There are lots of things to see and do in Athens, but the Acropolis was tops (pardon the play on words) in our view. The problem, though, was to get the whole site into one photo. A camera on a drone would do the job, or maybe we could pay for a helicopter ride, but we did not have either option available. We were stuck on the ground and held there by gravity, so here are some photos of different parts of a complex, amazing site.

First up is a huge, perhaps 25,000 seat amphitheater located on the south side of the Acropolis. The shot below looks through the gate and past the checkered stage to view the seating. You can see the Athena Nike temple and part of the Acropolis gateway or entrance structure at the top of the slope behind the seating. This theater is still in use and, therefore, receives some amount of maintenance.

View of amphitheater on the south side of the Acropolis. Notice the view of part of the Acropolis looming above the back of the amphitheater.

The next photo looks down on the amphitheater from above the last row of seating. Beyond the theater lies part of Athens, and beyond that is the sea. Turning back to the theater, the seats and stage are in pretty good shape and still see regular use for concerts. The backdrop structure (I don’t know what else to call it) behind the stage is in poorer condition, but hopefully is still stable enough to not endanger performers. On the other hand, this is earthquake country so you never know…

Looking down on the amphitheater seen in the previous photo.

Our guide told us that the structures on Mars Hill were pretty much razed over the centuries, and all that remains is the sort of reddish stone hill itself. As you can see in the next photo, behind and below it lies another part of Athens. We did not have time to walk over to Mars Hill, but this is where the Apostle Paul debated the Greek philosophers and presented the Gospel (Acts 17:16-34).

Mars Hill, or what is left of it, on the northeast slope of the Acropolis.

Here is the famous Porch of the Maidens, next to the Erechtheion. The actual statues are all in the wonderful Acropolis Museum, at the foot of the hill, except for the one in the British Museum. The statues you see below are full-sized replicas. The Erechtheion is a temple to Athena and Poseidon, the Greek gods who competed to be the patron god of Athens. Athena won that role from Zeus, hence the name of the city.

Porch of the Maidens at the Temple to Athena and Poseidon.

The Parthenon is the crowning structure of the Acropolis. It is striking, if not amazing, despite the scaffolding. The building suffered over the years due to earthquakes, wars, and looters. At one time part of it even blew up because the Ottomans used it to store gunpowder and a Venetian shell hit the magazine. A prime example of classic Greek architecture, it has eight columns on each end and 17 columns on each side, and was the main temple to the pagan goddess Athena.

Parthenon, the temple to Athena at the center of the Acropolis.

Once in a while the photographer makes it into a photo! A passing tourist was willing to take his chances with my “good” camera, resulting in the shot below:

Photographer, author, and tourist in front of the Parthenon.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s