Greece’s Unlikely Hot Spot for Tourists: Athens

November 21, 2019

ATHENS – In the past a stopover for visitors on the way to the islands, Greece’s capital has become a must-visit place, the number of arrivals doubling in six years as the city has picked up an international reputation for having a buzz, if not charm.

With funky areas like Psirri and Gazi drawing the young, the capital’s grimy, graffiti-covered concrete buildings that stand in stark contrasts to elegant if abandoned classical structures has neighborhoods with unique coffee shops, taverns and restaurants and not just chain stores.

Athens is also home to a few bars and restaurants rated among the world’s best and pedestrian walkways that used to be roads now let people stroll from the new Acropolis Museum down to the Monastiraki flea market and trendy tourist area of the Plaka, drawing hordes.

Visitors said they are satisfied with what they see, once they get past the often grim first image with the 15th survey on Attica hotel guests conducted by the Athens-Attica and Argosaronic Hoteliers Association and GBR Consulting showing good results, said Kathimerini.

In the period from 2012- 2018, Athens International Airport recorded an increase in annual visitors from abroad from 2.5 million to 5.7 million, while data for this year up until September showed a further annual increase of 12 percent. Most of this demand (87 percent) concerned recreation visitors, of whom 31 percent headed to other destinations within Greece.

What tourists don’t like are filthy public places and air pollution and the emergence of short-term rentals such as Airbnb has siphoned off a million people a year although new hotels keep popping up during a run of record tourism seasons.

Hotel occupancy rates dropped 2.4 percent in September 2019 from a year earlier, while hotel room rates increased 1.2 percent, bringing the average revenue per room down by 1.3 percent year-on-year.


JERUSALEM — At a tourism conference in Phuket last month, Thailand's prime minister looked out at attendees and posed a question with a predictable answer.

Top Stories

General News

FALMOUTH, MA – The police in Falmouth have identified the victim in an accident involving a car plunging into the ocean on February 20, NBC10 Boston reported.

General News

NEW YORK – Meropi Kyriacou, the new Principal of The Cathedral School in Manhattan, was honored as The National Herald’s Educator of the Year.

General News

PHILADELPHIA – The Federation of Hellenic Societies of Philadelphia and Greater Delaware Valley announced that the Evzones, the Presidential Guard of Greece will be participating in the Philadelphia Greek Independence Day Parade on March 20.


TNΗ’s Happenings of the Week by Eraklis Diamataris

NEW YORK – The National Herald’s Happenings of the Week as have been reported at the print and digital editions of TNH and presented by the TNH Editor Eraklis Diamataris.

Enter your email address to subscribe

Provide your email address to subscribe. For e.g. abc@xyz.com

You may unsubscribe at any time using the link in our newsletter.