Studying abroad in Greece is an exciting experience for students. To help each student get the most out of the study abroad experience, The National Herald has compiled the following tips:
Brush up on Your Greek Language Skills
Make sure you are on top of the basics which can be helpful, like hello and goodbye, thank you, please, sorry, and yes and no. Greek-Americans have also been known to use a variety of Greek-lish words that pepper our everyday patterns of speech when we’re in the USA, but can cause a bit of confusion when we visit the homeland and try to communicate with native speakers. Be aware that there are actual Greek words you can use for everyday things instead of Greek-lish. Keep in mind that many Greeks in Greece do speak at least some English, so don’t panic if you are not one hundred percent secure in your language skills, you’ll have plenty of time to practice while you’re there.
Eat Like a Local
The food in Greece draws foodies from all over the world every year, so those studying abroad have a great opportunity to immerse themselves in the culture through gastronomy. To truly experience Greek cuisine, TNH recommends eating where the locals do. The restaurants in the more touristy areas also serve wonderful meals, but there will always be the temptation to fall back on the familiar menu items. If you venture out to tavernas, you will find all the specialties and delicacies to enjoy, usually at a more affordable price as well, along with the famous Greek hospitality.
Check out the Café Scene
Sitting for hours with friends at a café and drinking coffee is an art form in Greece. Order a freddo espresso and sip away while chatting about anything and everything. Practically every type of coffee, tea, and blended beverage is available at most cafes, so relax and enjoy this Greek pastime.
Stroll through Athens
The best way to experience a city is to walk through its neighborhoods and Athens, though sprawling, is generally speaking a walkable city. There is plenty to see from the very center of the city and neighborhoods including Kolonaki, Pagrati, Monastiraki, and Plaka, among others. Athens is full of archaeological treasures, so make sure to visit the most famous sites, including the Acropolis, the Roman Agora, and the Ancient Greek Agora. Local public transportation is also a good and affordable option in case you wander a bit too far from your home base.
Do Your Research
Make sure to do your research ahead of time on the area where you will be staying during your study abroad in Greece. Familiarize yourself with the location and what is nearby in terms of sites and transportation if you plan on day trips or visiting other regions and/or islands. Check on any restrictions and safety measures that might be in place especially in these times. Mask requirements and curfews could be in effect in some areas and you might need to show proof of vaccination or a negative COVID test result to be admitted to certain venues.