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West Coast  (from Faliro to Glyfada)

The west coast of Attica surrounds the southern suburbs of Athens and has received intense pressure of development during the last fifty years. It is the place where major and secondary streams of the Attica basin like river Kifissisos, river Ilissos and Pikrodafni torrent have their estuaries. At the same time the whole area adjacent to the coastline is fully urban with large scale infrastructures. The most important of these include the coastal avenue of Athens (Posidonos Av.), the tramway, the Kifissos Ring, the Peace & Friendship stadium, the former International Airport of Athens “Elliniko” and the marinas of Flisvos , Alimos and Glyfada. Additionally a few years before the Games of 2004 the waterfront has been further modified due to the construction of Faliro and Agios Kosmas Olympic Complexes that yielded configuration of marinas, docks and wave breakers. The west coast has also several sandy beaches that offer leisure and sport activities such as swimming, sailing and fishing.

 AGIOS KOSMAS (ELLINIKO)                                                                                                                        

Agios Kosmas Olympic Complex, FEB2011 (towards north). Along shore currents have caused removal of sediments from one side of the stairs and accumulation of them in the other. Note the break on the structure in the lower left part of the image.

Agios Kosmas Olympic Copmlex, FEB2011(towards south). Marine erosion has undermined the front part of many infrastructures for tens of meters and local collapses have taken place. The shoreface is exposed to SW-W winds.

Southwestern coast (from Varkiza to Anavyssos)

This area of Attica is considered as part of the Attica-Cycladic plateau with distinct geological history and features. The physical geography of the area includes highly complex coastline with continuous small embayments and sandy beaches with several seasonal torrents. It is surrounded by the southern Saronikos Gulf and is exposed to S-W winds and waves. The intertidal and near-shore environments have a characteristic feature which is exposed beach rock made of sandstone (psammite). This can be noticed along the southern coast from the swash zone up to 3 meters depth. The above described area is also the most touristically attractive encompassing numerous facilities from restaurants and small hotels to large scale resorts. Furthermore there are many local leisure centers and nautical clubs for sea sports, diving and sailing. Fishing is prohibited from Glyfada to Lagonissi. The main infrastructures – apart from hotels – to the adjacent coast include the coastal avenue of Athens (Souniou ave.) and some coastal towns with small marinas. The proximity of this area to Athens capital resulted in excessive use for bathing and other similar activities during summer. As a consequence this part of the shoreline receives the seasonal pressure of massive bathing users. Apart from this factor the incorrect building activity on the coast along with drainage of touristic facilities directly into the sea have caused severe environmental impact yet unresolved and not quantified. Water quality of this part of the coast has been a subject of debate with some areas having the Blue Flag whereas some others are characterized as “inappropriate for bathing” according to the EU relevant directives standards.


Varkiza Beach, APR2010(towards the east). Shallow sandy seabed with dead seagrass leaves filling small depressions.


Varkiza Beach, APR2010 (towards the west). An extended sandy shoreline with several touristic/bathing facilities. In lower part of the image we can observe the Nautical Club of Voula-Varkiza.


Lagonisi at 34km Souniou Ave, DEC2011. This near vertical image depicts the sandy shoreline and the fragmented beachrock layers of psammite in the sublittoral zone.


Lagonisi at 34km Souniou Ave, DEC2011. Centimetre resolution near vertical image of the sublittoral zone. Main seabed features include the fragmented beachrock surrounded by coarse sediments. In the seaward part of the image dark tones represent meadows of Posidonia oceanica.


Agios Nikolaos beach, APR2010 (towards east, Agios Nikolaos Islet).Planar view of the tombolo formation that connects the Agios Nikolaos Islet to mainland Attica. The upper part of the image includes small fishing boats and part of the Agios Nikolaos-Anavyssos nautical club.

Agios Nikolaos beach APR2010 (towards mainland). Near vertical image of the tombolo coastal formation covered with low vegetation.

Agios Nikolaos beach, FEB2012 (sublittoral zone). Near vertical image of the sublittoral zone adjacent to the tombolo formation. Seawards from the shore first appears the elongated beachrock (psammite) followed by rocky reef (possibly made of beachrock) which is parallel to the shoreline. The rest part of the bottom includes sandy sediments partially covered with brown algae and/or dead leaves of seaweed. Mean depth is approximately 2.5 m.

Agios Nikolaos beach, FEB2012. Near vertical image of the sublittoral zone adjacent to the tombolo formation. Note the yellowish plume of drainage waters in the upper right part of the area. The lower part includes exposed and submerged beachrock (psammite) in the proximity of the shoreline.



Agios Nikolaos coastal cliff, DEC2011. Vertical image of centimeter resolution depicting rocky beach and hard substratum seabed. Further seawards extended Posidonia oceanica meadows can be observed. Maximum depth is 5.5 m

Agios Nikolaos coastal cliff, DEC2011. Vertical image of centimeter resolution showing eroding coastal cliff and hard substratum seabed. Note the linear fragmentation pattern of rocky seabed. Mean depth is 3m.


Agios Nikolaos coastal cliff, DEC2011. Centimeter resolution vertical image of very steep eroding coastal cliff. Sublittoral zone is full of large boulders and coarse sediments surrounding rocky outcrops on seabed. Rocky islets and very shallow waters make this area dangerous to vessels. Maximum elevation on shore exceeds 20 m whereas mean depth is approximately 2m.


Anavyssos beach, APR2010 (towards west). Oblique view of the sandy shoreline. Upper right part includes the Souniou Avenue. Leisure Park is located backshore. Seawards from the shoreline first appear gravels and small boulders followed by softer sediments.


Anavyssos beach, APR2010 (towards west). Jet Ski tournament. Oblique view of the beach, with Souniou Avenue and impressive stunts that leave white scars on sea surface.


Anavyssos town, APR2010 (towards east). Panoramic view of the coastal part of Anavyssos town with Souniou Avenue and resort facilities. Wind surfers training.