Athens Acropolis, the most visited tourist site in Greece, temporarily closes due to heatwaves | Travel

The scorching heatwave sweeping through Greece has forced the closure of the Athens Acropolis, the most visited tourist site in the country. The UNESCO-listed archaeological site shut its doors to the public during the hottest hours of Wednesday and Thursday, with temperatures expected to soar to a blistering 43 degrees Celsius (109 degrees Fahrenheit).

As the first heatwave of the year blankets Greece, the culture ministry has taken precautionary measures to protect both visitors and the ancient site. The closure may be extended depending on the severity of the weather conditions.

The climate crisis and civil protection ministry has issued warnings of a high risk of wildfires in the Attica region, particularly around Athens. To ensure public safety, schools in several regions, including the capital, will remain closed, and public-sector employees have been advised to work from home.

In response to the extreme heat, an air-conditioned hall has been set up at Syntagma metro station in central Athens to provide a cool refuge for residents and tourists alike. This proactive measure aims to minimize the risks associated with prolonged exposure to high temperatures.

Last year, the Acropolis faced a similar situation during a prolonged heatwave in July. Despite the challenges posed by the weather, the iconic site continues to attract millions of visitors annually, with its popularity heightened by the influx of tourists arriving via cruise ships at the nearby port of Piraeus.

In times of extreme weather events, it is crucial for authorities to prioritize public safety and implement measures to mitigate potential risks. By staying vigilant and adapting to changing conditions, Greece can navigate through these challenging times effectively.

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