Athens, Greece Olympic flame ceremony

We had only made plans to visit the Acropolis Museum today and spend the remainding time exploring the streets of Athens. Our plans changed somewhat when we overheard at breakfast that the Olympic flame handover ceremony was taking place at the Panatheniac Stadium later this morning (a stadium built entirely in solid white marble - what else would you use?)

We arrived in time and sat with the entire Athens school population. (Easiest way to fill a stadium, or at least half a stadium, as they kept the other side free for the TV cameras and dignitaries and what’s more it gives the TV audience the appearance of a packed stadium!).

It was an entertaining morning with excellent choreographed dance routines performed by both the Athenians and Koreans (hosts of the 2018 Winter Olympics). Then came the lighting of the Olympic flame and then (don’t tell anyone) we snuck out during the official speeches and headed for the Acropolis Museum.

Unfortunately no photos were allowed! Jenny and I are not ones to get excited over Museums, but we surprised ourselves and were appreciative of the informative guide we had the day before as the Museum really brought it all together. Wow is all we can say...

It was time to explore the streets and a quick visit before closing time of Ancient Agora, unfortunately by this time, due to not having enough time and being overwhelmed at the Acropolis Museum, we couldn’t take it all in (maybe for another time).

We have come away with a strong appreciation and respect for the Greeks and particularly for the Athenians and can appreciate their strong pride in such a great city.

We share their loss over the many treasured ancient antiquities that are showcased in other Museums (such as the British Museum) particularly after English individuals had stolen them anyway, when their rightful place is home in Athens.

Their history is so rich in comparison to ours (embarrassing really!). It nearly tempts one into studing Greek history...

Panatheniac Stadium

Olympic Flame Handover Ceremony

30 Greek priestesses or ‘Caryatis Kores’ (Who’s to disagree?)
The marching band
Athenians dance routine (check 30sec video snippet below)
Korean Dance routine.
Athens Youth
Time to sneak out...

Athens Street Life

Orange Cake... Yum!

Ancient Agora

Athens Street Walking

Marble paving

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