|The Plaka Area|
Athens oldest and most picturesque neighborhood.
As soon as you start walking around Plaka 's stone-paved, narrow streets, you will have the feeling that you are travelling back in time.
You will be delighted by the beauty of the neo-classical colors of its houses, their architecture, their lovingly tended little gardens, the elegance, and the total atmosphere of the area.
In Plaka, even the air is different; lighter, clearer, scented, like a gift from the gods.
When you decide to take a walk around it be sure to bring a map along, because Plaka is a labyrinth and you may get the feeling that you are lost in its maze of narrow streets and alley ways. No need for alarm though. It is easy to orientate yourself: uphill is the Acropolis and downhill are Syntagma and Monastiraki.
The origin of the
area's name is not really known thus allowing various theories to have developed
PHILOMOUSOU ETAIRIAS SQUARE
The Monument of Lysikrates
The choregos who sponsored the best performance of the year was presented with a prize by the city. When wealthy Lysikrates won the prize (334 BC) he decided to build a monument to house it where it remains to this day.
Its construction by Lysikrates was only the beginning of the monument's long and eventful story. In 1658 a Capuchin monastery was founded here by French friars of that order and in 1669 the monument was bought by them.
It was in this monastery that Lord Byron stayed during his second visit to Greece. It was in its gardens that in 1818 the first tomato plant in Greece grew after Father Francis brought the seeds from abroad.
In 1829 a foreign traveler in Greece was granted permission by the friars to take the monument with him but fortunately it proved too heavy.
Later, Lord Elgin put his mind to the same task but was again stopped, this time by the monks.
After the construction of the temple of Zeus the Athenians honored Hadrian by building, in AD 131 an arched gateway in the north-west corner of the enclosure of the temple. The arch, built of Pentelic marble (Penteli is one of the mountains surrounding the basin of Athens) , bears two inscriptions. The one on the side facing the Acropolis (west facade) reads:
"This is Athens, the ancient city of Theseus"
while the other the side facing the sanctuary an the extension of the city by Hadrian reads:
"This is the city of Hadrian and not of Theseus"
Several Museums are in Plaka including:
Odyssey - Jewelry & Workshop