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The Capital City

  • General Information

    Other Name: Athina, District: Athens, State: Attica, Greece
    Area: 0 -
    Languages Spoken: Greek,French, Italian, and German
    Long Distance Code: 210
    Importance: one Athens is one of the world''s oldest cities
    Best Time to Visit: September to October and May-June
    International Access: Connected to all the major cities of the world.
  • Description

    Athens the capital and largest city of Greece, dominates the Attica periphery; as one of the world''s oldest cities, its recorded history spans around 3,400 years. The Greek capital has a population of 745,514 (in 2001) within its administrative limits and a land area of 39 km2 (15 sq mi).The urban area of Athens extends beyond the administrative city limits with a population of 3,130,841 (in 2001)and a land area of 412 km2 (159 sq mi). According to Eurostat, the Athens Larger Urban Zone (LUZ) is the 7th most populated LUZ in the European Union with a population of 4,013,368 (in 2004).A bustling and cosmopolitan metropolis, Athens is central to economic, financial, industrial, political and cultural life in Greece. It is rapidly becoming a leading business centre in the European Union. In 2008, Athens was ranked the world''s 32nd richest city by purchasing power and the 25th most expensive in a UBS study.
  • Location

    Athens sprawls across the central plain of Attica, often referred to as the Attica Basin, and bound by Mount Aegaleo to the west, Mount Parnitha in the north, Mount Penteli in the northeast, Mount Hymettus in the east, and the Saronic Gulf in the southwest. Mount Parnitha is the tallest of the city (1,453 m (4,767 ft)) and has been declared a national park. Well-marked paths, gorges, springs, torrents and caves dot the area. Hiking and mountain-biking in all four mountains remain popular outdoor activities for many residents.
  • Climate

    Athens enjoys a typical mediterranean climate, with the greatest amounts of precipitation mainly occurring from mid-October to mid-April; any precipitation is sparse during summer and falls generally in the form of showers and/or thunderstorms. Due to its location in a strong rain shadow because of Mount Parnitha, however, the Athenian climate is much drier compared to most of the rest of Mediterranean Europe. The mountainous northern suburbs, for their part, experience a somewhat differentiated climatic pattern, with generally lower temperatures and more substantial snowfalls during winter. Fog is highly unusual in the city centre but it is more frequent to the east, behind the Hymettus mountain range.