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  3. Athens

Athens, Greece

Panoramic view of the Acropolis and the city of Athens, Greece. Photo Creative Commons License Alan Grant.

Athens is Greece's capital and largest city, with a population of over 745,000 within the city limits. Named for its patron goddess Athena, the historic city of Athens is famed for its wealth of classical temples and museums full of ancient art and artifacts. Athens is also home to an important biblical site, numerous historic Greek Orthodox churches, more than one mosque, and several modern religious sites.


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Sacred Sites and Religious Attractions in Athens

  • Agii Apostoli Church
    Located on the Ancient Agora of Athens, this Byzantine church dates from the 10th century. It is one of the oldest churches in the city.
  • Agios Nikólaos Ragavás Church
    This attractive 11th-century church in the Plaka neighborhood of Athens is often used for weddings.
  • Areopagus (Mars Hill)
    This bald marble hill approached by slippery steps was home to the Athenian council and court, where Socrates was condemned and Paul spoke about "the Unknown God."
  • Erechtheion
    Famed for its Caryatid Porch, this beautiful temple on the Acropolis honors Erechtheus, a legendary king of Athens, as well as the great Greek gods Poseidon and Athena.
  • Mikrí Mitropolí
    This tiny 12th-century church next to the cathedral is dedicated to the "Virgin Who Answers Prayers Quickly." The facade features a quirky patchwork of classical artifacts and medieval sculpture.
  • Mitrópoli (Cathedral)
    The largest church in Athens, this 19th-century cathedral is the spiritual headquarters of the Greek Orthodox Church. Its interior is lavishly and colorfully decorated.
  • Parthenon
    The famous Temple of Athena Parthenos, built in 440 BC, crowns the Acropolis. It was a major sacred site and is considered one of the finest examples of Greek architecture anywhere.
  • Temple of Athena Nike
    Dedicated to Victorious Athena, this elegant and beautifully proportioned Ionic temple was built in 427 BC. It is currently undergoing a major reconstruction.
  • Temple of Hephaestus
    This fine Doric temple was built just two years before the Parthenon, dedicated to the god of volcanoes and metalworking.
  • Temple of Olympian Zeus
    Finally completed by the Roman Emperor Hadrian after centuries of construction, this was one of the largest temples in the ancient world.