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Thessaloniki is a city in the north of Greece. It is the country's second largest city. The population of the "Thessaloniki Metropolitan Area" has reached a total of 1,006,730 inhabitants in 2011.
Thessaloníki is considered by many the most vibrant city in Greece. It is not a coincidence that almost every visitor falls in love with this city. It is in fact a youth capital for all age ranks that combines history of thousands of years, culture, entertainment and good food!
You can take a stroll in Thessaloniki's recently renovated port, wander around the small paved alleys in "Ano Poli" (Upper Town) staring at the unique view of the city, drink a coffee in one of the city's numerous cafes by the sea, visit some of the 22 interesting museums, enjoy a couple of the country's most delicious dishes at Ladadika area and last but not least observe it's residents who are known across the country for their loose attitude towards life itself.
Don't forget to have a drink or two together with the locals in Valaoritou area and of course, take a long walk on the paved alleys of the Jewish market near the famous Aristotle Square; this walk will be unforgettable.
Thessaloniki has a typical Meditarreanen climate with warm and dry summers and mild but wetter winters. Still, the average annual amount of precipitation is just around 450 mm, making it a relatively arid climate as well. Most of the rain falls from October till January. Summers are driest. The average temperature in summer is around 30 °C during the day and around 18 °C at night. Winters see highs of around 10 °C with nights just above zero.
Thessaloniki International Airport (SKG) is located about 15 kilometres from Thessaloniki's city centre. It is the third biggest airport in the country, after the ones in Athens and Heraklion and is the main gateway to the north of the country. Several dozens of airlines serve destinations mainly throughout Europe and a few outside the continent.
Aegean Airlines flies to/from Athens, Chania, Düsseldorf, Frankfurt, Hanover, Heraklion, Larnaca, Moscow-Domodedovo, Munich, Mytilene, Nuremberg, Rhodes and Stuttgart and seasonally to/from Kos, Milan-Malpensa, Mykonos, Paris-Charles de Gaulle, Saint Petersburg, Santorini and Tel Aviv-Ben Gurion.
The low-cost airline Ryanair offers flights to and from Thessaloniki. Destinations include Bremen, Brussels-Charleroi, Chania, London-Stansted, Milan/Bergamo-Il Caravaggio, Paphos and Rome-Ciampino, and seasonally to/from Bologna, Girona, Hahn, Karlsruhe/Baden-Baden, Oslo-Rygge, Stockholm-Skavsta and Airport Weeze.
The private bus company KTEL drives to and from various destinations in Greece. The buses arrive and depart from the bus terminal (station: Macedonia).
There are daily regional trains to Veroia-Edessa and Katerini-Larissa, six InterCity (IC) trains and one night-train to Athens via Platy-Katerini-Larissa-Palaiofarsalos-Domokos-Leianokladi(Lamia)-Leivadia-Thiva-Oinoi-SKA-Athens, two trains to Kilkis-Serres-Drama-Xanthi-Komotini-Alexandroupoli and one train to Karditsa-Trikala-Kalampaka.
Walking is the best way to get to know Thessaloniki. Visit the Old Town, the centre of the town, the port and of course the coastal line with the great sunset views. These are some of the best places in Thessaloniki and a really great way to spend your day.
Taking a bus is the best way to move inside the city except when visiting the Upper Town ("Ano Poli") and the Castles area. You can buy a ticket for a single route (€0.80/€0.40 for students) or a 90-minute ticket for 2 routes (€0.90/€0.50 for students).
We reccomend the one day ticket which is valid for 24 hours. Tickets can be found in the kiosks of OASTH (Organization of Urban Transportation of Thessaloniki city) and most privately owned kiosks scattered all around the city (the known "Periptera"). You can buy a ticket from an automatic seller inside the bus but beware that the price is increased by 10 cents. Dont forget! The automatic seller doesn't give change.
For a more complete experience, we recommend you using the Cultural Transfer Line of OASTH, which will enable you to visit some of the major tourist attractions of Thessaloniki. Using the public transportation system, you will save time and money while you will be more friendly to the environment.
You can rent a car to go right outside the city and visit the museum and planetarium "Noesis" or one of the biggest malls in the Balkan region, named "Mediterannean Cosmos" for shopping or cinema. There you will enjoy your movie on one of the biggest screens in Europe.
Spend some time and read more about all the places that you can visit places near Thessaloniki. The crystal clear beaches of Chalkidiki, the Royal Tombs and The Macedonian Museum in the city of Vergina or the museum of Pella. You can go skiing in 3-5 Pigadia and Kaimaktsalan or Seli in Vermio, visit the beautiful lake Kerkini in Serres, or even go for fur-shopping in Kastoria town.
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There are many options available depending on what you are looking for. Ladadika area and Bit bazaar are some of the most popular places when it comes to sofisticated bars and pubs or traditional little taverns respectively. You can also try having a look all around Rotonda near the Aristotle University where because of the college community there are several small taverns and cozy bars that offer red wine or retsina. A couple of alternative destinations would be the coastal avenue "Leoforos Nikis" or going west of the city centre the popular "Valaoritou" street, which is full of all kinds of bars that turn into a club after midnight.
You should definitely visit Tsimiski Avenue in the city centre. It is by far the most popular commercial street of Thessaloniki with hundreds of fashion stores and boutiques. Many famous brands have their local branches there. A good alternative option would be "Mitropoleos" street. located on the south of Tsimiski Avenue, while it is heading west in a similar way.
|Alexandria Hotel||18 Egnatias Street||HOTEL||77|
|Atlantis Hotel Thessaloniki||14,Egnatia str.||Hotel||76|
|Santa Beach Hotel||Lambraki 2 Agia Triada||Hotel||-|
|Hotel Kornilios||10 km. Neas Chalkidonas- Veroias||HOTEL||-|
|Hotel Rex Thessaloniki||39 Monastiriou Str||Hotel||81|
|Pension-Tzitzifies||39 thermaikoy str,Agia Triada 20 mitrp.iosif||Hotel||82|
|Thessaloniki Studios Arabas||Sachtouri 28||Guesthouse||84|
|RentRooms Thessaloniki||Konstantinou Melenikou 9 Thessaloniki||Guesthouse||87|
|Hotel Alexander Inn||Stavros||Hotel||-|
|Hotel Aegeon||19th Egnatia St||Hotel||84|
|Studios Arabas||Sachtouri 28. Ano Poli||Hostel||82|
|Hotel Avra||Ampelokipon 2, Str, Perea||HOTEL||84|
|Emporikon Hotel||14 Sigrou & Egnatia Str.||Hotel||-|
|Amaris Wishes Hotel||Ag Nikolaos Methoni Pierias||HOTEL||-|
|Olympia Hotel-Thessaloniki||65, Olympou||Hotel||-|
|City Hotel-Thessaloniki||Komninon Street 11||Hotel||-|
|Tourist Hotel||21, Mitropoleos Street||Hotel||-|
|El Greco Hotel||Egnatias 23||Hotel||81|
|Little Big House||Andokidou 24,||Hostel||91|
|Luxembourg Hotel||6 Komninon Str.||Hotel||-|
|Hotel Kastoria - Thessaloniki||Leontos Sofou 17 Egnatia 24||HOTEL||75|
|Thessaloniki Flats||ypourgou filippou dragoumi 24||APARTMENT||-|
|Colors Budget Luxury||Valaoritou 21||HOTEL||88|
|Hotel Anessis||Oktovriou Street||Hotel||-|
|Pantheon - Hermes||Selefkidon 12||Hostel||-|
|Plaza Hotel Thessaloniki||Doxis & Paggaiou 5||HOTEL||-|
|Vergina Hotel||Monastiriou 19||HOTEL||-|
Internet access is widely available throughout the country. Almost all hotels provide internet access, either free or paid. Local coffee shops usually offer free Wi-Fi access, as many other public places do. Feel free to ask for the password, if the network is locked. Internet cafes however tend to be expensive, about €1.5-2 per hour.
See also: International Telephone Calls
The cheapest way to call someone abroad is to use a pre-paid calling card and call from a land line anywhere (also from your hotel room). Pre-paid calling cards are sold in many shops and kiosks. The calling card is not much more than a phone number and a pin code, which you dial prior to dialing the usual phone number. If you want to call internationally, ask for an international calling card. For one euro you can call for about 45 minutes, so buy a card in the cheapest value (which is about €3). Calling someone for half an hour is cheaper than sending one email from an internet café. Cards expire usually 90 days after first use. You can also use this pre-paid calling card at public phone boxes, which are widely available.
Mobile phones are prevalent in Greek's communication, and if you need to talk with your co-travelers it is advised that you buy a local prepaid plan instead of using roaming, as it is far cheaper. There are at least three mobile carriers, Cosmote, Wind and Vodafone all of which require by law presenting some form of identification in order to activate your prepaid plan. Choose whichever has better reception in your area, keeping in mind that GSM 900, GSM 1800 and UMTS 2100 bands are supported. Data usage is cheap, costing about €3 per 100 MB. Ask the mobile carrier for more information.
Hellenic Post is the Greek postal service. On their website you find more information about options to send letters, postcards and parcels and there is a search function regarding post offices and post boxes. It also has information on services like paying bills, transferring money, financial products etc. Greek post codes are five digits long and are usually written as follows; 123 45. The first three digits are used to identify the city, municipality or prefecture, for example the digits between 100 and 180 relate to the city of Athens. The last two digits identify a street or part of a street. Most post offices are open Monday to Friday from 07:30-14:00, although the largers ones usually have longer opening hours. For sending packages, you can also use international courier services like DHL, UPS or TNT.
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