After partying for a week in Budapest, Alesha, Alicia and I arrived in Athens, Greece at night and took the metro to the apartment we were staying in. Aleisha had gone on to Greece a few days before Alesha and I left Budapest as Aleisha wanted to see different parts of Greece and it was the one country that she was dying to see and spend more of her time in.
I had somehow hurt my ankle in Budapest, I remembered rolling it off of a tram track (I was not drunk at the time either! Just clumsily crossing the road…) and thinking nothing of it but a few days later I was finding it incredibly hard to walk on it. So walking with a 18kg backpack on a sore ankle was excruciating. That is definitely something I don’t want to experience again…
The apartment we were staying in was very nice, it was modern, clean and had air conditioning which was great because Athens was hot.
The first day we all went out to find food but it turned out the cafe’s and restaurants near us didn’t have any English menus… So we ended up at the bakery, the sandwiches we got were actually really yummy and pretty cheap. We bought groceries to make lunch and dinner though which ends up cheaper and nicer since we could make whatever we wanted. Europe also has very cheap grocery stores called Lidl, and there was one around the corner from us so everything worked out perfectly.
Alicia and I then ventured out to the Acropolis to see the Parthenon and whatnot, Alesha decided to stay home because she was still sick from Budapest and wanted to get better. We had tried to find an open doctor or hospital for her to see someone and for me to get my ankle looked at but everything was closed as it was a weekend.
The Parthenon was very cool and interesting, but the super hot day sucked for it and my ankle made it very uncomfortable for me. So I got exhausted quickly and I don’t think I enjoyed the end of the day as much as I could have. I was still super excited to see everything though.
(I miss that tan! And the shape I had been in from carrying an 18kg backpack everywhere)
The Parthenon it’s self.
The one thing I loved about Athens was the history of the place and the Ancient Greek mythology that I had learnt in University made it seem like a dream come true getting to wander around the ruins and picture the myths behind the gods the temples had been erected for. The view from the hill was amazing as well.
It was definitely as hot as it looks. Blue skys, no wind, hills and stairs to walk up. I powered through my water bottle before we even made it to the top where the Parthenon was. Luckily there was a water fountain up there, I suppose they would need one up there though so people don’t faint all the time.
I was very glad that I forced myself to go out and see the Parthenon and other ruins, even though it caused havoc on my ankle and I felt sick when we got back to the apartment. But I know I would have never forgiven myself if I hadn’t of gone to see it, it was an experience and it was insanely cool getting to see the ruins.
To be honest though, Athens as a city was very underwhelming. It was very dirty on the streets and the streets looked like they were falling apart. I guess that’s what happens when the government doesn’t have money to fix it all up.
We only stayed two nights and one full day in Athens, Alesha and I caught our ferry out to one of the greek islands Ios very early the next morning and Alicia caught her plane out to another place. The group was officially split up. Athens was the last place Alesha and I would see Alicia, and Budapest had been the last place Alesha and I had seen Aleisha. Saying goodbye was hard, when you spend that amount of time together with people you form a bond and grow close together.
This was a sad part of the trip because we all knew the three months were coming to an end, however for Alesha and I, we still had three more weeks of travelling left.
Overall, I really enjoyed seeing the Parthenon in Athens. It was a short stay in Athens but I didn’t care much for the city so I don’t think we needed any longer there. However getting to see the history made up for not liking the city itself, you really just don’t get history like that in New Zealand, New Zealand is just too young.