30 September 2010

Church of Panaghia Kapnikarea

Church of Panaghia Kapnikarea
This church is located right in the middle of a very busy shopping street (Ermou street) of downtown Athens. It is a Greek Othodox church and one of the oldest in Athens.
Church of Panaghia Kapnikarea

29 September 2010

No posing in Greek museums

I encountered a strange rule in the Athens National Archaeological Museum (and other Greek museums like the one in Fira/Thira): no posing allowed in front of the statues or collection. You are not allowed to take photos of a statue or museum item while someone is also visible on the photo. This rule is enforced strictly and the guards will shoot “No Posing!” when they do not like it.
Before contemplating on the reasons for having such a rule, let me show you some illegal photos:
Athens National Archeological Museum - Zeus or Poseidon of  Artemision 
Zeus or Poseidon of Artemis

Athens National Archeological Museum 
Greek philosophers (check out how the left statue is keeping an eye on things)
The reason for the “no posing” rule is not clear. Perhaps they want to stop tourists from imititating the statue’s pose.  Some people say that the statues are considered holy and therefore you should not take photos of them.

28 September 2010

Athens Tower of the Winds

The Tower of the Winds is a clock tower on the Roman Agora in Athens.

Athens Tower of Winds Horologion of Kyrrestos

The clock tower has eight sides. Each side contains a sundial.

Here you can see some of the sides.

Athens Tower of Winds Horologion of Kyrrestos Athens Tower of Winds Horologion of Kyrrestos Athens Tower of Winds Horologion of Kyrrestos

Besides the sun dials, it also used to contain a water clock and a wind vane.

27 September 2010

Athens National Archaeological Museum

The Athens National Archaeological Museum is the largest Museum of Greece and is devoted to ancient Greek art.

Athens National Archeological Museum

We show you some of the pieces we liked:

Athens National Archeological Museum - Mask Agamemnon

The Mask of Agamemnon

Athens National Archeological Museum

Vase with a sad octopus

Athens National Archeological Museum -Dipylon amphora

A Dipylon amphora

Athens National Archeological Museum - Kouroi

A Kouros (this is a male youth, not a female!)

Athens National Archeological Museum - Kouroi

Kourio (multiple versions of a Kouros)

Athens National Archeological Museum - Boy jockey and horse

Boy jockey and horse

Athens National Archeological Museum - Boy jockey and horse

Boy Jockey and horse

Athens National Archeological Museum


Athens National Archeological Museum
Marble sculpture

26 September 2010

Athens Modern Art

Athens New Acropolis Museum
Do you know what this is?
Scroll down for the answer…

It is a photo of the new Acropolis Museum entrance…
Athens New Acropolis Museum
 Athens New Acropolis Museum

24 September 2010

The New Acropolis Museum

Athens New Acropolis Museum

The New Acropolis Museum is located near the Acropolis. After our visit to the Acropolis, this was our next stop. Photographing inside the museum is not allowed, so we are not able to show you photos of the maidens (or caryatids). The upside is that you can stand very close to them and admire them.

What we can show you is the very interesting entrance.

Athens New Acropolis Museum

The museum is built right on top of an archeological site. The excavation can be seen through glass plates and from a balcony. The excavation below ground level continues.

100903-094839_ 0601_DMC-TZ7

When the excavation is done, visitors will be able to walk around on the lower levels of the museum.

23 September 2010

Visit to Greece – Athens and the Parthenon

This holiday we decided to visit Greece. Our main interests were:

  • the Acropolis
  • Delphi
  • Meteora monasteries
  • the island of Naxos
  • the island of Santorini

In a series of blog posts I will tell you more about the interesting things we saw. First stop: Athens

We flew with Olympic Airways from Schiphol to Athens airport. The flight takes about three hours. Olympic Airways did not provide on board entertainment, but they did serve a free lunch! We stayed at Arion Athens City Hotel, located right in the old center of Athens.

A few minutes walk from the hotel is Monastiraki Square. Here you can see Hadrian’s library, the Roman Agora and the Tower of the Winds – but more on that later.

Our first visit was The Acropolis. We made sure we were there when it opens: 8 o’clock in the morning. The light is right (not too harsh) and more importantly the busloads of tourists have not been dropped off yet.

First you have to climb the steps at the entrance of the Acropolis – the Propylaea.

Acropolis - Entry / Propylaea

Don’t forget to look up when you walk through the entrance.

Acropolis - Entry / Propylaea


And after a few steps you have your first view of the Parthenon.

Acropolis - Parthenon

We were lucky that most of the scaffolding was taken away. For the first time you could see the side of the Acropolis without any obstruction.


Next to the Acropolis you can see the Erectheum and it’s porch of maidens.


Some wise guy decided to set up his office there.

Acropolis - Erecthion

Note that these ladies are copies of the original. The originals are in the New Acropolis Museum.

The columns of the Acropolis are very special. Notice the sides run not parallel to each other, but they are slightly curved. One wonders how they have carved it like this out of marble.


Here are some details of the upper part of the Parthenon.

Acropolis - Parthenon Acropolis

A side view of the Acropolis


We had the place for ourselves until about 9.00. After that it becomes more and more crowded. This is what you get if you visit the Acropolis later in the day. We are going down, the busloads are climbing the entrance.


22 September 2010

Photos for Wiki Loves Monuments

This september is the month to take photos of old Dutch monumental buildings and make them available for the Internet community. Wiki Loves Monuments is under way and you can see the results in the Flickr group wikilovesmonuments.

I have been on holiday, so my contribution is not as substantial as the first initiative ‘Wiki Loves Art’. So here are my pictures of monumental buildings in Teuge, Twello and Leerdam.