Greece’s capital is obviously Athens, but there’s something about this smaller northern city that keeps attracting tourists. Most of the time it is the transfer point from one destination to another, but once they decide to explore it even just for a day – they find themselves dazzled. Thessaloniki is the name of this marvelous city – a Greek port town settled next to the waters of the Aegean Sea. It’s the second largest city in Greece, that’s why you may hear it by the nickname – the co-capital. But what’s there exactly to see besides the alluring promenade looking over the heavenly blue Aegean Sea? Stick with us to find out.
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Historic monuments in Thessaloniki
Thessaloniki is a city with a rich history and plenty of significant events have taken place right at this location. For those more interested in the historical events and monuments, you will find yourself amused by encountering different evidence of Roman, Byzantine and Ottoman remains – memories worth a whole treasure. Walking down the promenade, you will undoubtedly come across one of the most enticing buildings in the city, which is the White Tower – a significant historical monument. Above the city, you can visit an impressive fortress known by the name Eptapyrgio, or by its Ottoman Turkish name – Yedi Kule. Other sights like Arch of Galerius and Rotunda, Church of Panagia Chalkeon, Hagia Sophia Cathedral and so on can easily be spotted around the city. There are also plenty of museums you can visit and get more acquainted with the history of Greece.
Shopping at Egnatia and Tsimiski Street
Beautiful sights are not the only reason why people choose to visit Thessaloniki. Once in a while, tourists from the neighboring countries “attack” the streets of the city in a search for fashionable clothing pieces. For this purpose, the streets Egnatia and Tsimiski are the most visited ones, as they offer a broad range of shops, both providing some high class and some more affordable lower budget stores that are famous throughout the whole world. The streets are crowded and dynamic, so better stay focused on your field of interests and don’t lose track of time. You’ll be dying to enter every shop, but you don’t want to waste all your time on shopping. However, if you’re not so patient to walk down a street in a search for your favorite store, then it is better to head off to the numerous outlets and shopping malls right outside the city center.
Frappe at Aristotelous Square
Enough with the shopping already – it’s time to enjoy your time under the warm sun, close to the deep blue sea. Just a few miles away from the crowded streets, you’ll encounter the magic of a charming square called Aristotelous and the beauty of its simplicity. The square is located right next to the promenade, with a stunning view of the sea, inviting you to rest your body on a bench and let your mind wander off in the pleasure of the Greek spirit of Halara. Haven’t heard this word before? Well, let’s just say that “Halara” is a way of enjoying your free time, a motto similar to the Spanish “Siesta.” Nevertheless, if you find yourself at Aristotelous Square or somewhere on the promenade next to the sea, take your time to enjoy a delicious Frappe – a Greek coffee invention created right in the city of Thessaloniki. On the other hand, if you’re not a coffee lover, then head down to a local pastry shop and buy whatever falls in your eyes first – you won’t make a mistake, you’ll just get stuck in a loop trying to decide for the best dessert in the shop.
If the sun gets too hot, and usually this happens when you’re in Greece, then you can always catch a bus or take your car and go to the beach. There are nice, sandy beaches a few kilometers away from Thessaloniki’s center, so you should definitely bring your swimsuit along. Asprovalta, Agia Triada, Epanomi, Perea – these are just a few of the beaches you can go to while in Thessaloniki. Some of them are usually crowded and visited mainly by young people, but others are convenient and relaxing, adequate for families, singles, and couples – whatever you wish for. Drive some kilometers more to the south, and you’ll have the chance to witness the allure of the Greek peninsula – Chalkidiki. Even if you’re not in the mood for swimming or getting a nice sun tan, then you can always find a cozy tavern next to the beach, offering a lot of tasty Greek specialties.
Nightlife in Thessaloniki
Thessaloniki’s nightlife is not to be underestimated. Asking the locals is always a wise idea as they will tell you what’s trending and where the party is that particular night. However, there are a lot of bars around the city that offer a friendly atmosphere and often there is live music. Cocktails, retro style, rock music, and Greek music – whatever you choose, you can easily find it in the city. After midnight, there are several clubs welcoming party animals like yourself to join the madness that lasts until the break of dawn. Of course, if you’re not into any of these things, then you can always enjoy a soothing glass of wine in a charming restaurant with a great view of the surrounding.
Reworks Music Festival
Since we already mentioned the nightlife, there’s this really awesome event that’s been held annually in the city of Thessaloniki, and it’s called Reworks Music Festival. This music gathering is organized every September, offering ultimate pleasure for all lovers of electronic music. Various well-known performers take over 12 stages and serve a broad spectrum of exciting electronic music. Dance under the sun or in the night lights like no one is watching, hang out with cool people, visit interesting art exhibitions and praise the fun you’re having in Thessaloniki – this city will hold a special place in your heart.