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Goodbye Greece! – Our Month in Athens

This is the post where we say goodbye Athens! Eventually, everything comes to an end and after a month, we had to prepare to leave Athens. The time we spent in the Greek capital passed way too fast. So many memories in so little time – and Little A will have to stand all of our stories when she gets older. For now, let’s say it again goodbye Athens!

Our Month in Athens

We arrived in Athens at the end of May and we had rented an apartment for a month. Some of our plans for our time abroad were made in advance but mostly we spent the days as we liked. We had decided to just move our life to a new location for the short duration of a month.

The month included some amazing trips. We spent a long weekend in Paphos, Cyprus and another on the Greek island of Kefalonia. Except for this, we made many smaller trips in and around Athens while visiting Athena.

There were, of course, a great deal of both good and bad experiences in Athens. Some of these experiences made us appreciate our choice of home during this month and a few others made us question why we didn’t go to Italy instead. Well, in general, we were more than satisfied and brought with us some great memories.

Our Top 3 Memories Before Saying Goodbye Athens

There are so many nice memories, but here are our top three.

Little A Charming Everyone

One thing was constantly reoccurring in Athens and it had to do with Little A. She really got spoiled with attention and she really loved it. No matter where, in the metro, in the street, and in the restaurants people, both old and young, gave her plenty of attention. Most people seemed so friendly towards kids, making faces to get a smile, talking with them and just enjoying to get their attention. It felt like a mutual satisfaction from both sides.

Two events stand out even more. The first one was at the airport on Kefalonia. While waiting before going through security one lady working at one of the car rentals took some time to play with Little A. First the lady showed Little A her workspace and then a big part of the airport. The second occasion was on the ferry back from Agistri when Little A run around with Susann and me. She’d wave at people and behave like a royal! After getting some attention from a young woman, Little A wanted to hold her hand as well. So they took a walk around the sitting area to Little A’s big delight.

Revisiting the Feeling of Living Abroad

As we have told before, we have both lived abroad in the past. I moved to Bratislava in 2012 and that is where I met Susann. We stayed in Bratislava for a year and a half before moving back to Sweden. Susann had previously also lived in Poland, Russia, Spain, and the United Kingdom.

Even though we only stayed in Athens for a month, it was a bit like reliving our past. It is something special about living abroad, at least the time when everything is new and there is so much to explore and learn. A month is also long enough to not feel like a tourist. We believe that we got to enjoy some parts of Athens that most visitors miss. out on.

The Window into the Ancient Past

When I was a kid, I read all the stories about Zeus, Athena, and all the other Olympians. Finally, we got to see the ancient temples and sights. Acropolis, the temples of Zeus, Apollo and Poseidon, the Agoras and the impressive Acrocorinth. Even though they all are ruins today, they still can get you to think back to how it once must have been. The impressive height of the pillars tells a story of grand constructions.

We did not only see these in Athens but also when visiting Corinth,  Aegina, and Cyprus. Even later on in Rome, history cast its shadow on us. They all sure were the highlight during our sightseeing of these ancient places.

Our Accommodation

When looking for accommodation for our stay we decided to ask an old acquaintance of Susann’s. It turned out that she had an apartment being made ready for rental on sites such as Airbnb. So instead of looking for something to rent we agreed with Susann’s friend about renting her apartment for four weeks. Susann’s friend’s dad picked us up at the airport and he also brought some food with him for our first day.

The apartment was located close to the metro station of Kato Patisia (Κάτω Πατήσια). We only had a walk of around 200 meters to reach the station. The area had most we needed for a normal day; a few restaurants, coffee shops as well as a medium-sized grocery store. The area might be considered a bit worn and we don’t believe that it was so well off. Basically, you can expect normal, everyday working people on the streets. It was, however, an area that we eventually began to like.

Our apartment was also quite big with one large living room, two bedrooms, and a kitchen. Not to mention two balconies, one on each side of the building. This made it quite easy to cool down the apartment in the evening, even though it was almost 40 degrees outside during the day.

We had a bathtub and a washing machine in the bathroom, which certainly made life easier. I’m not one to say no to a bit of comfort.

The neighbours seemed friendly, towards the end of our stay we had random people greeting at us on the street or waving at us from the next-door bakery.

Goodbye Athens! Hello Rome!

Well, goodbye Athens for now, but it was actually not the end of our trip. We still had almost a week left before heading back to Sweden. Next stop: Italy.

Want more tips about Athens? Stayed tuned and we will get back to that topic during the autumn and the winter.

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