As the Parthenon towers resplendent over the Greek capital and dozens of ancient sites are there to be explored throughout the city, it can sometimes be easy to forget that there’s so much more to Athens than its ancient classical heritage. After all, Greece has been at a geographical and cultural crossroads for the past… well, several thousand years. So while Acropolis tours might top the lists of the best things to do in Athens, it’s discovering that extraordinary, multifaceted heritage that will really make your trip complete.

A Century of Change and Glory

A fascinating period in the city’s—and indeed the nation’s—history, the 19th century gave us Greece as we know it today. The Greek War of Independence, which started in 1821, resulted in the recognition of an independent Greek state in 1830 and the establishment of the Kingdom of Greece in 1832. The capital was moved from Nafplio to Athens in 1834, signaling the beginning of a unique period of optimism and splendor.

Renowned architects from across Europe came to Greece to oversee the construction of some of the world’s most elegant and magnificent neoclassical buildings. Meanwhile, the newly introduced Greek Royal Family and the city’s aristocracy and upper class infused their world with opulence and charm. By the end of the century, Athens had been transformed from a small modest town into a refined European capital, elements of which can still be experienced today.

Explore the Kingdom of Greece

A gem among Athens walking tours, Neoclassical Athens: An Introduction to the Little-Known Kingdom of Greece is a fascinating look into the city’s 19th-century heritage. Taking you on a wander through the city’s modern history, this fabulous Athens day tour showcases some of the city’s best neoclassical architecture, including the work of Theophil Hansen and Ernst Ziller, takes you on a stroll through the National—formerly Royal—Garden, and gives you a taste of royal life, with a private tour of the Museum of the City of Athens, the Greek royal family’s first residence in the city.

A fantastic opportunity to experience a different side of the Greek capital, this private walking tour deserves a place among the top things to do in Athens. Experience Neoclassical Athens for yourself and discover another layer of the city’s extraordinary heritage.