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 and the Acropolis Hill in central Athens.

There are several ways to get from Athens Airport to Acropolis: by metro, bus, taxi, or private transfer.

If you have limited time, your best choice is to pre-book a transfer at: Welcome Pickups.

By booking with Welcome, a driver will meet you at the arrivals terminal and take you straight to the Acropolis, without you needing to wait in the queue.

And now, let’s look at each of those Athens airport transportation options going to the Acropolis in more 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 36 minutes, from 6:10 in the morning to 23:34 in the evening.

Athens Greece metro map 2022

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 to Elliniko.

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. There are several vending machines available, but you can also buy your Athens airport metro ticket at one of the tills. You can pay by card or cash.

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. Look for a train whose end destination is Dimotiko Theatro, hop on, and then change at Syntagma towards Elliniko, for just one stop.

Note: There is also another train departing from the airport, called the suburban railway. Unlike the metro, this doesn’t go to central Athens, but you can take it to go to Piraeus port. So make sure you take the right train!

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 ticket, which is valid for 30 days, is 16 euro.

Taking the Athens airport metro

There is also a 3-day pass, which costs 20 euro. This includes one return trip from and to the airport, plus all transportation in central Athens for 72 hours.

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

If you plan the use the Athens city metro system at any point during your vacation, check out: A local’s guide to using the metro system in Athens, Greece.

Using a bus from Athens airport 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 less frequently, depending on the time of the day.

How to take the airport bus X95

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

You can buy your bus ticket at the booth, or the automatic ticket machine. The bus fare costs 5.5 euro, and you can pay by card or cash.

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.

As of April 2024, you can also tap your debit or credit card straight on the validating machine inside the bus if you prefer – so no need to pick up a ticket anymore. At the moment, this is only possible for the airport buses and for no other transportation in Athens.

Ticket scanner on the Athens airport shuttle bus

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. At the time of writing, there is a set price of 40 euros during the day from the airport to the Acropolis. At night (0:00 – 5:00), the cab fare costs 55 euro. These prices are set by the Greek government, and are subject to change due to inflation and increased costs.

I hate to say it, but even at this day and age I keep reading comments by visitors who were scammed by taxi drivers. Which is why I suggest considering booking a pre-booked service, where the driver will meet you at the airport and you will know the exact price in advance. 

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

Private transfer from Athens airport to Acropolis

A better 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. The driver will meet you inside the airport, so you won’t have to queue for a taxi.

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

If you use any of these options, you won’t have to worry about transportation to the city when you arrive at Athens airport.

Allow about an hour to reach your hotel near the Acropolis. 

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 the best option 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 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 🙂 

The Parthenon in Athens

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 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 selection 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.

FAQs on how to get from the Athens airport to the Acropolis

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 40 euro. During the night, from midnight to 5 am, the price is 55 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 6:10 to 23:34 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, so feel free to leave a comment below!

Also, have a look at this article on how to get a SIM card for Greece. Even though you can get one at the airport, it’s better to buy one when you are in town, as you will get better options. You will find several stores walking distance from the Acropolis.

Further reading:

Vanessa from Real Greek Experiences

Hi! I am Vanessa from Athens, and I 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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