Discover Athens Architecture - Ancient To Modern

  • by XpatAthens
  • Monday, 27 June 2016
Discover Athens Architecture - Ancient To Modern
Author and blogger Marissa Tejada recently went on a different kind of tour of Athens. Together with a local architect, she explored the city and listened to the stories behind each of the buildings. Here she tells us about her experience of the complex mix of ancient, historic, and new architecture of the city of Athens.

One thing I love about traveling in Europe is the amazing architecture that can be admired in the old towns. It’s wonderful to take in everything from fantastic castles, gorgeous sky high churches with spires and Gothic accents, to the charm of buildings and homes that have lined cobbled lanes before industrial modern times. For an American like me, it is all very fairy tale at times and simply charming.

It has been said that the landscape of Athens is an architectural challenge. Unregulated city growth and planning led to cookie-cutter housing, a lack of green space and grand centuries’ old buildings falling to the developer’s wrecking ball. Once elegant homes remain simply abandoned.

I have been walking the city center streets, where I live, for years now and failed to really look closer, only admiring the obvious: the Acropolis and other ancient structures that have survived with grace and the most important neoclassical buildings. However, I always kind of shook my head at buildings that lined the oldest Athenian neighborhoods which were a big old unnecessary hodgepodge of styles (some just ugly), at least to me.

Athens is a city built over a city, many times over. The ancient Greek world has been buried over time. Fast forward to today, within the past decades even, engineers and architects continue to literally bump into a landscape of antiquities.

Exploring much of Greece, you’ll find this kind of construction where eras are built over eras. Another reason why you can say Athens is truly a fascinating city of layers.

To read Marissa's article in full, please visit: My Greece My Travels