Where to stay in Athens, Greece. Best hotels in Athens for every budget, from luxury Athens hotels with Acropolis views to small, friendly apartments. Includes information on which area to stay in Athens is best depending on the type of city break you have planned.
Where is the best place to stay in Athens?
So, you're planning a trip to Athens, and now you want to know where the best place to stay is.
The thing is, everyone wants different things when it comes to hotels, so it's always a tough question to answer.
Is location more important to you than luxury? Is price more important than facilities?
This guide to the best places to stay in Athens will help you decide what's best for you. Let's begin by starting it in style!
Best areas to stay in Athens City Center
If luxury is not your first priority, but you are looking for the best area to stay in Athens, it’s a good idea to try to get your head around the different Athens neighborhoods.
Unlike other cities, it’s not as easy as it sounds. Athens was built without a real plan, and the streets are a maze – even locals get lost!
As a rule of thumb, I would suggest it's easier for first time visitors to Athens to stay near the Acropolis. Take a look at the map below, complete with price guide.
Where to stay in Athens may depend on a few things:
- Is this your first time in Athens?
- Are you in Athens for a night or two, or are you staying longer?
- Do you want to experience the touristy side, a more local, or perhaps an alternative side?
- Are you interested in ancient sites, upmarket shopping, or partying and nightlife?
Answers to these questions will determine the ideal area to stay in Athens.
Where to stay in Athens
Here's a quick list of the best areas to stay in Athens and what you might expect there:
- Syntagma / Plaka – First time in Athens, 1-2 days in Athens, ancient sites, souvenir shops
- Koukaki – 1-2 days in Athens, ancient sites, local neighborhood
- Monastiraki / Psyrri – Food market, street art, alternative vibe
- Syntagma / Ermou – Shopping, local life
- Kolonaki – Exclusive shopping, upmarket feel, museums
- Gazi / Kerameikos – Nightlife, street art
- Glyfada Athens Riviera – Upmarket neighborhood
1. Plaka – Ideal to stay for first time visitors
Ask anyone who has visited Athens, and they are likely to mention one area: Plaka. This small neighborhood right in the centre of Athens is where many people choose to stay, especially if it’s their first time in Greece.
Roughly speaking, Plaka is the area between Syntagma, Monastiraki and Acropolis metro stations. It leans on the touristy side, as it has the majority of souvenir shops in central Athens. At the same time, it has quaint little streets, several Byzantine churches and many tavernas and restaurants.
If it’s your first time in Athens and you want to be in the centre of everything, Plaka is a great choice. It is walking distance from most major sights and ideal for souvenir shopping. Despite its touristy side, Plaka is a charming little neighborhood where lots of Athenians choose to go.
Things to see in Plaka, Athens
Plaka also has a few interesting museums that you may have never heard of. If you like art, you will be delighted to visit the Frissiras collection, or the Museum of Greek Children’s Art which is unexpectedly interesting. On the other hand, if you are more interested in history, you will be impressed by some of the exhibits in the Athens University History Museum.
One of the most impressive features of Plaka is the Anafiotika area, just underneath the Acropolis. Here, you can see a few of the oldest houses in Athens, built by people who came from the Cyclades islands in the 1830s. There's also some quite neat street art hidden away.
If you are not planning to go to Santorini, this area will give you an idea of the famous white-washed houses. There are lots of steps leading up to Anafiotika, so getting there might not be everyone’s cup of tea.
Finally, do not miss a screening at the only outdoor cinema in the world with a view of the Acropolis, Cine Paris in Plaka.
Best Hotels in Plaka, Athens
As you would expect, Plaka has several hotels, including some nicely designed boutique hotels. This is just a small selection, so feel free to browse for more.
Located just at the outskirts of Plaka towards Koukaki, AthensWas hotel is very close to the Acropolis, the Acropolis Museum and the temple of Olympian Zeus.
The rooms are ideal whether you are travelling for work or leisure, as they all feature worktables, safety boxes, coffee machines and balconies. The rooftop restaurant offers great views of the Acropolis.
Tripadvisor reviews here: AthensWas Hotel
Book here: AthenWas Hotel
The newly established Ergon House features modern, uniquely designed rooms in one of the best areas in Athens. What is quite special about Ergon House is that it’s a deli hotel – it is adjacent to a restaurant, and as such pays a lot of attention on breakfast and other meals. Coffee machines are included in all rooms, and a fitness centre is also available at the hotel.
Tripadvisor reviews here: Ergon House
Book here: Ergon House
Electra Palace Athens
This classic five-star hotel is one of the best hotels in Plaka. It boasts a rooftop restaurant with a private pool, with a view to the Acropolis. The Electra Palace also has an indoor pool, a sauna and other spa facilities.
Tripadvisor reviews here: Electra Palace Athens
Book here: Electra Palace Hotel Athens
Urban Frame Hotel
Located right in the heart of Plaka, Urban Frame Hotel is a cozy, tastefully decorated hotel. A restaurant, a bar and a shared lounge are available. All rooms include a fridge, a kettle and satellite TV.
Tripadvisor reviews here: Urban Frame Hotel
Book here: Urban Frame Hotel Athens
2. Koukaki for easy access to ancient sites
Just behind the Acropolis Museum, between Acropolis metro and Fix metro, lies the beautiful neighborhood of Koukaki.
This is an increasingly popular area for visitors, as it is very close to Acropolis and the Acropolis Museum, while at the same time having a local feel. It is also ideal for people who can only spend a night or two in Athens.
If you are staying in Athens for a longer time, Koukaki has quite a few places of interest, like the impressive Lalaounis Jewelry Museum. Areopagitou Street, the nicest pedestrianized street in Athens, starts here. You can easily walk all the way to Monastiraki metro station in less than a half hour, and perhaps climb up Filopappou Hill on your left.
Koukaki has several local restaurants, where you will see many Athenians. Walk around the pedestrianized streets and choose one, then watch the people go by.
Best Hotels in Koukaki, Athens
As you can expect, Koukaki offers a great selection of places to stay. There are many well-known, established hotels, but also an increasing number of modern boutique hotels and luxury apartments.
If you are travelling with your family or a group of friends, this might be the best area to stay in Athens.
Acropolis View Hotel
The Acropolis View Hotel offers cozy rooms just a stone’s throw from the Acropolis Museum. Many of the rooms have balconies overlooking the Acropolis or the nearby Filopappou Hill. In the evenings, you can relax at the rooftop terrace, admiring the views.
Tripadvisor reviews here: Acropolis View Hotel
Book here: Acropolis View Hotel Athens
For people looking for all the comforts of an apartment, Noble Suites is the perfect choice. This hotel offers spacious suites that are ideal for couples or families. All of the suites include large seating areas and elegant marble bathrooms, while some of them include their own private terrace. A rich breakfast box with traditional Greek delicacies is offered daily.
Tripadvisor reviews here: Noble Suites
Book here: Noble Suites in Athens
B4B Athens Signature Hotel
The new, modern B4B Athens Signature Hotel offers tastefully decorated rooms, each with a coffee machine and a mini bar. Guests can enjoy a daily buffet breakfast and a cozy on-site bar. Upon request, the hotel can provide a smartphone with unlimited calls.
Tripadvisor reviews here: B4B Athens Signature Hotel
Book here: B4B Athens Signature Hotel
3. Monastiraki and Psyrri for a hip vibe
Monastiraki and the adjacent Psyrri are among the most bustling areas in Athens city centre. This is a great location to base yourselves if you want to be a little out of the hard-core tourist centre, but still have access to souvenir shops and a range of restaurants and cafes.
The Ancient Agora of Athens, including the Agora Museum, is a stone’s throw from Monastiraki metro station. This is also where the popular Monastiraki flea market begins.
Just at the border between Monastiraki and Plaka, you will find the fascinating (and free) museum of Greek Folk Musical Instruments. You should definitely visit, especially if you are travelling with children.
Related: What is Athens famous for?
Athinas street, just off Monastiraki metro station, is home to the Varvakios Central Athens food market and a range of deli shops, where you can taste fantastic Greek products. There are separate sections for meat, fish, fruits and vegetables, and many other products.
Psyrri area, just behind the food market towards Iroon Square, is a cool little area with many restaurants, ice-cream and dessert shops and coffee places. It also has a weird mix of little shops selling all sorts of random stuff, from ropes to wicker baskets to kitchenware to leather sandals.
Psyrri is great to walk around if you like street art. Not far from Iroon Square, and especially around Aristofanous, Sarri, Palamidou, and Louka Nika streets, you will see some of the best street art in Athens.
Best Hotels in Monastiraki – 360 Degrees Pop Art Hotel
If you want to be close to Monastiraki, it doesn’t get any better than the 360 Degrees Pop Art Hotel. A new, modern hotel with a popular rooftop bar / restaurant, 360 offers great, stylish rooms right in the heart of Athens. The Monastiraki flea market is literally just outside the door!
Tripadvisor reviews here: 360 Degrees Pop Art Hotel
Book here: 360 Degrees Pop Art Hotel
Another new hotel located on a quiet street close to Monastiraki metro station, Blend Hotel offers contemporary, stylish rooms. It’s a perfect choice if you are interested in the Athens food market, and want to be walking distance from the main commercial areas in Athens.
Tripadvisor reviews here: Blend Hotel
Book here: Blend Hotel in Athens
Mythos Luxury Suites
If you prefer to be more self-sufficient during your stay in Athens, you can choose to stay in self-catering apartments. Mythos Luxury Suites can accommodate up to four people in spacious, bright, modern apartments, each with a kitchenette and seating area.
Book here: Mythos Luxury Suites
Best Hotels in Psyrri – Athenian Residences
If you prefer to stay in the vibrant Psyrri area, the Athenian Residences are a great choice. You can choose from a range of rooms and apartments with different facilities, which can accommodate up to six people. Guests will also have access to an outdoor pool, which is great after a busy day of sightseeing.
Tripadvisor reviews here: Athenian Residences
Book here: Athenian Residences
4. Syntagma and Ermou Street in Central Athens
If you like commercial streets, the best area to stay in Athens is close to Ermou Street. Named after Hermes, the god of commerce, this busy pedestrian street stretches between Syntagma and Monastiraki square.
You can find all sorts of high-street shops and popular international chains, but also a few smaller family-run businesses. This is also the best area if you want to buy beads, fabrics and anything similar.
Walk up to Syntagma Square, and check out the change of the Guards in front of the impressive Parliament building. If you are in Athens on a Sunday, you can watch the ceremonial change of the Guards at 11am.
This area is where many Athenians live and hang out. If you want to go where the locals go, sit for a coffee or drink at trendy Agias Eirinis Square, or Mavili Square. Alternatively, just walk around the side streets and find somewhere you like. There are plenty of local cafes and also places where you can get snacks, nuts and chocolate.
Hotels near Syntagma – NJV Athens Plaza
The NJV Athens Plaza is located at the city’s most central location, right on Syntagma square. It’s a 5-star hotel offering spacious, bright rooms with large windows, and an on-site restaurant and lounge.
The NJV Plaza is ideally located for a stroll down Ermou Street, but also for a short walk to the upmarket Kolonaki area. Most of the best Athens museums, such as the Benaki and the Numismatic Museum are located within easy walking distance from the hotel.
Tripadvisor reviews here: NJV Athens Plaza
Book here: NJV Athens Plaza
A brand new arrival (opened in August 2019) right in the centre of Athens, this five-star boutique hotel is bound to become popular very soon. If you want to enjoy minimal, modern rooms close to the most commercial street of Athens, Ermou, the Athenian Foss will suit you. The hotel also offers family rooms.
Book here: Athenian Foss Boutique Hotel in Athens
Another recent arrival, the Athens Utopia is an aparthotel offering spacious, modern rooms. Like the Athens Foss, it’s in an ideal location for people who want to catch a glimpse of everyday life. At the same time, it’s walking distance from the ancient sites and other places of interest.
Tripadvisor reviews here: Athens Utopia
Book here: Athens Utopia Hotel
5. Kolonaki for upmarket shopping
The upmarket Kolonaki area is popular with many visitors, especially people who have been to Athens before. It’s only a ten minute walk from Syntagma, but it offers an entirely different atmosphere.
You will find several exclusive boutiques, design shops, gourmet restaurants, cool cafes and trendy wine bars. This is also the area with the biggest number of private art galleries – just walk around and you will see several.
In addition to the art galleries, Kolonaki has the best historical museums in Athens. The Benaki, the Museum of Cycladic Art, the Byzantine and Christian Museum and the War Museum are all located in Kolonaki.
Another highlight in Kolonaki is the imposing Lycabettus Hill, which is quite popular for the views. You can walk all the way up to the little church, take a taxi or use the funicular.
Hotels in Kolonaki – Coco-Mat Athens Jumelle
If you are looking for elegant luxury combined with modern design, you will love the newly opened, contemporary Coco-Mat Athens Jumelle. Located in the centre of Kolonaki, this lovely Athens hotel has a wellness centre, a spa and a pool.
Coco-Mat is primarily a mattress company, so you can expect to have a great night’s sleep. In fact, you can even choose your own pillow. Another bonus with this hotel is that you can have access to a free bike! Whether you want to cycle in Athens though is another matter.
Tripadvisor reviews here: Coco-Mat Athens Jumelle
Book here: Coco-Mat Hotel
A boutique hotel in the heart of Kolonaki, Oniro City provides comfortable rooms and suites with all modern facilities. The hotel also offers a fitness centre, and is adjacent to a wine bar-restaurant where you can taste exclusive gourmet dishes.
Tripadvisor reviews here: Oniro City
Book here: Oniro City
An elegant, contemporary hotel in Kolonaki, the Lozenge offers a range of rooms and suites, including family rooms. The on-site bar-restaurant serves modern Mediterranean dishes. The hotel is in the same block with the Numismatic Museum, one of the few neoclassical buildings that are open to the public.
Book here: Lozenge Hotel Athens
6. Where to stay in Gazi / Kerameikos
To be fair, if the main reason you are going to Athens is the nightlife, anywhere you stay can be good. Small bars are literally everywhere, and it won’t take long before you come across a few.
However, if you are looking for some clubbing, the best area to stay is Gazi, close to Kerameikos metro. There are plenty of all-day cafes and restaurants, as well as a selection of late bars and clubs. The backstreets between Kerameikos and Metaxourgio metro are also home to small, hidden bars.
Apart from the nightlife, there are plenty of things to do around Gazi. Benaki Peiraios Museum, one of the best museums in Athens for contemporary art is a ten minute walk from Kerameikos metro. Check their website to see what’s happening – sometimes there are as many as four parallel exhibitions.
The Technopolis centre, a short walk from the metro, hosts concerts and exhibitions – check out their website for more information.
In terms of ancient sites, don’t miss Athens’ ancient cemetery, Kerameikos. Located between Kerameikos and Monastiraki metro stations, it is an impressive open space which is often overlooked by tourists.
Hotels in Gazi – Athina Art Apartments
This is one of the best options around the Kerameikos area. These modern lofts are close to the metro station and the heart of the nightlife, yet far enough for a quiet night’s sleep. The apartments have indoor hot tubs and fully equipped kitchens, while there is a shared rooftop pool and garden for all guests.
Book here: Athina Art Apartments
D&E Technopolis Apartments
A selection of stylishly renovated, cozy apartments right in the heart of Gazi’s nightlife. Perfect for couples, groups of friends or budget-minded families that enjoy walking.
Book here: D&E Technopolis Apartments
7. Glyfada and the Athens Riviera
Right on the coast of Athens, the famous upscale Glyfada area is home to many expats in Athens. It is popular not only with Greeks, but also visitors.
Glyfada is an ideal place to stay if you only want to see the highlights in Athens and spend the rest of your time relaxing on the coast, without having to travel too far. You will find all sorts of shops, restaurants and elegant bars, and there are many beaches to explore in the wider area.
If you want to go to central Athens from Glyfada, the easiest (but slowest) way is the tram – it will take you about an hour to get to Syntagma. Alternatively, you can get a taxi or a pre-booked taxi.
Hotels in Glyfada – Brazil Suites Boutique Hotel
This boutique hotel is a few blocks away from the centre of Glyfada. It offers spacious, bright suites and apartments that are fully equipped with a large living area and a kitchen. It is ideal for short or longer stays.
The hotel has a private swimming pool, and offers daily breakfast. There is also a café-restaurant.
Book here: Brazil Suites Boutique Hotel
Glyfada Riviera Hotel
This modern five-star hotel offers bright, sunny rooms close to the centre of Glyfada and the beach. There is also a restaurant and bar, as well as a private, outdoor swimming pool. The fully equipped spa and wellness centre offers a range of treatments and therapies.
Book here: Glyfada Riviera Hotel
Palmyra Beach Hotel offers spacious, elegant rooms a few metres from Glyfada beach. There is an on-site restaurant where you can enjoy buffet breakfast. The hotel also has an outdoor pool, where you can relax by the bar.
Book here: Palmyra Hotel Athens
8. Piraeus Port Area
Most visitors only stay in Piraeus for a night, especially if they have a very early ferry to one of the islands. The busy Athens port is actually an interesting destination in itself, as it’s full of vibrant food markets and a fair few museums.
If you're planning to travel there directly after landing at the airport in Athens, this guide will be useful: How to get from Athens Airport to Piraeus
Hotels in Piraeus – The Alex
A brand new, stylish hotel, the Alex is a short taxi ride from Piraeus port. If you are arriving on a long flight and you need to catch an early ferry on the next day, the Alex is a perfect option. It has a private bar and restaurant, so you can take it easy if you don’t feel like going out. The nearby Mikrolimano port is very picturesque, and there are some great restaurants.
Book here: The Alex Hotel
If you want to be walking distance from the port, you can read our comprehensive article on where to stay in Piraeus.
9. Athens airport
There are rather few reasons why someone would choose to stay near Athens airport. In most cases, people would want to stay there if they are dropping a rented car and have a morning flight to catch the next day.
The immediate airport area has nothing to do, so unless your flight is very early you could consider staying in the centre and enjoying your last night in central Athens. However, if you have decided to stay at the airport, you can check out this article for more information.
Best Neighborhoods to stay in Athens FAQ
Readers looking for a fantastic location to stay in the city center or outlying Athenian neighborhoods often have similar questions to ask when planning their trips and looking for the best hotels in Greece, such as:
Where should you not stay in Athens?
Although you might find the best choice for a budget hotel in Exarchia and Omonia, some people tend to find these areas of Athens a little edgy and not as pleasant as others.
How many days in Athens is enough?
3 days is enough time to see the remaining sites of the Ancient city of Athens. If you want to explore the entire city, and really get to know it, you could spend weeks or months!
Is Athens a walkable city?
If you choose a centrally located hotel in the historic heart of Athens, you will find that most places of interest can be reached by walking. For places of interest further away from the center such as the magnificent National Archaeological Museum, you can use the very efficient metro system.
Should I stay in Plaka Athens?
Plaka is a very convenient location to base yourself, as important sites such as the Acropolis and Ancient Agora are just a short walk away.
What is the best hotel within walking distance of the Acropolis Museum?
The AthensWas hotel has an excellent location, and is situated between the Temple of Olympian Zeus and the Acropolis Museum. The Acropolis itself is also just a few minutes away on foot.
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I hope you've found this to be a very useful article, and it's helped you find somewhere to stay in Athens city centre. Have you recently stayed in a centrally located family hotel in Athens and would recommend it? Leave a comment at the end of this post!
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Dave is a travel writer from the UK who has been living in Athens since 2015. As well as creating this travel blog post on where is the best place to stay in Athens Greece, he's also written many more travel blogs and itineraries for destinations all over the world. Follow Dave on social media for travel inspiration from Greece and beyond: