Visit the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Athens
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Athens is one of those cities that is known as much for its rich history as it is for its modern cultural opportunities. Tied into that rich sense of the past and of its culture is the fact that the Greek people have been through a lot through the centuries and they’ve certainly seen their share of war. Although the Greek people do a great job living in the moment and enjoying their lives, it is hard to forget the hardships of the past. Because of the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, which is located in Athens, they don’t need to forget.
Here’s more information about this must-see Athenian landmark:
What the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier Is
The Tomb of the Unknown soldier is located in Syntagma Square in Athens by the Hellenic Parliament building. The tomb honors all those Greek soldiers who were ever killed in war and each day, there is a special ceremony performed here that further honors the following. While visiting the city, you absolutely don’t want to miss the chance to not only see the tomb itself, but to view the ceremony if you are able. The Hellenic Parliament building, however, is more than just the parliament. That building has a rich history, as well, since it was the palace when Greece was ruled by a monarchy.
Best Time to View the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier
Of course, you can head to Syntagma Square at any time in order to view the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. It is guarded by an Evzone soldier who is dressed up in the traditional uniform. Every hour, there is a changing of the guard ceremony located at the tomb where one Evzone soldier comes to relieve the other of his duty. If you have a chance to watch this ceremony, it’s worth the effort. Every week at 11 AM on Sundays, there is an even larger ceremony where a group of soldiers marches to the tomb. There is also a band that marches with the soldiers, playing traditional Greek military songs. To get the full experience, you should try to not only watch the hourly changing of the guard ceremony at least once, but also the event that takes place on Sundays.
Information About the Evzones
The Evzone soldiers had different roles throughout Greek history, and today, their main role is to form the Presidential Guard, which is a full battalion made up of two companies and one command company. Their principal location is in a barracks located behind the Hellenic Parliament building. They do more than just guard the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and participate in the changing of the guards ceremony. They also take place in military parades and other official state parades.
The Tomb of the Unknown Soldier is a must-see landmark to visit while in Athens. The tomb is located near the Hellenic Parliament building and represents every Greek soldier who has ever fallen in war during battle. You won’t want to miss it!
This post was written by Greek Boston