Wednesday, 3 August 2011
My degree may have been in Ancient and Medieval History and Archaeology - but it didn't include Greek history. Or at least the options I chose didn't. Mostly we gazed endlessly at relics of the Roman Empire.
Regardless of that, one of the monuments I was most looking forward to visiting on my world trip was the Parthenon in Athens (Greece).
Built on the Acropolis, it dominates the modern day city of Athens with an aura of serenity, untouchability, and thousands of years of history.
We decided to hike up there one morning in December, and after getting lost loads of times around the bottom of the hill, we eventually found the long and tiring road up to the top.
It is always a disappointment to look forward to something so much - and then - it isn't what you expect. This wasn't one of those occasions though and the memory still remains one of the highlights of my world trip.
The Parthenon more than lived up to my expectations, even though it was partly covered in scaffolding. Probably a permanent state of affairs judging by the on-going restoration programme that seems to have kicked off in the early 80s.
If you like piles of old stones and haven't visited it - do go. And preferably make sure you see the Elgin Marbles in the British Museum too. Two pieces of the jigsaw thousands of miles apart.