Blind Man with a white cane - Ancient Athens Uncovered
Blind Man with a white cane - Ancient Athens Uncovered

Ancient Athens Uncovered

Photo: Thomas Gravanis

Ancient Athens Uncovered


Photo: Thomas Gravanis

Table of Contents

Ancient Athens Uncovered - Aeropagitou Pedestrian Street

Itinerary Overview

This itinerary takes in the main landmarks of the historic centre of Athens. It starts with the world-class Acropolis Museum, a contemporary cultural highlight that is accessible and offers a spectacular view of the sacred rock of the Acropolis and the Parthenon. The museum is located on the most beautiful pedestrian avenue of Athens, Dionysiou Areopagitou Street, which cradles the Acropolis hill. Within a short walking distance of the museum lies the Odeon of Herodes Atticus, a monumental ancient theatre that still hosts acclaimed concerts and shows today. From here, the gradient begins, stretching gracefully up to the Acropolis and the legendary Parthenon. Erected in the 5th century BC in honour of the city’s patron – the goddess Athena – it remains one of the most remarkable and must-see monuments worldwide.

After a short gradient that leads to many noteworthy archaeological drawcards, Areopagitou Street turns into the Apostolou Pavlou pedestrian precinct that reaches down towards historic Thissio. It’s time to immerse yourself in the nostalgic sights and architectural delights of “Old Athens”. This photogenic pocket bustles with families, tourists and street vendors, while also granting splendid views to the Acropolis and Thissio park. At the latter, you’ll find the Temple of Hephaestus (also called Thissio), one of the most well-preserved ancient temples in Greece, in the heart of the ancient Agora.

General Accessibility

  • The whole itinerary is relatively flat -without taking into account the visits to the various points of interest. The only exception is the ascent to the Odeon of Herodes Atticus and to the Acropolis Hill. According to Google Maps, the itinerary is estimated at around 1,2 km, without including the return leg.
  • The itinerary only comprises big, convenient, safe pedestrian areas and tactile pavings, and mostly avoids high obstacles.

Attention: Entrance to the Odeon of Herodes Atticus is  via a big stair with tree branches popping out on bothleft and right. Proceed with caution, protecting your face.

  • We recommend that you do not count entirely on the tactile pavings -they just supplementarily assist the visitor with their orientation. Often, they are occupied with low obstacles or street vendors and they need to be bypassed.
  • The tactile pavings do not have colour contrast.
  • The pedestrian areas are properly illuminated at night, except for the points of access at the Odeon of Herodes Atticus and the Acropolis, where the lighting is insufficient for night tours.
  • At each point of interest, the accessibility is indicated according to the information available on their website (we have not verified this personally).
  • The itinerary starts from the “Akropoli” metro station (line 2, “Elliniko-Anthoupoli”). Due to road works near the “Thissio” metro station, where the itinerary would normally end, it is recommended to return to the “Akropoli” station for a safe departure. In this case, the itinerary is estimated around 2,4 km in total.
  • If you choose to continue despite the difficulties and leave using the “Thissio” metro station (line 1, “Piraeus-Kifissia”), the total itinerary is around 1,6 km. This station features interior tactile pavings.
  • The above stations provide an accessible toilet -open upon request- and elevators with voice output.
Metro station "Acropolis" - Line 2
Odeon of Herodes Atticus
Ancient Athens Uncovered - Aropagitou & Theonias Street

Route Description

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Step 1

Our itinerary commences at the “Akropoli” metro station.



Point of Interest: “Akropoli” metro station – Line 2


Step 2

We exit the elevator of the “Aκropoli” metro station on Makrigianni Street. This is the only elevator at street level. The tactile paving begins from the door of the elevator. We locate it and follow it up to the left pavement of the street.


On the first junction of the tactile paving, we are given two options, left and right. We follow the tactile paving towards the left. We are now on Makrigianni Street travelling towards the Areopagitou pedestrianised area.


On the second junction of the tactile paving, we have two options: right and straight. We continue straight. [If we choose the branch to the right, after vertically traversing Makrigianni Street, we access the opposite pavement, where we can find a kiosk and buy whatever we may need.]


On the third junction of the tactile paving, with a left and a straight option, we continue straight. To our left, the tactile paving leads us to the entrance-exit escalators of the “Akropoli” metro station. [If we have used the escalators to exit the station towards Makrigianni Street, we locate the tactile paving at the end of the escalator and at its first junction we turn left.]


On the next junction of the tactile paving, we continue straight, descending to a small pedestrian street while crossing it vertically, and we get up onto the opposite pavement where we once again track the tactile paving.


We follow it straight ahead until we are led to the junction of Makrigianni Street with the Dionysiou Areopagitou pedestrian street. We turn left there, following the tactile paving in the direction of Thissio. [Should we turn right, Dionysiou Areopagitou leads us to Vasilissis Amalias Street.]



Point of Interest: Dionysiou Aeropagitou

Step 3

We follow the tactile paving for quite a few metres, as it extends. The archaeological site of the “Slopes of the Acropolis” features on our right.


At some point, the texture of the ground around the tactile paving changes, turning from a stone paving to a smooth marble. Continuing on the tactile paving as it goes, after a while we can feel it turning towards the right.


From this point, if we continue straight without tactile paving, we can find the entrance steps to the Acropolis Museum about 2 metres further along. At the stairs we detect a wall on the left side, which also has a handrail. We go down the stairs, keeping straight until we reach the entrance of the museum.


If we do not want to visit the museum, we keep following the tactile paving and we stay on Areopagitou Street heading to Thissio.




Point of Interest: The Acropolis Museum



Exiting the museum, after having climbed the stairs, we locate the previous tactile paving right in front of us and we follow it to the left.

Step 4

Following the tactile paving as it goes, we remain on Areopagitou pedestrian street in the direction of Thissio. We find the Mitseon pedestrian street vertically in front of us, which we traverse continuing straight as we follow the tactile paving.


We stay on the left side of the Areopagitou pedestrian street, while having various buildings to our left and the pedestrian area extending to our right. We meet a junction of the tactile paving with an option to the left towards Karyatidon Street, but we continue straight ahead.


We meet another junction on the tactile paving with an option to the left towards Parthenonos Street, but once again we continue straight.


We reach the junction of Areopagitou Street with Erechthiou Street. The left branch continues towards Erechthiou Street, we proceed towards the right just as it goes.


As soon as the tactile paving ends, we have two options on our itinerary:



1 – To continue towards the Odeon of Herodes Atticus:


Directions towards the Odeon of Herodes Atticus:


At the end of the tactile paving, we turn 90 degrees to the right, so that we can now vertically cross the Areopagitou pedestrian street we are walking on and reach its right side. We get onto the right pavement of the pedestrian street and we locate the interior side, leaving it on our right-hand side. We now have the pedestrian area on our left.


Attention: At this point we suggest walking in slow paces, taking great caution with the high obstacles (tree branches etc.).


On our right, we have the Roman Cistern. Following the interior side, we will locate the stairs for the entrance of the Odeon of Herodes Atticus.


We turn right and climb the stairs from the middle, since there are many plants and trees that poke out from the right and the lef side of the stairs, at the height of the face. These steps are asymmetrical, with slippery marble due to years of use. Various landings intervene in between.


The stairs lead us to the right entrance of the theatre, destined for the bottom tier. From the entrance of the Odeon and leading towards the interior there’s a wooden floor. Right before and after the steps, we step onto a very big plateau with the ticket offices on our left.


Attention: The Odeon of Herodes Atticus is open to the public only when it hosts events.



Point of Interest: Odeon of Herodes Atticus


At the exit of the Odeon, after having descended all the steps and while having the stairs behind us, we proceed with the proper caution continuing straight, until we find the opposite side of the Areopagitou pedestrian street. This is where we seek for the tactile paving which we follow to the right and continue onto Areopagitou Street heading to Thissio.



2 – To continue on the rest of the itinerary:


At the end of the tactile paving, we vertically cross Erechthiou Street and we find on the opposite side, the continuation of the tactile paving, on Areopagitou Street. We will continue along it on our course.

Step 5

In front of us we find Propileon Street, where the tactile paving splits towards the left, but we continue straight where the pedestrian area resumes.


After quite a few metres straight, at some point the tactile paving branches only to the right and this is where it ends. Right after its end, after we have followed it turning 90 degrees, we have 2 options:


1-  Visit the Sacred Rock of the Acropolis.


Directions to the Sacred Rock of the Acropolis:

We continue straight, without tactile paving, until the ground texture changes to smooth marble slabs. There we have now entered the Thorias pedestrian street and are heading to the Acropolis.


If you choose to go on foot the following instructions will be helpful:


On Theorias Street, we move onto the right side, being guided by the signs of the interior side of the street (pavement, gutter etc.) We now begin a slightly upward route, since this is where the ascent to the Acropolis begins. We suggest caution due to the slippery, marble ground.


At some point, following the right side of the street, we arrive at the ticket office that is located to our left. Up until this point, there is no clear sign of orientation on the ground. You can locate the ticket office only by sound during the operation hours. There, you will be located and supported by the site guards. The main entrance of the archaeological site is a few metres after that.



Point of Interest: Sacred Rock of the Acropolis


After our visit, we return to Areopagitou Street from Theorias Street to continue our itinerary. We track the tactile paving in front of us and we follow it towards the right in the direction of Thissio.



2- Continue to Thissio:


We continue crossing Areopagitou Street until we are on its right side. There we seek out the tactile paving again and we follow it to the left on Areopagitou Street in the direction of Thissio.




Step 6

We follow the tactile paving for some metres, staying on track, being aware that at some point, it is interrupted for some steps and then restarts on the same straight line.


Now Areopagitou Street, the road we are on, turns into Apostolou Pavlou Street. The three Hills of the Muses, Pnyx and the Nymphs extend to our left.


On Apostolou Pavlou Street, the itinerary and our stroll can continue for some metres if we keep moving straight ahead. On our left, at 7 Apostolou Pavlou Street, we find the “Thissio” Open Air Cinema.



Point of Interest: Cine Thissio

Step 7

If we continue straight ahead, a little bit further, we meet Otrineon Street vertically in front of us. After this point, Apostolou Pavlou Street becomes a street of light traffic, with many cafeterias enjoying views to the Acropolis, the Temple of Hephaestus and the Ancient Agora.


Attention: Even though the street leads to the “Thissio” metro station in 350 metres straight, due to road works and junctions, we do not recommend that people with visual impairment complete the itinerary alone using this station, for their own safety. Instead, it is safer to return to the “Akropoli” station following the present itinerary backwards.


Historic Heart to Urban Soul of Athens