For a long time now Greece has held the attention of tourists worldwide. Archaeologists and history enthusiasts regard the country with such great significance that no tourist can help writing it down on his or her bucket list. And a visit to the nation serves to prove that this fascination isn’t misguided either. With its stunning landscape and magnificent historical monuments, Greece definitely deserves all the attention it gets.
Its rich history cements its place as one of the must-visit European nations. The country is the birthplace of concepts such as democracy, events such as the Olympics, and has had an impact on nations such as Italy, India, China etc. The world owes the contribution of philosophers such as Aristotle, Plato, and Socrates to Greece as well. From Pythagoras in mathematics to Hippocrates in medicine, Greece has indeed helped plenty with the progress of the world. The country is home to 18 UNESCO World Heritage Sites, among the most in the world – another proof of its admirable history.
It comes as no surprise therefore that the nation should be home to a large number of tourists every year as well. But given most tourists include Greece in a cross-Europe trip; it is difficult to witness all its splendour in a jam-packed schedule. So if the various magnificent cities have to be packed into a tight schedule – their number needs to be reduced drastically. Two, to be precise Athens and Patras.
The two cities hold various attractions for visitors and are a good window to the Greek lifestyle as well. For tourists in Athens, the must-visit places include:
The Acropolis: Situated on a hilltop, the Acropolis was the ancient city’s centre with its temple Parthenon dating back to 447 BC to 338 BC. The temple’s stunning sculptural details and rows of Doric columns fascinate every tourist. Among the ruins is also a complex of ancient sanctuaries called Erechtheion, built between 421 BC and 395 BC. To add to this marvel is the Acropolis Museum situated below the hilltop.
Byzantine Museum: Located in a 19th-century palace, the museum offers a peek into the Byzantine period. The museum also holds artefacts from early Christian and post-byzantine periods. The tally of scriptures, icons, textiles, paintings, and mosaics runs over 25,000.
Agora: Being the ruins of a marketplace, Agora offers a look into the everyday life of ancient Athens. The north wall of the Acropolis provides a great view of the site which held theatre performances and athletic events as well. It also holds the 18-metre long seat of the Archon Basileus, Royal Stoa. Also located nearby is the Temple of Hephaistos, a 5th century BC Doric temple.
Olympieion: Dedicated to Zeus, the God of the sky, Olympieion was ancient Greece’s largest temple. With 15 enormous marble columns still standing today (and another lying on the ground), it forces a tourist to imagine the temple in all its glory back in the day – with over a hundred of such columns.
When one has a long list of places to visit, the best way to visit these places would be through coach hire or a minibus hire. Exploring such magnanimous Greek cities in one day isn’t wise. You can take your time, visit these places of interest at your place and in between enjoy some local gastronomic and culture highlights. Available for day-hire and as multi-day hire, you can book day-hire coach hire for Athens. If you plan to visit nearby places and want to experience a Greek road trip, multi-day hire minibus from Athens can also be booked.
Moving away from Athens, Patras is worth visiting not only because it’s impressive but because it’s nearby too – meaning that your tight schedule need not risk any hiccups. With just over 200 kilometres, tourists can avail minibus hire services or coach hire services for Patras from Athens. And once in the city, these are the places you must spend your time visiting:
Roman Odeon: The Roman Odeon was built around 160 A.D. and is still used for theatrical performances and concerts among other weekends. While it was destroyed in earthquakes and wars, the Odeon was rediscovered in 1889 and regained its original shape after years of excavations, in 1956.
The Cathedral of Agios Andreas: Built in the 20th century, it is the largest church in the country with a seating of around 5,000 people. The church was dedicated to the patron of the city, Apostle Saint Andrews. Along with his skull and the pieces of the cross he was crucified on believed to be preserved in the church, it also houses some spectacular paintings and icons.
Bocas Bar: Moving away from history and towards the lifestyle, Patras boasts of an amazing nightlife as well – thanks to the large student concentration. The Bocas Bar, with wine and beer as its speciality, is one of the must-visit places on the Riga Fereou street, along with several other cafés and shops located there.
Greece, with all its stupendous attractions is sure to make your trip a memorable one. And with TripCenter easing your search for and booking formalities of coach hire for Athens – be it a luxury coach or minibus hire services for Athens – one can rest assured of both, supreme comfort and surplus memories. The global vendor neutral platform, TripCenter, brings 100+ vendors across countries at one place, with live price updates, complete informative vehicle listing, instant bookings and assured services to ensure you have an amazing Greek experience.