Last updated on January 02nd, 2023
The city of Athens, Greece, is one of the most amazing destinations one has to visit at least once in a lifetime. Whether it’s for shopping, the nightlife, history, or the Mediterranean sea, visitors flock this location year after year. Tourists visit the city of Athens to check out the Parthenon, Acropolis, and other historical sites. Plenty of accommodation can be found in every district and neighbourhood, from budget friendly hotels to more deluxe properties.
The history of Greece is well appreciated to the point that there are no structures allowed to cover Acropoli. This neighbourhood can be viewed from different points.
Just like the other cities in Europe, Athens has quite a number of neighbourhoods. Athens is an interesting city. Although it looks small, it is not easy to navigate. Even though there is a grid system in newer areas, most of the neighbourhoods are hard to navigate. Its layout brings about complexity in terms of deciding where you want to stay.
For most people, they prefer to stay in the Plaka district. Plaka is a location that is at the top of the primary sites. If it is your first time in Athens Greece, then it is the most convenient neighbourhood for you. For an alternative area, Exarchia is a place common to people who like to explore hipster bars and street art. For amazing nightlife, the most popular neighbourhood is the district of Psiri.
For visitors who like to travel on a budget, the most likely neighbourhood to settle in is the district of Gazi or stay near Athens train station where you can have easy access to the rest of the city. For families, Kifissia is a favourite location because it has a cool ambience and a relaxed way of life. Additionally, there are family tavernas where traditional Greek beer and food are served. Kifissia is also an ideal location for you to explore parks and to purchase souvenirs.
Whichever area would want to pick, there are tones of accommodation options that you can choose from. Stay in the best Athens city centre hotels, budget hostel to 5 star luxury properties. Other options include charming b&b’s or holiday apartments. Where to stay before a cruise? You can opt to stay in the city centre or close to the port in Pireaus.
What’s the best area to experience the city as a local or when visiting the first time, what’s the best district for shopping or for nightlife, or where to stay on a budget? Read on below to find out more best neighbourhoods to stay in Athens Greece.
Quick Overview – Contents
Where is the Best Place to Stay in Athens?
Best for First Time (Sightseeing): Plaka (Old Town) or Syntagma
Plaka used to be the nightlife district, but the bars were shut down by the government to reduce the number of crimes. Nowadays, it is a good residential district for tourists and locals. Since there are lots of archaeological sites on your doorstep, you can also visit the restaurant and cafe scene. Plaka is a touristic district because it bends the local culture and the touristic needs which include cheap accommodation. Another good option is Syntagma Square area.
Where to Stay in Athens City Centre
- Best Luxury Hotels
AthensWas Hotel • Electra Metropolis
- Best Great Value – Top Rated Hotels
Plaka Hotel • Best Western Plus Amazon Hotel
- Best Cheap Hotels in Athens
Hotel @Syngrou Fix • Centrotel Hotel
- Best Bed & Breakfast in Athens
The Frogs_Guest House • littledomus
- Best Budget Hostels in Athens
Bedway Athens Hostel • Bed Station Athens
What is the Best area in Athens to stay?
What’s the best district in Athens for local experience? Kato Petralona – Koukaki
Kato Petralona is an upcoming residential district that presents how the Athenians live. The area is divided by a subway line into two parts. Over the subway is Ano Petralona which is the most popular and vibrant area of the neighbourhood. It has lots of Greek restaurants, some cafeterias, and a few bars. Under the subway line is Kato Petralona where the working class live.
On the other hand, Koukaki is an area that combines entertainment, convenience, and authenticity. You can walk down the streets as you admire the Greek architecture. The most beautiful part of the area is the colourful streets which are covered with mosaics, colourful tiles, and porcelain plates.
What’s the best neighbourhood for nightlife in Athens? Psiri (Psyri) – Thission (Thiseio) – Gazi – Monastiraki
Young travellers like to stay in the areas listed above because the key attractions are within a walking distance. Gazi is considered to be the new district for cafes and restaurants. It is also common for youth because of its affordable accommodation. Thission is a popular location for young travellers. It used to be a common place for metal workers, but things have changed over the yeras. There is actually a small outdoor theatre in the summer that attracts more visitors from May to September.
Best neighbourhood to stay in Athens for shopping? Kolonaki – Kifissia – Monastiraki (Ermou, Athinas Street)
Kolonaki, Kifissia and Monastiraki neighbourhoods are full of modern designer boutiques and shops. Kolonaki is a great place to find high-quality Greek art and world renown art museums. If you also want to purchase high-quality souvenirs, Kolonaki is the place for you. Apart from the amazing shopping experience, you can go up the Lycabettus Hill where you can view all the streets of Athens. If you find it hard to climb, you can use a funicular to get to the top.
Where to stay in Athens before cruise? City Centre – Piraeus (Port)
The main port of Athens is Piraeus. It is a great place to take a ferry to visit the Greek Islands. Far from making trips on the sea, you can also take a walk in the harbour and enjoy looking at the ships and yachts. There is also a Maritime museum where models of both modern and ancient ships are exhibited. You will also view some amazing paintings of flags, guns, seascapes, nautical instruments, and medals. There are more than 3,000 years of nautical Greek history in the museum. There quite a number of hotels around the port for visitors to stay. The hotels are affordable for visitors.
Where to stay in Athens on a budget? Gazi – Neos Kosmos – Metaxourgio
Metaxourgeio is known for its nightlife activities. Gazi, a place which used to be a desolate district has become a popular place in recent decades. It is now full of modern lofts that are in on mansions. The neighbouring town of Metaxourgeio, located between Omonia and Gazi, is an affordable residential area that attracts lots of visitors. It is full of local bars, a Carnival Parade, and exotic restaurants. It is now becoming a trendy district.
The 5 Best Neighbourhoods in Athens for Tourists
Visit the neoclassical citadel that overlooks the city from the hillside. Check out the Parthenon temple that was dedicated to Athena, the goddess of wisdom.
Other sites to visit include the Temple of the Olympian Zeus and the Erechtheion. For shopping, you can look at the stores around the neighbourhood where you can find woodwork and authentic art. There are also other museums to explore like the Jewish, Music, and Children’s museums.
- Best Hotel (Great Value): Ava Hotel and Suites
- Best Cheap Hotels: Phaedra Hotel • Kimon Athens Hotel
The most famous monument in Athens, the Parthenon is located at Koukaki. Other sites common to visitors include the Dionysos Theatre, the Temple of Athena Nike, Erechtheum, and the Odeon of Herodes Atticus.
On the western part of Acropolis is the place where Apostle Paul preach called Areopagus or Mars Hill. Other great views to check out include the Filopappos Hill, the Temple oF Olympus Zeus, National Museum of Contemporary Art, and the Acropolis Museum.
Visit the Numismatic, located in Panepistimiou street where you will see collections of medals and coins that date back to the ancient era. The National Historical Museum is also a prime location for tourists who want to see archaic and historical literature and documents.
Visitors also have the opportunity of checking out Filellinon street to see St. Pauls Anglican Church and the Russian Orthodox church. Another important site to visit is Emperor Hadrians Arch and the National Garden, where visitors rest in a comfortable environment.
- Best Property: Elia Ermou Athens Hotel
- Best Cheap Hotels / Great Value: Sweet Home Hotel • Carolina Hotel
Visit the temple of Hephaestus that was built in Doric style before the 5th century. Get some insights to life by visiting the Museum of the Ancient Agora that has coins, inscriptions, and other archaeological objects.
You can also get a guided tour in the Herakleidon Museum that focuses on permanent collections, contemporary art, and exhibitions. For an education tour about 19thcentry Athens, visit the Merkouri Cultural Center and the famous Charidimos Shadow Theatre.
- Best Accommodation: Metro Thission Apartment
- Best Cheap Hotels / Great Value: The Athens Edition Luxury Suites • Historic Center Apartment at Thisseio
The amazing local beaches stretching across the Saronic Gulf are 30-40 mins away from the Greek capital if you are driving. Enjoy a relaxing waterfront experience as you walk along the marinas and pedestrian streets.
You can also play some water sports at the beach and also shop in some of the modern centres around. In the night time, there are buzzing clubs that are a favourite to a lot of young people.