As one of the world’s oldest cities (it’s history dates back about 3,400 years!), Athens has long been called the cradle of Western Civilization and the birthplace of democracy. It is the capital of Greece and is famous for its historical contributions in the arts, philosophy, athletics, and learning. A thoroughly modern city with a long and famous past, Athens is now a cosmopolitan capital of some 4 million people. Although reminders of its glorious history are everywhere, Athens is a city facing very modern issues including major political and economic crises that have shaken the entire nation of Greece and affected the EU as well.