You can see Mount Lycabettus for most viewpoints around the city. It stands tall over the entire city and provides and amazing viewpoint to get a 360 degree view of the entire city, all the way out to the water. Since I wasn’t able to go to the top of the Acropolis, this was something that was a must do for me. I didn’t have directions on how to go to there but since it stands over the entire top of the city, I just started walking in that direction. That’s one of the benefits of trying to target going somewhere that you can see from everyone. I eventually found myself at the base of some stairs that looked like they would lead in the direction I needed them to so I followed them and found myself at the base of Mount Lycabettus.
I’ve heard that there is a cable car that can take you up to the top, I’m not sure if it’s true and I didn’t see anything that indicated that there was a cable car. I was determined to walk all the way up to the top of the mountain. The one thing was that I wasn’t quick prepared for what I was getting myself into. Since the day was about 60 degrees with zero clouds, and I had decided to leave the hotel in jeans and a long sleeve; I definitely struggled. It got very hot as I started trekking up the mountain which is a perpetual incline the entire way up. If you decide to go, I highly recommend you bring water and be prepared to deal with non-stop incline as you make your way up.
About halfway up the mountain, the mountain gets just high enough to be above the trees of the city and the view gets better and better. There are view points you can stop at along the way up and look out over the entire city. The higher you get, the further you can see and eventually you can look out all the way out to the water just pass Acropolis Hill. As you make your way up, the switchbacks occur and at the end, a final lookout point over the entire city. There is a restaurant there you can hang out at but it was definitely very crowded. This is also a major tourist location so it was packed when I got up there. Getting all the views in can be difficult with all the people there but if you wait for people to move over, you can get a seat just at the edge of the lookout and enjoy the views.
After trying to deal with the crowds for about 10 minutes, I decided to make my way back down. The trail I had taken to get up to the viewpoint was relatively empty because most people did not want to hike up a mountain in the heat, and so I was able to get the same view of the water and Acropolis Hill about 3 feet lower without anyone. It was definitely worth not being surrounded by mass amounts of crowds so that I could actually just stop and enjoy the view.
I have to admit, I didn’t realize just how big and sprawling Athens actually was. It was wonderful and great to see. It’s also a little overwhelming to see just how huge this city is and it’s fascinating because there is so much history embedded into the architecture and right in the city center just like the Acropolis. Standing there, I got a very different and new perspective on Athens as a whole and to be honest, I think that was the moment I officially fell in love with the city. I’m so curious about what every neighborhood has to offer and what history is a part of each one. It is definitely a great place to visit and I already know that I need to go back.
When I was done with the view, I started making my way down the rest of the mountain and was off to find the next place to visit in Athens.