Christmas in Athens: Top Things to Do in 2018

It’s that time of year again! December is here, the air is getting crisp, and Christmas is just around the corner. And as decorations, lights and holiday music take over the town, we’ve put together a list of some of the best things to do in Athens this Christmas.

Art and Culture

As the weather gets colder, the holidays are a great opportunity to head indoors and discover some of the Greek capital’s best museums and top art exhibitions. Visit the Yannis Moralis Retrospective at the Benaki Museum, to discover the work of one of the greatest Greek painters of the 20th century; explore the depictions of Women in Neo-Hellenic Painting at the B&M Theocharakis Foundation’s; or step further back in time to experience the Countless Aspects of Beauty, from the Neolithic period up to late Antiquity, at a unique multi-sensory exhibition at the National Archaeological Museum.

Fantastic options for ballet lovers include The Nutcracker performed by the St. Petersburg Ballet Theater of Russia at Galatsi Olympic Hall and the Greek National Opera’s rendition of Swan Lake—with an environmental twist!

There is a plethora of excellent tours that will allow you to experience more of the city and discover its history and cultural heritage, but you can also try a modern art tour, such us our Modern Muses private guided tour of the city’s vibrant art scene, designed to give you a taste of contemporary art in true Athenian style.

Winter Wonderland

Christmas is almost here and Santa’s elves are busy preparing presents. As excitement for the world’s most beloved holiday builds up, there are plenty of opportunities to explore a fairytale winter wonderland in the Greek capital.

Children will love the Christmas market at Technopolis—which offers loads of themed activities, shopping, workshops and of course a great selection of seasonal treats—and the whole family is guaranteed a fun day out at Santa Claus Kingdom at Aidonakia amusement park. If you’re looking for something more traditional, grab your gloves, scarves and woolly hats and head to the ice skating rink at the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center.

Our top picks in the Not Quite as Seasonal, But Definitely Fun! category are the Dinosaur Theme Park at Helexpo Marousi (where tours can be arranged in English as long as you get in touch in advance) and, of course, our very own Young Explorers tours that are tailor-made for young travelers and their families!

A Taste of Christmas

It goes without saying that if you’re in Athens for the holidays, you should take the time to stroll through the city center and see the city light up with Christmas decorations. And while you’re at it, why not go on a little culinary adventure?

Enjoy the aromas of fresh baked goods spiced with cloves and cinnamon as you walk past the bakery windows, and stop along the way to sample various local foods and delicacies. For an even better experience, ask us about a private food tour. We’ll create a perfect itinerary just for you, to introduce you to some of the best flavors in Athens this Christmas, including the country’s favorite seasonal treats: kourambiedes (butter cookies coated in fine powdered sugar) and melomakarona (olive oil cookies flavored with a honey and cinnamon syrup and sprinkled with chopped walnuts).

A Touch of Luxury

If ever there was a season to indulge, this is it. Spoil yourself with a day out Christmas shopping in the upmarket boutiques of Kolonaki, or visit one of the city’s excellent department stores and shopping centers, including Attica in the city center and Golden Hall in Marousi. Unwind with an authentic hammam experience in Thisio or pamper yourself with a luxurious thalassotherapy session in the Athenian Riviera. Then head out for an unforgettable Christmas dinner at one of the city’s luxury hotels. Top contenders, such as Hotel Grande Bretagne and Athenaeum Intercontinental Athens, offer exquisite menus and festivities at this time of year—just don’t forget to make a reservation!

The possibilities are endless. Get in touch with us to explore even more options for tailor-made tours and bespoke experiences.