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“What a site!”

Hellenic Parliament
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Historical Athens and Acropolis of Athens Walking Tour
Ranked #40 of 345 things to do in Athens
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Owner description: A beautiful columned building built in the classical Greek style.
Redondo Beach, California
Level Contributor
75 reviews
29 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 61 helpful votes
“What a site!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 23, 2012

No matter how many times I have stood there with one of the Evzones guarding the Unknown soldier's tomb, I always have to come back! Do you know how brave this Greek military corp is? They are the keepers of the Greek flag. During WW II, an Evzone named Konstantinos Koukidis, was guarding the flag flying proudly on the Acropolis hill facing the Parthenon-Temple of Goddess Athina. When the Nazis demanded from the soldier to remove the Greek flag and replace it with the German swastika, he obeyd, but instead of handing his flag to the Germans, carefully wrapped himself with it and dropped from the hill to his death. The skirt they are wearing is called "Foustanella" which has 400 pleats, each one commemorating the 400 years of slavery under the Ottoman Turks, ending with the revolution of 25 March 1821. So every time I come back to my birth place, I have to pay homage to the bravery of these men. So next time you visit Athens, please stop and visit!

Visited August 2012
6 Thank stella_sl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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English first
Level Contributor
30 reviews
27 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
“Changing of the Guards at the Parliament House- Athens”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 7, 2012

First time I ever saw the Changing of the guards in Athens at the parliament building was when, by chance, I happened to be walking near the center of Athens in a square called Syntagma. I noticed that a small crowd was forming in order to watch something. Curious, I moved in that direction and found, in front of a large structure (which I later learned to be the Parliament Building), a couple of guards in traditional Greek clothing completing the end of one shift and the beginning of another. (The "changing of the guards or Evzones as they are called".

The precision and synchronization of the ceremony was fascinating and I found myself getting lost in the moment. Children seemed to particularly like it and there was much photo "kodak moments" being caught. The ceremony is evidently repeated every hour and a more complex one is undertaken at 11 am daily that is comprised with more guards.

Though I was not there on a Sunday, (I learned that is when the ‘real deal’ is performed). Many guards are involved and they must be at least 6’3” in order to participate. They wear kilts and shoes with pom-poms on them representing ancient Minoan times. When they are not relieving each other of their duties in this ritual, they stand guard stoically.(Like the guards in England)

Further inquiry revealed that there are only 120 of these soldier/guards and that they serve as sentries one hour at a time, three times every 48 hours(not a bad work schedule in my mind). They work in pairs in order to continually improve the preciseness of their movements. There is no cost to watching the ceremony and I strongly urge one and all to see this activity if and when in Athens.

Visited October 2011
11 Thank ArchaeologousTours
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Monemvasia, Greece
Level Contributor
144 reviews
72 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 64 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 2, 2012

Once the palace of King Otto, Greece's Bavarian-born sovereign and patron of the making of Athens as a capital city. Now it is an imposing, yellow, and hulky presence across from the elegant Grand Bretagne Hotel.

Visited September 2011
Thank Kathryn W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 28, 2012

Its very very very very very very very very very very very very badly organised

Visited June 2012
1 Thank cfrantzol
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cambridge, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
71 reviews
53 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 55 helpful votes
“The Parliament!”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 10, 2012

A familiar picture to many international travellers to Athens, especially today when Athens is one of the top news every day!
Apart from visiting the interior, where you can see where the parliament members normally gather for all the formal meetings and sessions, you can also learn about the democratic history of Greece at a specifically dedicated museum, situated right across Constitution Square. I would recommend trying to time your visit to the change of the guards. Even though you are not allowed to get very close to them during the ceremony of the change, you can get a picture with them afterwards, as long as you do not touch or make any funny gestures to them. Great even at the night, since the square in front of it hardly ever sleeps!

Visited June 2012
Thank trip_architect
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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