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Lykavittos ( or Lycabettos ) Hill in Athens

This geological wonder rises high above the streets of Athens. 

If you are starting from the Panathinaiko Stadium, cross the wide Konstaniniou Avenue and then progress along Irodou Attikou.  This street is lined on one side by handsome government buildings and on the other by the National Gardens. Here you find patrolling guards in traditional costume.

At the end of the road cross the busy Sofias Avenue and continue straight up, through the up-market area of Kolonaki. Keep going uphill until suddenly, the concrete gives way and trees abound - in the centre of Athens.

Lykavittos Hill - the second of 2 hills in Athens - the other is the Acropolis hill

Lykavittos ( or Lycabettus ) Hill in Athens *

Holiday accommodation in Athens

There is a Funicular Railway that you can ride to the top, or, you can revel in the peace of this green island in a sea of concrete and walk up. The walk is fairly steep but rewarding with superb views of Athens as you climb higher. 

Climbing Lycabettus Hill in Athens for terrific views of the city and a look at St. George's Chapel at the top where he can be seen slaying the dragon.

The path is stepped and rises through gardens resplendent with cacti and flowering shrubs. It's prudent to wear shoes with good grips because the path has been worn to a glassy smoothness in places.  Very quickly, the sounds of the city seem to disappear, replaced by bird song and the whisper of a breeze through the soft branches of pine trees.

There is an outdoor café about halfway up where you might feel the need for ice cold drinks, especially if the weather is warm. Drinks are served with an accompanying glass of iced water, and this applies to both soft drinks, beer and coffee. It's waiter service, as in almost every other café in Greece - just find a table and someone will arrive to take your order. Wooden benches are placed at intervals along the path on the upward climb for a welcome rest and photo opportunities. 

Athens, surrounded by hills, appears to shrink in size the higher you climb. The Saronic Gulf and Piraeus Harbour come into view, the Acropolis stands on another hill, the gardens of Zappion are an oasis of green among the concrete buildings. 

The walls and ceiling of St.  George's Chapel on Lycabettos Hill are adorned with traditional colourful frescoes depicting Biblical scenes.If you have walked up you will meet the crowds again at the top. The hill is crested by the small 19th century chapel of St. George. The walls and ceiling of the chapel are adorned by colourful frescoes representing biblical scenes. People regularly troop in to light a candle and kiss the icon of St. George slaying the dragon. 

There are several telescopes to zoom in on points of interest. Needless to say, the sweeping views are wonderful and for those weary travellers there is a very nice (although not cheap) café at the top that serves nicely presented refreshments accompanied by a lofty view of the city.

 It is a wonder that this place has stayed very much the same for millennia, whilst all around, the city strives to compete in a new century. 

In the summer the theater on the hillside plays host to a range of domestic and international stars as part of the Summer Festival.

One major problem with translations of Greek into English is the range of different spellings for place names. Lykavittos Hill is sometimes shown as Lycabettus, Lykabettos, or Lycavettos. The Greek letter B is pronounced V, which partly accounts for the differences.

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