Museums: Housing the cultural heritage of Greece

Greece is well known for its rich history, dating back to the ancient times, and its major contributions to modern culture. When visting the country’s capital, Athens, exploring at least some of its museums is a must. Each of Greces' numerous museums gives visitors the chance to find out about all aspects of Greek culture and history, ranging from ancient Greece and Greek traditions, to the arts and many more.


National  Archaeological Museum
The largest museum in Greece, and one of the most important museums in the world was founded in 1829. It was the first museums founded in the Greek state, after the revolutionary struggle and the liberation of Greece. The museum’s collection includes: Prehistoric period, the Sculptures collection (which demonstrates the development of ancient Greek sculpture form the 7th to the 5th centuries BC). The Vase and Minor objects collection (ancient Greek pottery) and the Metallurgy collection (with many fundamental statues). Highlights include the Golden Mask of Agamemnon that was unearthed by H. Schliemann in Mycenae. Latest additions include a 4th century BC gold funerary wreath and 6th century marble statue of a young woman, returned to Greece in 2007 by the Getty Museum in California. The museum is a 19th century neoclassical building, hosting more than 11,000 exhibits, and covers an area of 8,000 sq. metres, it was designed by L. Lange and remodeled by Ernst Ziller. Make sure that you have plenty of time to spend at the museum, at least 3 to 4 hours or an entire day. Don’t forget to visit the atrium’s garden, recently renovated, which displays 700 plants, many of them referred to in Greek mythology. 
Tue 13:00-20:00•Wed-Mon 08:00-20:00•Admission fee: €12•Reduced admission: €6•Free admission for: Escorting teachers on educational visits from EU member-states, visitors under the age of 25 from EU member-states (upon presentation of ID), students from E.U. countries, admission card holders (Free Entrance Card, Culture Card, ICOM, ICOMOS), guides (by showing their professional cards), members of Societies of Friends of Museums and Archaeological Sites of Greece, by showing their membership card, escort of blind people and escort of persons with mobility difficulties.•Reduced admission for: Senior citizens over the age of 65 (upon presentation of ID or passport for verification of their age and country of origin), parents acompannying educational visits from primary schools. 
 Victoria, 44 Patission (28 October) Str., Victoria, +302132144800, namuseum.gr


The Acropolis Museum
It’s an architectural jewel in the city of Athens. A modern glass building that allows the natural sunlight to embrace the statues, while also providing visitors with breathtaking views of the Acropolis opposite. It holds more than 20,000 pieces, unearthed during excavations in Athens. Located on the ancient road Dionysiou Areopagitou, only 300 meters southeast of the Parthenon. The Acropolis Museum was voted one of Trip Advisor travelers’ choice in 2016. It was also third in the Sunday Times list of the 50 best museums of the world. The museum is approximately 1 kilometer from Monastiraki stastion, and 2 kilometers fron Syntagma (Constitution) station. Where possible, try to avoid visiting during the rush hours of 10:00 to 14:00. Always begin the tour on the first floor at the northeast corner to best appreciate the significance of the Acropolis in the Mycenaean Period.

Friday night at the museum 

Every Friday the Acropolis Museum stays open until 22:00 and its restaurant until midnight. Enjoy a special menu ,based on tradiotional recipes, with beautiful night views of the Acropolis and great value for money. The restaurant, located on the second floor of the museum, occupies 700 square meter of public terrace and commands a breathtaking view of the historic hills of Athens. 
Mon 08:00-16:00•Tue-Thu & Sat-Sun 08:00-20:00•Fri 08:00-22:00• Admission Fee: €10•Public entrance from Dionysiou Areopagitou/ Groups from Mitseon•For: the ground floor Shop and Café, the purchase of a ticket is not required•For: the second floor Shop and Restaurant, a free admission ticket is required from the Ticket Desk.•Free admission EU students - ID required. 
 Akropoli, 15 Dionysiou 
Areopagitou Str., +302109000900, theacropolismuseum.gr


Cycladic Art Museum
It was founded in 1986, to hold the collection of Nicholas and Dolly Goulandris. Since then it has grown in size, currently holding one of the biggest private collctions od Cycladic art in the world. Ancient cultures 
of the Aegean and Cyprus, both permanent and temporary exhibits of approximately 3,000 objects from all phases of Cycladic, Ancient Greek and Cypriot art are housed in the two buildings of this museum. With special emphasis on the Cycladic Art of the 3rd millennium BC. The glass-roofed corridor that connects the modern building of Neofytou Douka Street to the restored 19th century neoclassical Stathatos Mansion is a feast for the eyes. Don’t forget to visit the new Cycladic café that brings the taste of Aegean fresh air into the City of Athens, in more ways than one! It is the perfect place to enjoy your breakfast, brunch, lunch or just a coffee. 
Mon-Wed-Fri-Sat 10:00-17:00•Thu 10:00-20:00
•Sun 11:00-17:00•Closed Tue•Admission fee: €10,•Reduced fee: €7•Reduced fee for: Seniors 
(over 65 y.o.), 19-26 y.o., students and chamber 
of fine arts cardholders•Free admission for: 
Kids and young persons under 18, visitors with disabilities and their companion, archaeologists, archaeology and art history students, members 
of ICOM-ICOMOS, journalists, qualified guides.  Syntagma/Evangelismos, 4 Neophytou Douka Str. / 
1 Irodotou & Vas. Sofias Ave., Athens, 
+302107228321-3, cycladic.gr 


The Byzantine & Christian Museum
Over 25,000 artifacts from between the 3rd and 20th century AD: Early Christian, Byzantine, Medieval, post-Byzantine and later periods. The size and range of the collections and value of the exhibits make the Museum a veritable treasury of Byzantine and post-Byzantine art and culture. It also houses a conservation department. You can admire reconstructions of parts of early churches, wonderfully preserved mosaic floors and wall paintings. The early Christian ecclesiastical artifacts and icons can offer a foretaste for those eager to make a tour of Athens’s abundant churches. The building was originally the villa of the eccentric French-American philhellene the Duchess of Plaisance. Inspired by the Greek War of Independence, she resolved to fund a museum. 
Mon 08:00-20:00•Τue: 13:00-20:00•Wed-Sun: 08:00-20:00•Admission fee: €8•Free admission for: Children and young people aged between 6 and 25 years, of member states of the EU and the European Economic Area, on presentation of their passport to confirm their age and country of origin 
 Evangelismos, 22 Vasilissis Sofias Str., Kolonaki, +302132139517, byzantinemuseum.gr


EMST National Museum of Contemporary Art Athens
The National Museum of Contemporary Art Athens, located at the former FIX brewery, has been building its collection the beginning of its operation in 2000. Its current collection holds approximately 1,400 artworks and is separated into two categories; historic art, dating from the second half of the 20th century, and contemporary art. Periodically, the museum features temporary exhibitions ranging from art commissioned by the museum to photography and video installations. Opening hours: Tuesdays-Wednesdays & Fridays-Sundays 11:00-19:00, Thursdays 11:00-22:00 General Admission: €8 Reduced Admission: €4, for young people ages 13-18, university students, groups of 10 visitors or more, visitors over the age of 65.
Free Entrance for: children under the age of 12, visitors with disabilities and their guides, groups of school, university and technological Educational institution students and their accompanying teachers and professors, members of ICOM-ICOMOS and licensed tour guides. Kallirois Av. & Frantzi Str.,
(former Fix brewery), Athens, +302111019000

The War Museum
The War Museum was found in 1964, to honor all those who fought for the country’s freedom. It presents many important periods of Hellenic History. It explores military conflicts, including the Asia Minor campaign, the Balkan Wars, the involvement of Greek forces in Korea and even Cyprus-related conflicts. It features 18th and 19th century swords, handguns and military uniforms. Standout exhibits include the full-scale model of the Daedalus and the fighter planes in front of the entrance. Visitors are recommended to start their visit from the first floor that hosts the hall of antiquities. Everyday 09:00-19:00•Admission fee: €6•Concessions: €3•Concessions for: Non - EU College and University students, by presenting their student ID, senior EU Citizens (over the age of 65), by presenting their ID card or passport and Non EU individuals of 18 years old and under•Free admission for: visitors under 19 years old who are citizens of countries/members of the EU, by presenting their ID, university students from E.U. countries, senior citizens (over 65 y.o.), ICOM card holders, registered tour guides, by presenting the corresponding ID, journalists, by presenting their press card and individuals with special needs ( e.g. disabled, blind) and their escorts.  Evangelismos, 2 Rizari Str., Evangelismos, +302107244464


National Historical Museum
Even the building that this museum is housed in since 1960 is historical: it was once the first Greek House of Parliament. Located in front of its entrance, and the museums symbol, stands the commanding bronze statue of General Theodoros Kolokotronis. The museum trails the history of Greece since the fall of the Byzantine Empire in 1453 through archival records, photographs, costumes and flags. Tue-Sun 10:00- 16:00•Closed Mon•Admission fee: €3•Concessions: €1.5 Concessions for: students and senior citizens 
(+65 y.o.)•Free admission: every Sun, under 18 y.o. 
 Syntagma, 13 Stadiou Str., Syntagma, +302103237617


Numismatic Museum of Athens
One of the oldest public museums in Greece, founded in 1834 it hosts a wide collection of coins andmedals,dating from Classical, Macedonian, Roman and Byzantine eras up to the foundation of the Modern Greek state. The collection is housed in Iliou Melathron, a neoclassical building near Syntagma (Constitution) Square. It was built and designed by German architect Ernst Ziller, and was originally the residence of celebrated archaeologist Heinrich Schliemann, the father of Mycenaean and Trojan archaeology. Tue-Sat 08:00-20:00•Sun 08:30- 15:00•Mon 13:30- 20:00•Admission fee: €6•Concessions: €3•Concessions for: citizens of Member - States of the European Union who are over 65 years old, upon presentation of their ID card or passport for verification of their age and country of origin and students of University - Higher Education Institutes, Technological Educational Institutes or equivalent Schools of countries from outside the European Union, upon presentation of their student ID cards• Free admission for: under 18 y.o.   Syntagma, 12 Panepistimiou Str., Syntagma, +302103632057, +302103612834, +302103612872


Jewish Museum
The aim of this museum is to provide a vivid picture of Jewish life and culture over a 2,300 year course. The museum displays more than 10,000 artifacts (some of them unique), investigating the Greek - Jewish experience in both religious and secular terms, in an area of 800 sqm. There are also plenty of planned activities and exhibitions. Mon-Fri 09:00-14:30
•Sun 10:00-14:00•Closed Sat•Admission fee: €6
• Concessions: €3 (for students) •Guided tours 
for groups: €50 (upon arrangement)  Syntagma, 39 Nikis Str., Syntagma, +302103225582

Benaki Museum of Greek Culture
A major institution and landmark in the City of Athens, the museum is located in the upmarket district of Kolonaki. Housed in one of the most beautiful neoclassical building hosts more than 40,000 items in its permanent collection, illustrating the character of the Greek world through a spectacular historical panorama: from antiquity and the age of Roman domination to 1922, the year the Asian Minor disaster took place. Its founder, Antonis Benakis, belonged to one of the leading families of the Greek diaspora. Mon, Wed, Fri, Sat 10:00-18:00•Thu 10:00-00:00•Sun 10:00-16:00•Closed Tue•Admission fee: €12• Temporary exhibition: €8•Reduced: €9•Reduced on temporary exhibition: €6•Reduced for: students, persons over 65 y.o., archaeologists and European Youth Card holders•Free admission for: under 22 y.o, museum members, disbaled persons and their guides and ICOM members.  Syntagma, 1 Koumbari 
& Vasilissis Sofias Str., Kolonaki, +302103671000, 
benaki.org


Benaki Museum / Pireos 138
Α vast industrial space (8,200 sqm with underground areas of 2,800 sqm and an internal courtyard of 850 sqm. The exhibition halls span 3,000 sqm). It is dedicated to contemporary art and design and has no permanent collections. The Museum gift shop is filled with unique pieces for house design and decoration. The café-restaurant on the ground floor serves a good selection of dishes and is a good place for breakfast. Thu, Sun 10:00-18:00•Fri, Sat 10:00-22:00•Closed 
Mo-Wed•Also closed in August•Admission fee: €5-15•Reduced admission: €2,50-12•Reduced for: students, persons over 65y.o., archaeologists and European Youth Card holders•Free admission for: under 22 y.o, museum members, guides and ICOM members  Kerameikos, Pireos 138 Str., Rouf, +302103453111, benaki.org


Benaki Museum of Islamic Art
Collections from India, Persia, Mesopotamia, Asia Minor, Middle East, Arabia, Egypt, North Africa, Sicily and Spain. The Benaki Museum of Islamic Art demonstrates more than 8,000 works of art, including ceramics, gold, metalwork, textiles and glass, smaller groupings of bone objects, inscribed funerary steles and weaponry, as well as the marble-faced interior of a reception room from a 17th-century Cairo mansion. 
Ιt also includes a section of the ancient city wall of Athens and an ancient tomb both uncovered at the level of the houses’ foundations during the preservation works. Don’t leave without a glimpse at the view from its terrace café. Thu-Fri-Sat-Sun 10:00-18:00•Closed Mon-Tue-Wed•The Café is open every Saturday until 23:00•Admission fee: €9•Concessions: €7•Reduced for: students, persons over 65y.o., archaeologists and European Youth Card holders•Free admission for: under 22 y.o, museum members, guides and ICOM members.  Thissio, 
22 Ag. Asomaton str. & 12 Dipilou Str., 
+302103251311, benaki.org


Herakleidon 
The museum and its annex consist of two small and beautiful neoclassical buildings in the historic district of Thissio, nextto the Acropolis and the Ancient Agora, that look more like large homes rather than museums. Now days the motto of the museum is “Science, Art and Technology of the Ancient Greeks” and it’s hosting the exhibition “Eureka”, which is presenting the most representative of the ancient Greek technological accomplish- ments, in the area of War - military technology. The mighty war ship trireme, that ruled Mediterranean for almost ten centuries, armors, large weapons, walls, siege machines and communication systems among others, are things that you can see or learn about. Don’t forget to visit the gift shop, offering a wide selection of collectables that have been inspired by the periodic visual arts exhibitions including M.C. Escher, Constantin Xenakis and Toulouse-Lautrec. Wed-Sun 10:00-18:00• Admission fee: €5•Concessions: €3•Concessions for: yound adults 12-18 y.o., students and pensioners•Free admission for: children up to 12 y.o., ICOM members and journalists•Family ticket: €14 (2 adults with 1 child) and €19 (2 adults with 2 children). Annex: 37 Apostolou Paulou Str., Thissio, +302110126486, herakleidon-art.gr


Industrial Gas Museum
Housed in an industrial heritage building, that supplied energy and lighting in the Athens metropolitan area for 130 years. It opened its doors in 2013, the site where the Technopolis of Athens is now located, approximately 30 years after the Athens gasworks permanently closed down. Visitors have the opportunity to tour the plant’s facilities, observe the coal gas production line, that provided the city with power for 130 years, and discover a forgotten part of the history of Athens. The exhibits include a rich collection of photographs and archive material as well as audiovisual material, including short films and recorded interviews of factory workers and residents of the area. The collection is further enriched with items from the factory itself as well as interactive applications. It is the first industrial museum in Athens.
Tue, Wed, Fri, Sat 10:00-18:00•Thu, Sun 10:00-21:00•Admission fee: €1.  Kerameikos, 100 Pireos Str., Kerameikos, +302130109325, 2130109300, technopolis-athens.com


Ilias Lalaounis Jewellery Museum
The first museum devoted to jewelry in Greece and one of the few of its kind in the world.ΩIt was established in 1993, its permanent collection includes over 4,000 pieces of jewelry and micro sculptures from over 50 collections, designed by the museum’s founder, Ilias Lalaounis, between 1940 and 2000. Lalaounis is the country’s most internationally renowned artist and jeweler. The permanent collection is enriched with donations including jewelry and decorative arts from all over the world. Lucky “Big spenders” usually head straight to the shop for 24K gifts! The museum includes many programs such as: jewelry design, making, gemology, art history, children’s theatre, special workshops on temporary exhibitions. Mon- Sat 09:00-15:00•Closed Sun and Mon•Admission fee: €5•Concessions: €4•Concessions for: Students and senior citizens•Free admission for: under 18 y.o., people with disabilities and their huides, archaeologists, journalists, members of ICOM and qualified tourist guides. Free admission every Saturday and throughout August (except for special tours).  Akropoli, Karyatidon & 12 Kalisperi Str., Plaka +302109221044, lalaounis-jewelrymuseum.gr


Municipal Gallery of Athens
The gallery’s collections feature the visual works of 3,000 artists –most of them Greek–, representative of the trends, influences and discussions which have marked the journey of Greek art. The museum is housed in a neoclassical building, which was abandoned until 1854 and later housed a silk processing plant, a shopping and residential complex, and the headquarters of the Hellenic Police. Of special interest are the drawings of German architect Ernst Ziller, father of neoclassical design in modern Greece. 
Tue 10:00-21:00•Wed-Sat 10:00-19:00 • Sun 
10:00-15:00•Closed Mon•Free admission. 
 Metaxourgeio, Leonidou & Mylerou Str., +302103243023, 2103231841


Museum of Modern Greek Culture
A treasure trove of Greek folk embroidery, weaving, traditional costumes and household items. The highlight is on the first floor: a reconstructed room from a house on the island of Lesvos with a series of murals by folk artist Theofilos. If you are a pompom shoes lover, (tsarouchia- traditional leather shoes) you will really enjoy your visit to the museum. Mon-Sun: 08:30-15:00•
Closed Tue•Admission fee: €2 •Concessions: €1• Concessions for: students from non - E.U. countries, 
senior citizens from E.U•Free admission: persons under 19, EU students, classical studies and Art students, journalists, ICOM-ICOMOS members, tour guides and disabled people.  Akropoli, 22 Panos Str., Plaka, +302103229031, melt.gr

 

Museum of Ancient Agora
A small museum housed in the renovated Stoa of Attalos, within the archaeological site of the Ancient Agora. Its collection mainly consists of findings from wells, deposits, burials, workshops and sanctuaries. The highlights include art dating all the way back to the stone age, every-day life objects, and artifacts related to the Athenian democratic functions during the Classical period. It is where in 2003 the Treaty of the European Union enlargement was signed. Tue-Sun 08:30-15:30•Mon 10:00-15:30•Admission fee: €8•Concessions: €4•Concessions for: citizens of Member - States of the European Union who are over 65 years old and students of University - Higher Education Institutes, Technological Educational Institutes or equivalent Schools of countries from outside the European Union•Free admission for: EU students, persons up to 18 y.o., members of the ICOM-ICOMOS
  Monastiraki/ Thissio, 24 Adrianou Str., +302103210185


Athens Olympic Museum
Located within the Golden Hall Mall, the Athens Olympic Museum offers the epitome of a modern museum experience. Walking through its chronologically organized exhibits, audiovisual programs, and interactive displays, visitors teleport through two thousand years of Olympic History. The museum begins by setting the scene in ancient Olympia, the site of the first Olympic Games, and continues to the present day, with a display commemorating the upcoming 2022 Winter Olympics. Real uniforms, medals, and torches from each Olympic Game are on display, thanks to donations made by former athletes. The museum also takes care to document how gender, race, and disability have factored into the Games over time, and notably features a section on the Paralympic Games. Open Mon-Sun 10:00-21:00  Athens Olympic Museum, 37A Kifissias Av. (Golden Hall Mall), Maroussi, +302106885560


Basil & Elise Goulandris Foundation
Situated in the heart of Athens, the Museum of the Basil & Elise Goulandris Foundation houses a world-renowned modern and contemporary art collection that includes rare masterpieces by European avant-garde artists. The collection features works by Cézanne, 
van Gogh, Gauguin, Monet, Degas, 
Rodin, Toulouse-Lautrec, Bonnard, Picasso, Braque, Léger, Kandinsky, 
Miró, Giacometti, Balthus, Pollock, 
Bacon, Lichtenstein and Botero as well 
as acclaimed modern and contemporary Greek artists including Parthenis, Bouzianis, Vassiliou, Hadjikyriakos-Ghika, Tsarouchis, Moralis, Tetsis, Takis, Chryssa, Stamos and others. Guided tours in Greek, English and French also take place. The Museum Shop offers a broad range of exclusive, custom-made products inspired by the collection and designed by Greek artists, while the 
Café-Restaurant, which boasts a cozy and discreet urban garden, specializes 
in creative Mediterranean cuisine
 with a twist. 
Wed-Thu 10:00-18:00•Fri 10:00-20:00•Closed Tue•General Admission 10€•Concession Tickets 7€ for 13-26 y.o. and over 65 y.o.•Free admission for under 12 y.o., people with disabilities and their accompanying person
13 Eratosthenous Str., Pangrati, +302107252895, goulandris.gr

Kotsanas Museum of Ancient Greek Technology  

A journey to cutting edge technology of Ancient Greece  Kotsanas Museum is located in the heart of Athens at Kolonaki district a few meters from the 
Greek Parliament and Syntagma Square. In a unique historic Art Nouveau building which once belonged to the family of Queen Aspasia Manou, wife of Alexander I, you may discover the panorama of Ancient Greek Technology from 2000 BC until the end of the ancient Greek world. Visitors may explore a relatively unknown aspect of Ancient Greek culture through the permanent exhibition “Ancient Greece - The Origins of Technologies” which includes approximately 100 unique exhibits, from the robot-servant and the  “cinema” of Philon to the automatic theater of Heron, and from the Alarm Clock of Plato to the Antikythera Mechanism. The journey to the world of technology continues with Pythagoras and Ktesibios through 42 fully functional, reassembled musical instruments. The helicon and the sixth string of Pythagoras, the lyre of Hermes, the guitar of Apollo, the Homeric phorminx, the harp of Sappho, the Ptolemaic helicon, the Pan flute, the hydraulis of Ktesibios and others are presented through the exhibition “Ancient Greek Musical Instruments and Toys”. At Kotsanas Museum the hands-on experience is only to begin with! Ostomachion of Archimedes and Ancient Greek strategy games along with a series of educational workshops and thematic guided tours are some of the Museum highlights. Opening hours:  Monday - Sunday 10:00 to 18:00  6 Pindarou Str. 
& Akadimias, Athens, www.kotsanas.com

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