The following female packing list for Athens was submitted by Marissa Tejada. See all female packing lists.
What I love about Athens is that it’s a city full of colorful contrasts. Traffic crawls along concrete blocks while around a corner there’s a cobbled lane lined with bougainvillea swathed tavernas and cafes. A plain entranceway can easily affront a charming outdoor cinema that serves ouzo under the stars. A little alley will lead into a spacious and beautifully chic cocktail bar.
As you explore, you’ll definitely want to take in the best views of Athens. Then there are the ancient sights like the Acropolis, owning a larger importance than anywhere else – built on democracy, Western civilization and philosophy. In the Greek capital, the ancient, historic, hipster and modern merge here – making it an incredible city to discover.
When thinking about summer weather in Athens, think hot and pack with that thought in mind. While many must-see sights are in the center, the Athenian Riviera is worth escaping for a day – breezy and lined with idyllic beaches. So be prepared for that too.
Here’s what to pack for a four-day summer city break in beautiful Athens.
Have a good mix of neutral colors. You don’t want to wear black during the day time, because a heat wave is possible and it will be hot nevertheless. Anything dark that you are considering to bring along, know that you’ll be more comfortable to wear it after the sun sets.
- 2 skirts: I recommend bringing two types of skirts – or three if you want some more variety. I suggest you choose from short and free-flowing, a mid-length skirt and free flowing, or a long free-flowing skirt. Choose light weight material and the key words here are free flowing. That will keep you cool and stylish.
- 1 pair of shorts: Shorts will come in handy for any of the scenic walks around Athens, the pretty walk up Lycabettus Hill, or climbing the ancient rocks of the Acropolis.
- 1 pair of light pants: I wouldn’t recommend packing jeans which can feel too constricting in the city heat. Bring a pair of lightweight pants instead, in a neutral color, that you can mix and match with your clothing.
- 1 light jacket: This is something you’ll likely use at night, if you are on the Athens coast or spend an evening on a nearby island. Consider a windbreaker, a stylish blazer for layering or short denim or cotton jacket.
- 2 scarves: Scarves serve many purposes on a Greek holiday. Have a light-colored one that you can fit easily into your purse during the day. It’s good cover for your shoulders if the sun is too strong and if you happen to visit a church or monastery you may need to cover bare shoulders and arms out of respect. A second scarf is useful to bring along at night to change looks. Dark colors are great for layering over tank tops if you feel a breeze at the rooftop bars.
- 1 belt: Stick to beige or black, something to match with your shoes.
- 4 tank tops: Pack solid, sleeveless tank tops. A great layering item.
- 3 blouses for going out: Dress up for dinner or a night out on the town after choosing from several lightweight blouses. I suggest short sleeve or sleeveless styles that match with your skirts or pants.
- 2 dresses: Pack a dress, like a maxi dress, that works for you during the day — perfect for a pretty pic at a scenic Athens spot. A second dress suggestion is a flattering mid-length dress for a nice dinner or drink out.
- 2-3 bras: One nude bra is a must for your light-colored tops. A third bra would be if you are taking along any tank tops that require a strapless bra.
- 5 pairs of underwear
>>See why we love fast-drying underwear for travel.
- 1 swimsuit: Necessary for a day at the beach or for a dip at the hotel pool.
- 1 cover-up for your swimsuit: For lounging by the pool or beach bar.
- 1 Pajamas
Walking around Athens isn’t the easiest. In short, you may want to keep the heels at home. There are lots of cobbled lanes, brick paths, uneven sidewalks and uneven outdoor steps. The archaeological sites are full of weathered rocks that may look harmless but are surprisingly slippery to walk over.
- 1 pair platform sandals: A great pair of platform sandals are the perfect stylish substitute for heels and fit in well in the Mediterranean urban summer landscape. Look great while hanging out at Athens’ hot spots.
- 1 pair of sandals: Take along neutral strappy sandals that match with your skirts and dresses and are comfy to walk around in.
- 1 pair of flip flops: Good to use by the pool or a beach day trip.
- 1 pair of stylish sneakers or good soled, closed shoes with a decent grip: Take along shoes with a decent grip on them that also covers your toes. Very useful when you are climbing the Acropolis, for example. Make sure they go along with the skirts, shorts or pants you are taking along.
- Socks for your sneakers or closed shoes.
- Shampoo and conditioner: Travel size.
>>Consider packing solid toiletries.
- Soap and/or body wash
- A toothbrush, toothpaste and floss
- Hairbrush, hair ties, headbands and bobby pins: You’ll likely opt to wear a sun hat. You can put together braids or a nice ponytail underneath to keep extra cool.
- Face wipes: For freshening up during the day.
- Makeup: Lipsticks that pop are perfect for the day. You don’t want to be loaded with too much makeup considering the hot temps.
- Oil-free lotions
- Any prescriptions and tampons
- Sunglasses: This is a must accessory and not just for style purposes. The sun here is strong!
- Sun hat: To protect your skin and for style take along a neutral colored sun hat for walking around the day. I recommend a fedora type. You can always buy one in Athens, they are sold on every corner. It can be a pain to pack a hat.
- Sunscreen: Bring along your favorite brand, especially for your face.
- One beach towel: For a beach day. Consider a Turkish Towel to save space.
Tech Gear and Bags
This varies from person to person…
- 1 Camera
- 1 or more European adapters: Consider what you’ll need to charge at the same time.
- Computer or Tablet
- 1 large collapsible shopping bag: As you shop for Greek souvenirs in Monastiraki, Plaka or any neighborhood in old Athens, you’re bound to pick up some souvenirs. Have this bag to pull out to place your purchases in along the way. (A stuffable backpack will also do the trick!)
- 1 small evening purse: Take along a small stylish clutch to go along with your night outfits.
- 1 cross body bag: Keep your valuables safer with a purse you can strap over your body. In general, very convenient while you are exploring Athens’ ancient sites and the city overall.
>> You may also enjoy this packing list for the Greek Islands.
About the author: Native New Yorker Marissa Tejada is an author, travel writer and freelance journalist living in Athens, Greece. She writes for top travel media including CNN Travel, Lonely Planet, Fodor’s and various lifestyle and travel magazines. She also posts her food and travel adventures across Greece and Europe on her blog Travel Greece, Travel Europe. Expat life also inspired her acclaimed romantic comedy novel, Chasing Athens. You can find her on Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter and Facebook.
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