The Most Exciting Weekend Getaways from Athens
Nearing July, here in Athens we are unmistakably at the height of summer. The days are burningly bright and hot, and while summer in the city offers its own charms, everyone in the city surely has getaways for cooling off in mind. Luckily, even if one has commitments in the city and cannot get away for long, there are many summer vacation destinations near enough Athens for a long weekend or even a day trip. While this list is nowhere near exhaustive, it’s a good starting point for inspiring and planning a quick trip outside of Athens.
All within a 1.5-hour ferry ride from Athens, Aegina, Hydra, Poros, and Spetses are not only beautiful in nature, architecture, and storied history, but they each have their own unique character. Aegina is family-friendly and offers many peaceful beaches; Spetses is noted for its refined, aristocratic culture; car-free, picturesque Hydra has long attracted artists; and well-populated, green Poros offers loads of places to go out and activities for having fun and is popular as a nearby destination for Athenians who love sailing.
Also popular among Athenians for a quick holiday getaway is the beach town of Chalkida, whose identity straddles island and mainland life. As the capital of Evia, Greece’s second-largest island, it connects to the mainland via 2 bridges, both for pedestrians and vehicles. It is an island one does not need a boat to travel to and is less than two hours away from Athens by car, bus, and train. The town has several memorable architectural sites and cultural museums, and a promenade along the sea for evening walks, people watching, and going to one of its many restaurants, many specializing in seafood, cafes, and bars.
A must-visit location under a two-hour drive from Athens is Cape Sounion, where an ancient temple on a hill dedicated to Poseidon overlooks the sea, which to the ancient Greeks was his dominion. The cape also offers a sandy beach for swimming and traditional Greek restaurants with a lovely view. It’s absolutely worth it to stay until the evening or overnight to take in one of those glorious Greek sunsets full of magical colours, this one with a view of the Poseidon Temple against the sky and sea.
If you are an archaeology enthusiast, you probably already know about Delphi, one of the most important archaeological sites in Greece. The world-famous Oracle of Delphi sits on the slopes of Mount Parnassus, about a two-hour drive from Athens. People from across the ancient world would travel there to seek a prophecy by the high priestess, Pythia, anxious to know the will of Apollo. If you choose to visit during the winter, do not miss the Parnassus Ski Center and the beautiful small, picturesque town of Arachova nearby.
While Greece is understandably associated with the sea due to having the largest coastline in Europe, its landscape offers a wide variety of natural landscapes. For those seeking out something different from a beachside destination, a wonderful trip would be to Livadia, also just under two hours away from Athens by car. This is a lushly green town with ancient roots, offering long walks and traditional restaurants known for their grilled meats alongside the river. The surrounding scenery looks like a fairytale setting. It is a popular destination for Athenians seeking out a refreshing break by taking in the plentiful shade offered by the trees and listening to the soothing sounds of the river’s waters.
Our advice: Whenever you visit Athens, do not limit your visit to the most well-known options. Explore the amazing scenery of the mainland, immerse yourself into the authentic Mediterranean landscape, its unique nature and the warmth of the flooding sunlight and the colourful sunsets. Enjoy the fresh breeze on a cool summer night. And if you ever feel like this could be your everyday reality, Athens will always be here to welcome you home.
We at MI4 Real Estate Brokerage are a one-stop shop that offers a full range of Real Estate Services, including Property Marketing & Sourcing, Legal Services & Consulting, Property Development & Renovation and Property Management in Greece. Contact us to learn more about available properties in Athens, Greece.
28 June 2022