On the opposite side of the Agora is another meeting place of sorts: Thissio, a former red-light district that has been one of the most sought-after residential neighborhoods since about 1990. Easily accessible by metro and offering a lovely view of the Acropolis, it has become one of the liveliest café and restaurant districts in Athens. The area has excellent rakadika and ouzeri—pub-like eateries that offer plates of appetizers to go with raki, a fiery spirit made from grape must; rakomelo, a mix of raki and honey heated to boiling; the ever-appealing ouzo; as well as barrels of homemade wine. The main strip is the Nileos pedestrian zone across from the ancient Agora entrance, lined with cafés that are cozy in winter and have outdoor tables in summer. The rest of the neighborhood is quiet, an odd mix of mom-and-pop stores and dilapidated houses that are slowly being renovated; take a brief stroll along Akamantos (which becomes Galatias) around the intersections of Dimofontos or Aginoros, or down Iraklidon, to get a feel for the quarter's past.


Melina Mercouri Cultural Center

Named in honor of the famous Never on Sunday Greek actress who became a political figure in the 1980s, this…

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