Athens (Αθήνα) is referred to as the cradle of Western civilization and the birthplace of democracy. It is one of the world’s oldest cities, with its recorded history being over 3,400 years. Nowadays, it is the 9th most populous city in the European Union, with a population of 3,828,000, and one of the biggest economic centres in southeastern Europe.
Athens is a city of history, culture, festivals and vibrant nightlife. It has been suggested as “the new Berlin”, due to the recent stream of younger international artists contributing to Athens’s cultural renaissance.
One of the most picturesque strolls in Athens is starting from Panathenaic Stadium, walk through the Zappeion Gardens and pass in front of the Temple of Olympian Zeus. You should then continue up to the Dionysiou Areopagitou Street admire the Acropolis and Erodou Atticou Theatre, ending up for a drink or dinner at Monastiraki and Thiseio.
More information can be found here.
How to reach Athens
From Eleftherios Venizelos Airport to Athens City Center.
By Athens metro: This is the easiest way. Follow the “Metro” signs at the airport. Line 3 towards “Aghia Marina” runs every 30 minutes and it takes ~35 minutes to reach Syntagma square. ATH.ENA ticket to and from the airport costs 10€ (return ticket is 18€).
By Bus: Bus X95 is a 24h service (runs approximately every 15 minutes) that takes you to Syntagma square. Bus station is located between Exit 4 and 5 at the arrivals level. There are only one-way tickets and cost 6€. It takes ~40 minutes to reach Syntagma (depending on time and traffic).
By Taxi: Licensed taxis are the yellow taxi cabs. They are permanently available in front of the arrivals hall. The fare from Athens airport to Athens city centre is fixed: day time (05:00-24:00) is 38€ and night time (24:00-05:00) is 50€
Meeting venue is in the heart of Athens with plenty of hotel choices in walking distance. We would recommend you to check hotels on Panepistimiou street, Stadiou street, near Kolonaki district or Syntagma sq (around Ermou and Mitropoleos street).
In particular, below are three trustworthy hotels we recommend:
1) Titania Hotel *****, 52 Panepistimiou street: single room from ~€89.00 per night (taxes and breakfast included)
2) Astor Hotel ****, 16 Karagiorgi Servias Street: single room from ~€75.00 per night (taxes and breakfast included)
3) Kimon Hotel *, 27 Apollonos str., Plaka: single room from ~€55.00 per night (taxes included)
Weekend away suggestions
VPO ends on a Friday. Therefore, you might wish to consider a Greek summer weekend away following the meeting. Below are our suggestions:
Argosaronic islands Daily ferry connection from the port of Piraeus makes them a lovely and easily accessible destination for the Athenians. Enjoy natural beauty, historical treasures, unique architecture, and a glamorous atmosphere. Most popular islands are Hydra, Poros, Spetses and Aigina. Ferry takes approximately 1h and 30min (depending on final destination)
Cyclades The diamonds of the Aegean. These are the most famous greek islands, known for their white and blue architecture, the crystal blue waters, the barren landscape and the vibrant nightlife. You will need a minimum one night stay. There are about 220 islands with most popular and easy to access to be Mykonos, Ios, Paros, Naxos and Santorini.
For ferry itineraries and prices, check here.
Pelion According to the Greek Mythology, Pelion was the summer residence of Olympian Gods and the homeland of Centaurs. Pelion is a mountain in central Greece about an hour drive from the city of Volos and 4 hours drive from Athens. It is considered one of the most beautiful mountains in Greece and a popular tourist attraction throughout the year: hiking trails and stone paths give access to springs, coves and numerous beaches, sandy or pebbly, set among lusciously green slopes, combing small traditional villages, hidden in the thick forests, and fishing villages in marvellous beaches. Most popular villages are Portaria, Tsagarada, Millies, Damouchari and Zagora and most popular beaches are Milopotamos, Papa nero, Fakistra and Chorefto. Best way to visit Pelion is by car.