Join this tour to discover the best of Athens, the essence and the development of the Athenian Democracy!
Explore Athens, the city that gave birth to democracy
If you are eager to follow the trails of democracy, then your journey starts here in Athens, where it all begun, back in the 6th Century BC.
Chief magistrate Cleisthenes (Archon) , was the first who set the foundations of the regime that would become the dominant regime for the vast majority of countries all over the world.
Democracy was born in Athens; philosophy flourished, as well as the sciences, arts and letters and over the years here is where the state that would expand to become the Greece of today was formed.
The city of Athens got its name from Athena, goddess of wisdom; hence it comes as no surprise that the first complete legal system and the first comprehensive democratic policies were formed in this city. The high durability of the Athenian democracy is attributed by scholars not only to the right institutions but mostly to the great adaptability and ability to evolve. The institutions were born of the necessities of life and that is why they are easily adapted to the changing circumstances.
Explore Athens and follow the trail of the world’s first democracy. Find out why the Greek Constitution was the basis for all modern democracies, at the exact place where all the policies and theories on human rights were born.
Itinerary of the private tour following the Footsteps of Democracy in Athens
This tour includes a visit to the following sites in Athens: Pnyx, the Acropolis, the Parthenon, Propilea gate, Erechthion, Temple of Athens Niki, the Odeon Theater, the Dionysus Theater, Mars Hill / Areopagus, Panathenean stadium (first modern Olympic Games in 1896), Change of the Guards, Greek Parliament, Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, Ancient Greek Agora, Plaka (the old city of Athens) with time for lunch and leisure, Lycabetus Hill with its breathtaking panoramic view of the city.
Also you will have a Panoramic tour from the car: Adrian’s Arch (Athens Gate), Syndagma Square (Constitution square), National Garden, Catholic Cathedral, Academy of Arts, University of Athens, the temple of Zeus, National Library, the presidential megaron (ex-Royal Palace), the Acropolis Museum, the Roman agore, the tower of the winds, Hadrian library, Kapnikarea Byzantine church, Monastiraki (also known as the flea market), Theisio, Central Orthodox Church, Kolonaki, the prestige area of Athens
Highlights of the Half Day Tour in Athens
- 8-hour, morning or afternoon, private archaeological tour of Athens
- Explore the best of Athens and follow the trails of the World’s First Democracy
- Explore the Acropolis, Pnyx, the Theater of Dionysus and the Ancient Agora
- A professional English-speaking tour driver
- An experienced English-speaking tour guide (Optional)
- Pickup and drop-off from / to your hotel, cruise terminal or cruise ship
Detailed description of our tour “Following the Footsteps of Democracy in Athens”
Starting the tour, you will visit the Pnyx, the wide hill that overlooks the Acropolis.
The Pnyx is a sacred area on which great politicians, generals and orators forbade such as Themistocles, Pericles and Demosthenes. That was also the meeting place of the Ecclesia tou Dimou, the famous Athenian assembly of citizens, where important decisions were made for the City.
During your visit to the Pnyx you will have the chance to listen to the narration of your guide, who will provide you with significant information on the birth and evolution of the Athenian Constitution, and the development of the first direct democracy in the world.
Leaving the Pnyx, you will ascend the most famous hill of the world; the Acropolis of Athens, the sacred sanctuary of the city, where you can admire the miracle made of Marble, called the Parthenon.
You will also see a number of marble made buildings that were all made during Pericles’ time, including the Propylaea gate and the Erechtheion.
The Parthenon, the great temple of Athena Parthenos (Virgin Athena), the patron of Athens, dominates the hilltop of the Acropolis.
The Parthenon was constructed entirely of white Pentelic marble, with a foundation of limestone and wooden ceiling with marble roof. It was built during the supremacy of the Athenian democracy, to remind the leading role of the Athenians in the Persian wars.
The Parthenon was the first and most important of the buildings that the Athenians rebuilt after the devastating consequences of the Persian invasion of 480 BC in Athens and was the symbolic and substantive focus of the ambitious building program that was implemented in the city at the initiative of Pericles.
The construction of the temple began in 447 BC by architects Iktinos and Kallikrates under the general supervision of Phidias. The temple with the cult statue of Athena was inaugurated nine years later, in 448 BC, while work on the sculptural decoration continued until 432 BC
Theater of Dionysus
You will also visit the Theater of Dionysus, the most ancient theater in the world; it is the theater where the first tragedies and comedies of the ancient world were presented to the people.
The Dionysus Theater is located in the South Slope of the Acropolis, north of the temple of Dionysus Eleuthereus at a level higher by 3 m. approximately. Its construction is connected directly with the Dionysian cult
The Ancient Agora of Athens was the center of economic, social and political life of the city.
If the Acropolis and its monuments was the face of the city, the Agora was its heart and her mind. Here were located the city authorities, and parliamentarians, the orators and generals frequented.
Here was awarded the popular justice. Here the Athenian came every day, not only to participate in public affairs, but also to do his shopping, see friends and acquaintances, to criticize, to gossip.
It’s time now to experience the old and the modern part of Athens. Drive through Plaka, the picturesque quarter of the city, where you can see lovely little shops with handmade crafts and gifts, restaurants and cafes.
The full day tour to Athens will also give you the chance to get a glimpse of modern Athens as well, visiting the Monastiraki market, which is the famous flea market of the city.
However, a visit to Athens is never complete if you do not get to taste the famous Greek cuisine; (optional) the tour will take you to a traditional Athenian restaurant or tavern, where you can indulge to the colors and flavors of the most known Greek dishes (home cooked food).
After this tasty exciting experience of the home cooked Greek food, enjoy the breathtaking views from Lycabettus Hill. It’s the highest hill in the city as it’s the perfect spot to take some spectacular pictures and an image of the entire city in your hearts and minds.
Next your tour driver will drop you off at your hotel, your cruise terminal or any other place you want in Athens.
End of our services.
“Following the footsteps of the first democracy in Athens” is a guiding experience designed by our specialized historian licensed tour guides. We highly recommend, during this tour to be accompanied by a professional tour guide, who will help you understand more on the actual places were the Democracy of Athens was born (Optional).
- Shore Excursion - Private tour
- Activity level: Moderate
Included in the tour
- Car and Driver
- A professional English speaking driver or escort with good knowledge in history and culture of Greece, to guide you till you enter archaeological sites and museums. Tour drivers are not licensed to companion you inside the archaeological sites and museums. If you'd like to have a licensed by the state tour guide to escort you inside the sites and museums, we can arrange it for you with an additional cost. Licensed by the state tour guides are freelance and it is subject of availability on bookings day!
- Transport by air-conditioned Mercedes-Benz vehicle or similar appropriate for the size of your group
- Accommodation is based according to availability (for multiple day tours only)
- Pick-up from and return to your hotel
- Pick-up from the Port of Piraeus
- Private tour, Road tolls and local taxes
- Our terminal: Leof. Andrea Siggrou 37, 117 43 Athina, Greece.
Excluded from the tour
- Entrance fees to the archaeological sites and museum
- Wine tasting fee (wine tours)
- Gratuities (optional)
- Food and beverage
- Your private chauffeur/guide will discuss a program best suited to your interest and mobile abilities. Option for a professional tour guide with a state license at an extra cost. Read more for the difference between a STATE LICENSED TOUR GUIDE and a TOUR DRIVER GUIDE in Greece!
- Dress: religious and marmoreal sites: shoulders and knee must be covered
- Terms & Conditions and Frequent Questions
- Confirmation will be received at time of booking
- A voucher will be emailed to you with our contact numbers and all necessary information for your tour.
- This is your ticket and proof of purchase. On the day of tour please present a paper voucher in order to redeem your tour/activity.
Persons with Disabilities
- Due to uneven surfaces, certain sites are not recommended for persons with walking disabilities or using a wheelchair. Such sites are the Acropolis, the Temple of Poseidon at Sounion, Mycenae, Delphi and Meteora
- In all cases, we recommend comfortable flat-solid walking shoes, sunglasses and sunscreen.
- Please note that on this tour, your tour driver is not licensed to accompany you on your climb. If you want this service you may book a licensed by the state tour guide for an extra cost.
- In case a group is followed by a licensed tour guide or an English speaking tour-escort the professional driver is not obliged to speak English!
Opening hours & Admission fees
- Opening Hours:Summer April 1st to October 31st from 08:00 AM to 07:30 PM
- Winter: November 1st to March 31st from 08:30 AM to 03:00 PM
- Free admission fees: Children under 18 & Students from E.U.
- Reduced admission fees: Citizens of the E.U. aged over 65 & Students from countries outside the E.U.
Free admission days
- March 6: In memory of deceased Minister of Tourism & visionary Melina Mercouri
- June 5: Environment international day
- April 18 : International monuments day
- May 18: International museums day
- September 27: International tourism day
- The last weekend of September annually (European Heritage Days)
- National Holidays
- Sundays in the period between 1 November and 31 March
- The first Sunday of every month, except for July, August and September
- NOTE: If the first Sunday is a holiday then the second is the free admission day
Holidays in Greece
- January 1: closed
- January 6: 08:30 AM - 03:00 PM
- Shrove Monday: 08:30AM - 03:00 PM
- March 25: closed
- Good Friday: 12:00 PM - 03:00 PM
- Holy Saturday: 08:30 AM - 03:00 PM
- Easter Sunday: closed
- Easter Monday: 08:30 AM - 03:00 PM
- May 1: closed
- Holy Spirit Day: 08:30 AM - 03:00 PM
- 15 August 15: 08:30 AM - 03:00 PM
- October 28: 08:30 AM- 03:00 PM
- December 25 & 26: closed