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Greece’s second-largest city has no shortage of unique cultural heritage, scenery and memorable food experiences that make it an ideal city-break. Here’s our roundup of the best way to spend an action-packed 24 hours in the seaside city of Thessaloniki.

10am to 12pm

The quiet of the morning is the perfect time to hit the pavement and start exploring before the bustle of the city sets in. To make sure you’re fueled up, grab a takeaway coffee from the friendly baristas at Shed specialty coffee and then walk a little further across town to To Anoteron for a taste of the family bougatsa recipe that has made them famous since they opened in 1972. From there, the only way is up to the quiet and stone-paved alleys of Ano Poli for a sweeping view of Thessaloniki from above. Ano Poli offers a traditional sense of Thessaloniki with many a taverna and mezedopoleio, and is scattered with architectural reminders of Thessaloniki’s Ottoman past.

1pm to 4pm

Make your way back downtown via the cluster of important sites that includes the Roman Forum of Thessaloniki, the Statue of Eleftherios VenizelosThe Rotunda and the Holy Church of Hagia Sophia. From here, lunch within walking distance can be found within the four walls of Ergon Agora’s gourmet food hall. The menu is centered around Northern Greek cuisine with a focus on quality ingredients (their Peinirli is a must-try). If you’ve already sampled Ergon’s menu at one of their many outposts around Greece, the UK, Cyprus or even Doha, walk across town to Ypsilon for an experience that’s culinary, cultural and historical. Ypsilon lives in one of the last remaining buildings from the 1860s that survived Thessaloniki’s Fire of 1917. The grand building has been renovated with an industrial feel and caters to laptop workers, holds cultural events and also happens to have an interesting lunch menu including its tuna confit nicoise salad, fish burger, and six-minute boiled eggs with graviera, olives and sourdough.

If time permits, stop in at nearby Beetroot Design Group’s newly opened cafe and gift store where you can enjoy an afternoon refreshment and browse their unique designs and products. 

6pm till late

Before dinner, stroll through the recently restored and reopened Agora Modiano (originally opened in 1922) and stock up on countless food offerings like artisanal bread, specialty tahini and traditional sweets. The bar on the top floor makes for a great spot to watch the happenings below. 

If you manage to resist the burgers, pasta fresca, dumplings and sushi on offer in the agora, make your way to Thessaloniki’s famed Ladadika district for a hearty and memorable meal at Sin Trofi. With a zero-waste philosophy that focuses on organic ingredients, the restaurant is headed by Yiannis Loukakis (also known for his restaurant Mourga). The flavours at Sin Trofi are original yet somehow feel like they take you back to a cherished moment when you’ve been your most content. Breads are baked daily on-site, the menu changes daily and you’d be forgiven for wanting to extend your stay in Thessaloniki to eat here again.

After dinner, duck into Pelosof for cocktails and mingling at what’s been branded a “sensory experience for coffee enthusiasts, cocktail aficionados and stalwart foodies”. The main hall that once was home to Thessaloniki’s main post office boasts a modern design aesthetic and the vibe at night is fun and social, with various spaces for groups to gather and form. Want to kick on with your new parea? Head to the jewel in Thessaloniki’s crown, Aristotelous Square, and party with the Beautiful People at Olympion Kafe (if the doorman grants you entry, that is) or join the hipsters of Thessaloniki under the disco ball at bord de l’eau.

Address List

Shed Specialty Coffee

Patriarchoi Dionisii E 11, Thessaloniki

To Anoteron Bougatsa

Ag. Dimitriou 68, Thessaloniki

Ergon Agora

P. Mela 42, Thessaloniki


Edessis 5, Thessaloniki


Siggrou 8, Thessaloniki

Agora Modiano

Ermou 24, Vasileos Irakleiou 33, Thessaloniki

Sin Trofi

Doxis 7, Thessaloniki


Tsimiski 2, Thessaloniki

Olympion Cafe

Square Aristotle 10, Thessaloniki

bord de l’eau

Egnatia 45, Thessaloniki


The Athens Guide

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