Scenic and sophisticated, Sounio’s main claim to fame is the Temple of Poseidon which commands a lofty perch at the tip of the peninsula.
Situated about an hour from Athens, serene Sounio is one of the most expensive places to live in Greece, a favourite among Athenians for time away in their huge, sleek holiday villas, and a sharp contrast to the hustle and bustle of the capital.
You can’t miss the Temple of Poseidon perched high on the headland, a Doric-style monument of local white marble, built in honour of the ancient sea god around 440 BC. English poet, Lord Byron, in a somewhat vandalistic act, carved his name into one of the temple’s pillars. Look closely to see it for yourself. Legend has it that, here, Aegeus, King of Athens leapt to his death, the Aegean Sea being named after him.
With one of the largest marinas in Attica, boat trips, including moonlight cruises are a popular pastime, or you could hire one to skipper yourself. Walking is another favourite among holidaymakers here, as the resort is surrounded by scenic Sounio National Park with its rich geological history.
Beaches are secluded, sheltered arcs of sand and shingle shelving gently down to the clear, warm sea. You’ll find most neatly dotted with sunbeds and parasols as well as changing and showering facilities. For days away from the beach, though, Athens is the place to go for attractions ranging from historical sites to the National Gardens or the splendid views from Lycabettus Hill, the highest in Athens. Alternatively, historic Lavrio is just 9km away. It is home to the oldest theatre in the country, Theatre of Thorikos, has a mineral museum and good shopping. If you fancied a bit of island life, you can also take a ferry from here to the Cyclades.
Sunsets are spectacular when the fiery red sun descends to the horizon, but the time of full moon, which is celebrated by Greeks, is when the locals really like to party; legendary beach parties take place on these occasions.