Athens has a vibrant night scene. The city comes alive as the sun sets and the city lights come aglow. Night life may start with the evening meal, which in Athens is quite late. Typically, Athenians have theirs at around 9 or 10 in the evening. Restaurants and tavernas offer excellent food and drinks and are usually open until 2 in the morning. The best tavernas can be found in the area of Plaka, a neighborhood at the foot of the Acropolis and the oldest region in Athens. There are tavernas with rooftop gardens and these are great spots to watch the changing hues of the sky as the sun sets over the Acropolis. Many of the tavernas and restaurants have their own entertainment. You can listen to traditional bouzouki music or be entertained by Greek folk dances.
Glyfada has its own share of tavernas and entertainments but are generally not as "wild" as that of Plaka. While Plaka is a bit more cosmopolitan, Glyfada still has small, homely tavernas which serve traditional food and drinks. It is a good alternative for those wishing to experience nightlife with a quieter ambiance.
Bars are numerous in Athens and are a common destination for young people. The focal point of nightlife in Athens is Psirri where the most frequented bars can be found. Once a run-down neighborhood for the working class, it has been renovated to include trendy bars, restaurants and cafés. One of the liveliest bars in Psirri and probably in the whole of Athens is the Soul, having a cocktail bar, restaurant and dance floor. The crowd is generally young which may overrun the bar during peak season.
Music clubs featuring live music are a hit in Athens and cater to music lovers’ different tastes. Authentic rembétika, the Greek urban folk music can be heard in Perivoli t’Ouranou in Plaka or in Stoa Athanaton, obscured by the arcades in the Central Market. Renowned rembétika musicians perform in these places. Jazz enthusiasts often frequent the Halfnote Jazz Club at 17 Trivonianou Street, which plays the best classical and contemporary music in town. Rock music fans can have their fill of metal, goth and other rock-related genres at Gagarin 205 Club where leading rock and underground music bands perform. An Club has been keeping the rock scene alive for two decades and has allowed both legendary groups and rising rock bands to play on its stage. Those who have a more sophisticated taste may head to the Athens Concert Hall to watch operas or listen to orchestras performed by prominent Greek musicians.
Those who are unaccustomed to Greek nightlife and music scene should never miss a trip to a bouzoukia. This place features live music performed by either known or amateur singers. People going to a bouzoukia are particular about the performers as each one has a different music. But regardless of the singer, there will be women dancing on tables or on the stage with the performer. Flowers or plates are sold to patrons so they can have them thrown on the stage or broken (the plates) to express their appreciation of the entertainment. Certainly a trip to Athens will be made unforgettable by a night at a bouzoukia.
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