Attica and Delphi

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One of the great surprises of Athens is how much there is to see around it. The mountainous region of Attica (or Attikí), which incorporates the capital, is bounded on three sides by the sea and a coastline fringed with innumerable beaches.

Inland, around the area’s four great mountains, is an undulating landscape laced with vineyards and stony foothills, and by its shores remnants of an ancient past retain their power to thrill, in temples, ruined cities, and the sanctuaries of long-lost cults. Over all this hangs the famed light, the purest of lights, sharply delineating a majestic land.

The story of Attica is inextricably bound to that of Athens, the most powerful of the villages that lay scattered over the peninsula. By force and persuasion it brought these communities... Read More

One of the great surprises of Athens is how much there is to see around it. The mountainous region of Attica (or Attikí), which incorporates the capital, is bounded on three sides by the sea and a coastline fringed with innumerable beaches.

Inland, around the area’s four great mountains, is an undulating landscape laced with vineyards and stony foothills, and by its shores remnants of an ancient past retain their power to thrill, in temples, ruined cities, and the sanctuaries of long-lost cults. Over all this hangs the famed light, the purest of lights, sharply delineating a majestic land.

The story of Attica is inextricably bound to that of Athens, the most powerful of the villages that lay scattered over the peninsula. By force and persuasion it brought these communities together, creating a unit that by the 5th century BC had become the center of an empire. Yet while relics of this era, such as the Temple of Sounion or the mysterious Eleusis, are undoubtedly among the wonders of the ancient world, its more recent history is proving just as potent a lure for those in the city.

Southwest of Athens you’ll find the coastline dubbed the “Greek Riviera,” a relic of a more relatable age, back in the 1950 and '60s when the wealthy and famous began to colonize this stretch of shore. It was a time when resident Jackie Onassis could be spotted bathing in the healing waters of Lake Vouliagmeni and the glare of the local paparazzi lens was fixed firmly on the area. Today, the legacy of that era is still found in the boutiques, bars, and five-star resorts that make the Riviera a popular day trip for well-to-do Athenians.

In the north of Attica, on the edge of the city, Mt. Parnitha is another slice of city life worth sampling. Its deer-strewn hills were savaged by wildfires over a decade ago, and are still recovering, but it’s a beloved hike for locals taking in the weekend morning air. In its southern foothills you’ll even spy the old Tatoi summer palace, left to crumble after Greece's 140-year experiment with royalty was disbanded in the 1970s. A stroll through its grounds offers a remarkable glimpse of an unusual story.

To the far northwest of Athens (around 175 km/109 miles), beyond Attica and among the Boetian mountains, is perhaps the greatest jewel of the ancient world. The sacred precinct of Delphi was the center of the universe for the ancient Greeks, home to the oracle of the god Apollo. It was here that the two eagles sent by Zeus to find the "navel of the world" met. Even today its archaeological site remains a principal place of pilgrimage and discovery, backed by a spectacular alpine setting. Similar to Attica, however, it’s not just a classical playground. In winter, the slopes of nearby Mt. Parnassus, now a national park, attract Athenian skiers to the area’s pretty hill towns as this ancient area fills with very modern life.

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Language

Greek

Nearby Airports

ATH

Electrical Outlets

200v/50 cycles; electrical plugs have two round prongs

Currency

Euro

Language

Greek

Electrical Outlets

200v/50 cycles; electrical plugs have two round prongs

Currency

Euro

Nearby Airports

ATH

Athens's nightlife shifts to the southern coast in the summer, typically from July through August. Après-ski town Arachova is the place to be...Read More

Discover the best neighborhoods in Attica and Delphi with curated recommendations from our editors.

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Athens's nightlife shifts to the southern coast in the summer, typically from July through August. Après-ski town Arachova is the place to be...Read More

Discover the best neighborhoods in Attica and Delphi with curated recommendations from our editors.

Explore All

Athens's nightlife shifts to the southern coast in the summer, typically from July through August. Après-ski town Arachova is the place to be...Read More

Discover the best neighborhoods in Attica and Delphi with curated recommendations from our editors.

Explore All

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