ATHENS — Mets and Pangrati

The residential area of Mets is found to the east of the Acropolis. This is a lovely old area full of some lovely neoclassical and prewar houses. Good examples of these are found on Markou Mousourou Street. Pangrati is another residential area but it is a lot livlier with its music clubs, cafes and old-style tavernas. It is found a short distance from Syntagma through the Zappeio Gardens.

The sights found here are:
National Art Gallery
Panathenaic Stadium
Philatelic Museum
Athens First Cemetery

National Art Gallery
This is the most important institution in Greece devoted to the subject of the history of Greek and Western European art. It was first founded in 1900 and contained around 258 works of art from the collections of the University of Athens and the Technical University of Athens and a year later the collection of Alexandros Soutzos was added. Over time there have been other additions to the collection including that of Evripidis Koutidis which was an important addition to the 19th and 20th centuries of Greek painting. There are now more than 9,500 works of art and the collection has been housed in its present building since 1976. In the first wing you will find temporary exhibitions but the second wing is where the largest permanent collection is found. This museum concentrates on works of art from the 19th century which are found on the first floor and the 20th century found on the second floor, all in chronologiacal order. Most of this permanent collection are Greek artists.
For information about the museum visit the website at: http://www.nationalgallery.gr/site/content.php

Panathenaic Stadium

Panathenaic Stadium
This stadium is found in what was once a natural hollow in the ground between the two hills of Agra and Ardettos, over Ilissos river. The first stadium was built in 330-329 BC for the athletic competitions of the Great Panathinaea Festivities. It was restored between 140 and 144 AD in a horseshoe shape with a track 204.07 metres long and 33.35 metres wide and could seat around 50,000 people. It was restored again at the end of the 19th century for the first Olympic games held in 1896.

Philatelic Museum
This small museum will interest stamp collectors with its history of stamp collecting and the post in Greece. Included in its collection are old post boxes, postal uniforms and printing plates from the first stamp in 1886 which featured the bust of Hermes.
For information about the museum visit the website at: http://english.postalmuseum.gr

Athens First Cemetery

Athens First Cemetery
This is also known as the Municipal cemetery and it provides a fascinating insight into the history of Greece from the 19th century through to the present day. There are thousands of graves found here and some of the more prominent ones include politicians, military leaders, revolutionaries, benefactors, academics, tycoons, artists, actors and actresses including that of Greek actress, Melina Mercouri. Some of the graves have magnificent sculptures and it is a lovely and peaceful place to stroll through.