Keeping Company on Sunday – At the birthplace of Ancient Athens & Ancient Drama

HAEF’s Special Programs unit organizes modular, educational visits for the whole family that are designed to include walking tours of the historic center of Athens, its outskirts and the greater Attica region.  We combine historical knowledge, exploration and creative play, seeking continuity between the past and the present.  We try to provide a different kind of lesson on history, culture and philosophy, from outside the classroom. 


From the Makrygianni locality to the Ancient Theater of Dionysus, a stroll around
the Acropolis, the Parthenon, and the “Anafiotika” quarter


On our second tour this academic year, our historical narrative will center on both the history of Athens from prehistoric to classical times and on the conditions under which ancient drama flourished, as we visit one of the main arenas in which dramatic struggles played out.


We will begin at “Acropolis” Metro Station where we will “discover” a small museum that hosts the archaeological findings from the excavations in the Makrygianni area.  At the same time we will have an opportunity to talk about the neighborhood with the same name, as well as the proximate locality of “Gargareta,” better known as Koukaki.  


From there, passing in front of the Weiler Building, we will walk a little further up where we will encounter the archaeological site of the Theater of Dionysus and begin to explore the Southern and Easter slopes of the Acropolis, following the “Promenade” (Peripatos) route.


“Promenade”  (Peripatos) is the name given to the ancient road that circled around the Acropolis, almost all the way around the foot of the Sacred Rock.  Walking the entire route, ancient Athenians were able to visit a great many singular monuments located on the north, east and south sides of the Acropolis, thus admiring the Attica landscape whilst taking a stroll.

We will attempt to take the same walk, acquainting ourselves, in sequence, with: the Theater of Dionysos, the Odeon of Pericles, the Stoa of Eumenes, the Choragic Monument of Nikias, the Askleipion, the Choragic Monument of Thrasyllos, the Aglaureion, the Mycenaean Drinking Fountain, the Temple of Aphrodite and Eros, the Cave of Pan, the Nymph Sanctuary, Apollo’s altar as well as the Clepsydra spring and the Church of St. Nicholas Paravas or St. Seraphim.


Half way through our archaeological tour, we will take a break in a shady corner, to talk about the history of our city, the genesis and blossoming of ancient drama and the cult of Dionysus the Liberator (Dionysus Eleuthereus). We will also attempt to engage in a short drama game based on excerpts from ancient drama.


Following our break, we will ascend Dionysiou Areopagitou Street for a short distance

until we find ourselves at the Propylaea (monumental gate) where will admire the incomparable beauty of the Parthenon, but also recognize the importance of other monuments on the Sacred Rock of the Acropolis, such as the Temple of Athena Nike, the Temple of Artemis Brauronia, the Chalkotheke and Erechtheion Temple.


Completing our archaeological tour, we will return back a bit, passing once more in front of the Theater of Dionysus.  There, we will encounter Thrasyllou Street from where we will slowly ascend toward the “Anafiotika” district, a unique quarter of Plaka reminiscent of the beauty and architectural style of Anafi, the Cycladic island from which it derives its name.

The district was created in the 1860s on the north side of the Acropolis, above Rizokastro, where refugees of the Peloponnesian War found shelter.  The “Black Stones” of the Turkish domination, else the “Anafiotika” of the 1860s, were arbitrarily constructed by poor craftsmen, builders and carpenters from Anafi island, who were working on the city’s reconstruction at the time.


From high up there, we will take a few moments to gaze below at the beauty of Athens and the history of our land.  The shadow cast by the Sacred Rock will give us an opportunity to recall known and lesser-known heroes who fought for our country.


Date:  Sunday, November 19, 2017, 10:00-14:15
For students in Elementary School  grades 4, 5, 6, Junior High School grades 7, 8, 9,  their parents, their grandparents.
Meeting place:  Metro Station “Acropolis.”  Inside the station, in front of the showcases exhibiting the archaeological findings, at 09:45.
Tour leader:  Mr. Iordanis Papadopoulos, Psychico College teacher (mobile telephone number in case of emergency: 6977-710949).
Cost: 15€ per family.
Adult Admission ticket (unified) to the archaeological sites of the Ancient Theater of Dionysus and the Acropolis: 10€

Useful Tips:  Bring along a bottle of water and a light snack for a brief picnic in the shadow of the Sacred Rock of the Acropolis.


Registration forms (see Related Files below) must be submitted by Thursday, November 16, 2017 at the latest to the Special Programs Secretariat (Psychico campus, Capps Hall, 1st floor, tel. 210.6726452), either in person or by fax (210.6744970) or by email (


The Accounting Office will then send you an invoice for the electronic payment of fees that will include an individual payment ID.  

Please note that the submittal of a Registration Form is binding, hence requiring the payment of stipulated fees.