CITY BREAK IN ATHENS AND THESSALONIKI

Urban beauty on the double: Athens and Thessaloniki


Athens and Thessaloniki: Europe, the Mediterranean, the East and West and the Balkans, all rolled into one. Discover the colours, rhythms, history, attractions, and vibrant life of the two biggest cities in Greece.

City break in Athens


Your airplane makes its descent towards Athens. This metropolis with its infinite, rich history and modern vitality welcomes you to experience a weekend filled with incredible imagery. From the New Acropolis Museum to the Agora, ancient Greece will come to life before your eyes. The centre of Athens will surprise you. Walking through the neighbourhoods of Thiseion and Monastiraki, you’ll discover shops with old treasures alongside trendy boutiques. In picturesque Plaka and Anafiotika, you’ll think you’re on an island.

From cosmopolitan Kolonaki to the hip areas of Psyrri and Gazi, you’ll find cool cafes, bars and clubs with a lively Mediterranean vibe. From the neighbourhoods of Athens, to the seaside restaurants serving fresh seafood, you’ll savour the flavours of both traditional and creative gourmet cuisine. If you have time, the beach is always waiting close at hand: the Athens Riviera, overflowing with resorts and beach bars, is the perfect destination for a short break.

And a little further down the coast, you’ll find Sounion and its magical sunset turning the Temple of Poseidon all shades of pink and red. Athens offers many high quality accommodation options;  from historic hotels in the centre, to boutique and art hotels, large international hotel chains, city and business hotels and, of course, luxury seaside resorts & spas.

A stroll through the centuries of Greek history
Start with the Ancient Agora and its monuments from different eras;   the Golden Age of Pericles, Hellenistic, Roman. Over everything presides  the Sacred Rock of the Acropolis. The cradle of civilisation beckons, so up you go. Your journey through the ages has begun – get to know the most significant stops:

1. The Acropolis:  Admire this most revered of momuments  and the iconic Parthenon, dominating  the Attica skyline and braced to take on eternity.
2. Odeion of Herodes Attica (Herodion): This open-air ancient theatre still hosts live performances, including the Athens Festival, one of the biggest cultural events in Athens.
3. Theatre of Dionysus: The most significant theatre of Ancient Athens. Time to raise the curtain on its mysteries.
4. Columns of Olympian Zeus: You’ll find them soon after the Arch of Hadrian.
5. The Panathenaic Stadium (Kallimarmaro): Originally built in 329 BC, and then reconstructed with marble in the middle of 2nd century AD.

Discover more on Athens culture here!

The Museums of Athens
You will  find a multitude of museums in Athens, with a rich history and important exhibits.

1. New Acropolis Museum: Significant exhibits, spectacular architecture and a contemporary museum concept.
2. National Historical Museum: Enjoy the permanent collection that guides you through  the history of Modern Greece.
3. Museum of Cycladic Art: You’ll find artefacts from ancient cultures of the Aegean, with an emphasis on Cycladic art.
4. Benaki Museum: Impressive collections that reflect  Hellenism through the ages.
5. National Archaeological Museum: One of the most important museums in the world.

The most popular sights and attractions in Athens
1. The neighbourhoods of Athens: Plaka, Monastiraki, Thiseio, Kolokotroni Square and the area around Lycabettus Hill.
2. The Athenian Trilogy: The Academy, University and  Library. The famous Athenian Trilogy on Panepistimiou Street. Perhaps, one of  the most beautiful buildings in the centre of Athens.
3. Art and Music: The National Gallery exhibits more than 15,000 important works of art, while at the Megaron (Athens Concert Hall) you’ll enjoy a variety of concerts and performances.
4. Athens’ nightlife: Kolonaki, Psyrri, Gazi, Kerameikos: Dozens of cafes, bars, restaurants, ouzeries, gay bars, theatres, galleries, stores and concert halls.

Discover more on Athens attractions here!


City break in Thessaloniki


Head up to Northern Greece  to get acquainted with ‘The Bride of the North,’ Thessaloniki; a city with a long history, unique vitality and so many engaging images and things to do; the famous White Tower, Ano Poli, Aristotelous Avenue, shopping on Tsimiski Street, bar hopping on Valaoritou Avenue, the International Film Festival held in the warehouses of the port, live music at Laladadika’s eateries, walks through the vaulted arches and the open air markets, visits to museums and Byzantine monuments.

Thessaloniki is famous for its gastronomy. Here you’ll eat to your heart’s content, your plates brimming with Mediterranean cuisine, seasoned with the added spice  of Asia Minor.

The choice of accommodation in Thessaloniki are endless: restored mansions, boutique hotels, city hotels for business travellers, hotels with casinos and an outstanding designer   hotel. No matter where you stay, you won’t want to leave.

Thessaloniki: a melting pot of cultures
Get to know the multitude of cultures that coexisted for centuries in Thessaloniki. During your visit to Thessaloniki, it’s worth making a stop at these three significant landmarks:

1. Arch of Galerius and Rotunda: the Palace, the Arch (Kamara) and the impressive Rotunda reminiscent of the Pantheon.
2. Jewish Museum: in an elegant listed building of 1904 on Agiou Mina Street, recreating the life of the Jewish community before the Second World War  and its subsequent extermination by the Nazis.
3. The former home of Kemal Ataturk, now a museum.

The most popular sights and attractions in Thessaloniki
1. Thessaloniki’s old waterfront: Everyone’s idea of the perfect stroll.
2. Ano Poli: Wander the narrow lanes of Ano Poli, one of the oldest districts of Thessaloniki above the modern town.
3. The centre of Thessaloniki: Walk from the iconic 16th century White Tower to Aristotelous Square.
4. Ladadika: The old and exceptionally popular portside market.

Discover more on Thessaloniki’s attractions here!

LOCALS KNOW BEST

The neighbourhood of Plaka and the Acropolis on an autumn morning

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