Exiting the subway from the airport at Monastiraki, Athens welcomes you with a stunning view of the Acropolis.

Right next to Monastiraki, ruins of Hadrian's Library, originally built AD 132, hint at the rich cultural history of the city.

Climbing the hill towards the Acropolis reveals a stunning view over the city that highlights Athen's position surrounded by mountains.

The World Heritage Acropolis consists of ruins of several ancient buildings, most of which are actively being preserved. Ongoing construction is a regular sight on its premises.

One of the smaller temples at the Akropolis is the Erechtheion, dedicated to both Athena and Poseidon. Parts of it have been replaced by artificial stone, a common occurrence in the other ruins as well.

The largest and most famous building at the Acropolis, the Parthenon. This 438 BC temple of Athena can be seen in the morning sun from the East here.

At the foot of the Acropolis towards the south, there are two historical amphitheaters. This picture shows the Theatre of Dionysus in front of the modern Acropolis Museum.

The walkways towards the acropolis are beautifully bordered by olive trees, as seen here in the afternoon sun.

Hadrian's Arch, likely built in 131 or 132 AD to honor the roman emperor. Despite being a gate, it has never been part of the city walls.

Remnants of the Temple of Olympian Zeus, southeast of the Akropolis and just behind Hadrian's Arch.

85.1 million tonnes of white marble make up the Panathenaic Stadium originally built in 566 BC. It hosted the first modern Olympic Games in 1896.

Greek's climate allows clementine trees to grow. Since December is in the middle of the harvesting period for clementines, there were some ripe fruits on those trees.

The shortest path from the clementine trees flanking the Zappeion to the Greek parliament leads through the National Gardens.

Syntagma square is the home of the hellenic parliament. The setting sun illuminates it from the West.

Evzones, Greek Army elite light infantry in their traditional uniform guard the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in front of the parliament. Traces of their uncommon style of parade can be seen on the ground.

Small churches can be found across Athen's city center. This one is -- somewhat ironically -- located in the middle of a huge shopping street.

Northeast of the Acropolis, the Ancient Agora is home to the largely intact 415 BC Temple of Hephaestus.

The right side of the Ancient Agora is bounded by the Stoa of Attalos. Originally built between 159 and 138 BC, it's current version is a 1956 reconstruction by American architects.

My hotel's breakfast room offered a stunning view over Monastiraki towards the Acropolis.