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Experience in Athens, Greece by Apollo

Published by Apollo Pampallis — 11 months ago

0 Tags: Erasmus experiences Athens, Athens, Greece

What is it like to live in Athens? Would you recommend it? What is the city like?

Athens is extremely diverse, culturally and price wise. Depending where you are, a coffee can be anything between 80c and E3.75
As always through, Athens is in the centre of everything. You can feel the birth of the west here, even today. The acropolis, though bombed, desecrated and demolished over the years still stands proud and strikes an ancient sacred chord in everyone, regardless of age and ethnicity. The main attractions of Athens are nearly all within walking distance, from the Acropolis and other significant ancient sights and the famous Acropolis Museum, to Monastiraki fleamarket flowing into Psiri, the throbbing nightlife centre. On your walks you are caressed by the bouzouki music played by cafe musicians and customers alike at the various tavernas, cafes and restaurants. Athens centre is Always alive, 24/24, 7/7, 365/365. But not all is laughter. You can also feel the pain and anxiety of a people plagued with a treacherous government and an orchestrated economic crisis, as the nwo tries to extinguish the New Wave of Hellenism, the Ancient way of life based not on materialism or belief, but on reason, virtue,courage and creativity that made Hellas great, not only amongst Greeks but in all nations. Athens is an experience far deeper than its physical form but, as is Greece a warm, fuzzy feeling that once experienced will never be forgotten.
Living here permanently can be challenging, but there are many foreigners who have made Athens home and would never dream of leaving.
In Greece everyone (except for some old people in villages) speaks English plus another Euro language, but of course its always good to learn a bit of Greek (although Greeks have the annoying 'polite' habit of answering you in English when you are trying to practice your Greek!

What is the student lifestyle like in Athens?

Student culture is pretty universal...though long time since I been a student, somehow I'm always surrounded by them, I'd like to think because of my wisdom in my years, but more likely coz I havent grown up yet :-). Despite that, the Greek joy de vivre (sic) permeates everything and puts you on a permanent Hi, and High ! Also as a student, you have access to many things on the cheap side.... ;-)

How much does it cost to live in Athens?

From very cheap to very expensive. Full range.

Is it difficult to find accommodation in Athens? Is there any advice you can give?

No. The best place in my opinion is the oldd city around the acropolis like Thysseion. Full of character and a walk away from just about anything. Near Keramikos metro is nightlife area. Near Thysseion and Acropolis, a walk away is near Ancient area and Philopappou Hill, wonderful for meditative walks.

What is the food like? What are your favourite dishes?

I dont eat red meat, but souvlaki, the traditional Greek fastfood, meat red or white grilled on a bamboo skewer served in a pitta in full salad with yoghurt and garlic (if you say 'me ola' , i.e. 'with everything is an alltime quick and cheap favourite. I also like moussaka and fassoladha traditional bean stew without meat (unlike Portuguese and spanish which has pork). Greek food is most definitely the best, quality and recipe and health wise the best in the world! And Greek confectionary is most addictive, for good reason! My health breakfast is traditional Greek sheep or goat yoghurt in a clay pot (from most supermarkets) (with or without quinoa) with tahini, a splash of carob syrup and a dozen different dried fruit, nuts and seeds blended together, with a touch of Greek honey, famous since antiquity!

What places would you recommend visiting in Athens?

Acropolis, surrounding ancient sites and museums. The planetarium, arguable best in the world. Sounion. In the summer there are stacks of free awesome cultural events. Check them out. Whatever your interests, you will find lots to do here.

Is it good to eat out in Athens? Can you tell us your favourite spots?

Yes, I cant give 'favourite spots', but I like places that have 'ladhera' or 'paradosiaki (traditional) kouzina, where you food may be undecoratively served in an unmatching chipped plate, but excellent in terms of taste, quality and value for money and with numerous veg options and broad menus that change daily.

Is the nightlife good in Athens? Where is good to go?

Every taste is more than adequately catered for, though I am not really a clubbing person

What advice would you give future students heading to Athens?

read up on history and mythology (esoteric truths), esp about goddess Athena and acropolis so that you wont have to rush it here. Make some friends on social media before you come. The Greeks are most hospitable. Look up the word "philoxenia"

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If you know Athens as native, traveler or as exchange student... share your opinion on Athens! Rate different characteristics and share your experience.

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