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The Panathenaic Stadium of Athens

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Panathenaic Stadium of Athens

Connected to the Modern Olympic Games, the Panathenaic Stadium is one of Greece’s most popular attractions. Being the only stadium in the world built entirely of marble the Panathenaic Stadium of Athens is commonly called Kallimarmaro (which means beautiful marble).

An architectural masterpiece of great historical importance, the impressive stadium is bound to captivate you. Its story begins in 330/29 BC and spans to modern-day Athens.

Here is all you need to know about the Panathenaic Stadium of Athens.

The history of the Panathenaic Stadium

Among other public works that Lykourgos, a statesman of Athens started commissioning in 338 BC was the construction of a stadium between the Ardettos Hill and the banks of the River Ilissos.

The ancient stadium, which later became the site where the Panathenaic Stadium was built was inaugurated in 330/29 BC when the Great Panathenaia took place for the first time.

Several centuries later and during the Roman period, the orator and sophist Herodes son of Atticus erected several buildings all over Athens.

During that time, he also made significant changes to the stadium Lycourgos had built transforming it into the magnificent architectural masterpiece we see nowadays.

The Panathenaic Stadium in Athens is also known as the Kallimarmaro and is a must-see attraction when visiting Athens

Between AD 139 and 144, the stadium took the current horseshoe shape, and rows of seats of white Pentelic marble were added composing a space for spectators.

Moreover, the track saw several changes.

Marble slabs divided the starting line from the finishing line and bifacial herms adorned the track.

In addition, the stadium was decorated with statues of marble, bronze, or gold and the temple of the goddess Tyche/Fortuna.

The Panathenaic Stadium had gained a worldwide reputation and was attracting travelers.

However, when Christianity prevailed the once glorious stadium was abandoned.

The Panathenaic Stadium is an unforgettable experience for visitors of all ages, Photo courtesy: wikimedia.org

Sports events stopped taking place and his marbles were used for the construction of other Athenian buildings.

Traces of the ancient Stadium of Herodes Atticus were unraveled in 1836 and in 1869 in the excavations directed by Ernst Ziller.

Based on these findings, the stadium was reconstructed with Pentelic marble.

The architectural masterpiece came again into the spotlight in 1896 when it hosted the first modern Olympic Games.

Throughout the 20th century, the Panathenaic stadium hosted several events and it was of course the place of the Marathon race finishing line at Athens 2004 Olympic Games.

The Panathenaic Stadium was first built in 330 BC and was used to host some competitions of the Panathenaic Games

Why you should visit the Panathenaic Stadium

Whether you’re interested in history, architecture, or in Greece’s antiquity, the Panathenaic Stadium will captivate you with its story.

Not only is it a symbol of noble competition representing the Olympic Games’ ideals and values but it is also a spectacular landmark.

The Panathenaic Stadium is one of the most visited attractions in Athens

Things to do in the Panathenaic Stadium

Listen to its story with an audio guide while exploring its breathtaking construction.

The audio-guided tour is available in several languages and it is provided on-site.

Make sure to explore every corner of the stadium and to take as many – instagrammable – photos as possible.

And it gets better! If you climb on the upper tier of stand 21 you will be able to capture the Acropolis, the Parthenon, Filopappos Hill, the Temple of Olympian Zeus, the Lycabettus Hill, Zappeion, and the National Gardens.

Panathenaic Stadium: The views from the upper level are spectacular. Photo courtesy: manoleas via instagram

At the Atrium, you will find two big screens presenting “Memories from Olympic Games: Posters and Torches from 1896 till today” and highlights of the Athens 2004 Olympic Games.

There is a multimedia touch screen table that allows visitors to play and interact.

Now, if you ask yourself if you can run in the Panathenaic Stadium, the answer is yes is allowed to jog in the stadium from 07:30 am until 09:00 am.

So, if you’re in the mood for a run put your comfortable (athletic) shoes on and trace the footsteps of historical athletes.

You can go for a run around the Panathenaic Stadium, in the footsteps of great athletes

Visitors information about the Panathenaic Stadium

The Panathenaic Stadium is open to visitors from 08:00 – 19:00 from March to October ad from 08:00 – 17:00 from November to February.

The general admission ticket is 5,00€ but there is also a reduced price for students and visitors over 65 years old.

Visitors with disabilities and children under 6 years old are entitled to free admission.

In general, the morning and evening hours are the best time to visit the Panathenaic Stadium.

The best time to visit the Panathenaic Stadium is early in the morning or late in the evening

However, in the summer due to Athens’ high temperatures and because of the marble, it can be really hot even in the morning.

Therefore it is recommended to visit it as early in the morning as possible or late in the evening.

There is also the official museum shop and a cafe on the premises which operates daily.

The official museum shop in the Panathenaic Stadium

How to get to the Panathenaic Stadium

Conveniently located in the heart of Athens city center, the Panathenaic Stadium is easily accessible by metro, bus, taxi, and on feet.

Tip:
Simply put, we have write for you a detailed guide on how to get around Athens

Situated around 1km from the metro stations of Syntagma, Acropolis, and Evangelismos it is quite easy to get here by metro lines 2 and 3.

In a close distance, there are also stations of trolleybuses’ lines 2, 4, 10, 11, and normal buses’ line 209.

Of course, if you’re roaming in the historic city center, you can easily walk to Panathenaic Stadium.

Tip:
And it gets better! Visit our Athens Maps page and download for free the Map of Athens Center
Getting to the Panathenaic Stadium is quite straightforward

Where to eat near Panathenaic Stadium

Some of the best restaurants near Panathenaic Stadium:

Spondi

Spondi is a high-end restaurant that serves Mediterranean cuisine dishes with a modern twist. It features a vaulted stone dining room and a courtyard.

Address: 5 Pyrronos, Pangrati, 116 36, Athens, Greece (Map)

Telephone: +30 210 756 4021

Cupola

Featuring an authentic Italian menu, Cupola restaurant is the perfect place for spaghetti and pizza lovers.

Its modern and cozy atmosphere is ideal for a relaxed dinner after a long day of sightseeing.

Address: 13 Eforionos, Athens, Greece (Map)

Telephone: +30 21 1411 7444

Fish Point

In only a three-minutes walk from Panathenaic Stadium lies Fish Point restaurant.

Boasting a spectacular seafood menu and a great wine variety, the modern restaurant will introduce you to traditional Greek cuisine.

Address: 8 Archimidous, Athens, Greece (Map)

Telephone: +30 210 756 5321

Where to stay near Panathenaic Stadium

Here are some of the best hotels to stay near Panathenaic Stadium:

Pi Athens

A stone’s throw away from the Panathenaic Stadium, Pi Athens is surrounded by Athens’s historical landmarks.

The elegant micro luxury boutique hotel features only 6 suites while visitors will also find a garden, a big sitting area, and a roof garden.

See the Pi Athens hotel on Booking.com

Athens Green Apartments

Athens Green Apartments offer visitors luxury accommodation that feels like a home away from home.

Its location in the serene neighborhood of Mets makes it the perfect spot for exploring Athens on foot.

See Athens Green Apartments on Booking.com

Zappion Hotel

Zappion hotel is located on a quiet pedestrian street close to the Panathenaic Stadium.

Being recently renovated, the two-star hotel offers all the amenities for a comfortable and budget-friendly stay.

See the Zappion Hotel on Booking.com

The Panathenaic Stadium is an absolute must-visit attraction of Athens.

Located in the heart of the city center, a visit to this famous monument will be the perfect opportunity to combine spending a day sightseeing outdoors with gaining invaluable insight into the city’s culture and the history of the Olympic Games.

But wait, let us tell you something: Book your Panathenaic Stadium tickets online and skip-the-line with free cancellation! Cancel up to 24 hours before your activity starts for a full refund.

On the other hand, when you get there, make sure to check out our recommendations for a few excellent nearby restaurants and some impeccable accommodation options.

Remember that BTI Athens Travel Guide is here to guide you with planning the perfect trip to Athens and help you every step along the way. If you didn’t found what you’re looking for, or need any recommendations about your trip to Athens, feel free to leave us a comment or just contact us and we will do our best to help you. Please be as more detailed as possible regarding your subject so as to help you better.

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