Our top ten list of fun things to do in Athens exposes the fun-loving side of a city that holds a reputation for being broody and philosophical. There's no reason you can't argue the problems of the world and still have a good time.
The Aegean coastline provides a huge playground that is used by everyone- and we do mean everyone- from May to September. Yabanaki Resort is considered one of the best and is well divided so that grown-ups can play like grown-ups and kids can avoid it at all costs. Closer to the center, Flisvos Park has long lineup of colorful moonwalks just behind rows of cafes and shops lining the marina. The outdoor movie theater paired with the adjoining souvlaki
restaurant keeps the fun going into the evening ours.
Allou Fun Park's very name should leave little room for guesswork why it's one of our favorite land-based center for fun in Athens. On top of having a kitschy carnival atmosphere, there's a megaplex movie theater, some shopping to be had, and a special theme park for the itty-bitties called "The Kiddom." We're just sad that it's a bit difficult to access having no nearby metro station and few buses.
For an activity that is distinctively Greek, we recommend hitting the Karaiskaki Stadium in Paleo Faliro for an Olympiakos football game. Olympiakos, the team of Piraeus, has a throng of passionate fans bleeding red and white; catching a game puts you face first with football fever in Athens. If you happen to be there out of season, there's still a fan shop, small museum and a coffee shop.
Melissino's Art is perhaps the most famous sandal maker in Greece; the family-owned shop has made sandals for Jacqueline Onassis and John Lennon. You can mix the visit in with shopping on Ermou Street and the Monastiraki Flea Market, both at their most lively on Thursday and Friday nights, then again on Saturday and Sunday mornings, provided there's good weather. Street performers, balloon sellers and other characters make good use of your unwanted change during the off-season months of winter. The Athinas Street Market, while being considered strictly business for cooks, meat, and fruit sellers, is great fun for out-of-towners who squeal at the carcasses of lambs, pigs, and chickens in whole. It's also a great place to sample cheeses, fruit, olive oil and honey of the Attica area. Get there around ten in the morning to see it at it's most busy; get there before five if you want to see it before everyone closes shop.
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