Athens In November & the Marathon

Old Oct 9th, 2002, 02:22 PM
  #1  
Kim
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Athens In November & the Marathon

Hi All,

These forums are great! Thanks for all of the great info!

I am participating in the Athens Marathon in November. I will be on my own from Tueday - Friday - go home on Saturday. What recommendations do you have? What is the weather like? What organized tours did you like - or not? Being a single blonde woman, is it better to travel alone or stick to some type of organized travel?

By the way, if anyone has done the marathon, I would love to hear about the course and the marathon, the facilities around the marathon - water, snacks, toilets, etc.

Thanks!
Kim
 
Old Oct 10th, 2002, 05:44 AM
  #2  
Yiannis
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Hello Kim,

Although I haven't personally participated in the Marathon myself, I have seen the athletes going through Athens at the last part of the marathon.

As a Greek living in Athens, I would prefer to see the Marathon do better. I haven't heard the best of the commnets about the organization of the marathon in Athens from other American friends who have participated. I hope this year, as we are getting closer to 2004 Olympic Games, that things get better. Usually the commitee for the organization of the 2004 Games helps in tha athletic events, and if they help in this year's marathon things will be much better. In any case will be very interesting to run the original marathon (starts from Marathona) and go at the end through Athens and finish at the all marble stadium of the first modern Olympic Games of 1896!

Keep in mind that the same marathon route will be for the 2004 Games, meaning as in the rest of Athens, you will see huge construction works under development, everything + the whole route is redone for the Games, meaning for you that you will see it at the "ugliest" point right now.
Being a single blonde woman, do not worry about that. Athens it's very safe. For suggestions on what to do, I would follow the schedules most people do while in Athens for a couple of days, like you.
Weather, can't predict from now, there are sites with weather statistics, but not very cold for sure. Ususally not rain, not snow for sure, and low humidity.
At the end I believe you will like the whole experience.

http://www.athens2004.gr/page/default.asp?la=2&id=1822

http://www.athens2004.gr/page/default.asp?la=2&id=838

http://www.athens2004.gr/page/default.asp?la=2&id=7828

http://www.athens2004.gr/page/default.asp?la=2&id=232

 
Old Oct 10th, 2002, 07:39 AM
  #3  
Nancy
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Yes, Kim, if you were a brunette, you'd be perfectly safe.
 
Old Oct 10th, 2002, 02:27 PM
  #4  
Kim
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Thanks Nancy!! =
 
Old Oct 10th, 2002, 02:34 PM
  #5  
Kim
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Thanks Yiannis!

I have been surfing the net to find out details about the marathon to no avail. Just a little nervousness setting in!

I'll be doing the marathon with a big group so whatever the day brings, it will be fun! It is ONLY 26.2 miles! = How bad could it get?!

A friend of mine, I have come to find out, is not only greek but is married to a travel agent! She is going to hook me up with one of the classical tours that goes out for a few days- Delphi, Olympia, etc. That will be good so I'll be able to get out of Athens without having to rent a car and deal with driving.

I am getting excited and have found some good web sites.

Thanks for the info!
Kim
 
Old Oct 11th, 2002, 07:22 AM
  #6  
Athens Marathon Site
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Dear Kim,

I just found out the official site of the Athens Marathon. Seems that things got better this year! I guess it's probably we are getting closer to the Olympic Games. So I hope, since the sponcor is the official bank of the 2004 Games, organization is going to be much better than other years.

All your questions answered at:

http://www.athensclassicmarathon.gr

let me know what you think!

Yiannis
 
Old Oct 14th, 2002, 03:18 PM
  #7  
Kim
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This is exactly what I was looking for!! Thanks! It has room for development, but it is off to a good start!

I appreciate it!
Kim
 
Old Oct 14th, 2002, 10:29 PM
  #8  
Kim
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Hi Yiannis,

By the way, I was talking to my travel agent today and they recommended the 4 day classical tour. Do you have any comments either way about it? Too touristy or good content? After the marathon, I wouldn't mind being shown around but I don't want a total "bus tour". I like to walk around and explore a bit. It goes to Delphi, Olympia, etc.

Also, I was surfing the marathon web site and I saw the course map. It said that there were going to be "refreshment" stations. What exactly does that mean? Gator-aid -type drinks? Powerbars? I have been training to carry that all with me given that there hasn't been any mention of those things so far. The sponsors on the site weren't companies in that industry. Any insight?

Thanks again!
Kim

Thanks,
Kim
 
Old Oct 16th, 2002, 03:49 AM
  #9  
Yiannis
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Dear Kim,

I don't think I will be of great help. The tour you are referring to it's a specific tour which I don't know, but it seems to be a good choice if you are going to be only for a few days in Greece. It's a bus tour, but you get to see different places, and in the future if you decide to come back (remember the 2004 Games) you will have an opinion in your own about where you want to go. Another option, but more adventure involved, is to spend a couple of days in one or two islands close to Athens, like Hydra, Aegina, Spetses etc. All the above are very close to each other and about 1-2 hours from Athens. You are going to be close to Athens but still get the feeling of an island. (No need to buy tickets for these islands from before).

Concerning the marathon stations etc. I really don't know. You have nothing to loose if you come preparedwith your own things, and then you see here what they really offer or not. I guess you may use their e-mail to ask about it.

Good Luck!
Let me know if u need any advice.
 
Old Oct 19th, 2002, 05:01 AM
  #10  
Kim
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Hi Yiannis,

The website for the marathon is great - but only at work. I am not certain if you have anything to do with it but ...

When I am on a LAN, the main page comes up and I can get through all of the menus - I like what they did with the course map showing the different elevations. That is both good and bad news! =

The only thing is when I am at home and dialing up - I connect at 45-52k - the little guy on the top of the page keeps running and loads only at 44%. I have tried several times but to know avail.

Well, off to hit the pavement - 2 weeks from tomorrow to go! I can't wait!

Kim
 
Old Oct 19th, 2002, 12:52 PM
  #11  
Walter
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Kim: I see that the race is starting in the town of Marathon rather than from the actual battle site.
But you will be running right by the battle site, somewhere around where the 1st refreshment stop is (5000m out).
You will see a sign "Marathon Tomb" or Tomb of Marathon/Athenians" I forget which. The tomb is on the left but down the road ~350m.
Go to www.herodotuswebsite.co.uk/maps/marathon.jpg the Tomb is labeled "Soros" on the map.
When you run by that road which is where that arrow on the map crosses the race course road also on the map.
Think of this. On 12 Sept 490BC ~6am to the right of you was ~10,000 Athenian Hoplites & ~1000 Plataeans marching in orderly ranks towards the 48,000 Persians to the left of you (shown on map). At this point the Persians think the Athenians are just plain crazy, 4+ to 1 odds.
When the heavily armored Hoplites still marching in orderly ranks got to around where you are. Which is just before coming in range of the deadly Persian archers.
They did something unheard of, they attacked the last 200m by running. Now the Persians are totally convinced they are madman.
The Athenians then won the battle with a brillant "pincer movement". Present a weak center and let the enemy advance into it while the left and right flanks encircle them. Also around the halfway point on the left you will see a large dirt mound with a large wooded cross (Tomb of Partisans). This is where the Nazis executed some local Greek men in 1942. I was told 30yrs ago (I was stationed in Nea Makri for 2yrs) and IIRC? that a German staff car was attacked by the Partisans. The Germans in retaliation rounded-up local men and hung? them, 5 Greeks were killed for each German.
Good-Luck in the race! Regards, Walter
 
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