How to get from Athens Airport to the Acropolis

You can travel from Athens airport to the Acropolis by taking the metro, a bus, a taxi, or a pre-booked transfer. Here are all details that you need to get to the Acropolis from Athens Airport, and how to choose which way is the best for you.

Leaving Athens Airport

The Athens airport, Eleftherios Venizelos (IATA: ATH), is the largest airport in Greece. It started operating 20 years ago, and replaced the old airport.

The airport is located at the outskirts of the city, in an area called Spata. This is about 32 kms (20 miles) from Syntagma Square in central Athens.

There are several ways to get from Athens Airport to Acropolis: by metro, bus, taxi, or private transfer. Let’s look at each of those transportation options in detail.

The airport in Athens Greece

Taking the metro from Athens Airport to the Acropolis

The metro is a quick and easy way to get from the Athens airport to the Acropolis. Airport metro services run every 30 minutes, from 6:32 in the morning to 23:32 in the evening.

Map of the metro system in Athens

The Athens metro system consists of three lines: blue, red and green. To get from Athens airport to Acropolis, you will first need to take the blue line from the airport, and then change at Syntagma station for the red line, for just one stop.

Your whole trip shouldn’t take longer than 60 minutes in total.

Where is the Athens airport metro station

After you are out of the arrivals area, you will need to find the airport metro station. Follow the signs pointing to “trains”, and you will soon come out of the terminal building.

Signs in airport Athens Greece

You will then need to cross the street, and take the escalators up to the metro station. Walk across the glass corridor, and you will soon find the entrance.

How to issue your Athens metro ticket

Once you are inside the metro station, you will need to issue your ticket. You can normally pay by card or cash.

While there are vending machines available, they are sometimes out of order, or might not accept your credit card. I generally find it easier to buy my Athens airport metro ticket at one of the tills.

After you’ve issued your ticket, you will need to validate it. Just swipe it over the card reader, and the gates will open.

Using the Athens metro

That’s it! You are now on your way to catch the metro. Just make sure that you are on the right platform. You will need to look for a train whose end destination is Nikea.

You should know that there is another train departing from the airport, which won’t go to central Athens. This is called the suburban railway, and it will be useful if you want to get directly to Piraeus port.

Prices for Athens airport metro tickets

The Athens airport metro is fairly inexpensive. A one-way ticket to central Athens costs 9 euro and is valid for 90 minutes. The cost of a return pass, which is valid for 48 hours, is 16 euro.

Taking the Athens airport metro

There is also a 3-day pass, which costs 22 euro. This includes one return trip from and to the airport, plus all transportation in central Athens.

For more information on how to get the metro from the Athens airport to the centre, check out this detailed guide.

Using a bus from Athens airport metro to the Acropolis

An alternative way to get to the Acropolis from Athens airport is the bus.

There are several airport buses that take you to different areas of the city. Bus X95 terminates close to Syntagma station, which is about 1 – 1.5 kms from the Acropolis.

X95 bus Athens Greece

Depending on where exactly your hotel is, you might be able to walk. Alternatively, you could perhaps use a quick taxi ride, or take the metro for just one stop.

The bus to Syntagma will take around 60 minutes, or maybe longer. This generally depends on traffic and time of the day. Buses leave every 20 minutes or so.

How to take the airport bus X95

Taking the airport bus X95 is fairly straightforward. Once you are out of the arrival area, follow the signs to buses. The bus station is located right outside the airport terminal.

You will first need to buy your bus ticket at the booth. The bus fare costs 5.5 euro, and you can pay by card or cash.

Ticket scanner on the Athens airport shuttle bus

Once you are on the bus, you will need to validate your ticket by swiping it over the card reader. Your ticket is valid for 90 minutes.

You can read more about the Athens airport bus in this article.

Taking a taxi from Athens airport to the Acropolis

If you are travelling with family, have heavy luggage or just don’t want to use public transportation after a long trip, then you can take a taxi from Athens airport to the Acropolis.

Driving in Greece - Taxis in Athens

There will typically be several yellow taxis waiting at the airport. There is a set price of 38 euros during the day from the airport to the Acropolis. At night (0.00 – 5.00), the cab fare costs 54 euro.

I hate to say it, but even at this day and age I keep reading comments by visitors who were scammed by taxi drivers. Make sure they use the metre, and if they aren’t willing to do it, try another taxi instead.

Depending on traffic and time of the day, a taxi might take about an hour to reach the centre. 

Private transfer from Athens airport to Acropolis

An alternative to a taxi is to pre-book a private shuttle from Athens airport. These transfers will take you to your hotel near the Acropolis or elsewhere in the center.

You can easily book this service through GetYourGuide. There are many companies, offering different options for private or semi-private transportation.

This option will suit you better if you don’t have to worry about transportation to the city when you arrive at Athens airport. Allow for about an hour to reach your hotel. 

So, what’s the best way to get from the airport to the Acropolis in Athens?

 There is no single best way, as this depends on your circumstances.

Metro from Athens airport to Acropolis

The metro is efficient, quick and inexpensive, but you will need to walk all the way to the airport metro station, plus change for the red line when you get to Syntagma. It costs 9 euro, and will take you about an hour.

The X95 bus will drop you off at Syntagma, so you will then need to find a way to get to your hotel. At 5.5 euro it is the cheapest option, but can take well over an hour to get to the centre.

A taxi is probably better if you have lots of luggage, travelling with family or arriving after midnight. For extra peace of mind, foreign visitors could opt for a pre-booked transfer.  

Main attractions near the Acropolis

Every visitor planning to go to Greece will have heard of the world-famous Acropolis. This large citadel is up on a hill, and you will see the ruins of several ancient temples and buildings.

The Parthenon in Athens

The most famous temple in the Acropolis is the Parthenon, which was dedicated to Athena, one of the 12 Olympian Gods. In fact, Athens was named after the ancient goddess 🙂 

People who want to visit all the ancient sites in Athens should check out the Athens combined ticket.

Another famous attraction in the area is the Acropolis museum. You will see hundreds of findings and artefacts that were discovered around the Acropolis hill. However, there are many more historical museums in Athens that you can visit.

Acropolis museum and the Caryatids - Best museums in Athens

For more information on what there is to do around the Acropolis, check out this article about the lesser known museums in Plaka. Also, make sure you climb up the quaint area of Anafiotika.

Where to stay around the Acropolis

You will find a wide selections of hotels and rooms to let near the Acropolis. The areas called Plaka, Koukaki, Thissio and Psiri are all close to the ancient complex.

Athens in spring

The closest stations to this are of Athens are Acropolis and Thissio. Monastiraki and Syntagma metro stations are also walking distance.

If I was a tourist in my city, I’d choose to stay around Monastiraki, Thissio or Psiri. They have a more authentic feel, and they are close to the Varvakios food market, which I consider one of the most interesting places in Athens.

Frequently asked questions

Here are some questions often asked by people visiting Athens:

How much is a taxi from Athens airport to Acropolis?

A daytime taxi will typically cost 38 euro. During the night, from midnight to 5 am, the price is 54 euro. You may find different prices if you pre-book a transfer.

Is there a metro from Athens Airport?

Yes, there is a metro from the Athens Airport to the city centre. It runs from 6:32 to 23:32 on a daily basis.

How much is the metro from Athens Airport?

The metro from the Athens airport to Acropolis, or anywhere else in the city center, costs 9 euro.

What is the best way to get from the Athens airport to Acropolis?

It depends. If you are on a budget, the best way is the bus or the metro. If you don’t want to carry around your luggage, the best way is a taxi or pre-booked cab.

Do you tip taxi drivers in Greece?

There is no set rule for tipping taxi drivers in Greece. However, if you were happy with their service, by all means give them a tip. They will definitely appreciate it!

Airport transportation in Athens Greece

So now you know how to get from the Athens airport to the Acropolis. If you’ve used any of the means of transport above, I’d love to know what you thought – feel free to leave a comment below.

Vanessa from Real Greek Experiences

Hi! I am Vanessa from Athens, and love helping people with information about my city. If you have any questions about transportation in Athens, please post them below! Join my FB page and FB group for more tips!


 

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