reezy, hedonistic and culturally active year-round, Greece’s northern capital has an invigorating urban landscape that blends seamlessly with its port to create an aura of openness. Its five kilometre-long waterfront promenade is a hub for vibrant social and cultural activity, from fashion shows and art exhibitions to cycling, jogging and social get-togethers. In the city’s centre and surrounding areas, strata upon strata of history, tradition and contemporary trends merge to create a sophisticated, laidback and cosmopolitan ambience, while the old Upper Town (Ano Poli) north of the city centre, declared a UNESCO heritage site, also offers a picturesquely delightful window into the city’s past. Strategically placed, playing an important role in trade throughout history, Thessaloniki has been heavily influenced by the Roman, Ottoman and Byzantine rules it has undergone, while also having been a long-time home to major Jewish communities.
Thessaloniki is a city of the senses; apart from its ozone-rich air, it’s hard to talk about the city and not mention its delectable foods, savoured in glossy modern inner-city restaurants, seafront tavernas or innumerable, packed bistros lining the streets of popular areas like Ladadika.
A sophisticated art world, two annual international film festivals, a varied shopping scene, an up-and-coming design community, an exuberant wine industry of which the city’s elderly mayor is a revered star, and a broad selection of cultural events, all serve to make this pleasantly walkable city a wonderful destination year-round.
Thessaloniki is known as Greece's "second" capital