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Athens, Greece

Athens Holidays Greece - Athens Holiday Packages and Tours

Athens is the capital and largest city of Greece. Athens dominates the Attica region and is one of the world's oldest cities, with its recorded history spanning around 3,400 years. Classical Athens was a powerful city-state. A center for the arts, learning and philosophy, home of Plato's Academy and Aristotle's Lyceum, it is widely referred to as the cradle of Western civilization and the birthplace of democracy, largely due to the impact of its cultural and political achievements during the 5th and 4th centuries BC in later centuries on the rest of the then known European continent. Today a cosmopolitan metropolis, modern Athens is central to economic, financial, industrial, political and cultural life in Greece.
The heritage of the classical era is still evident in the city, represented by ancient monuments and works of art, the most famous of all being the Parthenon, considered a key landmark of early Western civilization. The city also retains Roman and Byzantine monuments, as well as a smaller number of Ottoman monuments.
Athens is home to two UNESCO World Heritage Sites, the Acropolis of Athens and the medieval Daphni Monastery. Landmarks of the modern era, dating back to the establishment of Athens as the capital of the independent Greek state in 1834, include the Hellenic Parliament (19th century) and the Athens Trilogy, consisting of the National Library of Greece, the Athens University and the Academy of Athens. Athens was the host city of the first modern-day Olympic Games in 1896, and 108 years later it welcomed home the 2004 Summer Olympics. Athens is home to the National Archeological Museum, featuring the world's largest collection of ancient Greek antiquities, as well as the new Acropolis Museum.

Climate
Athens has a subtropical Mediterranean climate. The dominant feature of Athens's climate is alternation between prolonged hot and dry summers and mild, wet winters. With an average of 414.1 millimeters (16.30 in) of yearly precipitation, rainfall occurs largely between the months of October and April. July and August are the driest months, where thunderstorms occur sparsely once or twice a month. Winters are cool and rainy, with a January average of 9 °C . Daily average highs for July have been measured at 34 °C

Archaeological hub
Athens hosts 17 Foreign Archaeological Institutes which promote and facilitate research by scholars from their home countries. As a result, Athens has more than a dozen archaeological libraries and three specialized archaeological laboratories, and is the venue of several hundred specialized lectures, conferences and seminars, as well as dozens of archaeological exhibitions, each year. At any given time, hundreds of international scholars and researchers in all disciplines of archaeology are to be found in the city.

Museums
Athens' most important museums include:
- the National Archaeological Museum, the largest archaeological museum in the country, and one of the most important internationally, as it contains a vast collection of antiquities. Its artifacts cover a period of more than 5,000 years, from late Neolithic Age to Roman Greece.
- the Benaki Museum with its several branches for each of its collections including ancient, Byzantine, Ottoman-era, and Chinese art and beyond.
- the Byzantine and Christian Museum, one of the most important museums of Byzantine art.
- the Numismatic Museum, housing a major collection of ancient and modern coins.
- the Museum of Cycladic Art, home to an extensive collection of Cycladic art, including its famous figurines of white marble.
- the New Acropolis Museum, opened in 2009, and replacing the old museum on the Acropolis. The new museum has proved considerably popular; almost one million people visited during the summer period June–October 2009 alone. A number of smaller and privately owned museums focused on Greek culture and arts are also to be found.

Transport
Athens is serviced by a variety of transportation means, forming the largest mass transit system of Greece. The Athens Mass Transit System consists of a large bus fleet, a trolleybus fleet that mainly serves Athens's city center, the city's Metro, a commuter rail service and a tram network, connecting the southern suburbs to the city center.

Office:
Tourlos, New Port, 84600
Mykonos Town
Cyclades Islands, Greece

Tel. +30 22890 28020 to 22
Fax: +30 22890 28023
E-mail: info@matt-holidays.com

EOT number (MHTE): 1144E61000085201

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