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Location / Nearby Changing of the Guard Ceremony


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Image Changing of the Guard Ceremony

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Beautiful military cermony

A beautiful ceremony not to be missed while in Athens. Happens every hour everyday with a special ceremony on Sundays at 1100am. I was not in Athens on Sunday to see that ceremony. When we were there the soldiers wore the brown skirt uniform which is their winter uniform. If you happen to see them in their white skirts, we were told on our tour there are 400 pleats in their white skirts that represent 400 years of Ottoman occupation in Greece. Their shoes have spikes on the soles and you can here the shoes tap and scrap on the marble. There are two soldiers that guard the tomb of the unknown soldier. They stand motionless until it is time to change.
Marsha D

It was amazing!

Just across the street from our hotel we had an awesome view from their. It was also on the route of our hop on hop off tour bus. So many beautiful things in Athens Greece. Definitely a must see travel spot.

Such a performance!

The changing of the guard at the tomb of the unknown soldier occurs hourly, on the hour. Really fun to watch them move in slo mo. I’m sure it would have been more meaningful if we had watched with a tour guide to fill us in on all the reasons for their particular dress, movements, etc but still well worth experiencing. Lasted about 15 minutes. We arrived only a few minutes before the hour and were fine in terms of having a decent view.
Gretchen L


It was very interesting to watch tge changing of the guards at the tomb of the unknown soldier. I have seen the one in Arlington and the slow precise movement just keeps you watching.

Quick event with a lot of meaning

We arrived about 5 minutes before the top of the hour and were able to get a place to stand with a good view. The whole process takes less than 15 minutes, so it is not big investment in time.

We had a guide for the day. He explained that there was historic significance and symbolism attached to all the elements of the ceremony. The different parts of the uniforms have special meaning. There is symbolism in the way they move their legs like houses and a reason why they move in slow motion. The loud stomping sound the guards make with their boots had special meaning, and it was not to remind a king of his homeland.

The background added to the experience.

Uniquely Costumed

We luckily saw the famous Evzones a few times and in differing uniforms.

Undoubtedly the grandest is their Sunday morning apparel for this ceremony, the kilt-like Foustanella that feature 400 pleats, one for each year of Ottoman occupation.

It’s a great enjoyable sight seeing them march and stride.

Other symbols of their uniform include the red cap calling to mind blood shed during the long arduous struggle for Independence and the black tassels signifying tears cried under Occupation.

Distinctive footwear is also outstanding. Reddish leather with large black pompons, they are surprisingly heavy with about 60 nails at base to replicate the sound of battle when they march.


I would recommend watching the changing of the guard at the Presidential palace rather than the Syntagma square. It’s not on a major road junction and it’s a lot quieter, so you don’t have to compete with other tourists to get a good view. It’s free and happens every hour.
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