The Acropolis! Today we had two missions: to see the Acropolis and the Acropolis Museum. Since we were still in the midst of the heat wave, we woke up early to beat some of the heat. When we went out the door though, we realized that even though it was early, it was still very hot. Undeterred, we set our sights on the ancient plateau that rises about Athens and started hiking toward the summit.
About halfway up, we came across the Areopagus. This hill/rock was used for homicide trials and is mentioned in Acts 17:19 as a place Paul preached to the Athenians. We decided to climb up the Areopagus on the way back so we could get in line for tickets to the Acropolis. The line wasn’t too bad as we walked up, but we still had to wait for about ten minutes to get our tickets. Then we started the steep track up the stone steps. On the way up we looked down and had a great view of the Odeon of Herodes Atticus, which is an ancient theater that has been restored and is still used for events.
When we made it to the top the view from the Acropolis was amazing. We could see to the edge of the city and even to the ocean. It was clear why the Athenians thought this was such a special place. We stayed for quite a while before tiring of fighting the heat and increasingly crowded area. On the way back down we noticed that the line for tickets had increased substantially and looked like it would take an hour for tickets. We were so glad that we had gotten there before most of the crowds. We decided to clime the Areopagus before we left and were treated to another wonderful view of the city. We sat for a while to cool off and take in the breeze before leaving to go find the Acropolis Museum.
The museum was supposed to be pretty close and we were hungry so we wandered around trying to find some food. It took us a while but we found a very cute family restaurant behind the museum that didn’t have a set menu. Instead you looked at the stove and decided what you wanted that was already cooking. Stews, roasting meat, vegetables, a few backed dishes, and plenty more to pick from. The food was amazing and as we were walking up to the museum past all the packed tourist filled cafes were happy that we decided to search out a better restaurant for lunch.
The museum seemed very new and to my discomfort, much of the floors were glass so you could look down at the excavation below the museum. I love archeology but I also don’t like walking on glass with a ten foot drop. Not to mention that as you went to higher floors, they were still glass so you had a multi-story view down to the ground. The exhibits were great though and the museum itself was very nice with views to the Acropolis and the surrounding area.
After checking out the exhibits we made our way down to the Agora to do some shopping and people watching. Several hours later we grabbed some dinner at a restaurant before heading back to the apartment.