Upon celebrating its 10th anniversary on Thursday, the Acropolis Museum has now created public access to its underground level, where visitors can traipse through an ancient neighbourhood, which until recently was only viewable through a glass floor. 

The neighbourhood, inhabited in classical times (from 5th century BC) and until the Byzantine era, is made up of fascinating components – houses, baths, roads, workshops and more.Acropolis Museum

Led by archaeologist Stamatia Eleftheratou, the dig was described by the Director of the Acropolis Museum, Dimitris Pandermalis as “located in the place where Thucydides wrote his second book, which tells of the history of Athens, and in which he reveals that it is the oldest in Athens.”

“In his own way,” Pandermalis noted, “Thucydides argues that that is where the ancient sanctuary of Olympian Zeus, the sanctuary of the Earth, the sanctuary of Pythian Apollo, the sanctuary of En Limaes of Dionysus exist.” Pandermalis added that “the excavations also brought to light in the southwest corner of the museum the sanctuary of Kodros, the mythical king of Athens.”

“Next to startling monuments such as the Acropolis and the Odeon of Herod Atticus (Irodion) Theater, any other archaeological site would pale in significance,” the museum’s director said.

“However, the neighbourhoods of ancient Athens also had their own singular magic. And that’s because they are the places where more than any place else, familiarise us with ordinary people, the places where they were born, grew up, worked, created families… essentially wrote their personal stories. It is such a neighbourhood that we now have before us.”

ACCESS: The neighbourhood can be explored by getting a ticket at the ground floor of the museum.


Alexia Amvrazi

Alexia Amvrazi enjoys the thrill of discovering beauty in the world around her. With a passionately hands-on approach to Greece's travel, gastronomy, holistic living, culture, innovation and creativity, for 20 years she has explored and shared her findings with the world on all aspects of the country and its people via writing, radio, blogs and videos. Although her childhood and early youth in Italy, Egypt and England left her feeling somewhat root-less, she is by now firmly connected to her native land, bravely weathering the hurricane known as the Greek crisis!

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