Thessaloniki is at its best in the spring (from April to June) and autumn (from September to November). The city has pleasant weather during these periods, perfect for sightseeing and outdoor activities.
The summer months, particularly July and August, can get quite warm, making outdoor activities less comfortable. While the winter months are cooler and occasionally rainy, you'll find fewer tourists and a more authentic local experience.
Thessaloniki's city centre is relatively compact and easily explored on foot. The city also has a reliable public bus system, which is the primary mode of public transportation.
Taxis are available and affordable, and renting a car can be a good option for exploring areas outside the city centre.
A 2-3 day stay is typically enough to explore the main attractions of Thessaloniki.
However, if you plan to include day trips to nearby areas or delve deeper into the city's cultural and culinary scene, a stay of 4-5 days would be ideal.
Thessaloniki is generally safe for tourists, comparable to other European cities. Common sense precautions should be taken to avoid pickpockets, especially in crowded areas.
The city centre is generally safe at night, but as with any city, it's advisable to stay aware of your surroundings.
White Tower: Visit this iconic landmark for a panoramic view of the city and a glimpse into its history.
Ano Poli (Upper Town): Explore the old town's narrow streets, traditional houses, and enjoy stunning city views.
Archaeological Museum of Thessaloniki: Discover the region's rich history through its vast collection of artifacts.
Rotunda and Galerius Arch: Admire these impressive Roman structures and their architectural significance.
Aristotelous Square: Experience the heart of the city, lined with cafes and offering a lively atmosphere.
Vergina and Pella: Visit the Royal Tombs of Aigai, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and see the birthplace of Alexander the Great at Pella.
Halkidiki Beaches: Explore the beautiful beaches and quaint villages of the Chalkidiki peninsula.
Mount Olympus: For the adventurous, a day trip to the mythical mountain offers hiking and breathtaking natural beauty.
Edessa and Pozar Thermal Baths: Enjoy the scenic waterfalls in Edessa and relax in the natural hot springs at Pozar.
Meteora: Although a bit farther away, Meteora is well worth the trip. The stunning monasteries perched atop massive rock pillars offer a unique and awe-inspiring sight. Spend a couple of nights there if you can, otherwise you can take a day tour from Thessaloniki.
Bougatsa: A must-try pastry, often filled with cream or cheese. Best enjoyed at one of the city's many bougatsa shops, especially in Modiano Market.
Gyros: Similar to other parts of Greece, Thessaloniki serves delicious gyros. Head to the local tavernas or street vendors for an authentic taste.
Seafood: Being a coastal city, Thessaloniki offers fresh and delicious seafood. Try some at the tavernas along the waterfront.
Trigona Panoramatos: A unique dessert of triangular phyllo pastry filled with cream. One of the best places to try this is at Ta Trigona Elenidis.
Meze: Experience the local cuisine by trying various meze (small dishes) in the traditional tavernas of the Ladadika district.
Koulouri: A traditional Greek bread encrusted with sesame seeds, koulouri is a popular snack or breakfast item. It's a simple yet delicious treat, commonly found at street vendors and bakeries throughout Thessaloniki.