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Thessaloniki is Macedonia’s capital and it is the second largest city in the whole of Greece after Athens. The history of this city started many hundreds of years ago and thanks to its strategic position it became one of the most important cities in ancient times. It is also a great point to start from if you are planning to visit northern and central Greece. It is the ideal destination for someone that enjoys history, shopping and vibrant nightlife.
There are many local and international flights besides busses and trains that leave from Balkan countries.
How to reach Thessaloniki
The airport of Thessaloniki is located 16 km east from the city center, in the region of Thermi. It receives national flights from Athens and other Greek airports all year round (Heraklion, Crete, Chios, Rhodes, etc.). The flight from Athens to Thessaloniki lasts about 1 hour. The airport of Thessaloniki also receives charter, international and low cost flights. There are also trains that that run from Athens to Thessaloniki or to Alexandropolis and other cities like Platy Imathias and Florina.
Thessaloniki can be easily reached also by taking a bus from Athens and other larger Greek cities. There are busses that run on a daily basis and will get you from Athens to Thessaloniki in about 6 hours. The busses leave from the station of kifissos (bus 051 Omonoia – Kifissos and bus X93 Athens airport – Kifissos). Last but not least you can reach Thessaloniki by car as there are two highways that connect it to Athens. The journey lasts about 5 hours. Unfortunately there aren’t any ferries here and the closest port where you can catch one is kavala at about 2 hours distance to reach.
What to do in Thessaloniki
Since Thessaloniki is a city with an ancient history there are many places and monuments to visit. The main attractions of Thessaloniki date back to the Roman and Byzantine empires and include the Roman Arch of Galerio, the monument of Rotonda, the church of San Demetrio and the medieval castle (kastro in Greek). Bt the most important and iconic simble is certainly the White tower located on the city’s coastline. Since it is located in the center of the region it is also the place from where many excursions to Chalkidiki, Kavala and Meteora start.
The beaches of Thessaloniki
Even if Thessaloniki is mostly famous for its nightlife there are also some very nice beaches that are worth visiting. All the beaches can be easily reached from the city center and most of them are weeel equipped with beach umbrellas, sunbeds and places where to get something to eat or drink.
Accommodations and hotels in Thessaloniki
The most convenient hotels in Thessaloniki are located in the town center close to Aristotle square. Almost all the activities in Thessaloniki are located in Aristotle square and by the beach, for this reason it can be easily reached by taking public transportations. The hotel prices change quite a lot from hotel to hotel so you may want to check prices in advance.
Moving around Thessaloniki
There is a local bus line that runs from early in the morning to late at night. The busses run from the center of city to the outskirts while others run from the bus station Macedonia and the bus station of Chalkidiki. For example there is the bus number 78 will take you from KTEL Macedonia to the city center before reaching the airport. While the bus n. 45 runs from KTEL station Macedonia to the city center before getting to KTEL station in Chalkidiki. There are also many taxis spread throughout the island, especially in the city center. Most taxis can be found in Aristotle square. From the port of Thessaloniki you can easily reach Lemnos, Chios and Lesbos.