at the 2000 census.-Geography:...

     (pop. 1,095)

  Canada:
  • Athens Township, Ontario (pop. 3,086)

  Costa Rica:
  • Atenas
    Atenas
    Atenas is the capital city of the canton of Atenas in the province of Alajuela in Costa Rica. It is also the name of the distrito that includes the city. The district of Atenas covers an area of 8.93 km², and has a population of 7,716...

     (pop. 7,716)
  • Atenas Canton
    Atenas Canton
    Atenas is the name of the fifth canton in the province of Alajuela in Costa Rica. The canton covers an area of , and has a population of 23,743 . The capital city of the canton is also called Atenas....

     (pop. 23,743)

  Germany:
  • Athenstedt
    Athenstedt
    Athenstedt is a village and a former municipality in the district of Harz, in Saxony-Anhalt, Germany. Since 1 January 2010, it is part of the town Halberstadt....

    , Saxony-Anhalt
    Saxony-Anhalt
    Saxony-Anhalt is a landlocked state of Germany. Its capital is Magdeburg and it is surrounded by the German states of Lower Saxony, Brandenburg, Saxony, and Thuringia.Saxony-Anhalt covers an area of...

     (pop. 431)

  Ukraine:
  • Afini (Zoria – Зоря), Donetsk
    Donetsk
    Donetsk , is a large city in eastern Ukraine on the Kalmius river. Administratively, it is a center of Donetsk Oblast, while historically, it is the unofficial capital and largest city of the economic and cultural Donets Basin region...



See also


  • Parthenon
    Parthenon
    The Parthenon is a temple on the Athenian Acropolis, Greece, dedicated to the Greek goddess Athena, whom the people of Athens considered their virgin patron. Its construction began in 447 BC when the Athenian Empire was at the height of its power. It was completed in 438 BC, although...

  • Acropolis of Athens
    Acropolis of Athens
    The Acropolis of Athens or Citadel of Athens is the best known acropolis in the world. Although there are many other acropoleis in Greece, the significance of the Acropolis of Athens is such that it is commonly known as The Acropolis without qualification...

  • Classical Greece
    Classical Greece
    Classical Greece was a 200 year period in Greek culture lasting from the 5th through 4th centuries BC. This classical period had a powerful influence on the Roman Empire and greatly influenced the foundation of Western civilizations. Much of modern Western politics, artistic thought, such as...

  • 2004 Summer Olympics
    2004 Summer Olympics
    The 2004 Summer Olympic Games, officially known as the Games of the XXVIII Olympiad, was a premier international multi-sport event held in Athens, Greece from August 13 to August 29, 2004 with the motto Welcome Home. 10,625 athletes competed, some 600 more than expected, accompanied by 5,501 team...

  • 1896 Summer Olympics
    1896 Summer Olympics
    The 1896 Summer Olympics, officially known as the Games of the I Olympiad, was a multi-sport event celebrated in Athens, Greece, from April 6 to April 15, 1896. It was the first international Olympic Games held in the Modern era...

  • Eurovision Song Contest 2006
    Eurovision Song Contest 2006
    The Eurovision Song Contest 2006 was the 51st Eurovision Song Contest, held at the Olympic Indoor Hall in Athens, Greece on 18 May and 20 May 2006 . The hosting national broadcaster of the contest was Ellinikí Radiofonía Tileórasi . The Finnish band Lordi won the contest with the song "Hard Rock...

  • Hellenic civilization
    Ancient Greece
    Ancient Greece is a civilization belonging to a period of Greek history that lasted from the Archaic period of the 8th to 6th centuries BC to the end of antiquity. Immediately following this period was the beginning of the Early Middle Ages and the Byzantine era. Included in Ancient Greece is the...

  • Large Cities Climate Leadership Group
    Large Cities Climate Leadership Group
    The Large Cities Climate Leadership Group, now officially known as the C40 is a group of cities working to reduce urban carbon emissions and to adapt to climate change. It believes it has an important role to play as cities contain around 50% of the world population, consume 75% of the world's...

  • List of museums in Greece
  • Panteion University of Athens
    Panteion University
    The Panteion University of Social and Political Sciences , usually referred to simply as the Panteion University, is a university located in Athens, Greece...

  • Politics of Greece
    Politics of Greece
    The Politics of Greece takes place in a large parliamentary representative democratic republic, whereby the Prime Minister of Greece is the head of government, and of a multi-party system. Legislative power is vested in both the government and the Hellenic Parliament...

  • Hellenic Parliament
    Hellenic Parliament
    The Hellenic Parliament , also the Parliament of the Hellenes, is the Parliament of Greece, located in the Parliament House , overlooking Syntagma Square in Athens, Greece....

  • Peloponnesian War
    Peloponnesian War
    The Peloponnesian War, 431 to 404 BC, was an ancient Greek war fought by Athens and its empire against the Peloponnesian League led by Sparta. Historians have traditionally divided the war into three phases...

  • Age of Pericles
    Age of Pericles
    Fifth-century Athens refers to the Greek city-state of Athens in the period of roughly 480 BC-404 BC. This was a period of Athenian political hegemony, economic growth and cultural flourishing formerly known as the Golden Age of Athens or The Age of Pericles. The period began in 480 BC when an...

  • Greco-Persian Wars
    Greco-Persian Wars
    The Greco-Persian Wars were a series of conflicts between the Achaemenid Empire of Persia and city-states of the Hellenic world that started in 499 BC and lasted until 449 BC. The collision between the fractious political world of the Greeks and the enormous empire of the Persians began when Cyrus...

  • Democracy
    Democracy
    Democracy is generally defined as a form of government in which all adult citizens have an equal say in the decisions that affect their lives. Ideally, this includes equal participation in the proposal, development and passage of legislation into law...

  • National Library of Greece
    National Library of Greece
    The National Library of Greece is situated near the center of city of Athens. It was designed by the Danish architect Theophil Freiherr von Hansen, as part of his famous Trilogy of neo-classical buildings including the Academy of Athens and the original building of the Athens...

  • Athens University
  • Academy of Athens
    Academy of Athens (modern)
    The Academy of Athens is Greece's national academy, and the highest research establishment in the country. It was established in 1926, and operates under the supervision of the Ministry of Education...

  • National Archaeological Museum, Athens
  • National Technical University of Athens
    National Technical University of Athens
    The National Technical University of Athens , sometimes simply known as Athens Polytechnic, is among the oldest and most prestigious higher education institutions of Greece....

  • Agricultural University of Athens
    Agricultural University of Athens
    The Agricultural University of Athens is located in Athens, at the neighborhood of Votanikos.-Location:The University is located on the alluvian plain of the Kifisos river. Its address is 75 Iera Odos. It is bordered by Kavalas avenue, Spyrou Patsi Street, the bus depot of AUTO, and the FAGE factory...

  • Athens University of Economics and Business


External links



Official
  • Cityofathens.gr – City of Athens official website
  • Athens The Official website of the Greek National Tourism Organisation


Historical

Travel

Visual