The Complete Guide
Athens is the capital and largest city of Greece. Athens is a global city and one of the biggest economic centers in southeastern Europe. It has a large financial sector, and its port Piraeus is both the largest passenger port in Europe and the second largest in the world, while at the same time being the sixth busiest passenger port in Europe.
Since the distances to most of the main sights of Athens are not far, walking is a good idea and a good way to get to explore Athens. Apart from having many museums in the City, Athens also has many exhibition centers, shopping malls, theatres, and concert halls and of course the famous nightlife of Athens equivalent with the nightlife of Paris and London. There are many places to visit in Athens that sometimes you can spend the whole day just strolling around. A place like that is Monastiraki and its famous flea market with all kind of old and new stuff, a place that first was used by the rag and bone men of Athens as their main market place.
Just across Ermou Street from Monastiraki is the area of Psiri with numerous restaurants, bars, cafes and taverns with Greek live music both Monastiraki and Psiri is something like the Camden market in London. But do not forget the beaches of Athens. From the Lycabettus hill, you can have an amazing panoramic view of Athens. The coastal road from Faliro to Glyfada, Vouliagmeni and further until Sounion is full of sandy beaches, yacht marinas, hotels, sports clubs, a worth seeing Riviera of Athens. From the port of Athens, Piraeus you can visit the beautiful Greek islands of the Aegean world famous for their nature, history and tourist attractions like Crete, Rhodes, Kos, Santorini, Mykonos, and many others.
Here in this article, we will provide all the necessary information related to nightlife features at Athens including a comprehensive list of the best destinations. You will find all the tools and necessary information to organize your holidays in Athens in the most complete way to make your journey a beautiful experience.
Greece’s capital has a very active nightlife. Like every other big city in Europe Athens has everything to offer for every age. The young ones prefer the small bars the so-called “Baraka” in Greek. Those are pub style places with loud mainstream music or the latest Greek modern music. As an alternative to Bouzoukia and live Greek music clubs, there are many restaurants and taverns that have a couple of musicians, usually a bouzouki and one guitar and you can enjoy Greek music while dining. Live music in those places in Athens generally you will find mostly on Fridays and Saturdays.
The main places of nightlife attraction and activity are, the area of Plaka, the area of Psiri and Thission near and around the Acropolis. In Plaka, (once the center of the Athenian nightlife attractions) still some restaurants offer Syrtaki and Bouzouki shows for the visitors. Psyrri a former scruffy area of any kind of handicraft shops next to Monastiraki flea market, became during the late 90’s the replacement of Plaka with numerous restaurants, taverns, and bars attracting a huge part of the Athens night outing, another place of nightlife with many bars and upmarket restaurants are the Thission area.
Athens is just as lively at night as it is during the day, perhaps even more so. Make the most of the vibrant cultural scene, history and scenic evening views with our guide here to enjoy the attraction in Athens at night. So check out our recommended options here for the best venues available in Athens and all are ready to make you happy while you are enjoying your nightlife over there:
Launched in Brussels back in 2006 started its operation in Athens in 2015, indeed it is one of the Best Restaurants in Athens! A multi-awarded extraordinary culinary proposal that welcomes 22 guests along with the Chefs who are preparing a 6 course menu lifts you up to 40 meters up in the sky and offering a once in a lifetime experience. Choose between the Sunset and the Star-lighted Acropolis Dinner. You can invite your friends, loved ones or colleagues for a special dinner and spice up your nights in Athens.
Enjoy one of the most frequented activities in the summer nights in Athens – Outdoor Cinema. The nice summer weather and dozens of outdoor cinemas throughout the city make this the perfect social occasion or romantic evening. Join the locals here taking a tour that provides you a guide, cinema ticket, and delicious treats. You can also be picked-up from centrally located hotels.
There is nothing more amazing than seeing the entire town from above a quiet place. You can choose a bar and enjoy the stunning views of the city along with with good background music, and a nice atmosphere. Located on the rooftop of the Hilton Hotel in Athens, the Galaxy Bar is a must visit for the sunset!
It really sounds pretty astonishing to spend a night under the stars, dancing to good music? Just imagine how pleasant the water looks at night when the moon reflects in it. The beach is lovely, very clean, and with lots of sunbeds and umbrellas. They also serve delicious food along with drinks of your desire and you can come here during the day as well.
There are many beaches in Athens and in the peninsula of Attica. All of the beaches of Athens are well organized. Most frequented and well-known are the beaches in Vouliagmeni, Varkiza, Kavouri, and Glyfada. Alimos is the nearest to the center of Athens. All of those beaches are on the coastline of the south suburbs of Athens and you can get there by tram (until Voula) or by bus. On the east coast of Attica, there are many sea resorts very popular among the Athenians with nice beaches, to name a few, Marathon, Rafina, NeaMakri, Agios Andreas, Porto Rafti, Loutsa and Sounio at the southernmost peak of Attica.
Athens is heaven who loves shopping, all kind of shops are easily accessible in the most famous shopping areas of Athens the Ermou street, Aiolou Street and in the area of Kolonaki. For books and music instruments the Solonos and Academias Street. Many shops are on the two main streets that heading to the Parliament square Panepistimiou and Stadiou. But the most famous market place for the tourist is Monastiraki and the flea market. The worth of a visit is the Athens market in Athinas Street and the small shops in Evrypidou Street.
Whether you have already visited the historical center under the broad daylight or not, we highly suggest you take a night stroll around Athens as well. Without the heat of the sun, but with the beautifully illuminated paved pedestrian street, that almost seems to sparkle instead, it is such a unique and picturesque scenery, that it looks like it has been taken straight out of a fairy tale. This can be an ideal activity for couples in Athens, with the place being incredibly atmospheric and romantic, it is an experience that, in our humble opinion, no one visiting Greece should miss.
Spend an evening learning how to dance traditional folk dances. Command to the music, and learn the steps to some famous movements. Attentive and entertaining instructors will teach you exactly how it is done. After all the music and dance activity you may be feeling hungry, so the tasty dinner that follows will surely hit the right note. Go along with friends, or make new ones in Athens, Greece. Allow five hours for your fun dancing and dining excursion.
There is no such explanation in words for a hangover in Greek which says a lot about the culture and how Greeks like to enjoy a drink; slowly, with a few nibbles or meze to share over several hours. In fact, the latest statistics have revealed new and drink venues have more than doubled over the last 5 years in Greece. Athens nightlife activities, much like the food scene, has evolved into a world-class affair and after you have visited one or two places, you can’t help but think the city’s revival is well underway. There are also some places where you can enjoy the bouzouki, traditional Greek musical instrument along with some great drinks and cocktails similar to a mandolin, you may refer our recommendations here for some best bars in Athens:
It is one of the typically Athenians all day bars that face Monastiraki with exclusive views of Plaka and the Acropolis and Its rooftop terrace sits above their accommodation facilities. Friday and Saturday nights are no doubt the busiest nights due to nightlife lover attractions, it is a frequented and favorite of a younger mixed crowd of locals and tourists. Cocktails come from the award-winning bartender, the ideal day time stops for refreshments and to capture some great city shots.
It is a hidden all day bar with its vintage theme is situated close to the popular night spots of Kolokotroni Street and has been a hit with the locals from the day it opened. Paying homage to old “blue eyes”, this long narrow bar sees patrons spilling out onto the pavement, where some additional tables and chairs are set-up and are well serviced too. Its décor and cocktail list are inspired by the ’50s and ’60s and have a fun relaxed atmosphere. Many start the night here before moving on to the next hotspot.
A few twists and turns away from Syntagma Square near the hip and happening Romvis St, you will find Baba au Rum that was established by Thanos Prounarous, a pioneer in the Greek bar scene. Having won several awards over the last few years and listed as one of the best rum bars in the world (The Rum Society) this eclectic bar has become renowned for its premium selection of rum and other spirits. Exotic drinks and cocktails are mixed with organic herbs and unexpected spices. Non-alcoholics will appreciate an impressive list of homemade artisanal sodas. Baba au Rum definitely has the secret recipe to remain part of Athenian society for quite some time.
It is a comparatively new addition to the Athens bar and nightlife scene and one of frequented for the cooler season. This 1920s – 30s American style bar which is close to Syntagma Square, likes to play with the notion of a secret society and the days of prohibition. It is the first of its type to hit the capital and similar to the ones you will find in London and Paris. Located underground, there is a bit of effort required to find the entrance, as there is no such signage there. Once inside, you will need to walk down a flight of stairs and decide on the next correct door. If you get that far, you have done well and deserve a drink! Bespoke cocktails waiting with DJ sets and live music.
Relocated from Konstantinoupoleos Street to Gazito Chatzigianni Mexi Street, here we are talking about The CV Distiller, a bar with warm interior, dark colored walls that serve countless rare whiskey and rum labels. The owners of the place invented this unique venue with pure love and care, as a hobby to escape from their daily working routine through cool music, drinks, and friends.
Cube Project is a cooperative complex, situated in a remarkable neoclassical building dating back to 1920 in the area of Kerameikos. After 11 pm it becomes an authentic bar serving wine, raki, and drinks at low prices, under the sounds of live DJ sets playing rock, disco, new wave, funk and soul music. During the summer, you will be able to enjoy your drink on a lush terrace with a charming view of the Acropolis.
From the outside, the only noticeable thing about Clumsies is a pink light leaking out of its front door. Whereas, from inside, it is indeed a spacious vintage-meets-industrial bar on the ground floor; a “let’s sit and talk” bar on the second floor; and “The Room” on the top floor, with a pool table, reclining chairs and much more, which you can book for group events. This youthful, vivid bar counts on its personalized service and awesome cocktails, which made it a sensation way before it entered the list of the world’s 50 best bars in 2016.
This place is just plain beautiful and awesome, from its hand-painted ceiling to its vintage furniture and the colorful bottles parading behind the bar. Although Syntagma is factually the center of Athens, The Trap is found in a very quiet spot, just behind the stop where you’d take the bus to the airport. So if you are simply in the neighborhood, do pop in to enjoy the relaxed atmosphere of this place, be it by trying one of it’s drought cocktails, having a bite of classy bistro-style food, or just getting a coffee.
If you are worried for the food in Athens, you are in the right place here, all kind of restaurants with local, international and ethnic cuisines, grill houses, Greek souvlaki shops, pizzerias, hamburgers, you just name it, are to be found everywhere in Athens. For fish food, you should try the fish taverns in the area of Piraeus at Peiraiki and Tourkolimano. Alongside the Poseidonosavenue at the coast there are countless restaurants, bars, taverns, and live music clubs are there. Here we have come up with some of the best and finest restaurants available in Athens so you don’t find yourself in the hassle of looking for:
Open from early in the morning, the Osterman is a stylish bar-restaurant with an elegant stylish French-Style aura in the hipster haven of Agia Irini Square. It serves coffee and sandwiches, as well as cooked meals from a rich catalog of optional cuisines or you can choose their pre-fixed menu too. At night the jazz music, the soft lighting, the cool mood and the high-quality drinks (the options range from great Greek wines to cocktails of your choice and premium drinks) compose a tempting atmosphere that will keep you energetic until late.
If you are visiting Athens on a Saturday night and you really want to eat like a local, hop on the M3 metro toward the Airport, get off at Holargos Station and head over to ThaMa. Situated in a strip mall, ThaMa serves classic Greek favorites like Saganaki (fried cheese) and Horiatiki (Greek salad). On Saturday nights ThaMa also serves Gourounopoula – thick cut steaks of slow-grilled pork and potato fries. Think of Gourounopoula like a Greek variation on Rome’s Porchetta. The meltingly tender pork steak is served with it’s rendered, salty crispy skin crunching with every bite.
Here you will acknowledge a perfect culinary experience, atmosphere along with a reasonable price. It is a very pleasant restaurant with an elegant indoor dining area as well as a comfortable and cool outdoor dining place. You will have to make a prior reservation because, in the evening, the tables are full and people are waiting to get a table. This is due to the very high-quality standards of their food, a good selection of wines and, above all, their attentive service.
This large, rustic Metaxourgeio space overflowing with diners offers outdoor sidewalk seating along with a range of tables on the other side of Keramikou Street. Inside Seychelles, the open kitchen hums while its chefs produce dishes cooked from the finest local ingredients and executed to remarkable precision. It is better not to visit Seychelles expecting food from the Indian Ocean island nation, instead of going there to eat some of the best shareable plates in Athens.
Located on the fringe of the edgy Exarchia neighborhood, Ouzeri Lesvos offers a traditional taverna experience with prominence on fresh fish and seafood. Do not take the restaurant’s shabby chic decor so seriously, as the food and service at Ouzeri Lesvos are among the best in Athens. Moreover, most of the action happens on the well-lit sidewalk once the crowds arrive and the ouzo starts flowing.
Open since 2012, “The Black Sheep” is a delightful mezedopoleio (meze restaurant) situated on a leafy street in the Pagrati neighborhood. Try not to ignore or miss the crowds that rush the inside every night and spill out to the long row of sidewalk tables just blocks from alongside streets and neighborhood. The reason you will found out, these crowds gather for two reasons only i.e. great food and reasonable prices.
Located in a contemporary, vaulted ceilinged specious lounge, SAH serves a collage of food inspired by the entire Mediterranean region, from the Middle East to Spain and everywhere in between. From paella lamb shank tagine it’s all here and is well prepared by the kitchen. SAH even offers ribeye steak and côte de boeuf for hungry carnivores. But being that this is a Greek restaurant, diners can still order a tomato salad with dakos (barley rusks) without any disappointment.
Located in the ultra-chic Kolonaki neighborhood, The Philos, serves generously sized mealtime portions of Greek and American options in a gorgeous atmosphere. The high-ceilinged building reminded us some of the favorite and famous inter-belic buildings in Bucharest, however, the decor and food at Philos are 100% Greek. So, if you are hungry for some Greek yogurt? Philos is the right place, as they serve special creamy cultures from Epirus in what they call the “Energy Bowl” along with oats, banana, chia seeds, and pine tree honey from Agistro. This very well may be the best breakfast in Athens Greece. It is a sweet bowl of Greek love that will satisfy your morning hunger pangs through lunch and beyond.
The most popular outing of the Athenians though is the famous Bouzoukia place. Those clubs a few decades back was a place for the proletariat and the lower classes. Since the middle sixties, the Greek live music clubs with the promotion of the Greek popular music Laika and the films of the Greek cinema have become one of the main entertainments for all ages. There are countless bars and night clubs with the mainstream, hip hop, house and rock music, well-known DJ’s, Latin and Ethnic clubs with Latin music can easily be experienced. Refer our recommendations here and keep the festivities going on at the optimum best night clubs in Athens:
Six d.o.g.s is an all day and night cultural venue situated on alongside street close to Monastiraki. The owners have established their own record label and so it is no surprise that this nightspot is a hub of live music with guest DJ’s and concerts by local and international musicians, and enthusiastically playing best of it’s role to boost nightlife activities in Athens. A pumping bar serves drinks until very late or early into the morning. This is a one of a kind hotspot in Athens that also supports the local art scene with regular exhibitions and art installations.
Vinilio is well-known and favorite amongst dance fans and the summer venue opens at Ribas on the Varkiza Coast, south of Athens. A huge dance floor placed in impressive scenery, where entertainment peaks every night. Special lighting sets the rhythm and DJs play classic disco hits from the 70s and the 80s. Dance along to Boney M and the Abba, Bee Gees and Sylvester, until the small hours, like the good old times. The older generation enjoys remembering old times and the younger feel the vibe of those years as well.
Dybbuk has been one of the most frequented and favorite destination in Athens nightlife since 2009. Situated in the cosmopolitan neighborhood of Kolonaki, on Loukianou Street, this popular night-club attracts the trend-setting youngsters who enjoy the lively and energetic atmosphere. The well-known DJs from all over the world set the rhythm on the decks, creating the vibes for dancing until the small hours. Dybbuk is a dynamic mixture of music and spectacle, and has been described also as a ‘dance theater’. The space functions as a New York style after club with great house music which always impresses. The glamorous environment is ideal also for unforgettable parties.
Sun, sand, music, and party are the four words that characterize this vibrant beach bar in Alimos, not far from central Athens, by the Athens’ Riviera. Although it is practically an all-day place, Bolivar organizes upbeat parties for young crowds with international and local DJs on the decks until the early morning hours.
The 30-year-old and all-time-classic Athenian party establishment, yes it is Rock ‘n’ Roll, a MUST on your ‘to do’ list while you are visiting to experience the Athenian nightlife scene. The Rock ‘n’ Roll’s parties are legendary, starting from late afternoon and going on till late, gathering a blend of younger and older crowds dancing to funky tunes.
It is a secluded summer club called the Transistor, the nightclub opens at 11 pm on a daily basis and shuts down at about 4 am. If you visit this bar on a Friday night, you will see guests drinking, chatting, dancing and having a swell time. There is always more than enough space for visitors to dance to the tunes that serenade the atmosphere.
The Lazy Rock stage bar has been keeping alive the nightlife of Athens bubbling for over a decade and visitors troop into the bar every night to experience different rock bands in action. The crowd is friendly, and the drinks are always topnotch. The atmosphere is very clean and clear. You will feel lightweight and happy when you visit this nightclub.
Exarchia is a happening neighborhood in Athens which offers a fusion of Urban and contemporary culture of this Greek capital. It is famous for its amazing food and artistic vibes, and an endless choice of bars and restaurants available there. While being in Exarchia, you can grab a beer and then join the crowd dancing in the nightclub. The party atmosphere of this place is simply tempting. You must not skip this place if you want to step into the exotic side of the city of Athens and indulge in its nightlife.
Let us conclude the topic, here in this article we had a brief introduction of The Athens along with highlighting some of its prominent norms, culture, and nightlife features. We also went through different activities and places to enjoy the nightlife of the region, Musical venues, Bars, Restaurants and Nightclubs as well. Such activities provide a great source of entertainment for tourists and locals as well.
As already elaborated, the nightlife attraction of The Athens is scattered throughout the city. There are several streets / bustling areas of the city where cafes, concert and dance venues, galleries and restaurants offer something really special to everyone who loves the culture, shopping and nightlife attraction. There are plenty of pubs & bars throughout the City areas and they are truly satisfying the desire of thirsty visitors where you can enjoy your cocktails with the mesmerizing architectural beauty of the hand-crafted beers and their decors.
You don’t feel any hunger during your trip that is why we also suggested some of the finest restaurants in the city that offer exotic and delicious food along with your favorite drinks. You can really enjoy the taste of good food along with some great booze.
And lastly, we went through comprehensive options of nightclubs of the city that offers great music and fun with some delightfully exotic choices of drinks and cocktail that will delight your overall experience of charming nightlife during your stay at Athens.
All of the experiences as mentioned above will work together to make your journey to Athens a memorable one. A perfect and balanced blend of the above-identified activities can actually boost your experience and make your trip extremely unforgettable for you.