The Benaki is small enough that you do not feel overwhelmed, yet it packs in treasures from the Neolithic era all the way to the 20th century. It grew out of the private collection of the wealthy Benaki family, so every piece was chosen because it was a perfect example of its kind—or because someone fell in love with it and just had to have it. Your appreciation for it may follow the pattern of my own: I first started going here for the wonderful folk art collection, which includes magnificent embroidered costumes and gold-encrusted icons. Then, I discovered two rooms, each of which recreates the parlor in an 18th-century northern Greek mansion. Perhaps you, too, will fantasize about what it would be like to live in one of these rooms, with copper vessels and plates shining on the walls, rugs glowing on the floors, leaded windows letting in just enough light—and, of course, servants to keep everything looking so perfect. Wander around and you'll encounter ancient Greek bronzes, gold cups, Fayum portraits, and rare early Christian textiles. There's a lot to see here, but there's also a rooftop café with a bird's eye view over Athens. In addition to morning coffee and lunch, every Thursday, when the museum stays open until midnight, the café has a €40 dinner buffet. Allow as much time as possible for a visit.