Over the last seven years or so, the public transportation system in the Greek capital city of Athens has undergone mass modernisation and development. With the modernisation of the Athens tram, suburban railway, and Athens Metro along with the development of its infrastructure with the construction of a brand new railway network, bridges and new roads, a lot of the transportation woes in the city have been relatively eased out. Moreover, they have contributed greatly to the reduction of atmospheric pollution over the river basin of Attica.
There are four main means of public transportation in Athens. Let us now take a look at each of them in greater detail.
Tram service in Athens
First of all, there is the Athens tram network. This service helps in connecting the central point of Syntagma Square or Parliament Square with a number of the local markets, local residential areas and beach areas bordering the coast. The tram network has as many as five lines with three of them operating exclusively between a new site for new hotels and a glitzy eating and shopping area along the seafront promenade. The remaining lines originate from the Syntagma Square just above the underground Metro station.
The tram service is one of the most affordable and cheapest means of getting around the city. Quick and spotlessly clean, it is the fastest way you can travel between the beach and Athens city center. With numerous hotels along the route, tourists can have access to one of the best transportation means in the city for getting around to all of the tourist attractions on offer in Athens.
The next best public transportation means in the city is the underground or Metro service. It is not the easiest system to navigate as the layout does not rank among the best in the world. However, the system is a very inexpensive and quick way of touring the city for the Adult visitors. The Athens underground system is in many ways similar to the one seen in the UK. During rush hours, it tends to get crowded and hot and is not a very good choice for carrying your loaded shopping bags. Lifts and escalators serve the commuters, located at each end of every platform. The Metro service is one of the best means of reaching the haggling and bustling shopping district at Monastiraki and also for travelling between some of the main points in the city center of Athens.
Taxi service in Athens
Taxis in Athens are the next means of travelling around the city. These are usually of two types, both of them being yellow in color. First of them are the radio taxis which arrive when you place a call through to them; second are the street taxis which need to be hailed on the streets. The latter have the freedom of deciding whether they want to take you to your desired destination or not. Visitors are likely to take some time getting used to the system. For travelling on the call taxis, you are likely to be charged a premium rate. However, they are the best choice for travelling when you have to tug along large amounts of shopping.
Bus service in Athens
Last but not the least are the buses and trolleybuses plying the city streets of Athens. Cross-ticketing is allowed on both of them so if visitors have a Metro ticket in hand, they can easily travel on one of the buses. Please take note that the destinations are mentioned exclusively in Greek so visitors are advised to study a guide if they wish to avoid feeling confused by the vast network.
Tourists are advised to be careful of pickpockets when touring Athens; the crime is so actively practised that many have reported being attacked as early as at six in the morning! Be careful you don’t have anything in your pockets and never carry a wallet or purse. For a safe measure, ensure that you keep everything tucked away preferably in a passport belt.