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Crazy Souvenir Shopping in Athens

While a big chunk of any itinerary in Athens involves sight-seeing, one must alsomake sure to leave enough time (a day at least!) for souvenir shopping! Seriously, of all the countries I’ve been in, this is where I had the most fun at not only buying souvenirs but also window-shopping the huge variety of items for sale.

So whether you’re a fan of fashion (branded and local), typical tourist souvenirs(tshirts, hoodies, magnets, spoons etc)AWESOME tourist souvenirs (orthodox icons, statues, swords and armor!!) or just plain weird stuff (antiques, old pictures of random families, taxidermied animals), Athens has something for you.


Plaka

* Such a nice day for a stroll along Plaka’s streets. Armed with time for leisure-strolling, the art of exploring, getting lost, and finding one’s way again equates to a very pleasurable experience indeed.





Athens Souvenirs

* Now THIS is what I call a souvenir store!! Being a collector of action figures, I went crazy over these statues of gods and goddesses, Greek heroes and mythological beasts. Add the huge selection of bronze-work and Greek jars and you have one almost-broke-yet-very-happy guy.


Athens Grafitti

* Interestingly, there is an abundance of graffiti on the streets of Athens. But I have to give it to Greeks, even their graffiti is very artful.


Monastiraki square

* The bustling Monastiraki square full of locals and tourists alike, buzzing with activity and music.


Monastiraki square

* This day, an African tribal drum group attracted the most attention.


Athens Souvenirs

* I have no idea if these Converse and Fred Perry sneakers are authentic or class-A counterfeit, but they sure look nice and feel comfortable when you try them on.


Athens Souvenirs

* I’m sure my mom would love it here, what with the huge selection of colorful bags, hats and scarves!


Athens Souvenirs

* Mysterious and spooky store specializing in antique.. everything!! I felt like those guys in Pawn Stars while looking at old photos, cabinets, radios, cameras, vacuum cleaners, books, maps, even cereal boxes!


Greek Yogurt

* Apparently here in Athens, the cool kids hang-out in this loung-y Yogurt shop, with its very own DJ (right).


Athens Souvenirs

* Being very proud of their Orthodox Christian roots, many stores sell icons and crosses in all forms and sizes.


Athens Souvenirs

* Acoustic and electric guitars, side-by-side with the traditional Greek guitar, the Bouzouki. 


Monastiraki square

* A random Greek Orthodox Church in the middle of the shopping district. There are about 5 Churches in the area of Plaka.


Monastiraki square

* The ornately decorated interiors and iconostasis plus the dark, cave-like atmosphere of the Church easily puts one in the mood for a silent prayer. 


Athens Souvenirs

* A store specializing in Greek military gear inspired by the 1821 Greek War of Independence with a Golem-ish graffiti face looking on.


Athens Souvenirs

* Even in Greece, Heavy Metal has an audience! It was a pleasure spending time here hoping to chance upon some rare records.


Athens Souvenirs

* Being so close to Turkey and the Middle East, Athens is also home to a host ofShisha-loving gents.


Athens Grafitti

* Graffiti of an Emo / My Chemical Romance - looking dude.


Athens Souvenirs

* I also went crazy upon seeing this store specializing in armor and weapons!


Athens Souvenirs

* Realistically though, how does one expect to bring these AWESOME items home, what with the custom requirements and the weight?!?


Athens Souvenirs

Helmets of different ancient warrior cultures: including Athenian, Spartan, Saxon, Crusader, English, Frankish, Roman and friggin Russel Crowe’s helmet in the movie Gladiator!


Athens Souvenirs

* While I was getting lost in the streets and souvenir stores of Plaka, Monicca was likewise losing herself on Ernou St. (the branded, up-scale shopping area) with her favorite European brands.


Athens Grafitti

* I noticed that the font used in all grafitti is universal, may you be in Athens, America or even Manila! I wonder if that’s an agreed upon standard of graffiti-craft.


Thanasis

* After a long and tiring day of shopping, we ended the day in our favorite restaurant, Thanasis, located near Monastiraki Square. It’s so good, we must have eaten here thrice in our entire stay in Athens.


Thanasis

* To this day I have dreams about the mouth-watering Kebabs, creamy Tzatziki and fresh tomatoes. All these for the very good price of 12 Euros.


Thanasis

* Having already tried Mythos Beer, I next sampled this pint of Alfa Hellenic Beer. Not bad! This Stella Artois-tasting beer was a good way to cap off the excellent meal.


Monastiraki Square

* At night, the street performers come out. Here’s Monicca appreciating the work of this one man band, using his hands to play the guitar and his legs to operate his kick-snare contraption.


Monastiraki Square

* The night scene at Monastiraki Square with its restaurants and cafes full of patrons, which isn’t surprising at all since dinner time for the Greeks starts at 10pm!

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3 comments:

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