Interesting Things to Do in Thessaloniki, Greece

A port, a place of higher learning, and a cultural giant, Thessaloniki in Central Macedonia is Greece’s second-largest city. It is a great idea to make a trip to this city. In this post, we will share with you some interesting things to do in Thessaloniki when traveling.

Interesting Things to Do in Thessaloniki

1. Visit the White Tower

White Tower


The fortified White Tower on the seafront is Thessaloniki’s main landmark, which houses an exhibition about the city’s Byzantine history.

During Ottoman times, the White Tower was used as a prison and supposedly called “Blood Tower” due to the many executions that took place there. It got the name “White Tower” after it was painted white, although today it has a yellowish color.

From the White Tower, you have a lovely view of the entire city and the Mediterranean Sea. If you have only a few hours in Thessaloniki, a visit to the White Tower would be the one thing you should definitely make time for.

2. Go to the Agios Dimitrios Church

interesting things to do in Thessaloniki: Agios Dimitrios Church


This large and impressive church was built on the site of an ancient Roman bath where legends say that its namesake, St Demetrius, was held prisoner, executed, and dropped down a well by Roman soldiers. It is a five aisled basilica with a unique hexagonal nave known as a ciborium. Of particular interest here is a famous six-paneled mural that is one of Thessaloniki’s finest mosaics, showing St Demetrius with children and the builders of the church. This is not only one of the largest churches in the city, it is considered to be one of the most historically and religiously important houses of worship in all of Thessaloniki.

3. Spend time at the Archaeological Museum

interesting things to do in Thessaloniki: Archaeological Museum


A priority for anyone coming to Thessaloniki, the Archaeological Museum has Archaic, Classical, Hellenistic and Roman-era artifacts brought to light in the city and across Macedonia.

There are finds from a 6th-century Ionic temple in the city, as well as a palace complex constructed by the early 4th-century emperor, Galerius.

There’s also a reconstruction of a Macedonian tomb uncovered not far away in Agia Paraskevi.

The “Gold of Macedon” exhibition has found from cemeteries at Derveni, Sindos, Agia Paraskevi, Serres, and Leti to name a few, while there’s also a recent exhibition covering prehistory to the end of the Bronze Age.

4. Explore Aristotelous Square

Aristotelous Square


The city’s biggest square is one of the most popular places to visit in Thessaloniki and a great place to stop for a coffee. This is the modern center of the city and a major meeting place. You will find various cafés and restaurants in this pedestrian zone.

People like to go shopping in the streets and markets close to the square, and you will definitely pass by here more than once during your time in Thessaloniki. Aristotelous Square is one of the most famous squares in all of Greece and one of the most famous spots in the city. If you visit during Christmas or New Year’s Eve this is a great place to see how the locals celebrate.

5. Visit Rotunda of Galerius

Rotunda of Galerius


The oldest monument in Thessaloniki, the Rotunda is a massive round building that was first a Roman temple, then a Christian church, then a mosque. Its walls are more than 6 meters (20 feet) thick, which is one reason why it has withstood Thessaloniki’s earthquakes. The cylindrical structure was built in 306 as part of a large palace complex on the orders of Roman emperor Galerius. It was either intended to be his mausoleum or somewhat more likely as a temple. The building was used as a church for over 1,200 years until the city fell to the Ottomans. In 1590 the Church of Agios Georgios was converted into a mosque. Fortunately, the mosaics that survived until then were not harmed further by this conversion; they were simply painted over. After serving three religions, the Rotunda is now a museum.

6. Explore Ladadika



Behind the ferry port, a brief walk from Aristotelous Square is the historic district of Ladadika, with colorfully painted houses, workshops, and warehouses on cobblestone streets with restaurant tables.

One of the best places to go out in Thessaloniki, Ladadika used to be a chaotic merchant district, settled by many of the city’s Sephardic Jews: The name “Ladadika” comes from the shops that used to sell olive oil and olive oil products in the quarter.

Ladadika has come to the fore as a nightlife area once more, with “ouzeri” (taverns), Greek restaurants, diverse international eateries, and a surplus of bars.

In conclusion, these are some interesting things to do in Thessaloniki you can’t miss during your trip.


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