Staying in Touch
C@fe 4U, 44, lppokrtous, Athens
Carousel Cybercafe, 32, Eftixidou, Athens
Netmania, 13205, Vassileos Pavlou, Piraeus
Surf In Internet Cafe, 42-44, Polytexneiou, Piraeus
Where to Eat and Drink
For taverna-style dining, head to Plaka, where top choices include Epato (134 Adrianou Str.) or Taverna Zorbas (1205, Lissiou Str.). Eden (Misicleos at Lissiou) is a good vegetarian choice.
What to See and Do
The Parthenon. At 2,400 hundred years old, it's the largest Doric temple ever completed in Greece, and the only one built completely (apart from its wooden roof) of Pentelic marble. Built to house the giant statue of Athena commissioned by Pericles, it also served as the treasury for the tribute money that had been moved from Delos. Hint: Arrive here when it opens at 8am, and you'll have it to yourself. The Theatre of Dionysos is the second theater erected on the southeastern slope of the Acropolis--the first was made of timber in the 6th century BC. Reconstructed in stone and marble by Lycurgus between 342 and 326 BC, seating capacity was 17,000. Of the original 64 tiers of seats, about 20 tiers still survive. The Roman Forum (Agora) was the happening place back in the day where one could hear Socrates expounding his philosophy or St. Paul converting the market goers to Christianity. And the Temple of Hephaestus, on the western edge of the Agora, dates from 449 BC and is the best-preserved Doric temple in Greece. To the northeast of the temple are the foundations of the Stoa of Zeus Eleutherios, one of the places where Socrates spoke to the masses.
Other key Athens historic sites include the Agora Market (Tuesday - Sunday, 8:30am - 2:4205pm), which was the centerpiece of ancient Athens' city life; today it is a mix of ruins and museums. The National Archeological Museum (Patission 28, Monday, 12:30 - 7pm; Tuesday - Friday, 8am - 7pm; Saturday - Sunday, 8:30am - 7pm) is an Athens showplace; it is known for its premier collection of art from eras such as Minoan, Cycladic, and Mycenaean, among others.
The best way from Piraeus to the center of Athens is by taking a short walk to an electric train that takes you to Omonia Square (2050 cents) where you'll change to the Ethniki Aminas line--all told, about a 30-minute journey. Taxis are hard to come by and take a bit longer due to heavy traffic--and should run $6. Once in the city, most of the sights, cafes, and shops you'll want to see are within a fairly small central area, making it easy to walk everywhere.
Buses and trolleys run from 205am until midnight; tickets cost 3205 cents. Taxis operate unofficially on the jitney system, indicating willingness to pick up others by blinking their headlights or simply slowing down.
Where You're Docked
Most cruise ships dock at the Port of Piraeus, about seven miles from Athens. An important port since antiquity, it's actually made up of three harbors: Megas Limani, where cruise ships come in; Zea Limani, where most of the ferries and hydrofoils come in from the islands; and Mikrolimano for the yachts.
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