Athens Local Customs

  • Local Customs
    by rexvaughan
  • Local Customs
    by rexvaughan
  • Local Customs
    by rexvaughan

Most Recent Local Customs in Athens

  • johngayton's Profile Photo

    Fancy A Nice Easy Outdoor Job?

    by johngayton Written Aug 15, 2006

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    My Kinda Job!

    Then get a job as a security guard at Monastiraki!

    This guy seems to have an ideal job wandering around the square in the sunshine, cigarette in hand, passing the time of day with the local restaurant owners, delivery drivers and chatting-up the waitresses, giving out a few directions to the odd tourist bold enough to interupt and just generally chilling out.

    I don't think he gets free public transport though - bummer eh?

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    Mythos - "Yamas!"

    by cckbp7 Written Jul 25, 2006

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    Mythos label

    Mythos is a greek beer that in my opinion tastes a lot like the Czech pilsners. This beer is served everywhere, much like Corona is in Mexico. Every once in a while, you will get a choice of Amstel of Heineken, but the selection is usually pretty limited. Great beer, but mix it up, because its not as good if Mythos is all you drink for 2 weeks.

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    Ouzo

    by cckbp7 Written Jul 25, 2006

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    Bottle of Ouzo

    Ouzo is a local Greek drink that tastes a lot like black liquorice. Its similar to Absinthe, only without the wormwood. The locals drink it by mixing it with ice or cold water. It is normally a clear liquid, but turns a milky white when you combine it with water or ice. I'm not a huge fan of black liquorice so it was a little strong for my tastes; though Greeks seem to enjoy it.

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  • Smoking

    by WillAntoniou Written Jul 16, 2006

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    Almost everyone in Greece smokes, including me. All I can say is to just deal with it. If you politely ask someone to put out their cigarette if it is bothering you, 9 times of 10 they will. But just remember, the majority of places you will be allow smoking, and unless you really can't bare it, you should respect that.

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  • Ouzo

    by WillAntoniou Written Jul 13, 2006

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    ouzo from lesvos

    I've noticed that when tourists come to Greece, especially young ones, they want to try Ouzo. But then what they do is drinking like a shot. This is not how you are supposed to drink Ouzo. The way we drink it is in a tall glass, with ice or water, and sip over a longer period of time. Ouzo is a very strong drink, the only think you'll do by drinking it in shots is get really drunk, and then really sick. But then again if that's your goal, party on.

    As far as the best brands, it is well known in Greece the best Ouzo come from the island of Lesvos. There are many brands from the island. But, if you can't find it, "Mini" or "Barbayannis" are good.

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  • OiKnow's Profile Photo

    Timeless Traditions

    by OiKnow Written May 31, 2006

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    This photograph was taken in May of 2006 just outside the ancient temple on the island of Aegina (you could convince me that it was taken in 1926 if it was in black and white.) While waiting for our bus back to town, two tour buses arrived containing what appeared to be a church group on an outing (complete with a priest in full robes.) I am hesitant to invade the privacy of people (even in a public place) but the image was so timeless that I could not resist. Take time to look around, especially in out of the way places. Greece has a long history, things that are 500 years old, are considered new, in the shadow of a 2000 year old temple change takes place slowly and old traditions, ways and dress endure.

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  • leigh767's Profile Photo

    Don't "give me a five"

    by leigh767 Updated Apr 15, 2006

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    An open palm with five fingers spread apart commonly used to denote "five" in many countries is considered a rude sign in Greece. Be careful when indicating your lack of interest in goods merchants are offering you; a simple shake of the head might be a safer bet. If you need to indicate a five for anything, face the palm towardsd yourself.

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  • janetanne's Profile Photo

    Kite Flying and Clean Monday

    by janetanne Updated Mar 18, 2006

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    Clean Monday Kite over Acropolis

    Every year on Clean Monday, the Greek people, young and old alike, can be seen out in the countrysides, flying kites! Now, what does this have to do with the beginning of Lent? That's a good question that research must be done in order to answer! Check back later and I might have found the answer as I am fascinated by this myself, just never thought about it much! Isn't it interesting, how so many of our different cultural traditions have been happening for so long, that we have lost the original intent and meaning? How many of these traditions do you have in your country?

    The easiest 'Clean Monday' tradition to explain is the custom of eating certain foods. It is well known that during the 40 days preceeding Easter, many Christians eliminate meat and oil from their diets. So, it doesn't seem strange that on the first day of this long fast, that certain foods should be eaten, among which are squid, octopus, oysters and other mussels and a special fish egg dip called 'tarama,' but excluding the actual fish as fish is not eaten! In addition, various assortments of pickles and unleavened bread should be eaten. On Clean Monday, it is thus the day that traditionally we 'clean out' our cupboards of any foods that should not be eaten during these 40 days.

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  • janetanne's Profile Photo

    Kite Flying and Clean Monday

    by janetanne Written Mar 18, 2006

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Clean Monday Kite over Acropolis

    Every year on Clean Monday, the Greek people, young and old alike, can be seen out in the countrysides, flying kites! Now, what does this have to do with the beginning of Lent? That's a good question that research must be done in order to answer! Check back later and I might have found the answer as I am fascinated by this myself, just never thought about it much! Isn't it interesting, how so much of our different cultural traditions have been happening for so long, that we have lost the original intent and meaning. How many of these traditions do you have in your country?

    The easiest 'Clean Monday' tradition to explain is the custom of eating certain foods. It is well known that during the 40 days preceeding Easter, many Christians eliminate meat and oil from their diets. So, it doesn't seem strange that on the first day of this long fast, sea foods, among which are squid, octopus, oysters and other mussels and a special fish egg dip called 'tarama,' but excluding the actual fish as fish is not eaten! In addition, various assortments of pickles and unleavened bread should be eaten. On Clean Monday, it is thus the day that traditionally we 'clean out' our cupboards of any foods that should not be eaten during these 40 days.

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  • janetanne's Profile Photo

    Pigeon's Convention

    by janetanne Written Dec 19, 2005

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    Pidgeons on Parade

    Anyone who has ever visited Athens, especially in the Autumn?, will have seen demonstrations in the central streets. I must qualify this statement by saying that this has just been my personal impression, that many of these demonstrations take place more often in the Autumn months...no professional research or statistics have been consulted; this fact may be infact close to the truth for several reason: people are back from their summer holidays, and wish to extend it; popular 'revolutionary' holidays occur during this time; October 28th-When the Greeks said NO to Mussilini; November 17th; when the University Students said NO to the Junta...whatever...it may be...rising costs of living with no increase in salaries...it doesn't take much for the Greek citizens to take to the streets with their complaints! After all, Greece is the home of Democracy! At the same time, don't forget the the Greeks also invented the words "anarchy,' and 'chaos!'

    Back to the pigeons! Is it only a coincidence that this group of feathery friends have congegrated in the platia just across from the City Hall of Athens??? Are they waiting for the Mayor to announce that the budget has been increased for stale bread for all pigeons? Or has she announced 'Let them eat Cake???'

    Whatever the reason, pigeons like the centre platias of Athens. Watch you step! and don't walk under their perches without your hat.

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  • dragontml's Profile Photo

    The Greek Language

    by dragontml Written Nov 3, 2005

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    The Greek language has a great history. It has the greatest history of all the European languages.

    Written monuments of the language prove that it existed from the second century BC, the literature from 2500 years ago. Ancient and modern literature has been written in Greek.

    With this language, the people of the Greek nation can express themselves; tell stories, its proverbs and folk songs.

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  • athena10x's Profile Photo

    Shopping

    by athena10x Written Oct 24, 2005

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    If you are coming from the United States to Athens...and you want to shop for clothes, beware of wanting to go at any time of the day. Shops are not always open 9-5 like at home.
    Some shops close in the middle of the day and reopen after 3 or 4 pm. Mondays they are open until 7pm because many are closed on sunday.
    The tourist shops for gifts on main streets like Adrianou, Kidatheneon and Monistriaki always seem to be open during the day.

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  • Pieter11's Profile Photo

    Proud Greeks

    by Pieter11 Written Oct 10, 2005

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    Greek flags everywhere...

    It’s wonderful to see how incredibly proud the Greek people are about their country. Talking to a Greek person you won’t hear the critics you do hear in lots of other countries. The Greek pride has only grown since the Olympics and since they became European Champions in both Football and Basketball. This means two things:

    First: be careful with criticising their country. They will see in as an insult.

    Second: They are always more then willing to show you their country and their culture. If you show that you are interested in the Greek culture, the people will let you feel it.

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  • Aggeliki's Profile Photo

    Musicians from all over the world

    by Aggeliki Written Oct 4, 2005

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    a band playing traditional music from Peru

    In the streets of the center of the city and in some shopping areas of the suburbs you see very often musicians from all ovel the world. This one is playing traditional music from Peru. You can but also their cd with the music they play!

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  • If you visit Greece in the summer, eat greek salad

    by cristiana04 Written Aug 16, 2005

    eat greek salad every day...however they might be the same, believe me...every time that you ate it, it seems different...the taste, the olive oil, the ingredients...so try it!!! it is worth!!
    Greek salad
    INGREDIENTS
    3 – 4 tomatoes ,1 onion ,feta cheese,1 cucumber ,olive oil ,salt ,olives,oregano.Cut the tomatoes, the onion and the cucumber in slices. Mix them, add salt and some pieces of feta cheese, oregano and at the end greek olive oil

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