Athens’ Bio Festival Starts Today  

The Athens Bio Festival, showcasing hundreds of local organic products- and designed to increase awareness of healthy and earth-friendly living- returns for its 2nd edition today, Friday, May 6, at the Technopolis in Gazi.

For three consecutive days (Friday, May 6 through to Sunday, May 8) visitors are invited to discover a very large variety of organic and natural products, as well as the chance to meet a range of organic producers and local eco-friendly businesses who are happy to chat about the benefits of their products.  

Food & Drink (with a special vegan area), Natural Beauty, Environment and Health & Nutrition are the festival’s four main categories; and attendees of the event can spend the day participating in crash courses, and watching live cooking demonstrations and presentations.

It’s also a great chance to get your hands on fresh organic fruit and vegetables, as well as vegan products, organic coffee, legumes, pasta, olive oil, dairy products, meat, tea, honey, and herbs; plus beauty, cosmetics, medicinal and household products that are all eco-friendly. 

The event is part of the first ‘This is Athens Festival’ taking place throughout the entire month of May, with more than 100 events scheduled all over the Greek capital. 

Info

Price: €3 for the public (€5 for two tickets), free admission for professionals

Date: 06 May 2022 – 08 May 2022

Time: Friday 3:00 pm – 9:00 pm,

Weekend: 11:00 am – 9:00 pm

A: Technopolis, 100 Pireos, Gazi, Athens

Event Website

‘This is Athens Festival’ Hosting 100 Events Throughout May 

The first ‘This is Athens Festival’ is set to take place throughout the entire month of May, with more than 100 events scheduled all over the Greek capital. 

For 30 days, both locals and visitors are invited to explore urban Athens in full bloom with a great selection of exhibitions, street parties, wine pairing at world-renowned museums, open-air movie screenings, picnics, walking tours, theatrical performances, live music concerts, and more.

From a fun-filled all-day picnic at Plato Academy and a cool street party at Varvakeio, to a stunning jazz concert on the terrace of the Acropolis Museum- each event puts the spotlight on Athens’ vibrant and rich art (theatrical and musical performances, galleries, museums), gastronomy, sports and nightlife scene.

‘This is Athens City Festival’ is an initiative of the Athens Development and Destination Management Agency, which aims to make this an exciting annual event, by promoting activities and performances that appeal to both locals and visitors alike. 

Having the pleasant spring weather as its driving force, the ‘Athens City Festival’ events will take place mainly outdoors at carefully selected spots that highlight not only the city’s contemporary history but also its architectural identity. 

“Athens is returning to its rhythm and we are creating a celebration for the city, inviting Athenians and visitors to the ‘This is Athens City Festival’, which is set in both the centre and surrounding neighbourhoods,” announced Athens’ Mayor Kostas Bakoyannis. 

The Festival will kick off on May 1, with a huge picnic filled with food, friends, sun and music. Taking place at the blooming grounds of the Plato Academy Park, famous radio DJ hosts of Athens will soundtrack the day from the early morning to late evening, with dozens of free activities on offer; including movie screenings, kids’ activities, family games and lots of food and drinks. 

Click here for more info on tickets and dates, as well as the full program of ‘This is Athens City Festival’.

Athens Street Food Festival 2022 Taking Place Throughout May

Throughout the month of May, Greece’s largest food festival will have its doors open in the cool neighbourhood of Gazi, as talented chefs prepare to serve visitors some of the most popular Greek “street food” and other enticing recipes from around the world. 

On the 6-7-8, 13-14-15, 20-21-22, as well as the 27-28-29th of May, the 5th edition of the Athens Food Festival will take place at one of Athens’ old depot stations, with the entire space being filled with stalls offering a range of casual international cuisine. 

Having hosted over 400,000 visitors so far (prior to the pandemic) the Athens Street Food Festival has become one of the most anticipated cultural events in the Greek capital. This year organisers are expecting thousands more local and international visitors to attend- as they will once again be able to experience a great range of flavours and flair from all corners of the globe- including those of Mexico, Japan, France, Italy, Vietnam, the U.S, and needless to say, Greece! 

There will be plenty of traditional Greek street food to try- such as the country’s much-loved souvlaki, spanakopita and loukoumades- plus international favourites like burgers, mac and cheese, tacos, hotdogs, and gelato. The Festival will also be showcasing new food trends that have become popular over the past year.

If you are a foodie who happens to be in Athens during the month of May, do yourself a favour and head over to the old depot station in Gazi, which will be filled with plenty of food, drinks, music and a great vibe! 

More details on the programme of the Festival will be announced shortly, so keep an eye out. 

Date: Weekends between 6 – 29 May 2022

A: Old Depot, OSY, Pireos & Ermou, Gazi

W: Athens Street Food Festival

Exploring Architectural Masterpieces at Open House Athens 2022

Open House Athens 2022 is a popular annual event during which historic buildings, architectural masterpieces and modern abodes -rarely open to the public- can be explored; as visitors are welcome inside to look around. 

The free event, which is the 9th edition in Athens, will take place on Saturday the 9th and Sunday, the 10th of April- offering visitors public access and guided tours to more than fifty private and public buildings, monuments, residences and offices.

Open House Athens is the perfect opportunity to spend the weekend outdoors exploring normally off-limits places around town- with tours of the city’s buildings highlighting outstanding cultural heritage and contemporary architecture. There will also be interviews with architects, activities, and special popup events. 

This year (both in-person and virtually) visitors have the chance to take a peek at the Allouche Benias Gallery, the Church of Agios Dimitrios Loumardiaris, Prodea Loft, Thissios Lofts, Megaron Music Hall, the Italian Embassy, Zillers-Loverdos Mansion, the B & E Goulandris Foundation, SNFCC Library, as well as some of Athens’ newest hotels including The Modernist, the Marriott’s The Moxy and Brown’s Lighthouse Hotel and Dave Red. Some of the neoclassical buildings that can be seen include the National Observatory of Athens, the National Theatre of Greece, the Numismatic Museum; plus many industrial spaces, offices, private homes, museums, libraries, churches and the former Refugee Houses in Ambelokipi will also be explored.  

What is Open House Athens?

Athenians and visitors alike are able to view the city on a whole new level, as this popular annual event (for one weekend only) allows the public to get a close look at normally off-limits sites and attractions in the Greek capital. The concept of Open House began in London in 1992 and has since spread to 35 countries around the world. Open House Greece is a non-profit organisation, part of the wider network of Open House Worldwide, which consists of 50 cities and hosts festivals and conversations about architecture, design and cities across the globe.

Date: 9-10 April 2022

For more details head to Open House Athens 

Main Image by George Adamos | Open House Athens ©

Athens and Epidaurus Festival 2022 Program is Announced 

The full program for the highly anticipated Athens and Epidaurus Festival 2022, was announced yesterday, Monday, March 28- with the Greek capital’s annual summer event once again featuring a great range of music, theatre, dance, performances, cinema, workshops, panel discussions and parties. 

With 67 productions and 1900 artists from around the globe, the Festival is set to kick off on June 1 and run right through to August 20, 2022. 

The Athens and Epidaurus Festival is a highlight of the Greek summer calendar and one of the oldest continuously running festivals in Europe. Spanning 66 years, the Festival has welcomed some of the greatest music, dance, and theatre artists of the international and local scene, in collaboration with the most prestigious Greek and international organisations, attracting large audiences from around the world.

Insights Greece - Athens and Epidaurus Festival 2022 Program is Announced 
Performances will take place at the Odeon of Herodes Atticus

Greek and international productions, partnerships and shows by foreign artists will be included in the 2022 program, which will be staged at the Odeon of Herodes Atticus, Ancient Theatre of Epidaurus, the little theatre of Ancient Epidaurus, and Peiraios 260, announced Artistic Director of the Festival, Katerina Evangelatos. 

“Today was a special day for us all, as we succeeded in meeting each other again in person after two years of unprecedented difficulties and challenges, to share with you everything that we have prepared, to remember remarkable events from the past and dream for the future that is ahead,” said Evangelatos as she presented the new program to the ministers of Culture and Sports, friends and partners of the Festival, various artists and the Press. 

Some of the highlights include the big Greek National Opera production Rigoletto, Giuseppe Verdi’s dark masterpiece, which will be conducted by Lukas Karytinos and directed by Artistic Director Katerina Evangelatos; as well as Tosca, which is an opera classic that will be performed by prominent Greek and international soloists and has been chosen as the Festival’s huge season finale. 

Music performances will include a concert by famous Greek singer George Dalaras; works by Beethoven, Rimsky Kosakov will be performed by the Thessaloniki State Symphony Orchestra along with Zoi Tsokanou and Daniel Lozakovich; Dimitris Papadimitriou, arguably one of the greatest contemporary Greek composers, will present a selection of songs from his rich body of work; and Maria Farantouri will invite audiences to enjoy a magical evening in memory of the late Mikis Theodorakis, as a tribute to his invaluable legacy.

For those lucky enough to be in Athens over the summer, make sure that you check out the annual Festival, which truly is a magical experience. 

Ticket booking for all venues will begin online on Friday, May 14th, at 13:00, for performances scheduled to take place in June, July, and August. 

Book your tickets at:

aefestival.grtickets.aefestival.gr | ticketservices.gr and the Public stores.

Images by Thomas Daskalakis ©

The Best Ways to Celebrate Christmas in Athens

After two years of dreary isolation and low-key gatherings, this Christmas season Athens is alive with numerous events.

From the festively twinkly streets, Christmas trees and pretty ornaments, various corners of the city are filled with Christmas villages, merry gatherings for people of all ages, fun ice rinks, loud music, creative performances and more.

The Capital’s Largest Ice Rink

Until January 6, from 10 am-8 pm, ice skaters can enjoy practising artful pirouettes (or just landing on their behinds several times in a row) in Kotzia Square on Stadiou St. The largest ice rink in Athens, with a total area of 400m sq, keeps ice skaters entertained for hours. An online reservation is required through the pagodromio.christmasinathens.gr platform.

Insights Greece - The Best Ways to Celebrate Christmas in Athens
Ice skating in the Greek capital

The Return of the Christmas Factory

Children can enjoy Christmas games, rides, and sweets at the Christmas Factory in Technopolis in Gazi. At the open-air Christmas marketplace, you’ll find 30 stands selling everything from seasonal decorations, toys, sweets, good luck charms and 15 food stands serving sweet and savoury dishes. Children can ride on the carousel, bumper cars and even a Ferris wheel while admiring beautiful Christmas décor. On weekends, activities and games, as well as musical and theatrical performances, take place. Until January 6.

Xmas DJs Hit the City

Producers from the City of Athens’s official radio station, Athina 9.84 will be DJing a Christmas soundtrack for shoppers and passers-by in the city’s most central areas around Syntagma Square, shopping boulevard Ermou St, around Monastiraki and Kotzia Square. Meanwhile, the Municipal Philharmonic Orchestra will be performing musical pop-up events, adding live entertainment to get those festive vibes rising.

Lively Christmas Villages in Various Neighbourhoods

From Acharnon and Kypseli to Pagrati and Goudi, neighborhoods of Athens will be transformed into ‘Christmas villages’ from December 17 to January 7. Santa Claus and his elves will welcome passers-by with crafts, sweets, Christmas hand-painting workshops and other festive activities. Stilt walkers, jugglers, Christmas characters, animators, puppets and magicians will be there too, adding to the seasonal fun. The Christmas villages will be open from 11 am -7 pm at Messolonghi Sq in Pagrati, Agia Aikaterini  Sq in Kato Petralona, ​​ Athanassiou Diakou Sq in Kato Patisia, Agios Eleftherios – Acharnon, Victoria Sq in Kypseli and Agios Thomas Sq in Goudi.

Insights Greece - The Best Ways to Celebrate Christmas in Athens
Festivities on every corner of Athens

Christmas Street Food Village

Athens’ first Christmas Street Food village is set up outside the Christmas Theater, an entire Christmas village with wooden houses that will serve up flavours from around the world. Try tasty French crêpes and American hotdogs or Mexican churros and Middle Eastern falafel, Italian pizza, Russian piroshki and heart-warming soups. Until January 6, at the Indoor Olympic Stadium of Galatsi.

The Tree of Freedom

In celebration of the Bicentennial of the Greek Revolution, decorate a giant tree with ceramic creations by the OPANDA Ceramics Centre. Meanwhile explore an exhibit of ceramic art like angels, doves and other festive items. The event is open from Tuesday to Friday from 11 am – 7 pm, and on weekends from 10 am- 3 pm at the Angeliki Chatzimichali Museum of Folk Art and Tradition.

The Acropolis Museum in Christmas Spirit

Interactive festive programmes for kids, evening walks in the exhibition spaces (every Friday at 8:30 pm except from 24/12 and 31/12), Christmas carols, unique gifts at the museum store and seasonal sweets in the restaurant are prepared to offer visitors special memories. The Acropolis Museum invites children aged 4 to 11 years old to participate in an interactive festive programme designed to help them express themselves through music. Visiting days are on 29/12 and 30/12 at 10:30 am, 12:30 pm & 2:30 pm.

Insights Greece - The Best Ways to Celebrate Christmas in Athens
Programs organised by the City of Athens

St. Petersburg Classical Ballet of Russia’s Christmas Performance

The Nutcracker, the beloved ‘Christmas ballet’ will be staged on 25/12 and 26/12 at 8:30 pm at the Christmas Theater in Galatsi. The Classical Ballet of St. Petersburg, made up of prolific dancers from the famous Kirov (Mariinsky) corps de ballets, will be in Athens this Christmas with 60 performers to enchant audiences with the most magnificent Christmas fairy tale.

Swinging Christmas

On December 30 at 8:30 pm, get ready for a “Swinging Christmas” with the Athens Big Band starring Stavros Romanos and Jenny Kapadais with songs made famous by Frank Sinatra and Ella Fitzgerald, at the Olympia Municipal Music Theater ‘Maria Callas’. On New Year’s Eve at the same location, say adieu to 2021 at the festive concert “The 12 Days of Christmas” with songs and hymns from around the world, and welcome in 2022 with a New Year Opera Gala on January 13 at a concert dedicated to love, with famous arias and a duet of the most popular operas, conducted by Nikolas Nägele.

Christmas Eve Wish Lanterns

On Christmas Eve, the sky above Kotzia Sq will be filled with lanterns representing the Night of Wishes. Those present are promised the dreamy experience of watching an impressive audio-visual show by the Athens Digital Arts Festival with the Athens City Hall as a backdrop.

Christmas at the SNFCC

Insights Greece - The Best Ways to Celebrate Christmas in Athens
SNFCC lights up during Christmas

On Monday, December 27, at 8.30 pm, the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Centre (SNFCC) will present the ERT National Symphony Orchestra under the direction of the award-winning conductor George Petrou at the Stavros Niarchos Hall. The seasonal concert will include the popular waltz and polka tunes as well as excerpts from operettas by composers from 19th century Vienna traditionally heard at this time of year to create a fuzzy festive buzz.  

From December 18 to January 6, as part of the SNFCC Christmas World, the lighthouse Terrace is transformed into an impressive pop-up bar, specially designed for the holiday season, is making an entrance in the city. Designed by architect & set designer Elina Loukou, the 360 Christmas Pop-up Bar turns into a festive bar of contemporary aesthetics. The experience is complemented by beloved DJs and music producers, and a large selection of cocktails. 

For more details head to Christmas in Athens