Espa
our team

Tina

Founder Photo of Founder Tina

In 2010 I was at the highest point of my marketing career. And then the Greek crisis hit and the country went into freefall. I was left without a job and with little perspective of finding one any time soon.

That's the story of thousands of people around the world. What was new to me was the fear. No one had ever prepared me for that. I had done everything by the book and expected life to unfold in a very linear (and predictable) way.

Time went by and I still didn't know what to do.  And then one day I became very tired of being afraid. So I decided to create a job for myself. I didn’t analyze what the market wanted, didn't do any SWOT analysis or financial planning. Instead, I thought – what do you love doing?

I love travelling and exploring and understanding how people live in other places. I love peeking into their windows, no matter how improper that may be. And this is what I decided to do in my own city. I created my first Food Tour and went out there and did it. And this is how Alternative Athens was born. Out of fear and love.

I am now back to a comfortable life. Not secure, but a life less ordinary for me and, hopefully, for those co-travelers around me.  Of course the journey doesn’t end here. I always remind myself that what goes up must come down -at any time – and this makes me think about all the simple things that really matter in life.The fear may still be there. But now I know that whatever it takes and wherever life takes me, I can make it. And this is a comforting thought to go to bed with in a country like Greece today . 

Athens, May 2015

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(....and then Covid hit ☺ To be continued!)

Photo of tour Leader Andreas.

Andreas

tour Leader

I grew up in a neighbourhood called Nea Smyrni. The first settlers here were refugees from Asia Minor. People in our neighbourhood are proud of where they come from.

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Photo of travel designer Katia.

Katia

travel designer

As I was growing up, I jumped on every opportunity to create friendships without linguistic or other kinds of borders. It was never enough. 

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Photo of tour leader Pavlina.

Pavlina

tour leader

Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass; it's about learning to dance in the rain

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Photo of certified guide Vassia.

Vassia

certified guide

There is a book I like a lot. Its final sentence reads: “It is never too late to have a happy childhood”. 

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Photo of tour leader Niko a.k.a. Rude.

Niko a.k.a. Rude

tour leader

It must have been at the end of middle school when I discovered graffiti. My new hobby began stealing ‘precious’ time I could have used for studying for school. I realised that action had to be taken...

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Photo of Accounting Associate George.

George

Accounting Associate

As Euclid said, the laws of nature are but the mathematical thoughts of God. So, maybe the reason I developed an inclination to mathematics is because I was so connected to the earth since my childhood.

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Photo of tour leader antigoni.

antigoni

tour leader

There is a theory that claims that your name determines who you are. Antigone, the famous heroine of a Greek tragedy, defied the rules and for that she faced death.

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Photo of tour leader Josephine.

Josephine

tour leader

‘We must be willing to get rid of the life we have planned, so as to have the life that is waiting for us’. And so I did!

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Photo of tour leader maria.

maria

tour leader

Growing up, I had always thought that life always puts us on the right path. As I got older, however, I discovered that...

 

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Photo of tour leader katerina.

katerina

tour leader

I am a fan of poetry. Poems have the ability to paint a picture in just a few words… especially while traveling.

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Photo of tour leader Elizabeth.

Elizabeth

tour leader

The French poet Arthur Rimbaud once wrote that "Eternity is the sea mingled with the sun " and I guess there' s a little bit of truth of that in me.

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Photo of tour leader Tania.

Tania

tour leader

I was about five, and I was taking part in a school celebration. When I stood behind the microphone, my mind went blank and my mouth went dry. Tears welled up in my eyes.

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Awards & Accolades

Testimonials

"This tour was excellent! A three hour walk through the most interesting districts of Athens looking at the latest street art. Our guide Nikos was superb - well informed, engaged, and super friendly."

Costi S

"We had a great 2 hours with our tour guide, Tonia. She was very informative about the Olympic History in Greece and put us through our paces in the javelin throw, discus, long jump and shot put. We then made our way to the Olympic Stadium where we learned more about it's history and was able to run a lap. Highly recommend this tour for an out of the ordinary experience."

sbouldin

"Truly amazing! Some of the hidden sites have been our favorites while in Athens. The tour allowed us not only to see interesting places and some street art, but also gave us a feel for Greek culture and the lives of the residents of each neighborhood, something we could not get simply by ourselves. Our tour guide was exceptionally kind, and engaging; we felt we were walking with a friend. It was definitely a highlight of our trip, and we are so glad we did it."

offthebeatenpath2019