The ancient capital of Greece hosts some of the most colorful and eclectic nightlife options to be found in Europe-- offering visitors and locals a chance to sit back and relax, listen to some music, or dance all night long.
The Greek people have an enthusiastic bon vivant attitude, and enjoy all kinds of activities after the sun sinks into the Mediterranean. There’s no shortage of historic sites to visit during the daytime, so when night falls in the city, take the opportunity to go out and really explore all this bustling city has to offer.
Fantastic Bars and Lounges of Athens
360 Cocktail Bar
Ifestou 2 | 360 Cocktail Bar's website
If you’re looking to really see Athens from a different angle, you’ll want to make sure to visit the 360 Cocktail Bar either at dusk for a stunning sunset, or after dark when the city is lit up. This rooftop bar gives an incredible 360 degree view of Athens, and is the perfect spot to relax with a cool drink after a long day of exploring the city. Although we recommend seeing the vista at night, you can also pop in for coffee during the day and get some amazingly unforgettable panoramic pictures sure to be the envy of your Instagram followers.
Normanou 3 | Couleur Locale's website
Rooftop bars are very popular in the sunny city of Athens, but they are just as much fun after dark as well! Couleur Locale is another fun lounge to check out when you just want to sit back and take in the people and the scenery of Athens. The rooftop offers a stunning view of the Acropolis-- and whether you visit during the day or want to check out their vibrant music scene at night-- you won’t soon forget these views. This bar is also known for their eclectic list of home made cocktails that are made to order according to your request, as well as a nice list of low key and easy bar food menu items as well.
Baba au Rum
Klitiou 6 | Baba au Rum's website
If rum happens to be your drink of choice, you’re in luck, because Baba au Rum has been named one of the Top 50 Bars in the world! This has everything to do with the impeccable ingredients that go into each cocktail, as well as the first-class service and expertise of the bartenders. Even if rum isn’t always your drink of choice, after an evening here, it just might be. This bar boasts of rums from all over the world including: Jamaica, Barbados, Cuba, and Peru among others. The servers always know how to put on a show, so as you sip your drinks and enjoy some appetizers, you’ll be sure to be entertained by their cocktail-making skills.
Thiseos 16 | Drunk Sinatra's page
An interesting bar that feels like a vintage throwback to the 1950s and 1960s, Drunk Sinatra has an unmistakable fun and retro vibe. This is a great place to start the night off, and it is usually packed with people enjoying their vintage cocktails. Indulge yourself and stay for a while as you almost feel transported back to a time when Old Blue Eyes was singing on stage. Since it tends to fill up quickly as the night goes on, perhaps make this stop the first of a couple on your night out in Athens.
Classical Drama in Athens’ Ancient Theaters
Odeon of Herodes Atticus
It goes without saying that seeing the ancient theaters of Greece is a must. Whether or not you love seeing live theater, it is awe-inspiring to see the places where the great authors of European drama put on their plays thousands of years ago. Although you can tour these theaters during the day, it is much more fun to see an actual performance under the stars. The Herodes--constructed between 160 and 174 A.D--is still in use today and is considered one of the main venues for music and theater. Tickets are available for shows throughout the year, so make sure to check out their schedule and experience theater as the ancients did.
Ancient Theater of Epidaurus
This ancient theater was originally constructed for the god of medicine, Asclepius, and theatrical, musical, and athletic contests were held here in ancient times. The Theater of Epidaurus is one of the major venues of the yearly Athens and Epidaurus Festival, due to the amazing quality of its acoustics. This theater is also considered to be one of the best examples of original Athenian design, since it was not rebuilt or remodeled by the Romans. There are seasonal performances here, so if you’d like to see how the perfect acoustics work for yourself, make sure to pick up some tickets. It’s interesting to note that besides Greek drama, this theater also hosts other dramatic events, including some of Shakespeare’s plays as well.
Listen to Live Music at These Popular Athens Spots
Voutadon 34 | Gazarte's website
Music is an essential part of any nighttime activity in Athens, so it makes sense that they also have some interesting places to see live music. Gazarte is one of the best loved places where Greeks enjoy seeing all kinds of music genres, from DJs, acoustic, rock, and rap-- there is not one, but three-- separate places to hang out and see a show. It boasts of a roof stage, a main stage, and a loft stage, as well as a cozy place to gather after the show, the B16 space.
Originally part of a 19th century gas factory, Gazarte has quickly made a name for itself as a welcoming place where all kinds of music lovers are welcomed. Music is happening here most nights of the week, but it’s always a good idea to check their schedule ahead of time.
Half Note Jazz Club
Trivonianou 17 | Half Note Jazz Club's website
Athens is a multicultural city, and is home to people from all over the world. If you’d like to see something a little more worldly, consider stopping into the Half Note Jazz Club where you can get your fill of acts from Africa, Asia, South America, and everywhere in between. This club has been on the Athens music scene since the 1970s, and has been host to great performances in jazz, blues, funk, and every kind of fusion you can imagine. The prime music season runs from May to October, where they can host close to 200 shows! While you’re in Athens try something a little out of the ordinary and drop in for a performance here--you won’t be disappointed!
Stavros tou Notou
Tharipou 37 | Stavros tou Notou's website
Athens is a resilient city, and even in the wake of the Greek economic crisis, Athenians flocked to the Stavros tou Notou (Southern Cross) to enjoy some amazing live music and stood in solidarity with each other. This musical venue actually boasts of three separate spaces-- the central stage, the club, and the plus stage. All three areas have their own atmosphere and are suited to a variety of different performances and genres. The Stavros tou Notou has seen many of the biggest acts in Greek music on their stages, but they also hold a tremendous draw for foreign acts who are looking to gain a wider and more diverse audience.
Where to Dance After Dark in Athens
Athens Riviera | Island's website
If you want to be able to appreciate the scale of the club scene in Athens, then you’ll have to make the journey to Island, which is located in the Athens Riviera. This ultra luxe club looks out onto the beautiful Mediterranean Sea, and is not only a favorite of the locals, but also of the jet-setting celebrity crowd as well. Here you can dance the night away to all the best hits spun by an international array of DJs. If you should get a little hungry, that’s not a problem either, since there is also first-rate restaurant serving locally-inspired favorites, many fresh from the sea!
Bolivar Beach Bar
Alimos 174 55 | Bolivar Beach Bar's website
If you just can’t get enough of the beach while you’re visiting Athens, then check out Bolivar Beach Bar and experience the beauty of the beach after dark! This place is a fantastic resort where you can watch the waves, enjoy some drinks, try out the water park, and dance until dawn--all within minutes of the city. You will quickly think you’ve been transported to a private beach serving up your favorite fresh cocktails. This is one the busiest places during the summer months, and once you step foot inside, you’ll understand why!
You can start the night off right by indulging in some of the options off of their exquisite menu, and allow the bartenders to make your favorite drink, then relax as you watch the sea and the club come to life with music until the small hours of the morning!
Athens has so much to offer travellers when it comes to nightlife, you might just have a hard time deciding what to do!