Here’s why Athens is the next big thing for Southeast Asian travelers

View over Athens. (Flickr / Andy Montgomery)

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Athens is a legendary place. But that doesn’t mean it should exist only in your dreams. This stunning city overlooking the deep blue Aegean Sea isn’t out of reach for wanderlusting Bangkokians – even on a budget! That’s because Scoot flies there (via Singapore) for as low as THB7,647. So, let yourself be wowed by this ancient capital and experience your own big, fat Greek adventure.

The Ancient Irodion Theater at the foot of the Acropolis.

Explore the ancient Acropolis like a local.

Athens is the home of ancient ruins dating back thousands of years. They’re literally sitting right in the middle of the city. (Breathtaking AND super convenient!) The most striking of all is the 2,500 year old Acropolis perched on a hill overlooking the city. The highlight for most visitors is the Parthenon, a temple dedicated to the goddess Athena. But if you want to see what local life is like, skip the most touristy spots and head to the western side of the Acropolis to the Hill of the Muses, aka Philopappos Hill, Pynx and Nymphs. Explore the neighborhood of Petrolona on a Sunday and you’ll find local Athenians enjoying long lunches at the many outdoor cafes.

Remnants of Greek statues at the Acropolis.

Connect with your inner Greek god or goddess. Or both!

This is the land where Greek legends and myths were born, and they are still a big part of the local culture. Discover the ancient traditions that still thrive in this mesmerizing city, whether that’s through history museums, art galleries or contemporary exhibits.

The Art Foundation is a great place to explore exhibitions and enjoy an afternoon glass of wine. (It’s ok, you’re on vacay!) And at night, the building, which doesn’t have a roof in the middle, offers a beautiful view of the stars.

Be charmed by the culture in each neighborhood.

Athens might have fallen on hard times in recent years, but the charm of the city is still vibrant and the local arts, culture and culinary scenes are thriving. Festivals, live music, outdoor markets, and bustling cafes are a common sight around the city. Panygiria are religious celebrations honoring saints with music and dance held in the village square. They are a big part of Greek culture and take place all year round, especially in summer.

You’ll probably see jewelry painted with a blue and white eye for sale around Athens. The “evil eye” is believed to ward off bad luck. Greeks, especially in small villages, believe people can catch the evil eye from a jealous compliment and only a special prayer can reverse the harm. Let’s hope no one envies your cool new Greek jewelry, then.

Cafe-lined streets near Monastriaki flea market.

Sample Greek gastronomy.

Spanokopita, anyone? How about some moussaka? Feast your eyes and taste buds on the  Mediterranean diet. Westerners might think it’s a cure-all, while Asian visitors might not be too sure about a diet filled with olive oil, bread, yogurt and cheese, but trust us, it’s amazing. Greece is known for producing some of the most delicate and tasty olive oil in the world. Douse it on everything, and let the fresh local produce fuel your exploration. Indulge in Greek yogurt swirled with honeycomb for breakfast, crunchy Greek salad with feta cheese for lunch and smoky grilled meat with fresh-from-the-oven pita bread for dinner.

An outdoor market in Athens.

Go vintage shopping at Athens’ flea markets.

Athens is known for flea markets filled with antiques, souvenirs, jewelry and knick knacks galore. Even if you’re not really into shopping, this is a very cool experience. Head to Monastiraki market on a Sunday in Avyssinias Square. Rifle through collectibles, home decor, second hand clothes and unique pieces of furniture. Hint: here’s where your Bangkok bargaining skills will come in handy.

Cine Thisio

Outdoor cinemas make for a unique movie-going experience.

Open air cinemas have a special place in the hearts of Athenians. In the 1960’s there were more than 600, but nowadays there are less than 100. Still, it’s a great way to enjoy the cool air and take in the scenery of the city. Relax with popcorn and a classic black and white flick for a truly atmospheric experience. Don’t worry – most movies are in English or have English subtitles.

Hop from Athens to the Greek Isles. Santorini and Mykonos, anyone?

The Greek islands are known for their iconic ivory villas and bright blue doors. With the backdrop of the deep blue Aegean Sea and white sand beaches on each island, it’s truly a sight to behold. (You have to cross this iconic photo-op off your bucket list at some point, right?) Easily explore the rest of Greece starting from Athens. Party hard in Mykonos, relax in Santorini, enjoy the old village vibe of Skopelos, and discover surreal rock formations on the volcanic island of Milos. Each island has its own charm.

Zakynthos, a Greek island in the Ionian Sea.

Best of all, Athens is easy, affordable and accessible with Scoot.

Are you ready for an epic adventure in Athens? Scoot over to Athens via Singapore at unbelievable low rates from just THB7,647!

The Singapore to Athens route will be serviced by Scoot’s 3 new wide-bodied Boeing 787 Dreamliner with crew bunks, part of its fleet of 15 Boeing 787 Dreamliners. The 787 Dreamliner also features quieter engines, more cabin moisture and even special mood lighting. This long haul route has a special menu featuring Greek delights so your cultural journey starts right on the plane.

Experience the flight before you even leave Bangkok!

Head to Siam Center on Nov, 11-12 (Sat-Sun) for an immersive 360° virtual reality experience onboard the 787 Dreamliner. “Enter” the spacious cabin to experience the interiors of ScootBiz, Scoot-in-Silence, and Economy Class zones, which are sure to challenge your expectations of traveling on a budget airline. Ready to Scoot from Bangkok to Athens? You could win a pair of return tickets when you come down to the event!

Read more about flying on the Boeing787 Dreamliner to Athens here and follow Scoot Thailand on Facebook for updates and promotions.

Where: Siam Center

When: Sat-Sun, Nov. 11-12, 2017, 10am – 10pm

What: An immersive VR experience in Scoot’s 787 Dreamliner plus a chance to win a pair of return tickets or travel vouchers. Free entry.

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