Lykavittos

Mount Lykavittos is the highest point in Athens. Given the nature of the language, you’ll probably see it spelled a whole host of different ways in English, so we’ll just stick with what the road sign says.

It’s a bit like how we pronounce π as ‘pie’ in English, when in Greek it’s really pronounced ‘pee’.

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Either way, the view from the top is pretty spectacular.

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The thing that strikes you is just how far the city stretches out. We took a few friends up here on separate occasions, and all of them without fail remarked that they didn’t expect Athens to be quite as big. Nestled in a corner by the coast, and in between mountains, it’s something to behold – particularly coming from Glasgow where we don’t really have any single point with a view like this.

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To get to the top you can either walk, or take a strange train thing that looks a bit like a ski lift. Instead of going over the top of the hill though, it goes underground – with all sorts of strange lights spelling out random words like WINE. Our pal Laura pointed out that it was pretty similar to the train in Willy Wonka, which sounds about right.

The best thing to do when visiting is take the train up, and then walk down. This is for a few reasons: You need to climb a shedload of steps to get to where the train even begins, and down the way you get to enjoy the view for a bit.

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They still take down the flag at sunset, which is pretty cool.

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The Greeks seem to have a habit of putting large objects – like telephone poles – in the way of the best views in places like this. It could well just be out of a lack of thought, but they probably do it on purpose.

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