Best Christmas Themed Cafes and Restaurants in Athens 

Many cafes and restaurants in Athens are welcoming the festive season with elaborate decorations, bright lights, and lots of red and gold taking centre stage. 

Seasonal menus have also changed to match this wonderful time of year – so we’ve rounded up the most festive spots that turn into winter wonderlands for you to visit in the Greek capital over Christmas! 

Little Kook

This gorgeous little spot in the heart of Athens stands out for its Christmas cheer! The extravagant decor and sparkly array of ornaments are displayed in every corner of the cafe – both inside and out. Apart from the decor that evokes the spirit of Christmas, what makes Little Kook special is that the friendly staff are dressed accordingly, making the setting even more theatrical! Don’t miss the opportunity to try decadent sweets swimming in chocolate or the colourful and moist cupcakes with marshmallows. 

Α: Karaiskaki 17, Athens

P: +30 21 0321 4144

Cap Cap

The Christmas period may have just started but Cap Cap has already entered a very festive mood! This thematic cafe constantly takes visitors on a fairytale adventure through unique themes that change each season – and right now it’s all about Santa, elves and nutcrackers! Famous for its highly imaginative decorations, here you will also enjoy creative sweets including homemade cakes, playful cupcakes, chocolate delights and amazing drinks that will warm you up in no time. 

A: 26 Panormou, Athens

P: + 30 21 0590 4116


This small coffee shop tucked away in an alley of Kaisariani, is a magical spot that dresses up in festive attire every Christmas. It’s a beautiful wooden chalet, which also houses a picturesque hall on a mezzanine floor – from where you can gaze for hours at the stunning decor. The vintage elements of the shop (found all year round) enhance the whole experience and make you feel as if you are in a fairytale. Here you can enjoy wonderful handmade hot chocolate, as well as a range of delicious sweet treats. 

A: 3 Nikomeidias, Athens

P: +30 210 723 5572


By far one of the most festive all-day cafe bars in Athens, this is an absolutely atmospheric hangout! The romantic space (inspired by an old Paris) features a range of elegant décor that blends in beautifully with the rest of the restaurant’s unique design. You can visit Noel from early morning for coffee or brunch, until the late evening for dinner and drinks.   

Α: Kolokotroni 59B, Athens

P: +30 21 1215 9534


One of Athens’ most elegant all-day restaurants is even more stunning to visit this time of year! We recommend you combine your Christmas shopping at the nearby high-end fashion stores with an exquisite lunch or afternoon tea at Athénée. And if you are around on the weekend, definitely visit for a unique brunch spread that has been designed by talented chef Antonis Selekos, and includes a signature Panettone that has also been exclusively created by Selekos.

A: 9 Voukourestiou, Athens

P: +30 21 0772 8411

Winter Garden 

The Winter Garden of the Grande Bretagne is a unique experience hosted in one of Athens’ most historic hotels. The carefully picked lounge music and wonderful atmosphere accompany the impressive menu curated by executive chef Asterios Koustoudis and his talented team, while pastry chef Evgenios Vardakastanis has created some Christmas options that are perfect with a cup of coffee or afternoon tea. Make sure you try the traditional Italian Panettone or the luscious raspberry chestnut cake!  

A: Vas. Georgiou A’ 1, Athens 

P: +30 210 333 0000

Geco Athens 

Located at the five-star Gatsby Hotel in the centre of Athens, this is one of the most ideal spots for a coffee, drink, or a casual dinner during the festive season, as the elegant décor beautifully compliments the menu’s fresh flavours and traditional recipes that include modern twists. This is the perfect place to head to after a busy day wandering around in the city looking for Christmas gifts. 

A: 14 Lekka, Athens

P: +30 21 0321 6001

Belle Amie

The all-day bar restaurant in Piraeus is undoubtedly one of the most atmospheric bistro restaurants in this part of Athens. Housed in a beautiful old building, decorated with imposing chandeliers, retro paintings, candles and other vintage touches – this time of year it’s even more beautiful with the addition of gorgeous Christmas decorations. Perfect choice for brunch, a nice dinner, or a festive cocktail. 

A: Angelou Metaxas 11, Piraeus

P: + 30 21 0417 5740

Βy the Glass Wine Bistrot 

With a great selection of Greek and international wines, champagnes, as well as spirits and dessert wines – here you can toast to the festive season in style! You can also taste impressive dishes based on the best local raw ingredients, which have been carefully designed to match the wine experience by renowned chef Kostas Tsigkas. The cool jazz and soul music in the background, along with the wonderful Christmas decorations complete the magical atmosphere.  

Α: G. Souri 3 & Filellinon, Stoa Ralli

P: + 30 210 3232560

Main image | Belle Amie 

Best Cafes in Plaka 

Plaka, built in the shadow of the Acropolis, is an authentic sample of where old-world Athens meets the new.

It’s a place where you will find ancient ruins on almost every corner; as well as a variety of charming cafes serving coffee, drinks and desserts, with the most historic views.

Here, we’ve rounded up our favourites when visiting this beautiful part of the city! 

Yiasemi is a picturesque spot that’s become the Instagrammable bistro-café in the neighbourhood thanks to all the jam-packed tables lined along the staircase. You can sit and relax, watching people go by, while also sampling the great vegetarian buffet breakfast that features delightful dishes made using fresh, local produce. A: (Mnisikleous 23)

Insights Greece - Best Cafes in Plaka 

Café Melina is a retro café dedicated to Greek actress and political activist Melina Merkouri, features plenty of images and decor honouring the late actress. With an indoor and outdoor seating area, the all-day menu includes mezedes, as well as crepes and homemade desserts. A: (Lysiou 22) 

Insights Greece - Best Cafes in Plaka 

Kimolia Art Café, a colourful and unique cafe that’s hidden in the alleyways of Plaka; Kimolia is set in a historic 1925 building, allowing visitors to step back in time with its traditional decor and ambience. A: (Ypereidou 5)

Insights Greece - Best Cafes in Plaka 

Anafiotika Café, located on the most famous steps of the neighbourhood; is the ideal place for a coffee during a morning stroll or a Greek meze later on in the day. A: (Mnisikleous 24)         

Insights Greece - Best Cafes in Plaka 

Café Plaka is a great place all year round but we love it even more in winter for its fireplace and a wonderful roof terrace where you can sit and enjoy the sunny mornings. Tip: try the pancakes and take photos in front of the pink house. A: (Tripodon 1)

Insights Greece - Best Cafes in Plaka 

O Glykys is a traditional kafeneio that serves great Greek coffee, tsipouro, and homemade delicacies. Here you will find locals enjoying a game of tavli (backgammon), of course. A: (Geronta 2)

Insights Greece - Best Cafes in Plaka 

Dioskouroi, located right in the centre of old Athens, this cafe recently received a new design without losing its traditional atmosphere and appeal. It’s a favourite amongst students, locals and tourists alike, who come here for a coffee in the morning and a cocktail or wine during the evening.  A: (37-39 Adrianou)

Insights Greece - Best Cafes in Plaka 

A Day in Athens’ Cool Neighbourhood of Neos Kosmos

Literally translating to “New World”, the neighbourhood of Neos Kosmos was historically known to be a symbol of new beginnings and a new home for refugees from Asia Minor who fled Turkish expulsion.

Still a haven for the modern-day refugee crises (the public housing estate off Syngrou Avenue now inhabits tenants from the Balkans, Asia and the Middle East), in recent years, the area has seen some changes, namely the addition of a cultural centre, theatre, major hotels and a string of celebrated eateries that now make Neos Kosmos an inner-city suburb of intriguing contradictions.

Whether staying at one of the nearby hotels on Syngrou Avenue or in the centre of Athens, a walk through the neighbourhood of Neos Kosmos wouldn’t be complete without these stops.  

Stop 1: Coffee and brunch at Naif

Perched on the busy corner of Leontiou and Evridamantos, Naif is one of those great neighbourhood cafes that is loved by locals (and not only). It has a compact interior with minimal, danish-inspired design, yet its real charm is in the sunny table-lined sidewalk that seems to be filled with patrons day and night. There is a varied menu that includes brunch options like baked eggs, tsoureki French toast and yogurt bowls. The food menu is rounded out with sandwiches, salads, burgers and pizza. The coffee is strong and good, and keeps company with a selection of wines, classic cocktails and local beers. 

Stop 2: Onassis Stegi Cultural Centre

Even if you’re not looking for the Onassis Cultural Centre, it’s hard to miss. Tim Etchall’s immense neon light installation  “All we have” mounted on the outside of the OSCC has become synonymous with the multidisciplinary art space. The Onassis Cultural Centre has a rotating seasonal program of performances, installations and exhibitions that recognise local and international talent. A 10-minute drive from the historic centre of Athens, the OSCC offers a contemporary take on Greek art and culture that rounds out Athens’ cultural offering.

Stop 3: Aperitivo hour at Teras 

After dinner, stop by hip hangout spot Teras for an early evening cocktail in the quaint 1930s building or under the impressive fig tree that fills the courtyard. Teras is a multidisciplinary space, with a rotating schedule of events like yoga lessons and pop-up bazaars. The one constant at Teras is the ability to enjoy the musical offerings of local Athenian DJs as you sip on your evening spritz. 

Stop 3: Take your pick from these noteworthy dinner options

The dining options in Neos Kosmos are not to be overlooked. In fact, you’d be well-advised to book a table in advance of your planned visit.

Since opening in 2019, Fita restaurant has cemented its place in the Athens dining scene as the go-to for fish and seafood close to the city centre. Featuring locally caught fish and seafood, the menu rotates based on the fisherman’s catch and usually includes Fita’s velvet-like taramosalata and a version of their famed spaghetti with bottarga or clams. The thoughtfully created menu, selection of Greek wines and casual neighbourhood sidewalk-dining make Fita a perfect place to dine on a balmy summer’s evening (or any time of the year, for that matter). 

Annie Fine Cooking is a relatively new (and exciting) entry to the Neos Kosmos dining scene. Originally from Mani, chef Stavriani Zervakakou designs a seasonal menu based on her market haul that morning. Here, you can relax at the tables and cushioned armchairs laying on the sidewalk of Menaichmos while you watch the open kitchen in full swing. 

Hytra Restaurant sits on the top floor of the Onassis Cultural Centre and has developed a culinary identity based on its fusion of traditional Greek gastronomy expressed in a contemporary manner. With a Michelin star under its belt, Hytra offers two separate menus that co-exist within the same space. Hytra and Hytra Apla share a common theme of local ingredients, presented in both a modern (see: Hytra) and traditional (see: Hytra Apla) way. 

Stop 4: Drinks at Grasshoppers

Grasshoppers is the new kid on the block in Neos Kosmos, having just opened in May 2022. Located opposite Naif and around the corner from the Onassis Stegi Cultural Centre, Grasshoppers is a bar where all the details have been seen to and the cocktails are no exception. With friendly bar staff, an excellent offering of bar food built for sharing (try the Vitello Tonnato) and a drinks list that will spark exciting discussion, Grasshoppers is the perfect spot to end (or start) your night in Neos Kosmos. 

Main Image Courtesy of One Man 

6 Coolest Concept Stores in Athens for Brunch and Shopping

Start your mid-morning with a spot of shopping and a delightful brunch menu at one of the coolest concept stores in Athens. 

Do you think it’s difficult to find a place that combines gardening advice and small Greek independent clothing labels with a shot of espresso and fluffy pancakes? Not anymore.

Imaginative concept stores are popping up all over Athens, offering a great range of unique items and services. Below we’ve put together a list of some of our favourite Athens concept stores for your next trip to the Greek capital.


A vivid space in Psyrri, Minu combines the sale of indoor plants, furniture and designer objects, with works of art. At the same time, you can enjoy a cup of organic coffee, homemade lemonade or tea with a homemade cake or taste one of the Asian-inspired dishes on the menu created by Athinagoras Kostakos.

A: Sarri 50, Psyrri


A concept store with a surfing vibe and an environmental conscience. KVD2137 is the store’s clothing brand made using 100% organic cotton and water-based dyes. Here you’ll only find reusable cups, cork coasters, soy candles and a vegan menu. Taste the protein bread with fig and mushroom, the carob bread with scrambled eggs or the vegan cinnamon rolls. 

A: Palaiologou 9, Piraeus


A concept store that feels more like a gallery of nature’s wild treasures, it highlights both the nutritional benefits of nuts, as well as the incredible value of simplicity. Apart from the protagonists (nuts), at Wild Souls, you will find smooth and crunchy almond butter, hazelnut butter, and super-rich cashew nut butter; all free from preservatives, sugar and palm oil, elements that Areti, the owner, dislikes. Don’t miss the halva and the American style sweets. 

A: Voulis 36, Syntagma


The brightly coloured basement on Nikis street is full of creations by Greek and international designers (that focus on sustainable and ethical fashion), Instagrammable accessories, design objects and tasty smoothies. Don’t miss the personalised handwritten packaging with your personal style tips by ANAMESA and the daily updated stickers collection.

A: Nikis 24, Syntagma


This concept store combines interior design with tasty food and coffee. Handmade ceramic mugs, pots, small furniture items and decorations, stationery, utensils, bags, accessories, serving items, personal care and household items that are perfect for gifts. Enjoy energy bowls and light lunch choices such as a soba noodle salad, while browsing design books and magazines or city guides. 

A: Efranoros 10, Pangrati


Set in a stunning 1930’s neo-classical building, Philos Athens, (part cafe/ part event space/ part boutique) located down Solonos Street in chic Kolonaki, is the Greek capital’s ultimate destination store and favourite weekend hangout alike!

A: Solonos 32, Kolonaki


Athens’ Favourite Concept Store and Cafe Reopens

Set in a stunning 1930’s neo-classical building, Philos Athens, (part cafe/ part event space/ part boutique) located down Solonos Street in chic Kolonaki, is the Greek capitals’ ultimate destination store and favourite weekend hangout alike!

Having closed its doors over a year ago (due to the pandemic) Philos’ loyal local fanbase was overjoyed at the store’s recent re-opening; allowing visitors to once again experience three levels of delightfulness (it’s so carefully thought out, it makes you feel right at home.)

From the moment you step inside, you’re immediately drawn into a real living space- featuring a grand wooden staircase, distressed walls, classic meander tiles and an eclectic mix of furniture that’s so warm and welcoming – you can easily sit here all day admiring the authenticity of this exceptional setting. With a finely curated edit of brands that combines high fashion with exciting emerging designers; Philos’ minimal space is filled with homewares, art, books, magazines, apparel, jewellery, shoes and other accessories.

Throughout the sleek store are beautifully displayed covetable pieces and distinct items that you’ll no doubt want to take home with you. The concept behind Philos is to evoke and inspire. Here customers don’t just come to shop. They come to engage, to sit back, to enjoy the energy, the people; and to discover the stunningly restored space that still reveals so much about its rich history (the building was once the property of Greek art collector Evripidis Koutlidis.)  

On the ground level is where you’ll find the cozy eating area. Philos’ delightful menu is based on the principles of simplicity and farm-to-table dishes- using local vendors and seasonal produce. From fresh eggs (made any which way you like) to French Toast with cinnamon and honey; plus their great coffee, refreshing salads and healthy juices- it’s easy to see why Athenians from all over the city love coming here for brunch on any given day of the week. 

But not only- as it’s open till late- you can also arrive here in the afternoon, or early evening and enjoy a light dinner, along with a fine wine or your favourite drink of choice!  

A: Solonos 32, Kolonaki

Opening Hours: Tuesday to Friday – 9 am to 12 am, Saturday- 10 am to 12 am, Sunday 10 am to 8 pm

Cozy Cafe in Athens’ Upper Petralona Neighbourhood

Located in the bohemian neighbourhood of Upper Petralona (under the Filopappos Hill) Kyrios Xou (Mr Who) is a cozy place where you can take a break from Athens’ bustle.

Boasting an abundance of character, this all-day cafe/bar is set in a striking 1930’s neoclassical building and features a soft green shopfront- making for an iconic facade.

Kyrios Xou is always busy, and with good reason: their great coffee and delicious dishes made from fresh Greek ingredients (that are sourced from a variety of producers all over the country) has created a loyal following of Athenians and ex-pats alike.

The cafe’s interior has become an adored space in the city for the quirky collection of posters, artwork, mementos and decor; as well as the original architecture and old fashion feel of the space. 

Kyrios’ many happy customers spill onto the footpath, as there are a few tables out the front where customers can sit and enjoy a coffee; and the cool courtyard in the back creates a lively scene. Here you will hear plenty of conversations in Greek and English that intertwine with the laid-back music. 

But it’s not only the ambiance that keeps regulars coming back- it’s also the quality range of coffee (here you can grab a good latte, espresso, a Freddo, or a traditional Greek coffee), as well as great options for teas, fresh and colourful juices; and an amazing brunch menu that includes French Toast, Poached Eggs, Pancakes, Homemade Pies (cheese and spinach pies), and a variety of sweets. 

In the afternoons and on weekends, locals also come here for a leisurely drink as Kyrios Xou doubles as a casual bar- and don’t worry about dressing up, this is the kind of place where people are laid-back and effortlessly stylish— making it the perfect spot to hang out with friends.

A: Iperionos 1, Athina

5 Best Courtyard Cafes in Athens

Chill out at the city’s top open-air courtyard (avli) cafe-restaurants, enjoying the perfect blend of a laid-back crowd, delicious food and drinks, cool aesthetics, and a casual, outdoorsy feeling that breezily helps one to escape the heat of urban life. 

Dexameni Kafeneion 

With tiny tables set out on either side of a pedestrian hillside leading to Kolonaki’s Dexameni Sq, this cafe is busy throughout the year from noon until midnight, but especially enjoyable during summer. Come for a coffee and a snack at lunchtime or cramp meze dishes onto your table (mainly based on simple, tasty Greek recipes such as keftedakia, lentil salad, fries with cheese, strapatsada eggs, octopus, fava) before heading to Dexameni open-air cinema. There is also a spacious playground here.

A: Dexameni Square, Kolonaki

Latraac Skate Cafe

As the home to Athens’ only skateboard bowl, this cafe is ideal for parents whose kids enjoy skateboarding and can roll away the hours skating in the birch-plywood bowl while adults enjoy a refreshment with friends. Latraac features an all-day breakfast menu (the pancakes here are popular) and also serves sandwiches, coffees, and cocktails. At night the chilled and trendy cafe becomes a buzzy bar that organises live Dj sets and occasional cultural events.

A: Leonidou 63-65, Metaxourgeio

Vryssaki Cafe

Sip homemade lemonade or iced herbal tea either in the small downstairs courtyard or the upstairs terrace at Vryssaki, an old Athenian mansion-turned cafe that also functions as a multi-arts space for classes, workshops, exhibitions, performances, and talks. Enjoy a cozy homey feel indoors during winter and the notion of sitting on a friend’s picturesque balcony in warmer weather – looking out across the ceramic-tiled rooftops of Plaka and up to the Parthenon.

A: 17 Vrysakiou St, Plaka

Six Dogs Courtyard Cafe

Upon entering the space here it’s like suddenly stepping from the heart of the city – which is exactly where it is, just off busy Athinas St in Monastiraki – into a large, multi-tiered, gravel-floored campsite cafe. With plenty of greenery, comfortable seating offering different perspectives, a hip but not pretentious vibe, and an excellent choice of foods (from pizza or a Vietnamese sandwich to a refreshing homemade watermelon drink and signature cocktails). On the street-level above are the other Six Dogs spaces where edgy gigs and heavy partying take place nightly, in summer often spilling out onto the street. (Address: 6-8 Avramiotou, Monastiraki). This is more of a restaurant than a cafe, but definitely welcoming for anyone only interested in coffee and dessert-like Chocolate Cremeux or Hot Walnut cake during the afternoon hours (it opens at 13:00 but does not accept reservations). The large and airy Exarcheia yard is shaded by trees and has a refreshingly tasty, creative, and very reasonably priced menu of Greek and Mediterranean meze dishes. Even at its busiest (and it’s usually packed), service is attentive and friendly.

A: 69 Kallidromiou, Exarcheia

Black Duck Garden 

This charming garden boasts lush greenery that is paired with marble tables and black chairs, giving it a cool and sophisticated vibe. Black Duck Garden is not only a cafe, it’s also a bar, gallery, museum and event centre where many local artists come to feature their work. From a light brunch menu and coffee through to dinner and cocktails, this place is a must-visit when you visit Athens and are looking for a spot to stay cool during the summer heat as you sip on your coffee!

A: 5, loannou Paparrigopoulou 7, Athina

Insights Greece - 5 Best Courtyard Cafes in Athens

cover image Latraac Skate Cafe

Athens’ Top 5 Cafes for a Rainy Day

When it rains, there’s nothing better than finding a spot inside one of Athens’ cosy cafes, sitting back and sipping on a warm cup of herbal tea or coffee of your choice, while opening up a book and enjoying some good old fashion reading. So, we’ve compiled a list of five of our favourite cafes where you can do just that!  

Tree Book Café
A bookshop-café where you can get as flirty as you can get nerdy, this charming Makryianni hangout serves coffee, tea and light snacks with a side of literature. If you want to read undisturbed by chatter it’s probably preferable to sit inside, where it’s a little quieter, but either way, the stylishly bookish atmosphere will inspire you to hold up your book with pride.

A: Kavalotti 2, Makryianni

Insights Greece - Athens' Top 5 Cafes for a Rainy Day

To Tsai

This is Athens’ only real tea room, with a minimalist Japanese -colonial feel and a huge range of teas from around the world, served properly by expert staff. As you may imagine the ambience is tranquil, ideal for tea lovers who enjoy a non-frenetic chat and who like to savour their tea as much as the silence. This is a great place to cozy up with a good read while sipping premium matcha.

A: Alexandrou Soutsou 29, Kolonaki

Just because this place has such an artsy and intellectual vibe, it’s ideal for doing something as civilized as reading a good book. Apart from the large ground-floor bar-café area, there is also an upstairs lounge where you can discover the solitude – or something closer to it – that you seek on a busier day.

A: Pireos 84, Gazi

The Daily
Perhaps the only real remaining ‘residential’, laid back café in shop- and people-centric Kolonaki, The Daily is a great place – day or night – to enjoy some page-turning solo time. It’s central but not too much so and serves refreshing homemade teas and lemonade as well as quality coffee.

A: Xenokratous 47, Kolonaki

The Underdog

If you like reading while sipping amazing coffee in a naturally-lit, airy space, this is the place for you. Housed in a neoclassical villa and with small tables as well as a long bench, this leafy, high-ceilinged locale was designed for individuals. Since it opened it has received numerous annual barista awards and apart from excellent coffee and a soothing vibe it also serves a delicious brunch menu.

A: Iraklidon 8, Thissio

The Chess Café in the heart of Athens

Venture outside the tourist box to see how Athens’ ever-changing present syncs with its age-old past! The book ‘111 Places in Athens You Shouldn’t Miss’ was written to offer you exactly that. This is just one of 10 unmissable places that even locals often miss, offered exclusively for IN+SIGHTS GREECE readers by the guide’s publishers EMONS.

For a kafeneion, it is uncharacteristically quiet. But patrons don’t come to Panellinion to argue over politics or football (or both simultaneously as in many cases the two are inextricable). Nor do they come to indulge in the counter-culture ambience of other area cafés. They come to play chess. And every single table in the café is set up with a chess set, ready for the contest.

Panellinion isn’t the sort of place that attracts passersby. Scuffed tables, a marble mosaic floor typical of 1950s and 1960s kitchens, stiff wooden chairs with flaking paint, and, at first glance, a clientele of mostly pensioners. The coffee is almost exclusively Ellinikos, individually brewed over a gas flame. The décor is mostly framed photos, including one of the original, far grander premises at the corner of Benaki Street that it occupied for the first eight decades after its founding in 1885. Pride of place among these souvenirs of its history is a magazine spread from 24 August, 1992, featuring Gary Kasparov, the Russian former world chess champion, who not only stopped by Panellinion but simultaneously played – and won – 30 games against the café’s regulars.

Chess isn’t just a game, but a philosophy. Or, as the Emanuel Lasker quote tacked to the service counter notes, ‘On the chessboard lies and hypocrisy do not survive long.’ As a game, it enjoys enduring popularity in Greece, with active clubs throughout the country. Panellinion is more of a haven, a place where players go to share their love of the game, rather than compete for a title. Like the décor, this love for chess has remained steady over time. Perhaps the one thing that has changed is that the coffee house no longer charges customers by the hour so they can continue to contemplate the board without anxiety about running up a bill. And there’s no rush to leave: Panellinion will stay open until the final checkmate. checkmate, even if it takes hours. Unlike our fast-paced lives, chess requires strategy and patience.

Insights Greece - The Chess Café in the heart of Athens

Address: Mavromichali 16, Athens 10680, +30 210 3634492

Getting there: Metro to Panepistimio (M 2); bus 21, 22, 54, 60, 100, 224, 608, 622 or 732

Hours: Daily 8am – 9pm (or later)

Tip: The old antenna atop the Law School Library on the corner of Solonos was used for Morse code transmissions to the government-in-exile in Cairo in World War II.

111 Places in Athens That You Shouldn’t Miss can be found at all major bookstores worldwide as well as online at Amazon.

Athens’ Prettiest Cafes

When it comes to good coffee, great desserts and Insta-worthy decor, these are the Athens cafes you need to add to your must-visit list immediately! 

Petite Fleur

Now in four locations around Athens but each of the cafes maintaining the same comfort and style, Petite Fleur is inspired by Parisian nostalgia. With large windows that let in natural light and small tables with coloured chairs, floral tapestry and mosaic floors, the ambiance is old fashioned and romantic. This is the perfect place to drink hot chocolate and share a strawberry tart on a rainy Sunday afternoon.

A: Central Athens locations: Aminta 1 in Pangrati & Omirou 44 in Kolonaki

Dark Side of Chocolate

Sitting here is like stepping into a painting, not one full of colours and shapes but one rich in ambiance. The name itself evokes a sense of drama and mystery, and the artistic vibe of the store itself extends to the sophisticated and tantalizing menu of handmade chocolates made with Valhroma chocolate and other quality ingredients. Havinjg studied patisserie and chocolate-making in Italy and France, the owner treats customers to combinations including chilli, basil, honey and cardamom. You can either sit or buy hot drinks and of course chocolates to go.

A: Solonos 49, Kolonaki

Kimolia Art Café

This intimate café is named after chalk as a nostalgic image of one of our first childhood drawing tools and decorated in a creative, cosy way that comforts the inner child in us. A small space with little pockets and warm, hushed tones is the creation of three artists and sometimes even hosts creative events. During lockdown it was the first and only café in Greece to go online, creating virtual tables for people to meet and connect as they would in a café. One of the owners, Nikos Palavitsinis, says: “However much we change, we remain loyal to our vision for Kimolia, against mass-tourism, mass-hospitality and faceless and colourless venues.”

A: Iperidou 5, Syntagma


Currently the city’s most Instagrammable café, pink and girlie Ellyz is new to the city’s lively café scene. With an entire wall blanketed in large pink flowers, tables decorated with gold candelabra, crystal chandeliers and colourful fantasy cakes and smoothies to match, this is probably the only place in town where you’ll find a doughnut sprinkled in gold dust and butterflies.

A: Aghiou Filippou 11, Monastiraki


This café has had a loyal clientele and keeps attracting new visitors since it was created by a Greek actress in Makryianni several years ago. Its stylish and original vintage décor, with pistachio walls and floral curtains, wooden bar and artfully placed objects and artworks, create a soothing atmosphere that makes you want to linger over your hot chocolate. Being a café-bistro it also serves fresh savoury pies, cocktails and mocktails and homemade ginger ale and lemonade.

A: Tzami Karatasou 2, Makryianni

Simple September Pleasures in Athens

September is when holidays are ending and our psyche subtly but surely begins to shift from summer flimsiness to autumnal focus.

Perhaps this year even more, with the threat of more lockdowns looming over us, we want to make the most of the sunshine, outdoors and chances to explore. In Athens, September is usually a kind and mellow month, when the city comes back to life and (always somewhat chaotic) order. It’s the time

…when the sun is still hot but not scorching and swimming is still perfectly pleasant.

Insights Greece - Simple September Pleasures in Athens

Throughout the week, the loveliest and most central – not to mention the largest in the capital – pool to visit is the one at Hilton Athens. It might not be cheap, but the sheer size of the pool and lovely greenery surrounding it, quality of its water, Coronavirus-cautious cleanliness, excellent service, and satisfying Oasis poolside restaurant menu will keep you relaxed and carefree for hours on end. On the ground floor of one of the city’s most architecturally fascinating hotels, designed in the 1960s, the pool here attracts mainly low-key glamourous types, families, and singletons who just want to chill in style. Another brilliant handful of great swimming options awaits you at Piraeus port, just 20 minutes’ train ride on the green line from the centre of town. Hop on a ferry or flying dolphin and within an hour you can land at lovely Argosaronic islands like Aegina, Angistri, Poros, Hydra and Spetses to spend the day at lovely beaches, eating fresh fish and sipping a sunset cocktail before returning to urbanity.

…when kefi-fuelled night owls reunite after a summer apart and make the most of being outdoors while it’s still warm.

Insights Greece - Simple September Pleasures in Athens

Head to the bars where you can be part of the crowd pouring onto the pavement, courtyard or rooftop and watch the world go buzzily by, like Ipittou on Ipittou Square in Syntagma, Baba Au Rum in Monastiraki, Blue Parrot in Metaxourgeio, Floral or Warehouse in Exarcheia, Latraac Cafe & Skate Bowl in Kerameikos, Bios in Gazi, Couleur Locale or

Taf The Art Foundation in Monastiraki, Drupes & Drips in Koukaki, Briki in Mavili Square, and Six Dogs or Atlandikos in Psyrri. Or take the quiet path and stroll at sunset time or under the stars in magical places like Philopoappou or Pnyx hills, Lycabettus, the Zappeion gardens, Anafiotika, and Plaka’s backstreets, the upper fringes of Kolonaki and the village-like part of Mets.

…when we start to look ahead at how we will prepare our home and wardrobe for winter with a touch of Greece.

Insights Greece - Simple September Pleasures in Athens

Whether you’re in Athens during September as a visitor or resident, it’s an exciting time to go window-shopping and start dreaming of how you’ll add classic or ultra-contemporary Greek touches to make your home and wardrobe both cozily comfortable and pleasurably stylish. Maybe you want a knitted lambswool fisherman-style pullover or elaborately-embroidered cushion covers that you can find in some of the finer tourist shops of Plaka like Loom. Or vintage stores with an international selection, including Greek designer specials, found around Kolonaki, Monastiraki, and Exarcheia. It may be classical-style jewellery or objects d’art inspired by Greek culture and sold either as a direct replica or with an extreme modern twist and found at specialty shops in the Cycladic Art, Benaki, Benaki Pireos Annexe or Lalaounis Museums or at Greek concept stores like SOPHIA, Forget Me Not or Paraphenelia.