Best Athens Food Tour: Must-Try Greek Food & Culture

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Seeking out the best Athens food tour? Enjoy a culinary odyssey through the vibrant streets of Athens Greece when you plan your next visit. It’s a great way to get acclimated to the city and indulge in the delicious flavors that define Greek cuisine.

From savory souvlaki to sweet bougatsa tastings and everything in between, you’ll also get a taste of Athens’ cultural attractions.

And when you’re led by an expert local guide, you’ll discover Athens’ hidden gems, indulge in local delicacies, and gain insight into the city’s food culture.

That’s just what I did when I visited Athens last summer on what I believe is the best Athens food tour. Keep reading to learn more and gain insights from my food tour experience in Athens!

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Avgolemno Soup (Greek Lemon Chicken Soup)
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Lemoni Patatas
(Greek Lemon Potatoes)
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(Semolina Custard and Phyllo)
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Moussaka (Beef and Eggplant Lasagna)

Why Take a Food Tour in Athens?

Starting your Athenian adventure with a food tour is a savvy move. Not only does it offer you a delicious introduction to the city’s flavors, but it also provides invaluable insights into its culture and history.

With Athens Food on Foot, led by the knowledgeable and friendly Anna, you’re in for a treat. Offering various tour options, including morning and evening tours, at affordable rates, this local-led experience promises a memorable journey through Athens’ gastronomic landscape.

Before I share the experiences I most enjoyed when I took the Ultimate Athens Food Tour with Athens Food on Foot, you’ll want some insightful tips about food tours in general. That way, you can make the best of whatever tour you choose.

Let’s start with what to look for when you want to plan the best Athens food tour.

10 Tips for Planning Your Food Tour

Here are some important tips for enjoying a food tour in Athens.

  1. Research Athens’ Culinary Scene: Look for food tours in Athens that highlight the city’s diverse gastronomy, from traditional tavernas to bustling markets. Consider:
    • The tour duration
    • Budget constraints
    • What tastings are included
    • Local expertise
    • How the tour fits into your travel itinerary
  2. Arrive Hungry for Greek Delights: Prepare to indulge in Athens’ culinary treasures by arriving with an empty stomach. Be ready to sample iconic dishes like souvlaki, moussaka, baklava, and more. If you have dietary restrictions, such as gluten-free, vegetarian, vegan, or have specific food allergies, be sure to let your tour operator know to see if they can accommodate your restrictions.
  3. Wear Comfortable Shoes for Strolling: Athens’ food tours often involve walking through vibrant neighborhoods and bustling markets with multiple stops along the way. So, you’ll want to wear comfortable, sturdy shoes.
  4. Weather-Appropriate Attire: Check the weather forecast for Athens on the day of your tour and dress accordingly. If it’s sunny, wear breathable clothing, and don’t forget to bring sunscreen, sunglasses, and a hat. In cooler weather, layering is key to staying comfortable. If the weather calls for rain, dress for it. Most food tours run in rain or shine.
  5. Engage with Local Guides: Take advantage of knowledgeable local guides who can offer insights into Greek cuisine, culture, and history. Ask your guide questions and interact with vendors to enhance your experience.
  6. Embrace Greek Culinary Adventures: Be adventurous and open-minded when trying new foods and flavors. This might include traditional Greek mezes (small plates), meat and seafood specialties, and regional wines. Savor the flavors of Athens’ culinary delights, from freshly grilled souvlaki to flaky spanakopita. Enjoy the sensory journey of Greek cuisine!
  7. Capture Memories of Greek Gastronomy: Bring a camera or smartphone to capture mouthwatering moments and scenic views along the food tour route. You’ll likely see some photo-worthy points of interest along the way, too!
  8. Take Note of the Locales: As you cover ground in Athens, make mental notes about the areas and neighborhoods you visit for future reference. For instance, notice attractions you might want to return to, and retail, parks, mini markets, and reputable ATMs. This knowledge will come in handy for further exploration on your own after the tour.
  9. Respect Local Dining Customs: Be sure to observe local customs and etiquette when you’re dining in Athens. Use polite phrases, like “efcharistó” (thank you), and respect cultural norms at markets and eateries by taking cues from your guide and others.
  10. Express Gratitude to Your Guides: Show appreciation to your guide and vendors for sharing their knowledge and hospitality during your food tour. A genuine thank-you gesture is always welcomed. In addition, it’s a good idea to tip your food tour guide in Athens as a gesture of appreciation for the guide’s knowledge, expertise, and hospitality throughout the tour. Tipping practices may vary, but a tip for a food tour in Athens might range from 10% to 20% of the tour cost, depending on your enjoyment and the group size.

What to Pack for Your Food Tour

When preparing for the best Athens food tour experience, you’ll want to bring a few essentials.

  1. Reusable Water Bottle: Staying hydrated is important, especially when you’re walking and tasting different foods during the warm summer months. So, bring a reusable water bottle to refill throughout the tour and stay refreshed. (The tap water in Athens is safe to drink.) Your guide will be able to show you to one of Athens’ multiple public fountains or to refill kiosks that charge a small fee.
  2. Small Backpack or Bag: A small backpack or bag can come in handy for carrying essentials like your water bottle, a camera or smartphone, and any souvenirs or snacks you may pick up along the way.
  3. Cash: While many establishments may accept card payments, it’s always a good idea to have some cash on hand for purchases at smaller vendors or markets that may not accept cards. If you plan on tipping your tour guide, bring enough cash for that as well.

By packing these essentials, you’ll be well-prepared to enjoy a memorable and delicious food tour experience in Athens.

Best Athens Food Tour: Athens Food on Foot Tour

Booking a food tour with Athens Food on Foot offers a unique and immersive experience that varies with each visit. Whether it’s your first time to Greece’s capital city or a return trip, their tours provide a comprehensive overview of Athens’ culinary landscape.

While you’ll find several excellent food tour operators in Athens, my experience on the Ultimate Athens Food Tour was outstanding.

Here are a few reasons why you should choose Athens Food on Foot:

  • As a local Athenian, Anna knows her way around the city and provides local insights
  • Athens Food on Foot is a woman-owned small business
  • You can choose from a variety of tour choices and experiences
  • All of the experiences are very affordable
  • The tours are comprehensive with multiple, delicious and cultural stops
  • Anna sets a welcoming, casual tone which creates a relaxed group vibe

Could you navigate these stops on your own? Certainly. But with Athens Food on Foot as your guide, you’ll efficiently explore and savor the best of Athens’ gastronomy – and you couldn’t possibly do it cheaper or gain as many insights.

Each tour is a bit different, but below you’ll find highlights from my experience on the Ultimate Athens Food Tour led by Anna at Athens Food on Foot. Our group of 8 adults was the right size for sampling foods, making new friends, and enjoying the experience together.

Must Try Foods in Athens Plus Cultural Insights

Here’s an example of what you can expect from the best Athens food tour based on my experience with Athens Food on Foot. It’s a Greek tasting and cultural adventure!

1. Discover Monastiraki Square: Your Vibrant Starting Point

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The Church of the Pantanassais is what remains of the 10th-century monastery after which Monistiraki Square was named.
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You’ll find the freshest fruit at this kiosk, along with coffee shops and other eateries surrounding the square.

Your foodie expedition kicks off at Monastiraki Square, a focal point of Athenian life for centuries.

This lively hub is teeming with food vendors, fresh produce stalls, and often, a bustling crowd. One of the square’s main draws is its bustling flea market, where you can browse an eclectic array of souvenirs, antiques, and artisanal crafts.

Additionally, the square is flanked by cafes, restaurants, and taverna. Monistiraki Square is a great place to savor traditional Greek cuisine while soaking in the lively atmosphere.

Amidst the hustle and bustle, you’ll discover the historic Church of the Pantanassa, a hidden gem steeped in centuries-old charm.

And of course, no visit to Monastiraki Square would be complete without marveling at the awe-inspiring views of the Parthenon, standing sentinel atop the Acropolis, a reminder of Athens’ ancient glory.

This is the ideal backdrop to begin your food tour. Here is where your tour group will gather, make introductions, and be on your way.

Before you head off on the tour, take note of the adjacent Monastiraki Metro Station for future reference. It provides convenient access to other parts of the city, such as the Acropolis, the Ancient Agora, and Syntagma Square. The metro line also connects you to other major transportation hubs, including the Athens International Airport and the Port of Piraeus.

Safety Tip: Monastiraki Square is generally considered safe, but like any bustling urban area, stay vigilant and aware of your surroundings and belongings to ensure you have a pleasant experience.

2. Whimsical Encounters Await at Little KooK

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Step into the pages of a picture book at Little Kooks.

As you venture down the cobblestone paths to Little KooK, you’ll step into a whimsical wonderland straight out of a fairy tale. Whether you indulge in a meal here or not, the enchantment of this scene on Karaiskaki and Pittaki Street will leave a lasting impression.

As you stroll past Little Kook on your food tour, be sure to stop and take some unique selfies. This is one colorful Intagrammable scene!

If you decide to return to Little Kook after the tour, the café’s enchanting indoor décor is equally vibrant. It features larger-than-life props, colorful decorations, and elaborate themed displays that bring wonder and delight. And the menu is equally enchanting, with a selection of decadent desserts, indulgent drinks, and savory treats to suit your inner child.

Tip: Little Kook tends to be busiest during weekends and peak tourist seasons. Consider visiting during weekdays or off-peak hours. If you’re hoping to secure a prime spot for dining or photo opportunities, arrive early to beat the crowds. (They usually do not take reservations.)

3. Try Koulouri – Sesame Delights

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Delicious sesame rounds or ‘koulouri’ fresh out of the oven.

Continuing your journey, you’ll sample koulori, made by hand in one of Athen’s most famous bakeries.

These traditional sesame bread rings are synonymous with Athenian street food. These warm, crunchy rounds also known as “Greek sesame bread rings” are a beloved staple of Athens street food.

Although made with simple ingredients, koulouri packs a punch of flavor and texture that’s hard to resist. Traditional koulouria are typically plain, but you’ll also find innovative variations from chocolate-covered koulouri to stuffed versions filled with cheese, spinach, or meat.

Look for koulouri at bakeries, street stalls, and markets throughout Athens. They are an affordable and convenient snack perfect to enjoy on the go.

Here’s a fun fact. Many Athens street vendors are supplied with koulouri by this well-respected family bakery. Located in a quaint corner of the city, the bakery has an old-world charm and is filled with the comforting aroma of hand-crafted, freshly baked koulouri. That’s just where you’ll taste them on the food tour–fresh out of the oven.

Tip: Generally, a single koulouri can range from €0.50 to €1.50. Street vendors and small bakeries may offer more affordable options, while upscale cafes or specialty bakeries may charge slightly higher prices, especially for gourmet or stuffed variations of koulouri.

4. Unveil Bougatsa: A Pastry Paradise Awaits

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See phyllo dough being hand-made and sample sweet and savory bougatsa.
best athens food tour bougatsa | Enjoy Travel Life
Custard-filled bougatsa is a must-try in Athens!

Next on your itinerary is a visit to a charming cafe/bakery, where you’ll witness the art of crafting bougatsa – a delectable phyllo pastry filled with creamy custard or savory fillings. Bougatsa is a quintessential Greek pastry cherished for its flaky layers and rich fillings, like cheese, spinach, or meat.

While you can find bougatsa at bakeries and pastry shops throughout Greece, certain establishments, like the one we visited on our food tour, are renowned for their expertise in crafting this beloved delicacy.

These bakeries often use time-honored recipes and traditional techniques to create bougatsa that’s both authentic and irresistible. For example, Bougatsadiko Psirri is a popular bakery located in the Psirri neighborhood of Athens, Greece with a warm, inviting atmosphere.

One of the most fascinating aspects of bougatsa is its preparation process, which requires skill and precision. Watching the skilled bakers expertly layer the delicate phyllo dough and carefully fold it around the luscious filling is a true testament to the artistry behind this beloved pastry.

Watching the skilled hands of the bakers expertly prepare the delicate dough is a true delight. For anyone who’s bought frozen phyllo dough, this centuries-old tradition and craftsmanship process is truly humbling.

Tip: Bougatsa vs. Galaktabouriko? Bougatsa and Galaktoboureko are both Greek pastries with phyllo dough, but they differ in filling and texture. Bougatsa has a creamy custard filling (sweet or savory) layered in flaky phyllo, often dusted with powdered sugar. Galaktoboureko has a semolina custard filling with milk, sugar, and eggs, encased in crispy phyllo layers, then soaked in sweet syrup. Both offer unique Greek flavors and textures, showcasing the richness of Greek culinary tradition. Take a taste test and see if you can pick a favorite!

5. Exploring Chios Mastiha: A Unique Greek Experience

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Mastiha-infused elixirs.
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The mastic tree: a natural source of mastiha resin.
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Bits of masatiha resin.

Mastiha, made from the resin of the mastic tree native to the Greek island of Chios, offers a unique and distinctive flavor profile. It’s a subtly sweet and refreshing taste with a hint of pine and herbal notes. Some describe Mastiha’s flavor as delicate, earthy, and slightly floral.

While the mastic tree grows elsewhere in the world, only the variety in Chios produces this resin. The resin is collected through small cuts in the tree, a process that doesn’t harm the tree and has been practiced for centuries.

You’ll find this versatile ingredient in both sweet and savory dishes, as well as in beverages and confections.

But mastika is most valued for its purported healing property. Rich in antioxidants and antimicrobial properties, mastika is believed to offer benefits for gastrointestinal health, oral hygiene, and skin care.

That’s why you’ll find Chios mastika is incorporated into various products, including lozenges, soaps, alcoholic beverages, and other products.

Along your food tour, you’ll step into a boutique store offering a range of Chios mastiha products and sample the scents and flavors. It’s a unique experience to explore this aspect of Greek culture and natural remedies.

You may even want to bring some home!

6. Exploring Syntagma Square: Athens’ Vibrant Heart

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The Greek Parliament building in Syntagma Square.
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Evzones, the elite Greek presidential guards.

Syntagma Square, located in the heart of Athens, is a bustling hub that serves as a focal point for both locals and tourists.

Flanked by important buildings like the Greek Parliament, it the geographical, political, and cultural center of Athens.

Here, visitors can witness the impressive sight of the changing of the guard ceremony performed by the Evzones, Greece’s elite presidential guard.

Syntagma Square has been the focal point of many significant events in Greek history. One of the most notable moments occurred in 1973 when a student uprising against the military junta took place, leading to the fall of the regime.

Additionally, the square has been the site of numerous political demonstrations and rallies, reflecting the ongoing struggle for democracy and social change in Greece. Its central location and historical significance make Syntagma Square a symbolic hub of political and social activity in Athens.

Surrounding the square, you’ll find upscale hotels, shops, and restaurants, making it a vibrant area to explore. Syntagma Square is also a major transportation hub, with metro and bus connections to various parts of the city.

Tip: Time your visit to Syntagma Square to coincide with the Changing of the Guard ceremony at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, located in front of the Greek Parliament building. This ceremonial event takes place every hour and is a captivating display of precision and tradition, complete with colorful uniforms, intricate footwork, and traditional Greek music. You’ll want to arriving a few minutes early for a good view.

7. Accommodations Fit for Royalty: The Grande Bretagne Hotel

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The elegant Grande Bretagne Hotel on Syntagma Square.

You’ll find several upscale hotels located near Syntagma Square in Athens, including the Grande Bretagne Hotel. This is one of the most renowned and historic luxury hotels in the city.

Its prime location offers views of the square and the Greek Parliament building, making it an ideal place to see if you’re seeking luxury accommodations in the heart of Athens.

The hotel has a rich heritage dating back to the 19th century and has hosted numerous notable guests over the years, including royalty, celebrities, and political figures.

As you might expect, the interior is elegant and opulent, with luxurious rooms and suites on offer. You’ll enjoy modern amenities and stunning views of the city or the Acropolis. The Grande Bretagne Hotel also features a spa, fitness center, restaurant, and rooftop pool.

You can expect a stay at the Grande Bretagne Hotel to range from around €300 to over €1000 per night for a standard room, depending on the season, with suites and premium accommodations commanding higher rates.

Tip: Visit the Grande Bretagne Hotel’s iconic rooftop bar terrace GB Roof Garden. It’s open to the public and is a great place to enjoy breathtaking views of the Acropolis, Lycabettus Hill, and the city skyline. Whether you’re indulging in a refreshing cocktail at the rooftop bar, indulging in gourmet Mediterranean cuisine, or simply taking in the panoramic vistas, the terrace offers a truly unforgettable experience.

8. Immerse Yourself in Cultural Encounters

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Panagia Kapnikarea Church in Athens.
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One of several statues on the church grounds.

Your culinary journey takes you next to the Panagia Kapnikarea Church, a serene oasis amidst the city’s bustling streets. Here, take a moment to soak in the tranquility of its courtyard, steeped in history and tradition.

The Panagia Kapnikarea Church, situated in the bustling heart of Athens, is a hidden gem that dates back to the 11th century. Nestled amidst the modern cityscape, this ancient Byzantine church stands as a testament to Athens’ rich history and cultural heritage.

The Panagia Kapnikarea Church is one of the oldest churches in Athens, and its long history and architectural significance make it a must-visit landmark.

One of the most striking features of the church is its unique architectural design, characterized by its octagonal shape and domed roof. The interior of the church boasts breathtaking Byzantine frescoes, intricate mosaics, and ornate iconography.

The church grounds are a tranquil sanctuary amidst the hustle and bustle of the city. Whether you’re seeking solace in its peaceful ambiance, admiring its architectural beauty, or delving into its storied past, a visit to this historic church is sure to leave a lasting impression.

Tip: As with any religious site, dress modestly when entering the Panagia Kapnikarea Church out of respect for its sacred significance. This typically means covering shoulders and knees and avoiding revealing clothing.

9. The Timeless Beauty of the University of Athens

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Many of the buildings of University of Athens are architecturally stunning.

As your Athens food tour progresses, you’ll likely stroll past The University of Athens on the way to your next stop.

Also known as the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, it is the oldest university in Greece (1837) and one of the most prestigious institutions of higher learning in the country.

The university’s main campus is located in the heart of Athens, near the historic center and iconic landmarks such as the Acropolis. It features a collection of beautiful neoclassical buildings that date back to the 19th century, giving it a timeless and elegant atmosphere.

One of the most notable buildings on campus is the Neoclassical Propylaea, which serves as the university’s main entrance and is adorned with impressive columns and intricate architectural details. Other highlights include the:

  • Historic University Tower
  • Central Library
  • Faculty of Law Building

You’ll want to take a moment to admire the university’s buildings for their architectural beauty and historical significance. While access to certain areas may be restricted to students and faculty, the campus itself is open to the public. So, you can stroll through its grounds and appreciate its architectural heritage.

Tip: Visit the National Library of Greece and the Academy of Athens, both located near the University of Athens campus. These historic institutions offer fascinating insights into Greek culture, history, and academia.

10. Exploring Athens’ Vibrant Street Art Scene

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Athens street art by Vasmou.
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Athens street art by INO.

Athens boasts a dynamic street art scene, with colorful murals and graffiti adorning its streets, alleys, and buildings.

You’ll want to explore neighborhoods like Exarchia and Psirri to discover an array of artistic expressions, from politically charged pieces to abstract designs. Don’t miss the chance to capture photos of these captivating artworks and immerse yourself in Athens’ thriving urban culture.

On you’re food tour, you’ll pass by a few noteworthy pieces, including a thought-provoking mural by INO. Keep an eye out for INO’s distinctive style as well as other artist’s murals while your exploring the Athens’ food scene.

Tip: One notable piece of street art by INO can be found in the Exarchia neighborhood of Athens. It’s located on Koletti Street, near the intersection with Themistokleous Street.

11. Greek Coffee Rituals

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Greek coffee brewing in brikis on hot sand.
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Savor Greek coffee – but avoid the grounds at the bottom!

Continuing your tour, you’ll want to indulge in the ritual of Greek coffee. Savor its rich, robust flavor brewed to perfection. With each sip, you’ll feel a deeper connection to Athens’ vibrant culture and heritage.

Greek coffee, also known as “ellinikos kafes” or “Greek-style coffee,” is a traditional beverage deeply ingrained in Greek culture. It is similar to Turkish coffee in preparation and taste, but it holds a special place in the hearts of Greeks as a symbol of hospitality and social connection.

Greek coffee is made using a special pot called a “briki” or “cezve,” which is typically made of copper or brass and has a long handle. The coffee grounds, usually a fine powder, are mixed with water and sugar (if desired) in the briki and heated.

Unlike espresso, Greek coffee is not brewed under pressure but instead allowed to simmer slowly. One distinctive feature of Greek coffee preparation is the traditional use of hot sand as a heat source. This provides gentle and even heat for the coffee to brew.

Greek coffee is typically served in small, handleless cups called “kafedes” or “tsitzikia.” The coffee is poured directly from the briki into the cup, including any foam that forms on top during the brewing process. The presentation of Greek coffee is simple yet elegant, with the rich, dark liquid topped with a layer of frothy foam.

Drinking Greek coffee is a ritual in itself.

It is customary to let the coffee sit for a moment after it’s served to allow the grounds to settle at the bottom of the cup. When you’re sipping Greek coffee, it’s important to do so slowly and mindfully, as the grounds can settle at the bottom.

Overall, the experience of drinking Greek coffee goes beyond the beverage itself – it’s about taking a moment to pause, connect with others, and savor the rich flavors and aromas of this beloved tradition.

Tip: While savoring Greek coffee, remember not to drink the grounds settled at the bottom of the cup. Take small sips and let the rich flavors envelop your palate, but be mindful of the fine grounds that may remain.

12. Exploring the Agora: A Culinary Adventure

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Colorful produce at the Greek market.
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Vendors offer samples of roasted nuts.
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A selection of the freshest fish at the market.

Venture next into one of Athens’ Marketplaces, you’ll enjoy a feast for the senses. From sampling roasted nuts to savoring exquisite olive oils, you’ll revel in the abundance of flavors and aromas.

Here are some of what you can expect to find at the Agora (market) in Monastiraki:

  • Fresh Produce: As you wander through the market’s winding alleys and stalls, you’ll encounter colorful displays of fresh fruits and vegetables sourced from local farms and producers. From plump tomatoes and fragrant herbs to crisp greens and juicy citrus fruits, the Varvakios Agora showcases the best of Greece’s bountiful harvest. Greece’s mild climate and diverse terrain make it ideal for cultivating a wide variety of fruits and vegetables, staples of the Mediterranean diet.
  • Nuts and Fruit: Alongside the fresh produce, you’ll find vendors selling a tempting assortment of nuts, dried fruits, and artisanal olive oils. Whether you’re craving roasted almonds, crunchy pistachios, or creamy tahini, the market offers a wide selection of wholesome snacks and pantry staples to satisfy every palate.
  • Olives: Greece is one of the world’s leading producers of olives and olive oil, renowned for its superior quality and distinct flavor profiles. At the market, you’ll encounter a dazzling array of olives, ranging from plump and juicy Kalamata olives to smaller, tangier varieties like Halkidiki and Amfissa. Each type of olive boasts its own unique flavor and texture, shaped by factors such as the region where it’s grown and the methods used for curing and brining.
  • Seafood: Varvakios Agora boasts a vibrant fish market offering an impressive range of freshly caught seafood. From whole fish to octopus and squid, it’s a haven for seafood enthusiasts. You’ll also find cured and preserved options like salted anchovies and smoked fish, perfect for enhancing your dishes. Surrounded by the Aegean, Ionian, and Mediterranean Seas, Greece’s fishing industry flourishes, supplying the market with an array of seafood.

Visiting the marketplace is an immersive cultural experience that allows you to connect with Athens’ culinary heritage and vibrant local community. Take your time to stroll through the market’s bustling lanes, interact with friendly vendors, and sample the diverse array of flavors and aromas that fill the air.

Whether you’re a seasoned chef seeking inspiration for your next meal or a curious traveler eager to explore Athens’ food scene, a visit to the Varvakios Agora promises an unforgettable journey through the heart of Greek gastronomy.

Tip: While Monastiraki Market is one of the most popular and vibrant markets in Athens, it’s not the only one worth visiting. Consider venturing off the beaten path to discover other local markets, such as the Central Market (Varvakeios Agora), too.

13. Souvlaki & Gyro: A Meaty Taste of Greek Street Food

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Sampling souvlaki and pita at a popular Greek street food vendor.

Located close to the bustling marketplace, you can find a quick and delicious taste of Greek street food. Whether you opt for a souvlaki skewer or a pita filled with savory gyro meat, onion, tomato, and tangy mustard, the flavors are sure to delight your taste buds.

With this casual vibe and informal setting, H Bolvi invites you to order at the counter and take a seat at one of their barrel tables. Prepare to immerse yourself in the laid-back atmosphere of Athens’ street food scene.

Here, you’ll indulge in Greek street food classics like gyro and souvlaki featuring seasoned meat cooked on a rotisserie or skewered and grilled, served in pita wraps with fresh veggies and tzatziki sauce. It’s a convenient and satisfying meal on the go.

Souvlaki, renowned worldwide for its delicious flavors and easy preparation, consists of skewered and grilled meat, typically pork, chicken, lamb, or beef. The meat is marinated in olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, herbs, and spices. Once cooked to perfection, it’s then served wrapped in a warm pita with fresh veggies and tzatziki sauce.

With ancient origins in Greece, souvlaki remains a popular street food enjoyed during festive occasions, family gatherings, and outdoor events, fostering warmth and camaraderie.

In addition to gyro and souvlaki, H Bolvi offers a variety of other Greek specialties, such as Greek salads, spanakopita (spinach pie), tiropita (cheese pie), and more. Whether you’re craving a quick bite or a hearty meal, you’re sure to find something delicious to satisfy your appetite at H Bolvi.

Tip: On average, a basic souvlaki wrap or skewer typically ranges from €2 to €4, making it an affordable and budget-friendly option for a quick and satisfying meal. However, prices may be slightly higher in tourist areas or upscale restaurants.

14. Greek Cheese: A World of Flavor

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Greece is famous world-wide for feta cheese.
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Try a variety of delicious Greek cheeses.
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Sample of a creamy, soft Greek cheese.
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You’ll sample several types of Greek cheese on the best Athens food tour.

At the local cheesemonger, you’ll discover a treasure trove of Greek cheeses waiting to be sampled. While Feta Cheese may be the most well-known, you’ll find a diverse array of cheeses to tantalize your palate. Try a diverse selection of Greek cheeses, from creamy and tangy to sharp and salty bites.

Here are some of the most popular Greek cheeses:

  • Feta: Arguably Greece’s most famous cheese, feta is a brined white cheese made from sheep’s milk or a combination of sheep’s and goat’s milk. It has a crumbly texture and tangy flavor, making it a versatile ingredient in Greek salads, pastries, and mezes.
  • Halloumi: Originally from Cyprus but widely enjoyed in Greece, halloumi is a semi-hard, unripened cheese made from a mixture of sheep’s and goat’s milk. Known for its squeaky texture and ability to hold its shape when grilled or fried, halloumi is often served as a standalone dish or incorporated into sandwiches and mezze platters.
  • Kefalotyri: A hard, salty cheese made from sheep’s or goat’s milk, kefalotyri is often aged for several months to develop its robust flavor and firm texture. It’s commonly used as a grating cheese in Greek cuisine, adding depth of flavor to dishes like pastitsio (Greek lasagna) and spanakopita (spinach pie).
  • Graviera: A popular table cheese in Greece, graviera is a semi-hard cheese made from sheep’s milk or a blend of sheep’s and goat’s milk. It has a smooth texture and slightly sweet, nutty flavor, making it a delightful addition to cheese platters and sandwiches.
  • Mizithra: Mizithra is a fresh, soft cheese made from sheep’s milk or a combination of sheep’s and goat’s milk. It has a mild, slightly tangy flavor and creamy texture, making it a versatile ingredient in both sweet and savory dishes. Mizithra is often used in desserts like cheese pies and pastries.

These are just a few examples of the diverse range of cheeses produced in Greece, each reflecting the country’s rich culinary traditions and regional variations. Whether enjoyed on its own, paired with wine and olives, or incorporated into traditional Greek dishes, Greek cheese offers a delightful taste of the country’s gastronomic heritage.

Tip: When selecting feta cheese, look for options made from sheep’s milk or a blend of sheep’s and goat’s milk, as these are typically considered higher quality. Seek out feta that is brined and stored in blocks rather than pre-crumbled varieties, as this helps preserve its flavor and texture.

15. Sit Down Bites: A Culinary Extravaganza

best athens food tour greek olives | Enjoy Travel Life
Olives are a staple of Greek culture, with many different varieties.
best athens food tour giganta beans | Enjoy Travel Life
Giganta beans.
best athens food tour eggplant | Enjoy Travel Life
Roasted peppers and eggplant.
best athens food tour shrimp | Enjoy Travel Life
Fried shrimp, olives.

Finally, your food tour culminates in a delightful spread of sit-down bites that showcase the best of Greek cuisine. From briny olives and succulent meats to crisp vegetables and indulgent seafood, each dish is a celebration of Greece’s culinary heritage.

As you savor the flavors of marinated chicken, roasted peppers, and zucchini dumplings with tzatziki, you’ll find yourself surrounded by friends and empty plates, reveling in the joy of shared experiences and unforgettable flavors.

The sit-down bites portion of your food tour in Athens offered a delightful array of Greek dishes meant to be savored and enjoyed in a relaxed setting. Here’s a closer look at some of the dishes you may sample, depending on where your tour ends:

  • Greek Olives: Not just Kalamata, Greek olives come in a variety of sizes, shapes, and flavors, each offering its own unique taste experience. Whether large or small, wrinkled or firm, Greek olives are known for their rich, briny flavor and are often enjoyed as a standalone snack or incorporated into salads and mezze platters.
  • Greek Wine: Greece has a rich tradition of winemaking dating back thousands of years, with a diverse range of indigenous grape varieties and wine regions. From crisp whites to full-bodied reds, Greek wines offer a spectrum of flavors and styles that pair beautifully with the country’s cuisine. Greek wine is steeped in history, with vine cultivation dating back to ancient times. The country’s diverse terroirs yield a wide range of varietals, from crisp Assyrtiko whites on the volcanic slopes of Santorini to robust Xinomavro reds in Northern Greece. Indigenous grapes like Agiorgitiko, Moschofilero, and Malagousia showcase Greece’s rich viticultural heritage. Winemakers blend tradition with innovation, crafting wines that reflect both ancient techniques and modern expertise. With a focus on quality and sustainability, Greek wineries produce a diverse array of wines that captivate the palate with their unique flavors and character, offering a taste of Greece’s terroir in every sip.
  • Sausage with Lemon: A flavorful dish featuring sliced sausage cooked with lemon juice and herbs, resulting in a tangy and aromatic flavor profile. The addition of lemon adds brightness to the dish, while the savory sausage provides a satisfying depth of flavor.
  • Roasted Red Peppers and Eggplant: Roasted vegetables are a staple of Greek cuisine, offering a smoky and caramelized flavor that complements a variety of dishes. Roasted red peppers and eggplant are often served as a standalone appetizer or incorporated into salads, spreads, and side dishes.
  • Marinated Chicken or Lamb: Tender pieces of chicken or lamb marinated in a mixture of olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, and herbs, then grilled to perfection. The marinade infuses the meat with flavor and helps to keep it moist and juicy during cooking, resulting in a dish that’s both succulent and aromatic.
  • Giganta Beans: Giganta beans, also known as giant beans, are a type of large white bean native to Greece. They have a creamy texture and mild flavor, making them a versatile ingredient in soups, stews, and salads. Often marinated or cooked in a tomato-based sauce, giganta beans are a hearty and satisfying addition to any meal.
  • Fried Shrimp: Crispy and golden-fried shrimp served with a squeeze of lemon and a sprinkle of salt, offering a delightful contrast of textures and flavors. Whether enjoyed as an appetizer or a main course, fried shrimp are a popular seafood dish in Greece.
  • Zucchini Dumplings with Tzatziki: Zucchini dumplings, also known as kolokithokeftedes, are savory fritters made with grated zucchini, herbs, and cheese, then fried until golden and crispy. They’re often served with tzatziki sauce, a creamy yogurt and cucumber dip, for dipping or drizzling.
  • Marbled Xalva: Xalva, also known as halva, is a sweet dessert made from sesame paste, sugar, and honey, with the addition of nuts or dried fruits for extra flavor and texture. Marbled xalva features swirls of different colors and flavors, adding visual interest to this traditional Greek treat.

Tip: When enjoying a sit-down meal in Greece, it’s customary to take your time and savor each dish, embracing the concept of “slow dining.” Greeks often view meals as a social occasion meant to be enjoyed leisurely, so don’t rush through your food. Engage in conversation with your dining companions, share stories, and relish the flavors of each dish. Additionally, it’s common to express gratitude to the host or chef for the meal by saying “Καλή όρεξη” (pronounced “kah-LEE oh-REHK-see”), which means “Enjoy your meal” or “Bon appétit.”

By the end of the tour, you’ll have made new friends, experienced the richness of Greek foods, and explored the city. It’s an amazing way to get to know Athens better.

athens food on foot group photo | Enjoy Travel Life
Our tour group, led by the knowledgable Anna of Athens Food on Foot.

Final Thoughts on the Best Athens Food Tour

My food tour in Athens was a true journey of discovery that offered a glimpse into the heart and soul of the city and its culinary scene. Each bite and new experience deepened my appreciation for Greece’s rich culinary traditions and vibrant culture.

So, I highly recommend booking a tour with Athens Food on Foot. Whether you’re a seasoned foodie or a curious traveler, you’ll have an unforgettable adventure in Athens!

Jackie Gately at the beach

About the Author: Jackie Gately

I'm Jackie Gately, your travel confidante and the creative force behind Enjoy Travel Life, awarded the "Best Casual-Luxury Lifestyle Blog (USA)" in Travel and Tourism by LUXlife Magazine for four consecutive years.

With 25 years of published expertise, I'm a seasoned writer, editor, and photographer curating inspiring travel guides and lifestyle tips for empty nesters. I hope to kindle your spirit of exploration, encouraging you to overcome obstacles and turn your dreams into reality.

Learn to minimize your pre-travel angst and maximize the joy of exploration with insights from my experiences. Let's make every adventure a celebration of this exciting phase of life! 

Follow my social channels for more inspiration.

Jackie Gately at the beach

About the Author: Jackie Gately

I'm Jackie Gately, your travel confidante and the creative force behind Enjoy Travel Life, awarded the "Best Casual-Luxury Lifestyle Blog (USA)" in Travel and Tourism by LUXlife Magazine for four consecutive years.

With 25 years of published expertise, I'm a seasoned writer, editor, and photographer curating inspiring travel guides and lifestyle tips for empty nesters. I hope to kindle your spirit of exploration, encouraging you to overcome obstacles and turn your dreams into reality.

Learn to minimize your pre-travel angst and maximize the joy of exploration with insights from my experiences. Let's make every adventure a celebration of this exciting phase of life! 

Follow my social channels for more inspiration.

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