Petralona (coming from the Greek word Pétrina Alonia –meaning “stone threshing floors“–) is, no doubt, one of the coolest and trendiest neighbourhoods in Athens, and you can find hundreds of recommendations about where to go and what to do there, but what would you think if I told you that in its heart you can find an area –allow me to call it a sub-neighbourhood– with houses made of stone, narrow streets and an unexpected quietness? Here’s a bit of the deepest villages of Greece located in the centre of Athens.
The path I propose here is not just beautiful and picturesque but it’s also part of the Athenian Contemporary History. Let me try to give you some clues about it.
For a long time there was an Army Naval Observatory at the Filopappou Hill. Old chronicles talk about a huge and beautiful building where Naval Soldiers were also receiving training. In the early ’50s it was moved to Pireas and the building was destroyed. According to history, it was Queen Frederica the one that proposed that those stones should be used to build houses for the families that moved to Athens in order to work in the old gas factory very close by (check the article by fellow Spotter Sofia).
This is a historical and hidden district where life goes on in slow motion.