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The lovers' hill

04 March 2010 / 23:03:10  GRReporter
3950 reads

Emanuela Karastoyanova

Every city has its highest point – some kind of “stairway to heaven”. A place where the local citizens come to rise high up. Higher than the roof of their home, higher than the city, higher than themselves. To climb on the “roof of the city”. In Athens this place is the Likavitos hill. With its 227meters height it is an objective witness of the life of the people and along with the surrounding neighborhood it has the fame of one of the most romantic places in town. The legend tells that the hill has been formed by a stone, which the goddess Athena was carrying in her hands, however she dropped it on the ground when a raven brought her a bad news. Since then the ravens are black… Today Likavitos is a wonderful place for walks not only for the citizens of Athens, but for all the guests of the capital city. The view which opens ahead is remarkable. From here the streets of the town could be seen in details, the Acropolis, the port in Piraeus as well and with the telescope available for tourists also the island of Aegina.

At the very top meets us a small temple – the church St. George from the 19th century. Next to it proudly stands a bell tower and an olive tree – a symbol of Greece. It is worth it for one to go on this symbolical way up for a conversation with God. Who knows, may be the prayers whispered from such a high place are better heard...?

Few meters under the hill itself there is the café – restaurant of Likavitos. It feels nice for a person to sit in it if not for anything else, at least to drink a cup of hot chocolate because the view which opens in front is one of a kind.

We could get to Likavitos by a lift (the so called teleferik, for which the ticket costs 6 euro in both directions) or by foot through the park accompanied by huge hundred years old trees from which leaves are proudly looking at us the written names of tourists from all over the world. “Here was Maria from Serbia” or simply “Jose – Barcelona” – an old habit of the man kind to capture moments and demonstrate presence.

Likavitos – a meeting from above with the town and the time inside. The time which is so unimportant and relative when looked from above. And what does it look like from down there? Sometimes friendly slow and in pretence asleep, other times dynamic, nervous or even neurotic it manages to slip from the rhythm of the day and follow its own lines. Offended. It only knows why…

Likavitos or “the hill of the lovers” is at last a date with love. There is no true couple in love which didn’t wish to climb “on the roof of the town” and to look at least once at the world from above. And there are plenty of people in love in Athens… And I doubt it there is a citizen of Athens who didn’t caress the town with his look from above. The town which never sleeps. One comes here for new hopes, dreams and wishes. Because wishing something at Likavitos is like tossing a coin in a fountain – for luck and just to come back here.


Tags: Likavitos lovers hill Attica
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