|Distance from NLH FIX||1.6 km (walking)|
|Directions||Open in Google Maps|
A few meters away from Syntagma metro station and right next to the Greek parliament lies the national garden which, together with the Zappeion hall garden, covers 24 hectares full of vegetation, rare kinds of plants, saplings and birds.
The Garden is accessible from seven entrances. The central entrance on Amalias Avenue, one on Vasilissis Sophias Avenue, three on Irodou Attikou Street and two more in the area of Zappeion park.
A few steps into the garden allows you to escape the hurly burly of the city. Many Athenians and travelers prefer the National Garden for their exercise and you will spot people jogging through this luxuriant city paradise.
The Garden is home to 7,000 trees, 40,000 bushes and other plants, making up 519 species and varieties. 102 of them are Greek, with Judas trees, oleanders and carob trees the undoubted stars, while others come from different countries all over the world such as Australian pines or Chinese trees-of-heaven. Centenarian Holm oaks, cypress trees and Canary Island date palms are also amongst the plants that have been a feature of the garden since it was first created.
In this green heart there are also six lakes, all with a sizeable complement of playful ducks waiting to feed them!
One of the most amazing finds in the garden is the Roman floor, uncovered at a depth of one meter, belonging to the courtyard of a Roman villa very near what is now the entrance on Vasilissis Sophias Avenue.
A sight that attracts the visitors to the Garden is the famous sun dial situated at the main entrance. The shadow of the hand, depending on the position of the sun, indicates the time, which everyone tries to guess at without looking at their watch or mobile phone; a momentary return to our pre-mechanized past.
The Garden also has a conservatory, children’s library and a small café. The entrance to the traditional café in the Garden is on Irodou Attikou Street.
A walk in the National Garden is love at first sight. It isn’t only a verdant oasis in the center of a metropolis. The heart of Greek and Athenian history beats in the National Garden and it is there waiting for you to explore it.