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Last week I was invited, along with the other members of Travel Bloggers Greece, to a walking tour of Athens by Livin Lovin. This tour had it all; traditional Athenian houses, ancient ruins, street art, a walk in Anafiotika and Plaka, museums, food and singing lessons! Especially the latter was the most fun one.
Let me take things from the beginning. After meeting with the wonderful people, Katerina and Aris from Livin Lovin in Plaka, we started our walk from one of the oldest streets in Athens, Tripodon street. This street maintains the same name for 25 centuries and it took its name from the tripods that used to be on the road. The tripods were the trophies from the sponsors of the theatrical games that took place in ancient times and were often dedicated to the god Apollon. One of these trophies can still be seen on Tripodon street and it is called the Lysikrates monument, it was built-in 334 BC. On the same road we had the chance to enter a dilapidated traditional house and see how people in Athens used to live in the beginning of the century.
After crossing the narrow streets of Plaka we ended up in the museum of Greek popular instruments. After visiting the museum and learning how music was influenced by the different areas of Greece we were presented with a surprise!
Livin Lovin has arranged for us a lesson of traditional Greek songs. Our teacher Evaggelia, a girl with an amazing voice, taught us how to sing traditional Greek songs mostly from the islands while she played the drum. The lesson was a total success, even the non-Greek speaking members of our group did a great job!
Our next stop was Anafiotika. A very special place in Athens just under the Acropolis that looks like an island! The first king of Greece Otto, wanted to build his palace and invited the best builders to build it. The builders came from the island of Anafi along with their families and built their houses at the slope of the Acropolis, looking exactly like their houses back on the island.
After admiring the view of Athens from above and checking some beautiful street art we strolled through the streets of Plaka.
Next we headed to the Tower of the Winds, the oldest weather station in the world that could calculate the weather and time. It was built on the 1st century BC.
Opposite the Tower of the Winds one can see the Gate of Mentrese. During the Ottoman occupansy it used to be an Islamic school. Later on it became a prison. From here started the first rembetika songs called mourmourika that the prisoners used to sing. Another interesting fact is that a very well-known Greek expression came from this place.
By now we were all starving so we decided it was time to have some food. Lunch was another pleasant surprise. As we were walking in the streets of Psyri, in downtown Athens Katerina opened a door and we ended up in a backyard of an old houses eating Greek delicacies. We then headed to one of the best places to have a dessert in Athens “To serbetospito tis Nansy” located at the central square of Psyri.
Katerina and Aris from Livin Lovin were extremely knowledgable . I learnt so many things about Athens that day that I have never heard in the past. They were also very friendly, making you feel like you are out with friends.
Livin Lovin is a company that mainly deals with people who want to move to Greece, they help them adjust in their new country, meet new people and know the real Greece.
Apart from that they organize custom-made tours for people visiting Greece. The tours are organized depending on what are your interests and can last from a few hours to almost a day. So if you want to see differnt aspects of Athens with “friends” you should contact them.
Thank you Katerina and Aris for an enjoyable day!
Have you ever done a tour like this? A tour made by locals? Did you like it?