Art in Athens throughout the eras

From vibrant graffiti to the Islamic arts of the Ottoman era, Athens’s artistic and cultural heritage is apparent in every step you take. Modern street art Street art is encouraged in Athens and the walk from the Metro station of Monastiraki to Kerameikos via Thiseio gives plenty of opportunities to see colourful murals in a variety of settings. From the trains – permits are granted to artists to decorate them – to the gates and walls of the old bus depot and the trendy Gas-Works neighbourhood, there’s seemingly a work of art on every vertical space. Look up as well as around to make sure you don’t miss anything. In Psyrri’s neighbouring you can find Pittaki Street decorated with lamps of all shapes and sizes. Go for a walk amongst the chandeliers. The Benaki museums The various Benaki museums – housing art from the ancient to the contemporary - are dotted around the city and can keep you amused for days. One example is the Benaki Museum of Islamic Art. Greece was part of the Ottoman empire from the 15th-19th centuries, and the empires’ different eras are celebrated through artworks on each level of this regal four-storey building. Visitor practicalities A single use Athens Metro ticket (valid for 70 minutes) costs €1.20. A day ticket is €4, a 5-day pass €10. Validate your ticket when you first use it. The Benaki Museums charge entrance fees of up to €7, depending which one you visit. For discounts of up to 50% on museums, restaurants, and more, pick up a free Athens Spotlighted card on your arrival at Central Information Counter at the Airport.

Article by Julie Sykes