Practical tips for visiting the Parthenon and Acropolis in Athens

Acropolis of Athens, a must-see in the greek capital
© Laure M.

The Acropolis of Athens is undoubtedly the most visited site in Greece. This is one of the must-sees during any visit to the Greek capital. A must!

The rock of the Acropolis and its monuments (including the famous Parthenon) form an extraordinary architectural and artistic ensemble bequeathed by ancient Greece to the rest of the world. Visiting the Acropolis isn’t just about admiring the famous Parthenon, the temple dedicated to Athena. You’ll also have access to the Theater of Dionysus, the Herod Atticus Odeon, the Portico of Eumenes, the Propylaea, the Temple of Athena Nike, the Erechtheion and more… These monuments have become a universal symbol of the classical spirit and civilization, and have been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

We’ve been to this magnificent archaeological site dozens of times. It’s a must when family and friends come to visit! So, to help you make the most of your visit, we’ve put together a few practical tips. They are therefore drawn from our own experience. We hope you find them useful.

How to get to the Athens Acropolis?

The main entrance is located in Dionysiou Areopagitou street. There is also a second entrance, via the Dionysus Theatre (on the corner of Dionysiou Areopagitou street and Thrasyllou street, almost opposite the Acropolis Museum). We recommend this 2nd entrance, as it’s often less crowded. The Acropolis on Google Maps.

If you’re staying in downtown Athens, you can easily walk to the Acropolis. In fact, it’s just a fifteen-minute walk from Syntagma Square, and also from Monastiraki Square, through Plaka or by reaching the Areopagus.

If you’re coming by metro, stop at the “Acropoli” station (line 2, red). Follow the signs and you’ll easily find your way.

How to visit the Acropolis? Ticket prices and purchase

To preserve this UNESCO World Heritage site, since September 2023, a daily quota of 20,000 visitors is established. You are now required to plan your visit in advance and purchase your ticket for the desired date and time slot. It is always possible to buy your tickets on site, but this does not guarantee that you will be able to visit the Acropolis and its Parthenon on the dates and at the times you want, and especially with the people accompanying you…

To find out more, see our articles All about the Athens Acropolis rates and Buy your tickets for the Acropolis online.

Where to buy tickets for the Acropolis and Parthenon? :

  • at the on-site ticket office
  • or on the official online booking site. The site allows you to edit full-price tickets, but you won’t save yourself a trip to the ticket office for reduced-price tickets and free admission, as you’ll need to show proof of purchase. => Find out all about booking your Acropolis tickets online here.
  • or on Civitatis: This is a practical skip-the-line ticket to avoid queues. Non-refundable tickets
  • or on GetYourGuide website. The price is slightly higher, but this site has two advantages: 1/ online booking is much easier than on the official site – 2/ those tickets are 100% cancelable and fully refundable up to 24 hours in advance. Book cancellable tickets on GetYourGuide .

You can choose either a single admission ticket or a combined ticket.

Single entry

Acropolis prices (updated March 2023) :

  • The price is high: 20 euros full price in high season (April 1 – October 31) / 10 euros in winter (November 1 – March 31).
  • Reduced rate : 10 euros for over 65 years old.
  • Admission is free for under 25 years old living in an EU member state, and for EU students on presentation of proof of identity.

All prices in detail in our article All you need to know about prices at the Athens Acropolis.

Combined ticket Acropolis + 6 sites

A good way to get a skip-the-line ticket is to buy a combined Acropolis + 6 sites ticket at one of the other monuments and then visit the Acropolis. In this case, there’s no need to wait at the ticket office – you can enter the site directly. The combined ticket costs 30 euros. It is valid for five days and allows you to visit :

The rates shown are current price in March 2023.

Thus, separately, the above sites would cost a total of €44, or €64 if the Acropolis is included. Sold for €30, this combined ticket is not only much more economical, it also saves time, as you only need to queue once at one of the monuments to buy it (skip-the-line access to all other monuments).

The combined Acropolis + 6 sites ticket is also available online on the official website or on Get Your Guide.

Please note: this combined ticket is only valid for 5 days from the date of issue, and only allows you to visit each site once (you can’t see the Acropolis twice with the same ticket, even if you’re still within the five-day limit).

Another combined ticket solution is the Athens City Pass, which allows you to visit the Acropolis, the Acropolis Museum, the Cycladic Art Museum, the Marble Stadium, etc. And the multi-stop tourist bus.

Is admission to the Acropolis Museum included?

The answer is NO. Whether you buy a one-way ticket for the Acropolis or a combination ticket giving access to the other sites, entrance to the Acropolis Museum is not included. Unless you buy a combined Acropolis + Acropolis Museum ticket on the GetYourGuide website, the only site to our knowledge that offers this formula.

Tickets for the Acropolis Museum are available from the museum’s ticket office or via its electronic ticketing service .

Free access

Please note that access to the Acropolis is free on the following days:

  • March 6 (in memory of Melina Mercouri)
  • April 18 (International Monuments Day)
  • May 18 (International Museum Day)
  • the last weekend of September each year (European Heritage Days)
  • October 28 (Greek national holiday)
  • every first Sunday of the month between November 1 and March 31
Acropolis, the Caryatids
© Laure M.

Athens Acropolis opening times

For information, the Acropolis site is open :

  • in winter: daily from 8am to 5pm
  • in summer: opens at 8am, closes between 5:30 and 8 pm depending on sunset.

The site may also be closed in the event of hot weather or heavy rain. Furthermore, closing times vary according to the season (especially in September and October), so it’s best to check the official website before your visit.

There are certain days when the Acropolis is closed:

  • January 1st
  • March 25
  • May 1st
  • Easter Sunday (note: the date to be taken into account is that of Orthodox Easter)
  • December 25 and 26

Solutions for visiting the Acropolis

An English-speaking guide to visit the Acropolis

To fully enjoy the visit, we strongly recommend you to book a guide. It changes everything!

1- If you would like a private tour of the Acropolis itself, it’s best to be accompanied by a licensed guide. Prices start at €245 (price for your family/group of 6) for a 3 or 4 hour visit, plus tickets. If you are looking for an english speaking private guide, we can recommend those 2 visits : Ioanna, Acropolis and museum private guided tour or Private 4 hour tour with Acropolis and old town.

2- If you prefer a tour of the Acropolis in a small group then call Alternative Athens. We know them and they are great! The agency offers two formulas: The Acropolis Afternoon Tour at 45€/adult and a more complete visit Athens Highlights Greek Mythology Tour at 65€/adult, in English. This tour takes in all the city’s landmarks. The must-see Acropolis and its world-famous Parthenon, the majestic Temple of Zeus, as well as the Ancient Agora. Tested and approved, we loved this visit! It’s lively and mythologically focused. Discover ancient sites through the legends of Greek gods and heroes. Click here to book (reduced rates for children).

Self-guided tour of the Acropolis

If you’re looking for a less expensive solution you can opt for these solutions:

  • Our Acropolis Guide “From another angle” of course! An e-book written by an archeologist, with 3D illustrations, explanations of all the monuments… A 10-step guided tour with numerous historical, archaeological and mythological references…
  • An audioguide in English included in the Acropolis entrance ticket, 2 options: Key Tours or Clio Muse
  • Or a 3D audiovisual tour of the Acropolis on smartphone. An interactive tour that plunges you into the Acropolis in its heyday. Discover the buildings thanks to 3D reconstructions and audio commentaries in English.

Visiting the Acropolis with children and teenagers

If you’re traveling with children, equip them with sneakers and light clothing. Bring a drink and a snack (no catering is provided inside the site).

For the little ones, you won’t be able to use a stroller. Don’t forget a baby carrier.

Having children of our own, we know that it’s not always easy to get them to visit ancient sites. However, children love mythology, and a visit to the Acropolis can be a fascinating experience for children and teenagers alike, if the conditions are right. In our experience, we have some solutions for families who want to visit the Acropolis in a fun way with children:

Practical tips for visiting the Acropolis

When is the best time to visit the Athens Acropolis?

The best advice we can give you, if you choose to visit in the morning, is to arrive early (really really early) to avoid the crowds and take full advantage of the site. If you can, try to be there at the opening. Bear in mind that this is the most visited site in Greece. Thousands of people go there every day. Arriving when the site opens means avoiding not only the crowds but also the high temperatures of the summer months.

Personally, our favorite option is to visit the Acropolis in the late afternoon. Afternoons are generally less crowded than mornings. In addition, temperatures are lower and the light pleasant. We like this solution. So go 1h30 to 2h before the site closes.

Ideally, you should also visit the Acropolis Museum. In fact, it gives you a better understanding of the site. So don’t hesitate to buy a combined Acropolis + Museum ticket.

The famous Parthenon: a must-see on any visit to Athens
© Pixabay

Things to remember before visiting the Acropolis

  • Remember to take water with you (you won’t find a periptero to buy it inside the site).
  • Beware of the heat: it can be extremely hot on the Acropolis (much hotter than in downtown Athens). We therefore advise you to wear light clothing, sunglasses, a hat and sunscreen.
  • Make sure your shoes are comfortable and don’t slip. You have to climb to reach the Parthenon, and some of the stones are very slippery. Avoid flip-flops and heels.
  • Don’t be overloaded. Indeed, visitors are only allowed to enter the archaeological site with small backpacks or handbags.
  • Also, don’t forget your supporting documents (passport, disabled card…) for reduced fares.

Disabled access and reduced mobility

The site is also partially accessible to disabled people and those with reduced mobility. This map shows the entrance and wheelchair-accessible areas.

An elevator is available for wheelchairs, people with reduced mobility, and single parents with 2 or more children. The elevator is about 350 meters from the main entrance to the site (street Rovertou Galli).

Anyone wishing to use the elevator should call these numbers in advance: +30 210 321 4172, +30 210 923 8470 for details and access conditions.

Enjoy your visit!

Laure M.

Updated March 1, 2024

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