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Mix Columbo Hotel

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One of the oldest cities in the world, Athens offers an unforgettable blend of history and hedonism. A city that dates back to 2,500 years, the ancient charm is palpable as you walk through the ruins of Acropolis and Parthenon. But the contemporary co-exists with the ancient in Athens, which is prominent in its cosmopolitan neighbourhoods and bustling restaurants, bars and clubs. If you’re looking for a city break that strikes the perfect balance between culture and entertainment, then Athens holidays are tailor-made for you. Walking around the impressive Archaeological Promenade offers a treat to culture vultures, while beachcombers can soak up the sun at the magnificent beaches that frame the Greek coastline. Athens has a handful of idyllic beaches where you can make a splash in the crystal-clear waters during your holidays in Athens. As the sun sets, explore the heady cultural scene of the Greek capital – dine at open-air tavernas that dot the city, and then head to the trendy beach clubs and party the night away.

Acropolis of Athens

One of the most atmospheric sights of Athens is the Archaeological Promenade, a 4km tree-lined walkway which links the main archaeological sites. Muse over the Acropolis, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and Athens’ most recognisable landmark, and admire the iconic columns of the Parthenon. Visit the National Archaeological Museum and the Panathenaic Stadium – the venue for the first modern Olympic Games in 1896. For a glimpse into ancient Athens, walk through the 19th-century whitewashed neighbourhood of Anafiotika, or visit the Temple of Apollo in the historic town of Delphi.

Fun at Athens beach

Athens isn’t just about history, and the stunning Greek coastline justifies that. There are a number of popular beaches in and around Athens, such as Schinias, Legrena and Erotospilia beaches. The best beaches in Athens are found between Kavouri and Sounion. If you’re looking for tranquillity, relax on the private sands in Glyfada. Entry is chargeable here, but a visit to the unspoilt coves is worth the fee. Take a short trip to the splendid Vouliagmeni beach, only 23km south of the city.

Athens after dark

Athens comes alive at night with a fantastic bar scene. The glamourous beach clubs between Piraeus and Glyfada are ideal venues to drink and dance the night away. Try the iconic Brettos bar that has been serving homemade liqueurs since 1909. If you want to sample traditional Greek cuisine, head to the city centre for stylish tavernas. Plaka has many first-rate tavernas, cafes and restaurants. You can also visit Kolonaki, which houses some popular nightspots.

Shop for souvenirs

Explore the modern face of Athens at GazArte – a multipurpose art space in Gazi that screens Greek cinema and has a bar and a bookstore. Enjoy cocktails at the alfresco terrace while admiring the panorama. A trip to Athens is incomplete without shopping for souvenirs. You’ll find an eclectic mix of handicrafts, such as handmade replicas of ancient Greek pieces. The Sunday flea market at Avissynias Square is a good spot for buying paintings and trinkets. You can also explore vintage stores in Psiri.

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Something for everyone from summer playgrounds of golden sands to peaceful relaxation in the pine-fringed calas of the east coast.

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