Monastiraki means “little monastery” in Greek, since a large monastery once stood on the main square of the neighborhood. Monastiraki and Plaka are two of the most charming and lively areas in Athens.
A good area for shopping
Situated on the north side of the Acropolis, Monastiraki is one of the most popular shopping areas in Athens. There are all types of shops, including vintage and second-hand clothing stores.
In addition, one of the main attractions is Monastiraki’s Flea Market. This lively bazaar is overflowing with hundreds of stalls that sell from handmade jewelry, relics, carpets, typical souvenirs, clothes and accessories. Just like in Istanbul’s popular Grand Bazaar, tourists will have to bargain to get the best prices possible.
Monastiraki is also famous for its colorful terraces, where visitors can sit, relax and try some of the best national dishes.
Top sights in the area
The neighborhood also offers numerous cultural visits. Tzistarakis Mosque is an eighteenth century Ottoman Mosque, which currently houses a ceramic collection owned by the Museum of Greek Folk Art. Another landmark is Hadrian’s Library. This large bibliotheca, built in AD 132, once housed a pool and several reading rooms.
You might also enjoy visiting Monastiraki metro station, one of the oldest metro stations in Athens, as it displays several archaeological discoveries found on the Hadrian’s Library site.
The district’s main streets are Ermou Street, Pandrossou Street and Adrianou Street, although one of the best things to do in Monastiraki is to wander along its avenues and squares.
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