Hidden Gems

Shop till you hop aboard your Greece sailing yacht

By Jenny Wilson
on  August 18, 2014

Athens is renowned for its history and iconic architecture but there is one attraction that is not talked about half as much – its fantastic shopping. There has never been a better time to experience this side of the city, however, as the recent problems with the Greek economy mean there are bargains aplenty to be had.

If you do not fancy packing too much for your Greece sailing holiday, how about getting what you need when you arrive in Athens? Many shops are actually selling clothes for less than the price they paid for them – so you could fill your case even if you are on a budget.
Downtown Athens is literally teeming with shops and cars have now been banned, meaning it is easier than ever to get around. As well as the stores, there are also street merchants, who sell everything from kitchenware to clothes.

One of the great things about Athens is the variety on offer. There is also a shopping experience to suit almost every personality, ranging from the Attica department store to a glitzy shoppers haven set by tram route 3. Hagglers will love Monistiraki’s shopping streets, while the local Saturday market, reached by tram 2 or 5, offers a real taste of Greek life.

There is an abundance of tourist shops in Monistiraki and Plaka if you want to plan ahead for your gift-giving. Monistiraki is also the place to go for shoes, sportswear, jewellery and luggage, while Kidathineon Street is the place to be if you want leather goods.

Be prepared to haggle here and don’t be intimidated. Just start by taking around 60 per cent off the price you are first given but be prepared to meet the shopkeeper somewhere in-between. Remember, politeness and a big smile can get you a long way when it comes to bagging a bargain.

The area around Ormonio Square is a paradise for shoe lovers, with a shop on every corner and if you want a taste of the familiar, there is a Spar, a Lidl, an M&S and a Body Shop. There are also many luxury boutiques if you want something special or simply want to browse.

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