101 things to do in Thessaloniki

1. Drink frappe (ice-cold strong coffee) to kick-start your day!
2. Eat Thessaloniki’s Koulouri all day long from the outside selling vendors or bakeries.
3. Get in touch with the sea! That’s The experience of watching the sea and seeing all the different colors throughout the day, is what makes our minds wander free and fuels our drems!
4. Read your book: overlooking the city in Eptapyrgio or on the grass of the Gardens of Pasha, on the bench outside Palataki or on a bench on the beach and forget about the time passing
5. Eat tsoureki in Aristotelous square. Just follow the smell!
6. Go to Halkidiki in just 45’ and take a swim in the best beaches and beach bars around. Because as locals say: There’s no place like Halkidiki (san ti Halkidiki den echi!)
7. Eat Trigona Panoramatos in Panorama, posh and yum!
8. Sleep! Thessaloniki’s heavy climate and relaxed atmosphere has been known to cure insomnia of the worst degree
9. Drink tsipouro!!! This double-distilled spirit is a local delicacy, which accompanies most foods, especially fish meze (if you don’t know what to order just say to the tavern-owner to prepare a tsipouro for you). Useful tip it doesn’t give you a headache!
10. Take your bike! It has been since 2008 that the bicycle network was introduced in Thessaloniki and the roads have filled with colorful bikers of all ages and walks of life. Why don’t you try biking by the sea?
11. It’s all Chinese to me! (that’s Greek for it’s all Greek to me, which is weird since all of Greece’s population could fit in 1 Chinese village!)
12. Eat “bougatsa and kakao (chocolate milk)” for breakfast. It is a cure for any hangover and yes you can order bougatsa with cheese , spinach or minced meat (it still is bougatsa!)
13. Get a midday siesta (ipnakos) after your midday food. It is our best-kept secret to longevity!
14. Drink Greek coffee (ellinikos kafes) and if you’re lucky, find someone to see your future in the coffee mug. Are you ready?
15. Change your daily routine. We eat our lunch at around 14:00- 16:00, sleep for an hour and eat our dinner 20:30-22:00
16. Change your watch times. We get ready and go out around 23-23:30 or when going to clubs even at 01:00, and then we party hard until the small (or big) hours of the day
17. Eat like the locals. Order everything on the menu, eat like there’s no tomorrow and then complain (why did we have to eat so much again?). And then order a dessert!
18. Visit a flea market (laiki) and feels the smells/ the voices/ the atmosphere and the people. Buy fresh fruits, vegetables, fish from the producers and why not? bargain for the price
19. Music! It is everywhere. From the street artists to the Greek rock scene, to entechno style of music (these influential styles of music were born here and have become famous all over the world), to live concerts everywhere, to small “boits” that have live music all days of the week, to bouzoukia, to bars/ clubs, to people singing in taverns, to street guitars in Navarinou and the seaside
20. Shopping in the town center, around Tsimiski Street. The ultimate shopping destination for all Northern Greece. Everything is within walking distance, from high-end stores in Proxenou Koromila Street to more budget shopping in Egnatia Avenue. Make sure to take a break in one of the countless cafes around the city center (we love our coffee!)
21. Eat charcoaled or boiled corn on the cob while taking a stroll by the seaside in the summer. Mmm Greek summer!
22. Go to a football match. We love our local teams and we surely support them-our style. Prepare to get wet, to scream and feel your heart racing
23. Visit the White Tower, the emblem of the city which was built by the Romans, has served as a prison in Ottoman times and is now a museum of the city’s history
24. Eat chestnuts or drink salepi while shopping in Tsimiski Street in the winter. That’s what keeps us going during the Christmas shopping spree
25. Feel the vibe of the Thessaloniki International Film Festival (November). Make sure you book some nice and exotic movies and then party all night in the various parties thrown around
26. Visit the International Book Festival (Ekthesi Vivliou) in the beginning of June. Bring an umbrella along, because of the festival’s mystic rain-bringing powers!
27. Take a taxi to feel the vibe of the city. It is very cheap compared to European standards, plus you get to meet the authentic vibe of the locals
28. During the Christmas season visit Kapani/ Modiano for a special welcoming of Christmas and the New Year with the brass orchestras that send your dancing skills to a new level
29. On the 24th of December and 31st of December, go walking and drinking and dancing in the center of Thessaloniki. Most places have set up barbecues on the pavement and give souvlakis to the passer-bys
30. Take the Cultural Line (bus number 50) that will take you around Thessaloniki’s most precious and historical parts and operates like a hop on-hop off for the cost of2 euro!
31. Visit the up-and-running Valaoritou Street area that is full of bars, cafes, hotels and art galleries. It is considered the most colorful new addition in town. It is the most popular among students and all ages, where music and party goes on until the morning
32. Have sex with a Greek lover, to see what all the hype is about!
33. Start your day by the sea. Go jogging by dawn in Nea Paralia (the newest addition to the seafront) and discover so many colors in the sky you never knew existed
34. Watch Mount Olympus, the house of Gods from our very own seaside
35. Drink coffee by the seaside in the countless cafes for hours- in local language Challlara (thick pronunciation of the l)
36. Go to the Bouzoukia and throw when the songs of the heavy Kapsoura are played. Kapsoura is the Greek word for the ultimate feeling of lost or forsaken love (love is serious business in Thessaloniki)
37. We take pride in small Bouzoukia- scenes as well. You may even smash plates in some places (Charama)
38. Fall in love with Greece’s most beautiful and tough ladies (the reputation has it)
39. Try your luck with Greek Kamaki (feel like a Greek Lover and try hitting on the ladies (or the gentlemen) )
40. Make friends! The region of Macedonia is known for its hospitality. The locals may be a bit heavy initially but can definitely show you a good time!
41. Mingle! Thessaloniki has a multi-culti vibe from the student community to the immigrants that live here. Don’t be amazed if you hear your language being spoken by those you thought were locals!
42. Buy antiques in a flea market (every Sunday behind Rotunda and Saturday mornings in Bit Bazaar) or the area of Bit Bazaar in the rest of the week. Don’t be afraid to bargain (bazaar or pazari in Greek means to bargain or negotiate a better price with the salesman and we love it!)
43. Musicians! Thessaloniki is the birthtown of Nikos Papazoglou, Melina Kana, Lizeta Kalimeri, Dionysis Savvopoulos, Stavros Kougioumtzis, Mario, Agathonas, Trypes, Ksylina Spathia, Monsieur Minimal, DJ Cayetano, Vassilis Karras, Paschalis Terzis, Natasha Theodoridou and Antonis Remos. All of these different styles have been inspired here. Can you feel it!
44. Enjoy the best summer concerts in the Forest Theater (Theatro Dasous). Insider tip: find a seat on the top benches and catch a magical glimpse of the port of Thessaloniki by night. We would advise you to attend some entechno style concert or ancient theatre based in Aristophanes’’ Comedy
45. Eat sporia (salted sunflower seeds) while doing almost anything, especially good for walking or watching a movie in an open cinema during the summer
46. Visit the best after-hours bars in town (Taksidi and On the edge). Thessaloniki isn’t the 5th city in the world for nightlife for nothing!
47. Visit our boat bars (3 or 4 during the summer months) or Klio that is an after-hours bar which takes you for a ride in the sea while enjoying your last drinks and showing off your dance moves
48. After a long night partying the best cure is a soup , for the hardcore ones try patsas with boukovo and skordostoupi, or else chicken soup and meat soup
49. Try a “vromiko” sandwich at the road canteens. It is used after a night out and we suggest an all-time classic: pantseta with lots of onion
50. Visit the surrounding area. Daytrips to Vergina, Meteora, the mountain region of Halkidiki and Mount Athos are available from local tourist agents and you can feel the history of the whole area
51. Have a spa in the surrounding area of Pozar, Sidirokastro, Aghia Paraskevi or Lagkada. The Macedonian region is very rich in hot springs and has excellent thermalism spots
52. Visit the Byzantine museum to delve into the rich religious history of the area. Christianity has originated in the city of Thessaloniki
53. Accompany your fish meze with a hot charcoaled pepper (kafteri). Macedonian’s like it hot!
54. Follow the Wine Roads of Northern Greece and see for yourself how the local wines are produced and familiarize yourself with the local world-renowned producers!
55. Enjoy Thessaloniki’s Eastern roots with desserts in Chatzis. We like or desserts very sweet, syrupy and full, a taste common in Greece and the East
56. Enjoy the street music in countless street festivals, especially in the summer and around the seaside
57. Honk! The speed of light is actually measured as the time that passes from when the red light turns green to the time you hear the first horn
58. Visit the area of Kastra. The surrounding walls have been build around the 4th century AC to protect the Byzantine city, their initial perimeter was around 7,000 meters and have reached the height of 10,5 meters. The Kastra area is very important in terms of history, archaeology and culture. There are around 60 towers that can be found in our days
59. Visit the International Exhibition Center (known as Ekthesi), a huge area in the heart of Thessaloniki that accommodates a number of exhibitions yearly with visitors from all over the world. The largest opening to the locals is at the annual Thessaloniki International Fair, a colorful adventure for grown-ups and children with exhibitors, music and of course the mouthwatering sausage and black beer
60. For fresh fish and seafood, visit the area of Perea and Michaniona, to have fish caught the same day by local fisherman and enjoy it by the sea. A typical meal at a fish tavern would be: fried calamari, charcoaled octopus, mussels or shrimp (or both) saganaki, kafteri pepper, charcoaled sardines, fried potatoes, tzatziki, Greek salad or chorta, ouzo or tsipouro and some delicacy to start with
61. Eat out on Sunday lunchtime, everybody else is doing it!
62. Go for a walk or coffee or beer or food in the area of Bit Bazaar. It is an enclosed square with 6 entrances that has been a very lively part of the city. Visit the local antique shops, open since 1928 and run by immigrants after the Asia Minor catastrophe. The area is now a lively part of the city that is visited often by the student community, romantics and almost everyone who wants to feel the “Old Thessaloniki”
63. Walk in the area of Aretsou (if you were here 20 years ago you could actually swim in Aretsou Plage), a lively part with loads of cafes and fish taverns
64. Live on the edge in the extreme sports recreational park right in the center of the city (Xarchakos Park)
65. Look for the gems of the Jew inhabitants of the city that have lived in Thessaloniki since 140 B.C. and played a hugely important part in the flourishing of the city. Some architectural masterpieces can be found along the Queen Olga’s Avenue and many have been turned into museums (Folk Museum, Center of Byzantine Research), hospitals (Ippokrateio) and hotels (Electra Palace
66. Have a coffee in the renovated Tower of OTE (Greek Telecommunication), which stands at 76m, and overlooks the city and… is rotating to allow a view of all the city. Especially beautiful at dusk
67. Kiss like high-school sweethearts in the park behind the statue of Great Alexander. We’ve all been there…
68. Enjoy the hustle and bustle of the city on the area of Vardaris, the multi-culti area where hot-shot lawyers rub shoulders with Chinese salesmen
69. Freeze! Feel the really cold and humid northwestern wind Vardaris. It has been sung time and again since it is an integral part of our city. It originates in the Balkan region and we have learned to live with it and actually expect it
70. Drink Touba Libre (retsina with coke). Unforgettable! (it usually accompanies souvlaki and preparation for the football match)
71. One night in the Ladadika area. The two squares used to be a commercial area next to the port and the food stores that gave their name to the area (Ladadika means “oil places” from the Greek name of oil- ladi)
72. Ouzo in the Kastra area (Portara area), where you can find taverns with live folk music and dance with the locals
73. Tsipouro in the Tsinari area (10 minutes walk from Aghios Demetrius Church). Cobbled pathways, small taverns, a sense of a neighborhood forgotten in time
74. Sunset in the Vlatadon Monastery, a Byzantine treasure built around 1350AC that is guarded by peacocks!
75. Visit Kodra- an abandoned military camp that hosts a number of art happenings to open-air concerts during the summer. A trip in the past!
76. A visit in the crypt of Aghios Demetrius (underneath the church of Aghios Demetrius), that has a spa and houses a museum with findings of the crypt from the 5th century AC
77. A walk in Thessaloniki’s port, which is a site for cultural activities, concerts, art exhibitions and movie viewings Thessaloniki’s Film Festival. Thessaloniki’s port was the cornerstone of the financial and strategic development of the area
78. Athonos Square. A square between the area of Aghias Sofia’s square and Aristotelous Square, a lively spot with flea market of spices, fruits/ vegetables and many, many taverns with live music in an area of 4,000 square meters of cobblestone alleys
79. Aristotelous square. A lively square full of the poshest cafes, bookstores and lovely architecture. It was designed after Thessaloniki’s Great Fire in 1917 and still remains a gem in the city center. Especially beautiful during the International Film Festival and the Christmas season
80. Archeas Agoras Square (Ancient Market Square)- a jewel from Thessaloniki’s Roman ages, where the men of the time used to meet to exchange goods, philosophy and a bit of old-time gossip!
81. Navarinou Square. A lively square that combines the remnants of a Byzantine era palace, the view of the Galerian monuments and the hustle and bustle of shops, bars, restaurants and concerts. You will also meet many students and groups of people with guitars sharing songs and drinking beer!
82. Visit the technological park NOESIS, which houses Thessaloniki’s Planetarium and a 3-D cinema for all ages
83. A luscious pita Gyros sandwich. ‘Nough said! You already know what we’re talking about.
84. A hitchhiking experience in the area Seich Sou area, a coffee in Kedrinos Lofos ( and a visit in the Zoo (small but picturesque)
85. Summer nightlife in the airport area, that is home to the largest summer clubs and bouzoukia. Insider tip: have a “vromiko” sandwich in Mama Teresa canteen
86. Visit the area of Kalamaria, populated initially by the immigrants after the Asia Minor catastrophe. Take a stroll in the posh Sofouli Avenue and the pedestrian area
87. Feel the modern vibe of the city in Reworks and Pre-Reworks electronic music festival that has brought a number of famous artists in the city and unites visitors from all over Europe
88. Drink whiskey in the Bouzoukia (we have one of the highest consumptions of whiskey in the world)
89. Enjoy a drive in the area of Sfaghia where Mylos and Fix and the Vilka area are situated in enormous industrial buildings of the previous century. Many live music scenes are located here, as well as clubs, bars and some restaurants
90. Catch a movie in the Aegli open-air garden cinema, situated in a spa built in the 16th century during the Ottoman occupation
91. Make a vouka (a dive in the oil of the Greek salad- the zest of Greek eating)
92. FALL IN LOVE. Thessaloniki has inspired many artists throughout the years and the romantic environment has been the beginning of many happy endings. Greek love can range from flirtatious and crazy to dangerous and a near-death experience so be cautious
93. Avoid overanalyzing Athens. Thessalonikians secretly love to hate Athens (their bad football teams, bland Athenian food and all the money that goes to Athens’s infrastructure). We would strongly advise you to stay clear from heated conversations
94. Vomvidia (small bombs-shaped charcoaled meatballs) in the Modiano arcade with loud music, retsina, networking, gossips and dancing to brass street orchestras. Especially addictive at lunchtime. The essence of Thessaloniki is in 15 sq.m.
95. Bakaliarakia with skordalia- our answer to fish & chips. Cod in batter, with garlic sauce by the port. A slice of heaven!
96. The nearest beach to Thessaloniki: 15 minutes to Perea. Honest!
97. Whatever you do in Thessaloniki, do it INTENSELY. Sing passionately, have a loud fight, laugh until exhaustion, dance until the morning, fall deeply in love, sleep heavily, drink strong coffees and spirits and above all live intensely!
98. Play cards or use a worry-bead! We love playing cards and actually Macedonians are famous for their gambling habits. An interesting hint is that greekery used to mean to cheat in card games, so beware!
99. Live in the capital of the Balkans or the Bride of Thermaikos. End of story!
100. Orientate yourself! Maybe you never knew you could but we have a secret for you: you can always find your way round by using the sea and even if you’re lost just follow the downward way
101. Visit a traditional kafeneio. Strictly for men, a hangout for the regulars (usually mid-aged) who spend their days socializing, playing cards, playing backgammon (tavli), and more often than not arguing about the aforementioned (you are such a cheat!). A playground for grown-ups and a perfect small-scale sample of the local society. Enjoy!

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