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   Beaches of Athens

Athens is surrounded by many beautiful and popular beaches. The best beaches are situated in the south-east coast, in the district of Glyfada, but most of them are private so you need to pay to enjoy your swim. The north-east of the city also offers you great and peaceful beaches, near the district of Marathon. You can also find some Athens beaches in the east coast of Athens, near the little port of Rafina, but they are often really crowded.

Glyfada

Glyfada is a big town, south of Athens center where wealthy Athenians go to relax themselves in their second residences, which are often huge villas. Located on the coast, it is one of the most popular places to go during summertime.

This is where most of the Greek population goes to enjoy the incredible quantity of trendy clubs and bars boarding the town and the coast. The town of Glyfada also contains a lot of luxurious shops, hotels and cafes which are particularly crowded during summer. Near the town you can find a lot of private beaches as well as some lovely rocky creeks less crowded than the big sandy beaches.

Varkiza Beach

The sandy beach at Varkiza is the most far away from the town center; therefore it is one of the less crowded in the south-east coast. This beach offers tennis and volleyball courts which can be hired per hour, day or evening, water slide, snack bars and a play area for children. You can easily go there by bus, directly from the town center.

Vouliagmeni Beach

With one of the best set up, this beach offers every thing you need to really enjoy your day: tennis and volleyball courts, play area for children, water slide, individual cabins and a restaurant. To reach Vouliagmeni Beach you need to catch two buses, one from the town center and then one from Glyfada.

Vouliagmeni Lake

A really relaxing place to go during a hot summer day, the Lake of Vouliagmenis is a natural lake 12m deep. You can enjoy a swim in its cool and beautiful water as well as a drink at the nice café positioned in the edge of the lake.

Cape Sounion

Situated at 65km from Athens, this is an amazing site that can't be missed. Majestic, rising out of the Aegean, this splendid rocky promontory carry on its highest point the Temple of Poseidon. Constructed around 600 BC it was destroyed in 480 BC by the Persians and rebuilt in 440 BC by Pericles.

If you look closely at the Doric columns rising above the coast you can find, on one of them, the signature of Lord Byron who was so captured by the beauty and the grace of the temple that he included it in his paean to Greek independence in his poem "Isles of Greece".

An hour from the temple you can find some nice beaches. Some are owned by hotels which charge you to let you swim but you there are a lot of free public beaches as well and some seaside stretches (along the bus route) which are always almost empty.

Marathon Region

This region situated at 42km north-east of Athens is a well-known site where the famous battle of Marathon took place in 490 BC, between the Greeks and the Persian army. After the bloody battle, a messenger named Pheidippides ran 42km to Athens to announce the victory of the Greeks and then died from exhaustion. This story is the origin of the marathon foot race in witch today runners trace Pheidippides route.

8km from the town of Marathon you can fin the Lake Marathon which is faced with a huge Pentelic marble dam (50m high and stretching for 300m), marble that was used to build the Parthenon.

This lake was Athens' sole water source until 1956. Nearby, in the little site of Ramnous overlooking the sea, you can admire the beautiful ruins of the Doric Temple of Nemesis (435 BC), goddess of retribution as well as the 6th-century small temple of Themis, goddess of justice and law. If you want to stay in a historic context, you can also visit the Archaeological Museum of Marathonas.

This interesting region also offers some little rocky inlets with clean and nice water as well as the really long and beautiful beach of Schinias.

Voula Beach

With the same bus you can also stop at Voula Beach. Sandy and clean, this beach also hires tennis and volleyball court.

Schinias

This sandy and pine-fringed is one of the most famous Athens beaches. It is located in the south-east of Marathon and it is known as the best beach in this part of Attica. Because of its popularity and beauty there are often quite a lot of people, especially during the weekends. This great beach is well-known by windsurfers all over because it is really long and located in a windy area. There is a good windsurfing club situated at the end of the beach. You can reach this heavenly place easily by bus from the center of Athens town.

Loutsa

Located on the east coast of Athens, this is the nearest of all Athens beaches. Because of its proximity it's usually really crowded and quite dirty. But it's a great place to go by night because it offers a lot of café, bars and fish taverns.

Rafina

On Attica's east coast, this is the second most important port for passenger ferries and appears like a smaller, quieter and less confusing version of Piraeus. You can take ferries for some islands like Andros, Hydra, Lesvos and Limnos and also for the port of Marmari and Karystos on the island.

Otherwise, you can choose to take one of the fine high-speed catamarans for Tinos, Mykonos, Paros, Naxos, and Amorgos. Around the area of this lovely port you can find a lot of small beaches and some camping sites.

Kokkino Limanaki

This particular creek is situated at 1,5km from the port of Rafina. Small and quiet, this place is going to intrigue you with its peculiar red cliff witch is boarding the sandy beach. Nearby thus creek you can find a blue and white sign indicating one of the few camping site in the area.

Porto Rafti

You can find there a sandy beach surrounded by small fish restaurant and cafe, as well some small creeks, unfortunately quite crowded.

Vravrona

It is an interesting place to go, not only for its nice beaches and creeks but also for the sanctuary of Artemis. The small town of Vravrona belonged to the mythical King Cecrops, founder of Athens.

 

 
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