Best Hotels in Athens for Christmas

Whether you’re a local Athenian looking to spoil yourself with a luxurious weekend in your home city or an international visitor wishing to experience the best the capital has to offer, those seeking a festive hotel stay for Christmas in Athens are spoiled for choice.

To help you plan your winter trip to Athens, we’ve curated a list of the best festive hotels that have gone above and beyond to make it a Christmas to remember.

Expect decadent feasts, wonderfully extravagant decorations, soothing melodies, and plenty of champagne upon arrival! 

Hotel Grande Bretagne 

Fancy spending Christmas right in the heart of Athens? Hotel Grande Bretagne allows guests to celebrate many magical experiences inside its hotel, and you are only footsteps away from the festive events taking place around the city! From the majestic 7-metre-tall Christmas tree in the glamorous lobby to the timeless crystal ornaments that adorn every space within and around the hotel- this is one of the best places to stay. Enjoy special menus in the hotel’s award-winning restaurants and bars for Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day – where you can expect to find fine caviar, live jazz performances, as well as the most enchanting ambience accompanied by breathtaking views and the sparkling lights of the city below. And with the exclusive King George Perfumery and GB Store downstairs – you don’t need to go far to spoil loved ones (or yourself)!

A: 1 Vasileos Georgiou A, Syntagma Square 

Four Seasons Astir Palace Hotel Athens 

Offering a calming oasis away from the buzzing city, Four Seasons Astir Palace, located in Athens Riviera promises a delightful stay during this time of year. From a signature winter wonderland at Avra bar to special festive crafts and activities for kids to take part in every day, plus the charming and thoughtful gifts available at the boutique store- there’s no need for anyone to leave the hotel to feel the Christmas magic in the air. Guests can also spoil themselves with a relaxing spa treatment and savor some of the most exquisite dishes and traditional sweets at one of the many fabulous restaurants found right here. 

A: Apollonos 40, Vouliagmeni 

The Dolli

Indulge in the “Jolly Dolli” spirit by celebrating Christmas with the iconic Acropolis hovering just overhead, while also enjoying the all-day dazzling festivities that have been put together for each guest. The hotel’s first Christmas includes tailored handmade adornments, whimsical surprises and the scent of Christmas treats that transform The Dolli into a welcoming wonderland. The festive agenda also features a distinct range of dinners and drinks with stunning panoramic views and music, a delightful afternoon tea, and a standout weekend brunch infused with a festive spirit.

A: Mitropoleos 49, Athens

Athens Capital Hotel

Experience the joy of the season at the Athens Capital Hotel, located in the centre of the city. Here you can immerse yourself in the festive atmosphere, adorned with unique decorations and the breathtaking panoramic view of the illuminated Acropolis. The hotel’s award-winning chef Boutsalis Dimitris invites guests to savor the magic of the Réveillon extravaganza on Christmas Eve, a Réveillon de Noel – a delightful Christmas lunch, and you can also welcome the New Year in glamorous style at the dazzling New Year’s Réveillon.

A: 4 Eleftheriou Venizelou Avenue & 2 Kriezotou, Syntagma Square Street, Athens

Gatsby Athens  

Another hotel promising to bring the magic of Christmas to life is the Gatsby Athens. Featuring live musical performances each night, as well as a delightful seasonal menu that is inspired by this special time of year- guests will feel warm, cozy and festive from morning till late evening. It’s the perfect place if you are looking to finish your Christmas shopping or experience the magic of Christmas in the centre of the capital, as luxury boutiques and lively events are right at your doorstep. 

A: Lekka 18, Athens

Main image Courtesy of Hotel Grande Bretagne

Best Christmas Markets in Athens 

Serving some of the best street food in the capital and selling unique handmade gifts, here we’ve rounded up Athens’ best Christmas markets for 2023 – where you can eat, drink, shop and be merry!

Christmas Mood in Pedio tou Areos & Omonoia Square
Insights Greece - Best Christmas Markets in Athens 

After strolling around the beautifully decorated Syntagma Square, make your way over to Pedio tou Areos and Omonoia Square where it’s also shining! Transformed into Christmas parks with open markets selling handcrafted gifts – here you will also have the opportunity to ice skate and enjoy plenty of cultural events that are held every day. At Omonoia Square you can admire the second-largest Christmas tree in Athens, with thousands of lights sparkling in one of the most beautifully renovated squares in the heart of the city.

Address: Pedio tou Areos & Omonoia Square

Μeet Market-Xmas Edition
Insights Greece - Best Christmas Markets in Athens 

Get ready for 10 consecutive days of shopping, music, drinks, food, activities and meet-ups in the most festive of settings! This year over 200 “Made In Greece” brands will be showcased during the 10 days – including well-known designers and artisans, plus over 50 fresh faces that will be introducing themselves to Athens locals for the first time with their gorgeous items that are ideal for this time of year.

Entry: Free

Date & Time: Friday 8 – Sunday 17 December 2023
Weekdays 17:00 – 22:00 & Weekends 12:00 – 22:00

Address: Amaxostasio / Old Depot OSY, Ermou & Pireos, Athens


The Christmas Factory 2023
Insights Greece - Best Christmas Markets in Athens 

For the most extravagant Christmas market event in Athens, look no further than the Christmas Factory, which is taking place for the tenth year at the Technopolis courtyard in Gazi. Games, gifts, an amusement park, an ice skating rink, musical acts, theatre performances, Christmas stories, and interactive workshops with dozens of elves will be there to greet visitors! This bright affair also features tasty Christmas market food and edible gifts, as well as a series of festive performances and programming, plus rides including a huge Ferris wheel.

Entry: €7-€17

Date & Time: 25 November- 6 January 10 am – 10 pm

Αddress: Technopolis, 100 Pireos and Voutadon, Gazi

Buy Tickets:

Christmas Street Food Village
Insights Greece - Best Christmas Markets in Athens 

Just outside of the Galatsi Indoor Olympic Stadium, which happens to be home to the Athens Christmas Theater, you’ll find Athens’ first and only Christmas Street Food Village! Wonderfully set up with wooden chalets, here you’ll find sweet treats and great handmade gifts for Christmas. With international street food, as well as fun games for visitors of all ages, this is a great Christmas market to visit in Athens if you’re catching a show at the Christmas Theater.

Address: Leoforos Veikou 137, Galatsi


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 

Hundreds of Christmas Festivities & Events Kick Off Across Athens

Hundreds of exciting Christmas events are taking place throughout 52 locations in the Greek Capital, giving locals and visitors the chance to celebrate the festive season with a huge program that’s been designed by the Athens Municipality.

Taking place between December 7, 2021, and January 13, 2022, the Christmas and New Year program involves more than 120 activities for people of all ages, including 25 music and theatre performances, as well as seven open-air film screenings.

“This Christmas, Athens will be celebrating each day, with special events created to make people of all ages smile. Due to the challenges faced by the prolonged pandemic, the municipality of Athens has responded with music, theatre, and Christmas surprises for everyone,” announced Athens Mayor Kostas Bakoyannis.

Among the highlights is the opening of the biggest ice skating rink in Athens. Located in Kotzia Square (opposite City Hall) and covering 400 square metres, it’s set to open on December 10. Admission to the rink is free but visitors are required to book via this link here

There will also be six Christmas “villages” set up in various neighbourhoods, including the suburbs of Acharnes, Kypseli, Pangrati and Goudi, where there will be a range of arts, crafts and hand painting taking place; as well as Santa and his elves, plus other activities and spectacles (including stilt walkers, jugglers, puppets, animateurs, magicians) bringing joy to the streets of Athens.

Commencing on December 11, the city’s museums, libraries, galleries, art centres and other venues will also host various workshops for art, narration, theatre games and dance, children’s pantomimes, puppet shows, tours and much more. 

The events will also include seven popular Christmas films selected by the Athens Open Air Film Festival and Premiere Nights, that will be screened outdoors in seven different locations in the city between December 17 to 30.

Images Courtesy of Culture is Athens

Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Centre Lights Up For Christmas

Together with visitors of all ages and actor Dimitris Kouroumbalis as a host, the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Centre (SNFCC) in Athens was transformed into a bright place of celebration overnight, in a glittering event at the Agora.

For the fifth consecutive year, four impressive light installations created by prominent foreign and Greek artists were presented at Stavros Niarchos Park, rolling out the magic of the SNFCC Christmas world.

There were also thousands of Christmas lights, three lavishly decorated tall Christmas trees, festive choreographies by the Canal Fountains, four-light installations at the Stavros Niarchos Park, and of course festive melodies from the young musicians of El Sistema Greece and Onirama.

Visitors are able to walk through the dreamy atmosphere of the Dome, the Great Lawn, the Pine Grove, and the Green Roofs that highlight the boundaries between light, colour, and motion, with many activities on offer for people of all ages.

At the SNFCC Christmas World, December is a month full of festivities – including the Ice Rink at the Canal, which is set to commence on December 10 and every day holds a new surprise for all.

The Christmas Stories at the Lighthouse, as well as music, sports, play and fun, art and creativity, all turn into a special event, setting the brightest Christmas memories at the SNFCC.

Photos by SNFCC | Nikos Karanikolas and Danai Kokkinaki

Syntagma Square’s Christmas Tree Lights Up for 2021

Tis’ the season for all things jolly and The City of Athens annual tree-lighting event to celebrate the Christmas holidays, took place at Syntagma Square overnight with the centre of the Greek capital beautifully lighting up and bringing joy to Athenians earlier than usual this year.

The 19-metre-tree from Karpenissi, Central Greece, was lit with 60,000 multi-coloured lights measuring 5km from top to bottom, signalling the official start of the end-of-year holiday season.

Athens Mayor Kostas Bakoyannis said that the annual decoration of the city came earlier this year than any in the past, “In order to leave behind the negative atmosphere of the [ongoing] pandemic and bring a spirit of celebration to the city sooner.” He added that it would also help boost the Athens market, which had suffered during the pandemic.

The Mayor also announced that the low-budget infrastructure introduced this year will be reused in the future, and “turn Athens into a brilliant and contemporary European capital this year too.” He also reminded the public to keep health measures.

The city’s main square, the Greek Parliament building and nearby streets and buildings have also been decorated with a total of 350,000 Christmas lights and green garlands. The lighting show was designed by lighting specialist Giorgos Tellos and the original music was provided by composer and sound artist Stavros Gasparatos.

Images Courtesy of INTIME and Eurokinissi