During our planning process, I said out loud, "I wouldn't mind if we skipped Athens". We had plans to stay for just one night.
In hindsight, I stand behind that comment about 40% now and I'll tell you why in a sec.
We had *killer* views of the Acropolis from our Airbnb - climbed five flights of stairs so it had better be worth it. The views of Athens from the Acropolis was breath taking. The food... THE FOOD, of course was delicious. Lamb and potatoes, Greek salad, yogurt + honey (for the 12th time in seven days), roasted chestnuts, and a bag of SIX persimmons for 1 euro (at our local grocery store, it's $2 PER PERSIMMON). Also, don't touch the fruit on their stand. You'll get scolded. A friend told me that prior to our trip but I definitely forgot.
Of course I regret saying that I would skip Athens because it. was. cool. It was just COOL. Greek history fascinates me - the only thing I paid attention to in college and I did an art project on the Parthenon. It was surreal to see this history in person.
Why Athens hit a sour note for us was because we had spent 6 days in Oía with no distractions, it was quiet, end of tourist season, and it was pedestrian-only. Upon arrival, we hopped on a stuffy bus, walked to our Airbnb, cars & horns everywhere, people walking all sorts of directions, and lightheaded because we were hungry as hell.
We got to our Airbnb and for some reason, I did not read/remember that we had to climb five flights of stairs. We were sweaty, hungry, and overstimulated with sounds that we hadn't heard for almost a week. Knowing that we only had the day here, we didn't waste any time and set out to the Acropolis.
We got approached by a little boy playing Despasito on his accordion and mumbling the lyrics. I was trying to dodge him but there he was every time I turned around. Annoyed as shit, we then get stopped by Reggae dancers who were giving out "free" bracelets and telling us about the performance they have that evening. I said, "no, thank you" and kept walking but my husband was baited and hooked. -_- Once they tied these bracelets on us, they said, "anything you have, any money, any donations". Zack says, "sorry, we don't have money right now. we can bring it tonight to your performance". He responds, "oh... we don't accept money tonight". bahahah. what kind of bullshit is that? You're going to perform and not have anything for tips? Zack says again that we don't have change for them, he looks at his buddy and said "they don't have money". And then he awkwardly TAKES OFF the "FREE" bracelets.
We finally get to the Acropolis and our eyeballs are basically falling out of our heads. It's surreal to look back and realized that we stood on Greece soil amongst beautiful marbled temples. From the Acropolis, we looked out to the city. What a sight it was.
After the Acropolis, we spent the day walking around with no agenda and nowhere to be. Those are our favorite types of walks.
We grew tired of the crowd and noise around 8pm so before we called it a night, Zack got a gyro and I got super yummy pad thai to-go, headed back to our Airbnb to enjoy our late dinner and balcony views, because we had to be awake by 330am for our flight to Florence.