End of a Dream Holiday in Greece: One Last Day in Athens

This article covers my last day in Athens after a dream holiday in Greece.

Back in Athens

Following a pleasant domestic flight with Aegean Airlines from Rhodes to Athens, I found myself back in the Greek capital where my journey began two weeks prior.

With most of the afternoon and evening still ahead of me, as well as the following morning, I had ample time to spend at my leisure before my flight back home.

At the start of my trip I had already explored Plaka and the Acropolis.

This time, I planned to take it easy as I had already seen all the sights and museums of Athens on numerous prior visits to the Greek capital.

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Boarding an Aegean Airlines Airbus A320 at Rhodes Airport for my flight back to Athens. ©Paliparan
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On final approach towards Athens Airport. ©Paliparan


I had reserved a deluxe double room at the Acropolian Spirit Boutique Hotel for my final night in Athens, which cost me 80 euros and included breakfast in the rate.

Although the hotel had a good location and my stay was perfectly fine, in my opinion it lacked a bit of character to be considered a proper boutique hotel.

Acropolian Spirit Boutique Hotel
A room at the Acropolian Spirit Boutique Hotel. ©Paliparan
Acropolian Spirit Boutique Hotel bathroom
Acropolian Spirit Boutique Hotel bathroom. ©Paliparan

Night walk

I didn’t spend much time in the hotel as I met up with some Greek friends in the evening at one of their homes located in the city’s northern suburbs, where we enjoyed a few beers together.

After taking a night bus back to the city centre, I went for one last night-time stroll through Athens.

In front of the neoclassical parliament building on Syntagma square, I watched the guards parading in their traditional Evzones (elite light infantry) uniforms with tsarouchia shoes with woolen pompon.

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Hotel Grande Bretagne on Syntagma Square. ©Paliparan
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Presidential Guards in traditional Evzones uniforms guarding the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in front of the parliament building. ©Paliparan
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Guards marching on Syntagma Square. ©Paliparan
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Guards in their Evzones uniform. ©Paliparan

Acropolis view

Back at the hotel, I took the lift up to the top floor to admire the views over the Acropolis.

No matter how many times you’ve seen it before, this view never grows old.

acropolis athens view greece holiday
The Acropolis as seen from my hotel. ©Paliparan


Although I found the breakfast buffet at the hotel somewhat disappointing, it came with one huge benefit.

The top floor breakfast room featured the same fantastic views over the Acropolis.

It was certainly not a bad view to fully wake up to while sipping your morning coffee.

breakfast hotel view acropolis athens
Breakfast with a view over the Acropolis. ©Paliparan
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View over the Acropolis from the hotel breakfast room. ©Paliparan

Morning walk

After the breakfast I had one little morning walk in the neighbourhood around my hotel.

I passed by a couple of major Athens sights such as the Panathenaic Stadium, Temple of Olympian Zeus and the Zappeion.

Panathenaic Stadium Athens last day greece holiday
Panathenaic Stadium. ©Paliparan
Temple of Olympian Zeus Athens
Temple of Olympian Zeus. ©Paliparan
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The Arch of Hadrian with the Acropolis being visible in the background. ©Paliparan
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Athens National Garden and the Zappeion Hall. ©Paliparan


There was some shopping to be done as well on my last day in Athens.

This mostly involved buying some particular Greek groceries, bottles of wine and mastiha liqueur to take home.

In the streets around the nearest big supermarket there was a ‘laiki’ (street market), which made me realise how much I miss buying fresh produce from such markets.

Taking a morning walk through the weekly street market in my neighbourhood was always one of my favourite activities when I was living in Chania on the island of Crete a few years ago.

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Athens street market. ©Paliparan
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Laiki. ©Paliparan

To the airport

All good things must come to an end, and the same was true for my Greek holiday.

With my trolley loaded up with all the groceries I had purchased, I made my way to Syntagma Square to catch the metro to the airport.

athens metro
Historical artefacts on show in the Athens metro. ©Paliparan
athens airport metro
A train arriving at the Athens Airport metro station. ©Paliparan

Flight home

My flight home went by rather uneventfully.

I was however amazed by the fantastic visibility when we descended over southern Romania.

From the plane window, I could clearly see the Carpathian Mountains and even the Transylvanian plateau beyond.

It’s amazing how even after so many flights to and from Bucharest, there are still moments of surprise.

The queues at passport control were fortunately light and within minutes I managed to catch an Uber from the parking deck to drive me home.

flight athens bucharest
The boarding gate for my TAROM flight back to Bucharest. ©Paliparan
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Take-off from Athens Airport. ©Paliparan
danube river plane view
Flying over the Danube, which at this point forms the border between Bulgaria and Romania. ©Paliparan
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Amazingly good visibility over southern Romania, with the Carpathian Mountains being clearly visible. ©Paliparan
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On final approach towards Bucharest. ©Paliparan
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View over Bucharest Otopeni Airport just seconds before landing. ©Paliparan
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Landing at Bucharest Otopeni Airport. ©Paliparan
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Bucharest Otopeni Airport. ©Paliparan

End of the trip

My flight from Athens to Bucharest marked the end of a dream holiday in Greece during the summer of 2020.

It was an unique experience to see some of Greece’s most beautiful places almost completely devoid of other tourists.

As I don’t think there will ever be such a moment again I certainly savoured every single moment of the trip.

Many thanks for joining me on this island hopping adventure in Greece.

If you missed any earlier chapters of this trip report, you can find the trip report index below.

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Trip report index

This article is part of the ‘A Dodecanese Dream: Summer Island Hopping in Greece‘ trip report, which consists of the following chapters:

1. Back in the Skies – My First International Flight in the Age of Corona
2. Review: Kimon Hotel, Athens, Greece
3. Exploring Plaka: Through the Winding Streets of the Old Town of Athens
4. Climbing up the Acropolis: Visiting Athens’ Most Famous Sight
5. Review: Skyserv Melina Merkouri Lounge Athens Airport
6. Review: Sky Express Athens to Naxos (ATR 42)
7. Review: Studios Zafiri, Naxos Town, Greece
8. Naxos Town: The Gorgeous Historic Heart of the Cyclades
9. Review: Blue Star Ferries Naxos to Astypalaia
10. Review: Belvedere Studios, Astypalaia Town, Greece
11. Astypalea Town: The Unknown Crown Jewel of the Aegean Sea
12. Astypalea Island Guide: Exploring the Butterfly of the Aegean
13. On a Night Boat in Greece – Astypalea to Kastellorizo With Blue Star Ferries
14. Review: Traditional Apartments Alexandra, Kastellorizo, Greece
15. Kastellorizo: A Look Around Greece’s Easternmost Island
16. Hiking on Kastellorizo: Two Sunset Hikes Detailed
17. Review: Olympic Air Kastellorizo to Rhodes (Dash 8-100)
18. Guide: How to Travel From Rhodes to Halki by Ferry
19. Review: Dorothea Apartments, Halki, Greece
20. Halki Town: Eating, Swimming & Relaxing in Beautiful Emborios
21. A Hike to Horio: Exploring Halki’s Old Abandoned Capital
22. Guide: The Best Beaches on the Island of Halki
23. Review: Hermes Hotel, Rhodes Town, Greece
24. A Visit to the Delightful Old Town of Rhodes
25. Review: Aegean Airlines Domestic Flight Rhodes to Athens
26. End of a Dream Holiday in Greece: One Last Day in Athens (current chapter)

koen paliparan rhodes rodos


Koen works as a freelance journalist covering south-eastern Europe and is the founding father and editor-in-chief of Paliparan. As a contributor to some major Fleet Street newspapers and some lesser known publications in the Balkans, he travels thousands of miles each year for work as well as on his personal holidays. Whether it is horse riding in Kyrgyzstan’s Tian Shan mountains, exploring the backstreets of Bogotá, or sipping a glass of moschofilero in a Greek beachside taverna, Koen loves to immerse himself into the local culture, explore new places and eat and drink himself around the world.

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