2D/1N Backpacking Athens Without A Tour (Part 10) : Affordable Lunch At Veranda a.k.a Bepanta Greek Restaurant & Cafe And Happy Athens Train Tour

All that sightseeing and walking about in the Monastiraki and  Plaka neighbourhood, Athens has made my sister and I hungry. So, after we explored the Roman Angora, we found ourselves wandering along Panos Street until we came to a corner of a junction between Dexippou Street and Adrianou Street. That was where we found a nice place to have our lunch. 🙂

 

Veranda – Greek Restaurant & Café

During our exploration, we came across several Greek restaurants scattered about in the area. Some of these restaurants are strategically located beside Athens’ archaeological sites, giving patrons a chance to dine while enjoying the ancient view before them.

One particular Greek restaurant caught our attention and that restaurant was Veranda a.k.a Bepanta Greek Restaurant & Café. At first glance, we instantly fell in love with the place. Actually, we love the idea of casual dining outdoors, sitting under the trees and an umbrella too as we relax and observe our surroundings.

In other words, Veranda Greek Restaurant & Café offers its patrons the perfect atmosphere for an afternoon lunch in Athens – just what my sister and I was looking for! 😉 Without hesitation, we got ourselves a table for two at a lovely spot and ordered our foods and drinks.

 

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Veranda Greek Restaurant & Cafe in Plaka, Athens
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Visitors and local residents enjoying their Greek lunch at Veranda Greek Restaurant & Cafe in Plaka, Athens

 

Good & Affordably Priced Greek Foods & Drinks

To our surprise, the foods and drinks listed on the menu cost much less than what we expected especially when we’re dining at such a fine place. The restaurant serves a variety of Greek appetizers, traditional dishes, snacks and desserts.

My sister decided to have the chicken soulaki (grilled marinated chicken) with fries while I had the soutzoukakia (Greek meatballs in tomato sauce) with rice. For our drinks, we each had a glass of chilled red wine sangria to quench our thirst. 😀

The waiter was friendly and attentive. Needless to say, the service was good too. We sat back, relaxed and simply enjoyed the excellent vibe and view around us. Our drinks were the first to arrive, followed by our aromatic foods several minutes later. Many visitors and local residents eventually joined us for lunch, happily chit-chatting away without worries.

 

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Our table for two at Veranda Greek Restaurant & Cafe in Plaka, Athens
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Eva posing with our Greek lunch at Veranda Greek Restaurant & Cafe in Plaka, Athens
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Erika posing with our Greek lunch at Veranda Greek Restaurant & Cafe in Plaka, Athens
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An affordable Greek lunch at Veranda Greek Restaurant & Cafe in Plaka, Athens – chicken soulaki (grilled marinated chicken) with fries, soutzoukakia (Greek meatballs in tomato sauce) with rice and two glasses of chilled red wine sangria costs about €50-€60, inclusive of taxes and service charge 🙂
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Eva and Erika enjoying their chilled red wine sangria at Veranda Greek Restaurant & Cafe in Plaka, Athens

 

Yet Another Encounter With The Notorious Rose Scam

Remember the story about our encounter with an old lady at the ancient Roman Market in Monastiraki who forcefully placed a rose into my sister’s pocket and demanded money for it? Read the whole story here. This time, we had another encounter with the notorious rose scam, but instead of an old lady, it was a young girl. 🙁

As we waited for our food to arrived, a young girl came out of nowhere and approached our table. She probably thought we were easy targets, but she was wrong! She gave us the sweetest smile and handed a stalk of rose to us saying it was a “gift”. Knowing her intentions, we politely declined her “gift”. She insisted that we should accept the “gift” and when we refused, she proceeded to beg for €5! We didn’t want to encourage begging, so we chose to ignore her.

The waiter from the restaurant saw what was happening and instantly shooed her away. She left mumbling some words we couldn’t understand. Afterwards, came an old lady peddling handwoven shawls at €10 each. My sister and I have all the shawls we need. So, we politely turned down her offer and she walked away mumbling to herself.

Apart from the unpleasant encounter with the notorious rose scam for the second time, we enjoyed our lunch and had a good time at Veranda Greek Restaurant & Café. The foods and drinks was good and the price was inexpensive. We wouldn’t mind going back there if we visit Athens again. Because I lost the receipt, I’m unable to state the exact price of the foods and drinks we had, but rest assured, it’s inexpensive. The total bill came to about €50-€60, inclusive of taxes and service charge. 😉

 

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The relaxing ambience of the outdoor dining experience at Veranda Greek Restaurant & Cafe in Plaka, Athens
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Patrons can dine and enjoy the view of Athens archeological site at Veranda Greek Restaurant & Cafe in Plaka, Athens

 

Happy Athens Train – 60 Minutes of Fun Sightseeing Around Athens’ Famous Sights & Monuments

With our stomachs full, we made our way back to the Monastiraki Metro Station. Along the way, we saw a bright red toy-like street train parked by the street at the ancient Roman Market in Monastiraki. Oh boy, it was the Happy Athens Train!! 😀 My sister and I were excited to have a closer look at the eye-catching train.

The Happy Athens Train provides a 60-minute fun sightseeing tour that takes visitors to Athens‘ most famous sights and monuments including the Acropolis, Plaka, Temple of Zeus, Thisseon, Monastiraki Square, Ancient and Roman Market, Zappeion, Panathinaiko Stadium, Theatre of Herodes Atticus, Hadrian Arch, New Acropolis Museum, etc. An adult ticket costs €6 whereas a child tickets costs €4.

Visitors will be able to enjoy fantastic views from the open-style train carriages, hop-on and hop-off as they please and see Athens in their own time and at their own pace, in safety and comfort. The Athens sightseeing tour with Athens Happy Train operates all year round. The trains start the tours at 9.00 am until 12.00 pm. All tours are guided with a guide on-board with commentary in English and Greek. 🙂 For more info, visit their official website here. Since we were running out of time, we had to give it a miss.

 

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The Happy Athens Train stop at the ancient Roman Market in Monastiraki, Athens
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The Happy Athens Train information board at the ancient Roman Market in Monastiraki, Athens

 

In A Nut Shell

At Monastiraki Metro Station, we took the train to Syntagma Metro Station and walked back to our Airbnb apartment. After packing our belongings and saying good bye to our host, we made our way to Athens International Airport by bus numbered X95. For information on how to travel from/to the airport – Athens city centre, read my blog post here. At the airport, we took the evening flight to Santorini via Ryanair and arrived safely on one of the most beautiful islands in the world. <3

That marks the end of our 2D/1N stay in Athens, Greece. To sum it up, my sister and I had a wonderful and memorable time in the beautiful and friendly city of Athens, not to forget an extraordinary time in dreamy Santorini as well. A list of my travel experiences and blog posts on Athens and Santorini is available here. May the information shared here benefits travellers out there. Happy and safe travels to all! 🙂

 

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