About Thessaloniki

  • A panoramic view of Ano Poli (the Old City) in Thessaloniki
  • Panoramic view of Aristotelous, at the heart of Thessaloniki city, Greece
  • A view of Thessaloniki
  • International film festival of Thessaloniki
  • Ladadika in Thessaloniki
  • Rotonda church in Thessaloniki
  • The Arch of Galerius in Thessaloniki
  • The old harbor of Thessaloniki
  • The port of Thessaloniki at night
  • Thessaloniki port
  • Thessaloniki's waterfront at sunset
  • Umbrellas at Thessaloniki port
  • View of the White Tower from above
  • Τhessaloniki Port
  • Alexander the Great statue in Thessaloniki
  • Thessaloniki port at night
  • Thessaloniki aerial

Ever since the 4th c. BC when it was founded, Thessaloniki has kept its urban character and has remained a civic centre and the hub of that region. The city’s centuries-old multicultural history has been associated with great empires, as it has known the Roman, Byzantine and Ottoman Rule. The town was also greatly influenced by many ethnic and religious groups (Jews, Latins, Armenians and others) as well as Greeks from Constantinople, Pontus [modern-day northeastern Turkey] and Asia Minor [a.k.a. Anatolia]. The numerous monuments, dating to many historical periods, coexist in a singular and charming way and manifest Thessaloniki’s historical multicultural and cosmopolitan nature. Nowadays, the historic capital -by right- of Macedonia, the land of Alexander the Great, has evolved into a modern and particularly charming metropolis. A multitide of monuments and cultural assets and the town’s traditional ways exist in harmony with the modern aspects and the high standard infrastructure, the carefree mood, the spirit of hospitality, the vitality of the locals – particularly the young – setting the pace of town life, the diversity of artistic events, the long list of choices for entertainment, the exceptional culinary tradition, and the fresh feel in the atmosphere, coming from the seafront, as well as the coolness of the northwest wind called Vardaris. Thessaloniki’s location is at the centre of a greater area with incomparable historical monuments and natural assets as it offers the opportunity for a visit to archaeological sites known the world over (Ancient Pella, Vergina, Dion, Petralona Cave), to areas of exquisite nature (river deltas, lakes, Mt Olympus), to the monastic state of Agion Oros [the Holy Mountain] as well as to Halkidiki, a famous tourist destination. And there is always an opportunity to practice sports (swimming, skiing, playing golf etc) or to indulge in wellness tourism (hot springs, spas)! In short, Thessaloniki is a city that can cater for even the most demanding needs, any time of the year.

  • Thessaloniki was the European Youth Capital for 2014 and a former European Capital of Culture.
  • Fifteen of the city’s monuments are listed as Unesco World Heritage sites.
  • In 2013, Thessaloniki was listed as one of National Geographic’s 20 ‘Must-See’ places in the world, and has been ranked 5th in Lonely Planet’s World’s Top 10 party cities
  • The city hosted a number of sports events during the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens.
  • Best-selling author Victoria Hislop’s novel "The Thread", takes the history of Thessaloniki over the last 100 years as a backdrop.


Thessaloniki Unesco City
15 Early Christian and Byzantine Churches, Baths, walls and towers are listed as Unesco World Heritage sites.

Unesco Monuments

29 Museums
Thessaloniki was the European Capital of Culture in 1997 and remains a city with intense cultural activity.

museum picture.jpg

A mosaic of Monuments
Outdoor sculpture provides its own artistic and historic touch to Thessaloniki’s cultural identity.


Mount Athos
Mount Athos is a self-governed peninsula in Greece that’s home to 20 monasteries and some 2,000 monks. Since 9th century, every single day 1,000 divine liturgies are celebrating on the peninsula of the Christian Orthodoxy. No women allowed.

Mount Athos

Alexander’s the Great Heritage
Vergina and Pella, the seat of the Alexander the Great. Remains of the Royal Palaces, tombs and golden treasures awaiting you.

Alexander the Great

The best waterfront in Europe
Stroll about and ride at the longest urban waterfront in Europe. 5 km of shore line from Thessaloniki’s Port to Thessaloniki’s Concert Hall wait you to wander, enjoy the Mt Olympus view, the sunset and the Greek flora.


A great Shopping destination
Thessaloniki receives visitors from the whole of northern Greece, as well as the Balkans, due to its wide range of products offered in the marketplace, for every taste and budget!


Gastronomic capital of Greece.
The gastronomic identity of Thessaloniki shaped by local flavors enriched by the cultures that passed through the city and the recipes the Greek refugees brought with them from Asia Minor, Pontos and Eastern Thrace.


The nights in Thessaloniki is an experience with countless options about dining and entertainment! The National Geographic included Thessaloniki in the list of the top 10 cities with the best nightlife worldwide!

Night Life

Sea & Sun
Hundreds of beaches within an hour drive from the city centre, take the guest to another mood. A sandy beachfront heaven hidden in the valley of Olive groves in Chalkidiki and on the foot of the divine Mount Olympus.


For detailed information about the city’s sightseeing & useful info you may download the city guide

1.    Moving Around the City

Thessaloniki offers an easy and quick way to commute; no city spot is more than 30 minutes away from the center by public transportation.

Surely, the best way to get acquainted with the historic center is by strolling down the UNESCO monuments, the market, the traditional taverns, as well as the coastline with the beautiful sunset, the distance between them is not more a few minutes’ walk, after all. Public buses and taxis are the main means of transportation of Thessaloniki, while bicycles have become increasingly popular over the past years. The picturesque boats and the alternative Segway, complete the list of transportation selections during summer period.

Bus Public Transport
The Organization of Urban Transportation of Thessaloniki (O.A.S.TH.), the second largest in Greece, connects the whole city via a dense network of bus lines. You can get your tickets at the O.A.S.TH.’s ticket booths, at the 1200 selling shops or by the vending machines inside the buses. Free service is offered to people with special needs.

Try getting the “No 50 Cultural Route”, departing from the White Tower. It passes through the monuments, important buildings, old neighborhoods, narrating the historic wealth of Thessaloniki in the course of time. Both optic and acoustic information is available for the passengers, in Greek and English.

All necessary information concerning timetables, bus tracking in real time, route duration, best routes etc, is available on the official page of O.A.S.TH. Standard adult tickets: 1,00€and 1,10€ when issued by ticket machines on the buses (for one trip). For up to 2 trips within seventy (70) minutes from the time of issue the ticket cost is 1,20€.   Travel cards of various durations are also available.


Thessaloniki sightseeing
The Thessaloniki sightseeing company offers tours around the city with its open deck busses. It is a 70 minute tour, departing from the White Tower, with 8 stops at the most important tourist attractions, while, due to its frequent bus routes you can visit any other historic monuments or places of interest you wish (frequency of arrival 30-80 minutes depending on the season). Commentary is available in 11 languages (Greek, English, German, Russian, Serbian, Jewish, Turkish, Romanian)


Τhere are approximately 2000 taxis in Thessaloniki with 24h service taxi ranks in many city spots and in many departure ones like the Airport, the Train Station, the Macedonia Intercity Station and the Port. 

Cost of indicative routes:

Macedonia Airport – historic center and vice versa: 18 Euros approximately

Macedonia Intercity Station – historic center and vice versa: 7 Euros approximately

Train Station – historic center and vice versa: 5 Euros approximately

A double fare is applicable between midnight and 05:00 am.

Thessaloniki’s taxis are blue in color, with white top.

Discover Thessaloniki by means of riding a bicycle! City touring becomes even more enjoyable through a network of bicycle lanes bearing the special marking! The bike sharing system in the Municipality of Thessaloniki, named I-BIKE, of THESSBIKE company, holds eight stations and a fleet of 200 bicycles, including two seat, four seat, electric bikes and vehicles for the handicapped.

Another company in the field of renting bikes is BikeIT, based in Nea Paralia of Thessaloniki, where you can select from a wide range of bicycle types.


Thessaloniki City Map

2.    Climate

The climate of Thessaloniki is Mediterranean, being partly affected by the mainland.

The rarity of extreme weather conditions and the mild temperature characteristics of each of the four seasons, provide the perfect opportunity for residents and visitors to take pleasure in the beauty and colors of each switching of the urban landscape.  

In September the average temperature is 25°C with average humidity 47%.


3.    Currency / Banking / Shopping Hours

Greece is a member of the Eurozone and the euro is the official currency.

You can buy euros from banks, exchange offices in the city center and the airport "Macedonia", while foreign exchange services offered in many hotels.

The opening hours of banks accepting foreign currency are:

Monday-Thursday: 8:00 -14:30 & Friday: 8:00 -13:30.

Shopping hours

The shops’ opening hours are not pre-determined.

In general terms, the regular shopping hours on weekdays are 09:00 – 21:00 and Saturdays 09:00 – 15:00.

Malls and big stores operate:

  • Monday-Friday: 09:00 – 21:00
  • Saturday: 09:00 – 18:00 or 20:00

Shops, boutiques and other commercial markets, operate:

  • Monday/ Wednesday/ Saturday: 09:00 – 15:00
  • Tuesday/ Thursday/Friday: 09:00 – 14:30 and 17:30 – 21:00


4.    Time

Thessaloniki, like the rest of Greece, belongs to the Eastern European Time Zone and is two hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time (GMT +2). Like most European countries, Thessaloniki implements the time change from "winter" to "summer" and conversely.


5.    Useful Phone Numbers
  • Thessaloniki area code (30) 2310
  • European Emergency Number 112
  • Police 100
  • Tourist Police (+30) 2310554874
  • Fire Department 199
  • Ambulance 166
  • Port Authority (+30) 2310593134
  • Traffic Police (+30) 2310250740
  • Railway Customer Service Centre 14511
  • Urban Transportation 11085
  • Intercity coaches (+30) 2310595400
  • TAXI 18300, 18180, 18288
  • Airport (+30) 2310985000
6.    Dining and Nightlife

Aristotelous Square: surrounded by monumental buildings and open to the waterfront for a width of 100 meters and the waterfront avenue of the city (Nikis avenue), where cafes, trendy bars, restaurants and street performers can be found.

Navarinou Square: Full of university student’s haunts (open air cafes overlooking the ruins of the imperial palace).

Valaoritoy district: The new trendy neighborhood where restaurants, bars and live music scenes.

Bar rows in the city center – cluster of bars with distinct character can be found at Lori Margariti, Nikiforou Foka, Zefxidos and Valaoritou streets.

Waiter Tips
Tipping is not an obligatory term, though in case of being satisfying by the service is always welcome!


7.    WI-FI Hot Spots

Surf, upload, share, get informed, Free!

The Municipality of Thessaloniki offers the possibility of free wireless internet access from mobile devices such as smartphones, tablets, laptops in places of economic, tourist and social interest of the city (the network will soon be extended to other parts of the Municipality of Thessaloniki).

The free wireless access points are:

  • Mina Patrikiou Square
  • Municipal Swimming Pool
  • Floricultural park
  • New City Hall
  • Tsimiski Avenue – Angelaki Street
  • Entrance of Thessaloniki International Fair (TIF)
  • N.Germanou Street - Entrance of the Municipal Garden Theatre
  • Society for Macedonian Studies
  • White Tower Square
  • Romfei square
  • Aristotle Square

But even if you move outside of free Wi-Fi hotspots, you can get connected to any of the hundreds of cafes, restaurants, etc. of the city, offering free Wi-Fi access to their customers!


Thessaloniki welcomes you