Athens in Real Life

Before I get started on this post, I need to give you all a little bit of background information. As a young girl, I had dreams of traveling the world. I loved studying the ancient history of the world and concluded at age 11 that I wanted to travel to see the Colosseum in Rome, Great Wall of China, and the Acropolis in Athens. When I was 14 years old, I took my first trip to China and stepped foot on the Great Wall. At age 17, while attending college, I worked as a waitress on the weekend to save up enough money for a two week trip to Europe where I was able to see the colosseum, walk down ancient streets, etc. The last thing on my childhood bucket list was Athens. Athens, oh Athens… I had read about this great city in my history books, and gazed at the magnificent Acropolis in travel magazines for hours. For 13 years I had dreamed of going to Athens, and as we were leaving the island of Santorini, this dream was finally going to come true. But to be honest, we left Santorini with variety of emotions… we had fallen in love with that little island, and if time had permitted it, I think we would have stayed for several more weeks. Oh well, the theme of our trip had been “we can’t do everything.” We put it on our mental list of places we’d love to visit again and boarded our evening ferry to Athens. Santorini Ferry to Athens We arrived in Athens late at night and barely caught the last subway ride to our hotel. The next day we set out to explore the city. Exploring the city of Athens Exploring the city of Athens Exploring the city of Athens We slowly made our way to the Acropolis… passing ancient ruins tucked away in the bustling city. Exploring the Acropolis Ancient ruins in Athens Exploring the Acropolis Exploring the Acropolis  Exploring the Acropolis We eventually made it to the Acropolis… Apparently around the same time everyone in the city decided to visit it. Exploring the Acropolis And then we saw it the beloved Parthenon Temple… Acropolis Wait, no, that’s what I imagined I would see… this is the scene that greeted us: Acropolis with scaffolding “What happened to the beautiful postcard-perfect Parthenon Temple from all of the travel magazines?” I was so disappointed… Ugh, stupid scaffolding! Well it goes to say that we tried really hard to get photos without a million medal bars cluttering up the pictures…Parthanon Exploring the Acropolis Exploring the Acropolis We discovered that the backside of the Parthenon was nearly scaffolding-free (nearly!). Exploring the Acropolis in Athens Exploring the Acropolis Exploring the Acropolis Exploring the Acropolis Exploring the Acropolis Exploring the Acropolis Exploring the Acropolis  Exploring the Acropolis Exploring the Acropolis Exploring the Acropolis Exploring the Acropolis Greek yogurt does taste better in Greece, just trust me on that! Greek yogurt in Greece! Athens is a mixture of the old and the new. While we enjoyed our time there, it didn’t meet our expectations (which goes to say that it is far better to throw your expectations out the window before traveling… if you do, you’ll never be disappointed). Actually, I should say that Athens didn’t meet my expectations. Jared didn’t come to the city with expectations and ended up enjoying it more than I did. Athens, GreeceShopping in Athens The city had some really nice areas, but also some rough parts… We didn’t get any pictures of those areas though; I guess we were just too concerned for our lives to even think about photos! Oh, and trying an authentic Greek salad is a must! Mmmm… Delicious! Greek salad in Greece Well, after I got over being disappointed in my not-so-perfect Acropolis experience, I was really happy that we had made the trip to Athens and that I could complete my childhood bucket list. Exploring the Acropolis Next up is our road trip through the United Kingdom!

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