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Athens Hotels – Tips and Recommendations
- Athens is a great city. I love it. You might have heard it’s ugly (and some areas are) but there’s much to see within the walkable central area. It has the Acropolis and the two best museums in Greece. The streets are filled with great food and lively restaurants. Athens can easily fill 2 full days of quality sightseeing. Recommended stay: 1 to 3 full days.
- Where To Stay in Athens: The best neighborhoods for visitors are Plaka, Monastiraki, Syntagma, Koukaki, and Kolonaki – all are walking distance to the Acropolis and other top historical sights.
- Athens is packed with tourists from May to October. Book hotels early for the best deals.
- Best Luxury Hotel in Athens: Grande Bretagne on Syntagma Square. A classic. One of my favorite hotels in Europe.
- Best Boutique Hotel in Athens: AthensWas Hotel in Plaka.
- Best Cheap Hotels in Athens: Phaedra Hotel (Plaka) • A for Athens (Psirri/Monastiraki) • Athens Center Square (Monastiraki)
- Best Hotels in Athens for Families: Ava Hotel and Suites • Grecotel Pallas Athena
- Most ferries to Santorini, Mykonos, and the Greek Islands leave between 7am and 8am from the Piraeus ferry port. If you’re catching one of these ferries then stay close to the Monastiraki metro station (which has quick direct trains to the ferry port for just 1.40€). If you take a taxi it doesn’t matter where you stay. Good hotels close to Monastiraki Station (for easy access to the train to the ferry port): A for Athens • Plaka Hotel • 360 Degrees • Adrian Hotel
- Taxi from the airport to downtown hotels costs 38€. From downtown hotels to the ferry port costs about 15€.
- Don’t stay in Omonia Square or in Piraeus (ferry port). They’re not unsafe but are gritty, somewhat ugly, and there are better places to stay.
- The best restaurant in Plaka is Psarras (Fisherman’s Taverna) – magical location on the steps below the Acropolis with fantastic traditional Greek dishes.
- The best bar in central Athens is Brettos in Plaka. Great friendly vibe.
- Best Tours in Athens – There are several great tours in central Athens.
The 16 Best Hotels in Athens
1. Hotel Grande Bretagne – Syntagma Square
Hotel phone: +30 21033 30000
The best hotel in Athens. Situated on Syntagma Square in the center of the action and walking distance to nearly all major attractions. The spa, rooftop restaurant, and bar are wonderful – the latter worth a visit even if you’re not a guest. Review of Hotel Grande Bretagne
2. King George Hotel – Syntagma Square
Hotel phone:+30 21032 22210
Wonderful location (adjacent to the Grande Bretagne) with Syntagma Square at your door, shops all about, and Plaka and Acropolis a short walk away. Rooms are beautifully decorated. Staff top notch. Review of King George Hotel
3. AthensWas Hotel – Plaka
Hotel phone: +30 21092 49954
The best hotel in Plaka. New and modern boutique hotel on a pedestrian-only street in Plaka. Rooms are spacious, stylish, and comfortable. Great breakfast included. Highly recommended. Review of AthensWas Hotel
4. Andronis Athens – Psirri
Hotel Phone: +30 21032 32244
Tiny luxury hotel (just 6 suites) in the stylish Psirri neighborhood, known for its restaurants and nightlife. Rooms feature eclectic decor and spacious walk-in showers. Elegant and Executive Suites have private terraces and claw-foot bathtubs; the split-level Elegant Suite also boasts a view of the Acropolis. Its open-air cafe serves Greek and international dishes all day with an especially great brunch, inventive cocktails, and an excellent wine list.
5. Coco-Mat Hotel – Kolonaki
Hotel phone: +30 21072 30000
Comfortable beds, modern decor, and a rooftop bar with amazing views – a great value hotel in a classy, cafe-filled neighborhood. Near many restaurants and shops, with major museums, Plaka, and Acropolis all within a 25 minute walk. Review of Coco-Mat Hotel
6. Perianth Hotel – Monastiraki
Hotel phone: +30 21032 16660
Luxury boutique hotel with a wellness center and Italian restaurant. This design-forward hotel features an Art Deco exterior and an interior filled with contemporary Greek art. Rooms and suites all have balconies and king-sized beds, some with views of the Acropolis. The Penthouse Suite boasts a private rooftop jacuzzi and pool. Excellent location in Monastiraki, just a short walk to the train station, several excellent bars and restaurants, and shopping on Ermou Street.
7. New Hotel – Plaka
Hotel phone: +30 21032 73000
A superbly renovated central downtown hotel two minutes’ walk from Syntagma Square. Modern design and decor, helpful extras like electronic blackout shades, great rooftop bar and restaurant. Review of New Hotel
8. Electra Palace Hotel – Plaka
Hotel Phone: +30 21033 70000
Rooftop pool has amazing views of the Acropolis (there’s also an indoor pool in the basement). Beautiful grounds in a great location with shops and restaurants only steps away. The large triple rooms are good for families. Review of Electra Palace Hotel
9. Periscope Hotel – Kolonaki
Hotel phone: +30 21072 97200
Modern, minimalist four-star boutique hotel. The 2-story Penthouse Suite has great rooftop views and an outdoor jacuzzi. Located on a quiet street in upscale Kolonaki, near many restaurants, bars, cafes, and shopping.
10. Grecotel Pallas Athena – Kotzia Square
Hotel phone: +30 21032 50900
Family-friendly, 5-star hotel with a play area and connecting rooms. Rooms, suites, and lofts all feature bespoke decor, either one-of-a-kind graffiti murals or elegant, minimalist style. Dining is excellent at their Greek-Mediterranean restaurant with an especially wonderful hot and cold breakfast buffet. Located near Kotzia Square, just a 3-minute walk to the Central Market and less than a 10-minute walk to shopping at Ermou Street and the Monastiraki Flea Market.
11. Hilton Athens – near Kolonaki
Hotel phone: +30 21072 81000
Good sized rooms, the best swimming pool in Athens, and exemplary service make the Hilton a great pick. Located a 15 minute walk from Plaka and Syntagma Square in a quieter section of the city (not far from the trendy cafes of Kolonaki). A nearby metro station connects you with everything.
12. O&B Athens Boutique Hotel – Psirri
Hotel phone: +30 21033 12940
Cozy and comfortable hotel with great Acropolis views and an excellent buffet breakfast. Just one minutes’ walk from Thisio Metro Station, ten minutes from the Acropolis, and two minutes from the flea market.
13. St George Lycabettus – Kolonaki
Hotel phone: +30 21074 16000
Comfortably elegant hotel at the foot of the Lycabettus hill with incredible views over Athens, the Parthenon, and the Acropolis. If you don’t spring for a view room (but you should), you can enjoy the panaorama from the rooftop restaurant, lounge, and swimming pool.
14. Royal Olympic Hotel – Plaka
Hotel Phone: +30 21092 88400
A great hotel with a wonderful central location – cross one busy street and you’re in the heart of Plaka. Acropolis and Acropolis Museum are a short walk away. The rooftop restaurant has incredible views of the sights. Suites are huge and luxurious.
15. InterContinental Athenaeum – Koukaki
Hotel phone: +30 21092 06000
Rooms are huge and some have amazing views of the Acropolis. The swimming pool is great. The hotel is located a 20 minute walk from Plaka and a free shuttle bus runs guests to the main tourist spots every 30 minutes. There’s also a tram and metro station nearby to take you to Syntagma Square. If location is of prime importance then this might not be your place, but the hotel itself is a great choice. Review of InterContinental Athenaeum
16. Four Seasons Astir Palace Hotel Athens – The Coast
Hotel phone: +30 21089 01000
Stunning setting on a private peninsula on the stretch of coast south of Athens. Great beach, pool, restaurants, kids club, and every kind of outdoor activity you can name. 10 minutes to the shops, restaurants, and nightlife of Glyfada, 20 minutes to the airport, and 40 minutes into central Athens. A free shuttle bus takes you into Glyfada (the hotel will pay for a taxi if the shuttle is delayed or full).
My favorite neighborhood in Athens. Yes, it’s very touristy but it also has a lively and friendly vibe. It’s a pedestrian-friendly warren of ancient streets nestled at the base of the Acropolis (the one must-see attraction in Athens). Plaka is filled with restaurants, tourist shops, and hotels. Sights include the Tower of the Winds, Metropolitan Cathedral of Athens, Hadrian’s Arch, and the Jewish Museum of Greece, and the Museum of Greek Folk Art. Served by Monastiraki station on metro lines 1 and 3.
The Best Hotels in Plaka
Neighboring Plaka and having a similar feel, Monastiraki is also a great area to stay with many places to eat and shop. The neighborhood is a little less touristy and has more antique, arts, crafts, and clothing shops than Plaka. Sights here include the Ancient Agora, Roman Agora, Stoa of Attalos, Hadrian’s Library, and the Museum of Greek Popular Musical Instruments. It’s also home to a large Flea Market every Sunday morning. The area is served by the Monastiraki station (lines 1 and 3). Line 1 is a direct route to Piraeus Ferry Port and line 3 heads directly to the Athens International Airport, making Monastiraki a good choice if you have an early ferry or plane to catch.
The Best Hotels in Monastiraki
After Plaka and Monastiraki, this is my favorite area of Athens to stay. Like Plaka and Monastiraki, the area sits at the base of the Acropolis and looks up at the Parthenon. It’s an easy walk from here to Plaka and Syntagma but the area has a more local feel and not so touristy. There are many local restaurants and cafes on the streets and squares around the neighborhood. The Koukaki (and Makrigianni) area is served by the Akropoli and Sygrou-Fix stations on metro line 2.
The Best Hotels in Koukaki
The business and tourist hub of Athens. In Syntagma you’ll find 5-star hotels, restaurants, shopping, banks, airline offices, and the Greek Parliament buildings. Served by Syntagma metro station (lines 2 and 3). The National Historical Museum is located in the old Parliament building on Stadiou street and the National Gardens are a cool and shady retreat from the sweltering Athens’ summers.
The Best Hotels in Syntagma
A residential neighborhood northwest of Syntagma Square that’s filled with upscale shops, restaurants, boutique hotels, and cafes. Sights include the Benaki Museum, the Museum of Cycladic Art, and National War Museum. It’s walking distance from here to Plaka and the Acropolis. Served by Syntagma station on metro line 2 & 3 and Evangelismos on metro line 3.
The Best Hotels in Kolonaki
Piraeus Hotels (Ferry Port)
The port of Athens where the ferries arrive and depart for the islands. There’s not much here for tourists besides the ferries but if you need to catch an early ferry staying here is an option (but I would still recommend staying in Athens). In high season there are always tourists milling about the area near the port and the metro station so you need not fear an early morning departure or a late night arrival. It’s about 30 minutes by metro (on line 1) from downtown Athens to the port.
Recommended Hotels in Piraeus
Plaka is the best area to stay in Athens. It’s very central for seeing all the best historical sights in Athens (except for the National Archaeological Museum which is a little out of the way and requires a short metro or taxi ride). It’s also busy day and night and feels very safe.
But you don’t have to stay right in Plaka to get that safe, busy, central feeling. Being a little outside Plaka area is fine too. Syntagma Square, Monastiraki, and Koukaki border Plaka and there’s no clear boundary as you leave Plaka and enter these neighborhoods.
The following hotels all have great locations in central Athens and are an easy walk to all the major sights in the area. The Acropolis, Plaka, the Acropolis Museum, the Ancient Agora, and a half-dozen historical sights of Ancient Athens are within walking distance of all the hotels listed below.
- A for Athens – Steps from the Monastiraki metro station (for direct trains to the Piraeus ferry port and the airport).
- Athens Gate Hotel – Very close to Plaka and Acropolis Museum and directly across from Hadrian’s Gate and the Temple of Olympian Zeus.
- AthensWas – Surrounded by bars and restaurants and close to the Acropolis Museum and a metro station.
- Ava Hotel and Suites – Great location in Plaka and a two-minute walk to Hadrian’s Arch and the Temple of Olympian Zeus.
- Divani Palace Acropolis – In the non-touristy neighborhood of Koukaki. Close to the Acropolis and steps from the Acropolis Museum.
- Electra Hotel – On a funky pedestrian-only street, close to Syntagma and walking distance to Plaka and Monastiraki metro station.
- Electra Palace Hotel Athens – The best hotel location in the heart of Plaka. Great views of the Acropolis. On a quiet street but steps from shops and restaurants.
- Grande Bretagne – Athens’ best hotel located on the city’s most famous square. The Syntagma Metro Station is steps from the hotel.
- King George – Directly beside the Grande Bretagne on Syntagma Square.
- New Hotel – Steps from the shops and restaurants of the Plaka.
- NJV Athens Plaza – Beside the King George Hotel and on Syntagma Square.
- Phaedra Hotel – Great location in Plaka
- Plaka Hotel – In Plaka and close to Monastiraki metro station (which has a direct link to the Piraeus ferry port so is perfect for catching early morning ferry departures).
- Royal Olympic Hotel – Close to Hadrian’s Gate and across a busy road from Plaka and Acropolis Museum.
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