Who hasn’t watched ‘Roman Holiday’, the 1953 movie starring Audrey Hepburn and Gregory Peck? A bored princess escapes her scheduled life, travels to Rome and falls in love with an American newsman. They ride around Rome on a vespa and we travel with them, living their cool affair.
I’m sure many of you would love to do that with your other half or with a friend- exploring a city by vespa!
Well, I have good news! Your dream can now become a reality in Athens. You can be the director of your own movie by renting a vintage vespa. Athens Wonders is a team of passionate Athenians, who have travelled the world and brought this amazing and cool idea to Greece’s capital.
They love their city, they know the best of it and with more than 20 years of experience in the tourism industry, they introduce us to this innovative way of exploring Athens, by self-guided and guided tours on vintage scooters.
Matthew Damigos, founder of Athens Wonders talks to Greek City Times and explains all about this new venture. He describes what Athens Wonders is, how it started and stresses the fact that he (and the team) wanted visitors and travellers to live a true experience of this vibrant city.
The tour can be customised depending on each traveller’s taste. Athens Wonders offers a wide variety of options, namely presenting major landmarks or hidden corners and ‘hip’ places, culinary experiences, architecture, and shopping. They also arrange tours to the Athens Riviera (southern suburbs of the city) and to islands close to Athens (Aegina, Poros, Agistri, Spetses).
Meet Matthew, Athens Wonders and get ready for buzzing around Athens with a stylish vespa, which will be your perfect guide!
Matthew, tell me firstly about the Athens Wonders project. What is it, how did it start and what led you to creating this?
Athens Wonders consists of a team of passionate Athenians, who travelled the world but always return here, where our heartbeats synchronise with the city’s pulse. We have more than 20 years of experience in tourism, we understand your needs and are committed to offer you a superb experience of what Athens is all about!
Athens Wonders offer self-guided and guided tours of Athens on vintage scooters, giving visitors a unique chance to explore the city. Athens Wonders provides a fun and convenient way to see one of the world’s oldest cities on an automatic (gear free) scooter. Go independent with a pre-programmed GPS-guided tour- painstakingly planned out by a local- or join a tour guided by an insider Athenian. Visit the most important landmarks, cruise the Athenian vast waterfront, or create your own itinerary and visit what you only wish to see. The company offers a broad range of sightseeing themes, so check our website to view more details.
What is your aim?
To design and offer tours that lead to true experiences and convert visitors not only to repeat visitors but ambassadors of Athens!
Why did you choose the vintage style vespa? Is this something that is missing from the industry?
A visitor of Athens had two choices of exploring the city: either by participating in a group tour that (allow us to express) make a quick panoramic tour passing some of the major landmarks allowing people short periods for photos, or by spending time on their own using the local transportation to visit a couple of places other than the Parthenon.
We offer a new fast, flexible and fully customised way to explore Athens. By choosing Athens Wonders, visitors will have the chance to really experience the city. Our carefully planned tour options give clients the chance to discover the city’s hotspots and latest trends set by Athenians. We constantly update & customise our tours, which are always aligned with the city’s vibes and events. We are here to offer a unique, stylish and flexible way to visit the city!
Where do you offer the tours? Athens center, suburbs?
We offer a variety of tour options, covering not only Athens center but Athens major hot spots where the city’s heart beats: from northern suburbs to the Athenian Riviera and beyond.
Is Athens Wonders going to the islands?
We are currently giving our clients the option to visit those islands that are close to Athens (Aegina, Agkistri, Poros and Spetses). Our future plans include several other destinations both on the islands and mainland too.
Can people plan a tour based on their own preference? For example, art, architecture, taste?
Visitors can choose from a selection of tours (self-guided or guided) that cover most of tastes such as landmarks, shopping, city’s hippest corners, gay and lesbian, Athens Riviera, photo safari, architect, culinary and many other) or ask us to create a tailor-made tour according to your requirements.
How can people who are planning a visit to Athens schedule a vintage style vespa tour in advance?
They can either book the tour of their choice directly from our website, contact us on the phone, by e-mail or through our live chat.
What is the approximate cost and the duration of the tours?
Tour duration varies from four to 12 hours or more. Prices start from just €60,00 per vintage scooter meaning the amazing amount of just €30,00 per person.
Do people have to know how to drive a vespa or do they have the option of doing this with an experienced driver/escort?
Those who choose to discover Athens on a vintage scooter need to have a valid driving license plus previous experience in driving scooters. At the moment, we don’t offer tours with experienced drivers as this is not allowed by the Greek ministry of tourism.
So, are you ready to make your very own vespa story? I bet that your holiday in Athens will be just like a movie…