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Acropolis

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The Acropolis, the ancient upper city of Athens, is situated on a hill above the current center and includes some of the city's most important archaeological sites. In addition to the Parthenon, the Temple of Athena, the Erechtheion, and the Temple of Nike, it also offers a fantastic view of Athens. It can be very crowded, so it is best to book a skip-the-line ticket in advance.
Miriam DewamBy Miriam Dewam
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Admission Tickets

Buy tickets for the Acropolis in Athens in advance.
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Athens: Acropolis Entrance Ticket with Optional Audio Guide
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Athens: Acropolis Entry Ticket with Optional Audio Guide
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Guided tours

Learn more about the ruins of the Acropolis during a tour.
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Athens: Acropolis and Parthenon Guided Walking Tour
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Athens: Acropolis and Museum Guided Tour
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Athens: Acropolis Guided Tour with Entry Tickets
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Athens: Acropolis, Parthenon & Acropolis Museum Guided Tour
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More Tickets & Tours

Discover even more products around the Acropolis in Athens.
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Athens: Acropolis, Parthenon, & Acropolis Museum Guided Tour
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Athens: Acropolis, Parthenon & Acropolis Museum Guided Tour
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Athens: Private Tour with Acropolis Skip-the-Line Entry
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Acropolis: Acropolis and Parthenon Guided Walking Tour
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6 tips for visiting the Acropolis

View of the Acropolis above the Monastiraki district | Photo: Unsplash, Andrea Leopardi - CC-BY 2.0
1
Buy your ticket onlineAs the Acropolis is one of the most popular attractions in Athens, particularly during the high season between May and October, long queues form at the ticket counters. Book your ticket in advance online to avoid the crowds.
View of the Acropolis | Photo: Unsplash, Jason Steele - CC-BY 2.0
2
Insider tip - use the south entranceEspecially at the north entrance, a particularly high number of visitors can be expected, as the parking lot for tourist buses is close to it. It is therefore advisable to use the south entrance at the Acropolis Museum to avoid the crowds.
3
Respect the rulesExcavations are constantly taking place on the grounds of the Acropolis. It is therefore important to stick to the marked paths and barriers to avoid damaging of the protected excavation sites. Please note that for safety reasons the buildings of the Acropolis can be explored only from the outside.
4
Wear comfortable footwearThe site of the Acropolis is extensive and hilly, so it is advisable to wear appropriate footwear in order to remain pain-free for the not to be underestimated distances. You should also not forget enough sun protection and drinks to be able to visit the sight comfortably.
Signpost to the Acropolis | Photo: Unsplash, Stefanos Nt - CC-BY 2.0
5
Avoid the hot midday sunThe entire Acropolis is outdoors, so there is hardly any shade-giving roofing, therefore a visit in the early morning or late afternoon is advisable. Plan at least two hours for the visit to the Acropolis. If you also want to visit the adjoining Acropolis Museum, the visit will be correspondingly longer.
The Acropolis Museum | Photo: Unsplash, Arno Senoner - CC-BY 2.0
6
Visit the Acropolis MuseumAlso on the grounds of the Acropolis is the Acropolis Museum which opened in 2009 and houses most of the recovered archaeological findings such as sculptures. These also include the original maiden figures, the Caryatids, of the Erechtheion.
The Acropolis | Photo: Unsplash, Kostas Vourou - CC-BY 2.0

Acropolis: The center of ancient Greece

The most complex and flawless Greek antique complex stands on a hill 156m (512 ft) high. The area of 116 ha (287 acres) is surrounded by a fortress wall and was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1987.

Athens splendor

In 448 BC, when Athens became the center of the Hellenic world, it came to power and wealth. The buildings which are still visible today represent the result of the victory over the Persians and also symbolize Athens' power over the Delian League of the city-states. The former buildings on the Acropolis were destroyed by a fire when the Persians plundered Athens in 480 BC. The newly erected temples were meant to serve as a form of propaganda that would send a message to the rest of the ancient world. These include the Parthenon, the Erechtheion, the Propylaea, and the Temple of Nike. Democracy, philosophy, theater, and the freedom of expression as well as freedom of speech were born on this hill.

Temple of Nike

The Temple of Athena Nike is the first Ionic temple on the Acropolis, most of the others are built in the Doric style. It was built after military victories in honor of Athena Nike, the goddess of victory. The construction of the temple was completed in 425 BC; compared to the other temples on the Acropolis, it appears delicate and graceful. Highlights include the sculptural frieze and the balustrades with the goddesses of victory.
The Parthenon | Photo: Unsplash, Spencer Davis - CC-BY 2.0

Parthenon

The central and thus most outstanding building of the Acropolis is also the main attraction for most visitors. The Parthenon is the largest temple in Greek history, was built in the 5th century BC and is dedicated to Athena, the patron goddess of the city. Over time, the Parthenon was often damaged and misused. Initially, it was used as a church, and later as a mosque. Inside the imposing building there once was an ivory statue of the goddess Athena, which was adorned with gold. Like other statues of the goddess, it was taken to Constantinople in 465 AD and destroyed by infuriated Christians in 1203.
The Erechtheion | Photo: Unsplash, Kieran Everett - CC-BY 2.0

Erechtheion

The Erechtheion temple was built between 420 and 406 BC and is the most asymmetric structure of ancient Greece. The central building is the Naos, adorned by 6 m high columns. The highlight of this building is the Korenhalle, which is supported by six large female figures, the maidens from Karyai, the Caryatids. However, the figures are only replicas, five of the originals are in the Acropolis Museum, one in the British Museum. The temple housed important relics of the city: traces of Poseidon's trident, a salt source created by him in the conflict with Athena, and the grave of the legendary King Kekrops I. The Erechtheion temple has also been repurposed as a church, government seat, and harem.

Propylaea

The Propylaea form the unfinished gate building from the 5th century BC, which served on the one hand as access to the sacred sites of the Acropolis and on the other hand as a picture gallery. In the 13th century, they were transformed into a prince's residence and command post. It is the first building in which two architectural styles, the Ionic and Doric style, were combined. The gate building with its marble columns between eight and ten meters high is the most complex and significant column structure of its kind. Today it is home to the Beulé Gate, which represents the current exit of the Acropolis.

The Fortress Wall

The fortress wall, known as the Pelargikon or the Pelasgic Wall was erected for defense in the 13th century. As Athens became a democracy, the Temple Mount was further developed and lost its original function. During the time of Thucydides, the wall was said to have been several meters high, but today only a bevel is visible, as the foundation of the original wall is below the level of today's hill.
The Herodes Atticus Theater | Photo: Unsplash, Jim Niakaris - CC-BY 2.0

Herodes Atticus Theatre

The Herodes Atticus Theatre was erected around the year 161 AD by Herodes Atticus in memory of his wife. The theater is semi-circular in shape and has a diameter of 76 m (249 ft). At that time, it could hold up to 5000 people. Today, the theater is still used as part of the Athens Festival, the Hellenic Festival.
Restorations at the Parthenon | Photo: Unsplash, sfmmy - CC-BY 2.0

The demolition

Since the 1980s, only essential excavations have been carried out in order to carry out a gentle restoration on the historical monument. To this end, theoretical and scientifically based design methods are used to restore the originally intended character. Also only tools and techniques are applied that resemble those of the time. In addition, as was the case back then, marble is obtained from Mount Penteli for the restorations. The restorations are financed by the Greek government and the EU.

The new Acropolis Museum

Since 2009, the Acropolis Museum at the foot of the mountain can be visited. It was designed by the architect Bernard Tschumi and includes most of the recovered archaeological finds such as sculptures. Here you can still see, among other things, the original sculptures of the Caryatids from the Erechtheion, some figures from the pediment and other friezes. However, to this day, some sculptures that were brought to London by Lord Elgin in the 19th century are also in the British Museum.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is the Acropolis barrier-free accessible?

The Acropolis is designed to be barrier-free, however, some parts of the area are uneven or hard to explore. Read more.

Is there parking available?

Please note that there are no car parking spaces in the area.. You can park for free on the street in the Koukaki district. Read more.

Are you allowed to carry bags and backpacks during the visit?

Small luggage items such as bags and backpacks can be taken into the Acropolis. Please note that there are no storage facilities available. Read more.

Is it allowed to take photos and videos on the premises?

Videos and photos for personal use can be made during the visit. Read more.

General information

opening hours

The Acropolis is open every day throughout the year. In the summer months (April to October) from 8 am to 8 pm and in the winter months (November to March) from 8 am to 5 pm. Last admission is half an hour before closing. Please note that the attraction remains closed on New Year's Day, March 25th, May 1st, Easter Sunday, and December 25th and 26th.

tickets

On site, admission tickets can be purchased for a price of 15 € per person in the summer season and 10 € in the winter season. Children under 5 years of age can visit the Acropolis for free. Please note that no combo tickets to other attractions are being offered anymore.

address

Acropolis and Parthenon
Acropolis Hill
10555 Athens

discounts

Children and young people between 6 and 25 years old, who belong to the EU member states, receive a free ticket by showing an appropriate ID, while non-EU citizens receive a discounted ticket for 10 € on site. Seniors over 65 from an EU member state can also get a reduced ticket. Every first Sunday, between November 1st and March 31st, as well as on March 6th, April 18th, May 18th, the weekend of the last week in September, and October 28th, the attraction can be visited for free.

how to get there

You can reach the south entrance of the Acropolis via the Acropoli metro station on line M2. You can reach the north entrance via the Monastiraki metro station on lines M1 and M3.
Miriam Dewam
Written byMiriam DewamMiriam is keen on traveling and has a passion for photography, which she can enhance through her cross-media studies. She uses her knowledge as well as first hand experience from diverse travels to help other travellers as a content creator at TicketLens.
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