What to Do in Thessaloniki: The 15 Best Things to Do in Thessaloniki, Greece
Asking what to do in Thessaloniki, so that you enjoy the best of it? We got you covered. Here is a list of our suggested things to do in Thessaloniki.
Before we start with the list let’s reply to the question:
What is Thessaloniki Famous For?
Thessaloniki is famous for its White Tower, the Byzantine castle ruins, and the exhibits from ancient Macedonia at its museums. Thessaloniki is also famous for its great food, probably the best in Greece, its vivid nightlife, and its shopping streets. Certainly, a city to enjoy spending some days at, especially if you combine your trip with a visit to Chalkidiki and Mount Athos during the summer, or at Meteora, Pella and Vergina.
#1 Visit the White Tower
The White Tower of Thessaloniki is the symbol of the town and an interesting place to visit, as it has many photos from what life looked like in Thessaloniki many decades ago. This used to be an observatory tower, belonging to the castles of Thessaloniki, but the castles have been ruined in their most part. The White Tower has also served as a prison in the past when the Ottomans were occupying the town. The White Tower has been built by the Ottomans when they captured the city of Thessaloniki, somewhere in 1430 and it is part of an older Byzantine fortification castle. Its height is 34 meters and it is situated on the waterfront of Thessaloniki.
Operating hours: The White Tower is closed on Mondays and it is open all the other days from 08:30 am to 3 PM.
Admission fee: There is a 6 euro admission fee for the adults.
Information in 20 languages: https://www.amth.gr/visit/information-in-multiple-languages
#2 Walk through the Aristotelous (Aristotle’s) Square
Aristotle’s Square is the most central place in Thessaloniki and one of the most beautiful areas to visit. It offers you a direct view of the sea, while it is surrounded by neo-classical, fairly high buildings and the beautiful Electra hotel. You will find many cafes and places to eat gyros and souvlaki, a cinema and shops, or you can just walk around and enjoy the beautiful sea breeze and the warm Greek sun. If you go to Aristotle’s square during lunchtime, try the “Ayoli” restaurant, right next to it and on the waterfront of Thessaloniki. It serves delicious fish food and many Greek mezes.
#3 Drink a Coffee at Le Garcon, next to the sea road
It is common for people in Thessaloniki to go and drink a coffee at one of the many cafes you will find on the road “Megalou Alexandrou” which is just in front of the sea and leads to the White Tower. Probably the most beautiful cafe on this street is “Le Garcon”, which is styled as a French brasserie and offers great views of the sea, excellent service, and an eye-catching interior design. Le Garcon belongs to Pedrak Stojakovic, a famous basketball player who is a local basketball hero in the town.
#4 Visit the Archaeological Museum of Thessaloniki (https://www.amth.gr/en)
The Archaeological Museum of Thessaloniki is the biggest museum in Northern Greece and one of the biggest museums in Greece. Some of its notable exhibits are the Derveni Krater, the statue of Harpocrates (2nd century BC), the head of Serapis (2nd century BC), the gold Medusa heads and many gold medals and other interesting artifacts from ancient Greece and Macedonia.
Address: 6, Manoli Andronikou Street, Thessaloniki
Operating Hours: Everyday from 09:00 am to 16:00 pm.
Admission fee (Ticket Price): 8 euros for the adults and 4 euros for the children.
#5 Go to Athonos Square and try some mezes
Athonos square hosts many Greek traditional restaurants, one next to the other and is a very handy and warm place to visit, if you would like to try the Greek mezes. Due to the low price of the food, it is often frequented by young students.
#6 Buy a “Tsoureki” from Terkenlis shop
Terkenlis is the most famous food store brand in Thessaloniki and this is due to its popular “Tsoureki”, which is covered with white or black chocolate. You have to try it for yourself to judge, so we strongly recommend you visit the Terkenlis store at Aristotle’s square.
#7 Have a drink at the Kitchen Bar
Kitchen bar is an all-day cafe and restaurant, which lies in an excellent position, on the old harbor of Thessaloniki. You can have an amazing view of the town from it, as the view includes the sea, the White Tower and the city of Thessaloniki.
#8 Visit the Castle ruins on top of the hills
Thessaloniki used to have strong fortifications, however, the biggest part of its Castles has been ruined, due to a huge fire and to the locals getting the stones from the castle to build their homes. One of the best-preserved places of the castle fortifications is at “Ano Poli”, meaning “Upper Town” in Greek and it is a beautiful area to walk through and enjoy the view down to the town.
#9 Go for lunch at Erotikos Restaurant in Kalamaria
Kalamaria is a suburb of Thessaloniki which is five kilometers away from the center of Thessaloniki and it boasts many restaurants and cafes, overlooking the Thermaikos sea. Erotikos restaurant is very well positioned in a peaceful area of Kalamaria, just in front of the sea. Give it a try.
#10 Have a coffee or drink at Istioploikos Omilos
Istioploikos Omilos is close to the Macedonia Hotel and it is also right on the sea. A great place to sit outside and drink a mojito or a coffee, while enjoying the sea breeze and the fantastic views of the town.
#11 See the Arch of Galerius (Kamara) and the Rotonda
These two architectures are among the most famous emblems of the city of Thessaloniki, with Kamara being the standard meeting point for parties who want to go out for coffee in Thessaloniki. “Let’s meet at Kamara”, is a common phrase among students and young citizens who have an afternoon rendez-vous there, so as to descend their way to the popular cafes and bars in the center of Thessaloniki. Both Kamara and Rotonda were built on the 4th century AD by the Roman emperor Galerius.
#12 Visit the Hagia Sophia Church
Hagia Sophia church is one of the oldest churches in Thessaloniki and a Unesco world heritage monument. It has been built in the 8th century AD, at the same place was another smaller church existed for 500 years. Hagia Sophia was built according to the architecture of the Hagia Sophia church in Constantinopolis, now called Istanbul, in Turkey.
#13 Visit the Saint Demetrius Church
Saint Demetrius was a Christian martyr and is nowadays the saint who protects the city of Thessaloniki, according to the locals. There is also a festive on the 26th of October, every year, when it is a public holiday, for everyone in the town. The Saint Demetrius church has been built in the 4th century AD and it hosts many catacombs for Christians who were hiding there.
#14 Visit the Museum of Byzantine Culture
One of the most interesting museums of the Byzantium era, that you can find anywhere in the world. The museum of Byzantine Culture has eleven different rooms, with exhibits from the early Christian times to the latest stages of the Byzantium and how it affected the city of Thessaloniki. Here you will find many exhibits including coins, books, statues, wooden icons, mosaics, wall paintings.
Address: 2, Leoforos Stratou, Thessaloniki
Hours: Everyday from 9 am to 5 pm
Ticket Price: 8 euros for the adults and 4 euros for the children
#15 Visit the Ataturk Museum