The Bath House of the Winds is perhaps the most poetic sounding museum name I have ever heard. Falling under the umbrella of the Museum of Greek Folk Art, it is the only Hammam still surviving from the period of Ottoman rule. Today, it functions as a museum dedicated to the cleanliness of the body. Sounds interesting? Read on to find out more about one of Athens hidden little gems.
Museum of Greek Folk Art
It is probably worth beginning by describing exactly what the Museum of Greek Folk Art is. As far as I can work out, it acts as an ‘umbrella' name, under which several smaller museums and exhibitions fall. I have already visited one, which you can read about here >> Museum of Greek Folk Musical Instruments. The Bath House of the Winds is the one I am writing about now, and The Museum at 22 Panos Street is one I will visit in the future.
A further two museums/buildings fall under this same umbrella, and are both currently closed. These are the Tzisdarakis Mosque, and the Central Building. Work is currently under-way to create a new central museum in Monastiraki, which will open “soon”. There is also a totally separate Museum Shop in Monastiraki, which stands almost forgotten in the middle of a busy street.
Does that make everything clear? Just another great example of how labyrinthine, complicated and bureaucratic everything in Greece seems to be. The Museums in Athens are not immune! I will write more about the Museum of Greek Folk Art Organization at a later date.
The Bath House of the Winds
But sometimes out of what seems like chaos, something surprises you. In the case of this museum, it was an app to download to a smartphone, available on both Android and (cr)Apple! If you are thinking of visiting, or even if you just want to find out a bit more without going, click here >> Smartphone App. Remember to take your earphones with you if using this, as there is an audio tour.
To be perfectly honest, this app is so good, there is very little point in my writing in much detail about The Bath House of the Winds Museum. Start playing it, and you will see for yourself! Instead, I have put a few photos up, and will finish off with some additional information. In brief though, it is laid out as an old Hamman, and you can see the various rooms which were used in the cleansing and bathing process.
As far as museums go, I didn't find this one to be particularly amazing in terms of exhibits. Where it did shine brightly though, was the smartphone app and audio tour. This revealed the history of the bath-houses and rituals of an Athens long since changed. You can easily get around in a half hour, so you can include this on the same day as a visit to the Roman Forum.
Further Information on The Bath House of the Winds
Located in the Plaka area of Athens, The Bath House of the Winds is on Kyrrestou 8. If you want to find it on Google maps though, the spelling is Kirristou. This puts it nearby to the Roman Forum and the Tower of the Winds, all popular attractions. The nearest metro stop is Monastiraki.
The opening hours for the Bath-house of the Winds are:
Every day 08.00 – 15. 00, apart from Tuesday when it is closed.