Acropolis is probably the most scenic sight in Athens and it’s absolutely a must-see when visiting the city. The question to ask is, however, how do you want to view it? From up close or from a distance? No matter your preferences, Acropolis is an impressive sight.
What You Should Know About Acropolis
Athena is the patron for Athens and there are monuments in her name all around the city. Acropolis is no exception and several of the buildings here are dedicated to the goddess of wisdom.
Several of the most prominent buildings on Acropolis were built during the fifth century BC. Some of these were the Parthenon, the Propylaia, the Erechtheion, and the temple of Athena Nike. The first building not being of ancient Greek origin was built in the first century BC. That was a small Roman temple dedicated to Augustus and Rome. The Romans did, however, let most of the site stand as before.
It was the introduction of Christianity that led to most of the changes to the Acropolis. In the 6th century AD, several of the temples were converted into churches and Parthenon even served as Athen’s cathedral during the 11th century. Parthenon survived until 1687 when the Venetians bombarded and destroyed it.
You can find more information about Acropolis on the homepage of the Greek Ministry of Culture and Sports.
Visiting Acropolis (As of May 2018)
There are two entrances to Acropolis, one on the south-western side (main entrance) of the hill and another on the south-eastern side. It is possible to buy tickets at both entrances and there are two options for adults. Either 20 euros for one entrance only to Acropolis, or 30 euros for a ticket which includes entrances to a few other sites in Athens.
Check in advance for information in regards to which times there usually are fewer visitors. It is common that the hill is crowded with other tourists. Especially large tour groups seem to be common.
Viewing Acropolis from a Distance
A much cheaper option in comparison with entering the site is to view Acropolis from a distance. This is our preferred way as it is much easier to understand the size of it. There are several hills and areas around Acropolis where you will have a great view. Two of the best options are probably the Pnyx at Filopappou Hill and the Lycabettus hill.
Visiting Acropolis with a Toddler
If you have a stroller or another means of transporting your child, you need to enter Acropolis from the main entrance. This is the entrance on the southwestern side of the hill. This is because you are not allowed to bring the stroller through the entrance. Instead, there is a small building outside – a “cloakroom” – where you can leave the stroller for free during your visit.
We left our stroller at this cloakroom and carried our 1-year-old up and down the hill. It might not be the most pleasant option, but it worked well. There are a lot of steps and uneven surfaces, and some of the rocks are also really slippery. So you need to be careful with your footing when carrying a child.
Also, keep in mind that there are usually a lot of people visiting the site. Do not be surprised if there is a queue at the entrance, a long line of people walking to the top, and then a queue and line to descend back to the entrance. Plan well so that your kid is able to get some shade from the sun. Also make sure that you are not bringing a hungry child, as it might take some time to get out. As the stroller is left at the entrance, ensure that he or she is not too tired. Due to the number of people, there is no way to predict how long time a visit will take and how soon you will be able to exit the premises.
However, we still consider it possible to visit with a toddler and we were able to keep our Little A happy most of our visit. Our biggest problem was that she got tired and was a bit dissatisfied with having to wait in line to get back down the hill.