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Piraeus (Athens), Greece (5/28/2019)

We have never been to Athens or Greece before. So, we are really looking forward to our visit. If you have been here before you might want to take an excursion away from the port to places like Delphi, Meteora, Mycenae and Epidaurus. Recently we happen to catch a National Geographic production of "The Greeks." The series was shown over a 3 day period on our local PBS station. It really peaked my interest in seeing the many sights from the Ancient Civilization of Athens and Greece. If you are able to see it, you should before taking this cruise. I just found it on YouTube - The Greeks.

I've had a few items on my bucket list that can only be satisfied by a Western Med Cruise: Athens, Istanbul and The Greek Isles. Well, I'll be able to check off Athens and Santorini, but Istanbul might never happen.

The picture below shows the major historic sights of Athens with the modern city surrounding them. The building in the center is the Parthenon, part of the Acropolis of Athens. Athens is an incredible opportunity to learn about the rich heritage of the Greek civilization. I won't even attempt to cover it as Rick Steves does a great job in this video - Athens and Side-Trips.

Athens Greece pic

Our cruise ship will dock at the Port of Piraeus, a large seafront area about seven miles outside Athens, which, with its three natural harbors (Megas Limani, Zea Limani and Mikrolimano) has been an important Mediterranean port since the 4th Century B.C. Cruise ships dock at Megas Limani, which has 11 berths and two cruise terminals. Terminal A (Miaoulis) sits near Gate E11 in the center of the harbor and handles small to medium cruise vessels, while Terminal B (Themistocles) is located closer to the harbor entrance and gate E12, where bigger ships berth. Terminal B was extensively expanded in 2013, and further expansion is planned following a $220 million investment in Piraeus by the European Union and Greek government.

Both cruise terminals are close to the center of Piraeus, and there are easy train and bus links both to downtown Athens and the airport. Someone on a previous Roll Call brought this info to our attention: How to Get to Athens from the Port of Piraeus by Train.

EXPLORE THE PORT:

Athens Cruise Port Page - Cruise Critic port page for Athens, Greece.

Athens Attractions & Activities - Tripadvisor's ordered list of Things to do in Athens.

Frommer's Athens - a well respected travel guide, has their take on Athens, with lots of links to explore like a walking tour.

Lonely Planet's Athens - Lonely Planet's list of things to do in Athens.

Tours by Locals Athens - Discover the Western world's greatest treasures on a private tour of Athens, Greece. Experience Athens through the eyes of a local private guide! Browse our tour 'suggestions' - each can be customized just for you.

Viator's Athens Tour Offerings - Viator is a consolidator, meaning that they source tour companies and resell them. What is nice is that you can pay in USD with your credit card before you leave home. I've used them in a few places and was very pleased. If you can find the company they are using to book directly, you can save a bit.

Athens Port Guide - Tom Sheridan has created a series of Port Guides for ports around the world. They are in PDF format; thus, can be loaded on your tablet, or printed, to have handy. Tom's website is tomsportguides.com, where he gives travel tips and explains how to best use his guides.

Best Things To Do in Athens - U.S. News Travel's ranked list of 9 things to do in Athens.

Share a tour in Greece - A private tour company in Greece. Pricing depend on size of group.

PK Travel - A private tour company in Athens. No deposit require. Pricing upon request.

AthensLimo - Another private tour company in Athens. You must submit a request to get a price.

Official Website of Greek Tourism - The Athens Page from the official website of Greek Tourism.

Rick Steve's Athens and Side-Trips - A full length TV show (25 minutes) in hi-def by one of the best tour guides and writers around.

More to come...

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