Athens, the capital of Greece, is home to the ruins of what was once a thriving civilization. Mainland Greece and the islands that dot the surrounding Mediterranean Sea make it a tourist hotspot. Athens certainly draws a lot of people through the year given it's proximity to numerous other sites. The city itself boasts of a myriad of museums and ruins to be explored, and each season in this ancient city has something to offer to anyone visiting.
Know Before You Plan Your Trip to Athens
Best Time of the Year to Visit Athens
The months between March and May, as well as September and November, are ideal for visiting Athens. The weather in the spring and autumn is pleasant, and sunshine is almost always prevalent. Not to forget, that there are fewer tourists and better flight and hotel prices than in the summer.
Best Time To Visit Athens For Different Kinds Of Travellers
Best Time for Sightseeing & Outdoor Activities: June and July, because the warm weather in Athens makes it perfect to take in the outdoors!
Best Time for Museum Buffs: March and November, because it is not very crowded and these months don't have many national holidays, which means attractions will be open throughout the month. Added bonus of less crowds means you can take your time to explore whatever catches your interest.
Best Time for Honeymooners: April and October, because the weather is quite pleasant and the high season crowd hasn't yet arrived in the city. The beginnings of spring and fall make the perfect time for a romantic getaway.
Best Time for Budget Travellers: February and December, because the frigid weather is unfavorable for tourists, leading to many businesses offering flight and hotel deals that would prove to be lighter on your wallet.
Best Time for Shopaholics:January and February, because the post holiday season-lull encourages businesses to offer clearance sales that you can take full advantage of.
Athens Through The Year
Tourist Seasons in Athens
- High season in Athens: Summertime in Athens is the high season, and it is a great time to visit if you want to experience the city's heat and vibrant nightlife. There will be a particularly bustling mood in the streets, as there will be a large number of tourists, and this season will also witness the highest lodging and flight charges. This is not a good time to be in Athens if you prefer to explore spots by yourself.
- Shoulder season in Athens: Most people believe that the greatest time to visit Athens is during the shoulder season. The weather is usually good from April to the end of spring, and again in early September, with maximum temperatures in the low to mid-20s. This is also when you can get better hotel and airfare prices, and most shops, sights, and restaurants are open. This time should suit most travelers.
- Low season in Athens: The low season lasts from late fall to the beginning of winter. While there are more cloudy days and rain at this time of year, snow is uncommon in the city, with low temperatures normally well above freezing. There is plenty of opportunity for touring as crowds are thin and lines are uncommon, and hotel and flight savings are frequently available. On the downside, transportation during this time is difficult to find.
Best Season To Visit Athens
Athens in Spring
Athens is arguably at its best in the Spring season. The average high temperature during this time of the year hovers around the 20°C. With the blue water bodies around, the spring bloom adds another dimension to the Greek capital. Spring season is a great time to be in Athens if you prefer to travel without the throngs.
Summer in Athens
The sweltering Greek summer is quite popular amongst the tourists. Athens receives millions of visitors from around the world during this season. The water temperature is mild during this time and the sun is out, making it the best time for watersports and sunbathing. The highs during the summer are recorded at around 34°C.
Athens in Autumn
Fall colors sit well in Athens. With the vegetation turning brown, orange, and amber, Athens’s average temperature falls to a very welcoming 24°C during this season. Precipitation is more likely in autumn than in summer, but it’s still infrequent enough to attract tourists. If you couldn’t make it to Athens in spring, autumn should be your next target.
Athens in Winter
Winters in Athens are characterized by variable temperatures and unpredictable precipitation. These two factors make the Winter season quite unattractive for travelers. The winter lows in Athens can be anywhere around 7°C. Snowing is rare and unlikely in Athens during the winter.
A Month-By-Month Guide To Visiting Athens
Follow our detailed guide to pick a month for your Athens exploits.
Athens In January
Average Temperature: 7°C to 13°C
The coldest month in Athens in January, but it is nearly warm when compared to cities in Europe at this time. The weather can change at any time, producing sun, rain, wind, or snow. Even though the days are shorter in the winter, there are still over 9 hours of daylight to experience the beauty of Athens in early January. January 1st is a national Greek holiday that commemorates both the New Year and Saint Basil's Day. The Feast of the Epiphany is observed on January 6th in various parts of Europe, including Athens. The greatest fair of folk art and tourism items comes to Athens for five days in mid-January.
Athens In February
Average Temperature: 8°C to 14°C
As February progresses, expect plenty of sunlight and gradually warmer days, as well as fewer tourists and lower lodging rates. Bringing a variety of clothing is still recommended because it can seem much hotter than the thermometer says when the sun is out, and it can also get chilly late at night. Carnivals are held all over Greece, with some of the biggest and greatest celebrations taking place in Athens. It takes place 3 weeks preceding Lent and is known as Apokries in the area. During the month of February, a section of the long canal at the Stavros Niarchos Center (SNFCC) is changed into an ice rink, which is accessible to the public for free every day from 10 AM to 10 PM.
Recommended Experiences in Athens during Winters
Athens in March
Average Temperature : 10°C to 17°C
March brings in spring, and the weather is starting to warm up. In March, there are normally more sunny days than rainy days, and the average amount of precipitation decreases. With such a minimal amount of rain, many people will visit this month and not witness much, if any, rain, obviating the need for an umbrella. One of Greece's most prominent feasts is Clean Monday. The Greek National Anniversary, which commemorates the country's triumph in the fight for independence against the Turks, falls on March 25th, as does a major religious holiday commemorating the day when Angel Gabriel announced Mary as Christ's incarnation. For St. Patrick's Day, pubs and clubs in Athens offer exceptional drink offers, including green beer, as well as Irish music and dancing.
Athens In April
Average Temperature : 12°C to 20°C
In April, the warm weather arrives for the first time. With enough sun and very little rain, this is a fantastic time to visit Athens. Attractions' hours have been extended, and days are getting longer, but lines are much shorter than in the summer, and crowds are scarce. In mid-April, the Athens International Film and Video Festival are held for a week. In Greece, Holy Week lasts from Palm Sunday to Easter Sunday. It can happen in March, but it usually happens in April. In Athens and throughout Greece, this is the most important holiday of the year, thus many shops will be closed and there will be church services every evening. On April 23, the Feast of Saint George honors one of Greece's most revered saints.
Athens In May
Average Temperature : 16°C to 25°C
May is a fantastic month to visit Athens. For the most part, it will seem like the height of summer, but without the throngs of tourists. With just over four days of rain, there are essentially no concerns about rain. When it comes to packing, you may want to bring a light jacket or sweater for the cooler evenings. In Greece, May 1st is May Day and International Workers' Day. Locals generally go to the countryside for picnics on this national holiday, and many museums, monuments, attractions, and stores will be closed. One of Athens' most prominent festivals, the Athens Technopolis Jazz Festival, takes place over five days and features jazz musicians from around the country.
Recommended Experiences in Athens during Spring
Athens In June
Average Temperature : 21°C to 30°C
In June, the heat and tourists arrive, with the average high temperature rising five degrees from the previous month. Rain is nearly unheard of now, with only one day of rain on average in June, and nights are pleasant. With the sea temperature rising, this is the time for almost everyone to enjoy splashing at the beach. Around the Summer Solstice, Art Athina takes place for four days. This is one of Europe's oldest international contemporary art fairs. The Athens Photo Festival, southeastern Europe's biggest international photography and visual culture festival, showcases work by rising and popular artists and photographers from throughout the world. Every year on June 21st, European Music Day is commemorated in Athens for five days.
Athens In July
Average Temperature : 24°C to 33°C
Athens is experiencing some of the warmest temperatures of the year now that summer has arrived. There will be no rain, but lengthy, hot days are expected. With the sea temperature at 24°C, this month is all about spending time at the beach, so bring more than one bathing suit and lots of summer clothing to stay cool and protected from the sun. Rockwave Festival, held just outside of Athens in Malakasa for two weeks in July, is one of the most well-known in the city. Ejekt Event Athens is a long-running festival that takes place in mid-July each year and features some of the best electronic and alternative music from across the world for two days. .
Athens In August
Average Temperature : 24°C to 33°C
August's weather is very similar to July's, with the exception that the average high rises slightly. The city is largely deserted now that most residents are on their two-week vacations. While it is quite hot, many people find it tolerable due to the dry atmosphere, and the calmer roadways make it a little more comfortable than July. Mary's ascension to heaven and reunion with Jesus is commemorated on August 15, which is a public holiday and the second most significant festival after Easter. The August Full Moon Festival is held every year in Athens and around Greece to commemorate the year's most spectacular full moon. During this time, a number of landmarks and monuments will be open to the public for free.
Recommended Experiences in Athens during Summer
Athens In September
Average Temperature : 20°C to 29°C
While early September will be hotter than August, the weather will progressively calm down. Many people consider August to be the best month to visit Athens, especially in the second half, when the crowds drop out dramatically. Rain is still unlikely, with precipitation falling across three days on average. During the first half of September, the annual Athens Book Fair takes place. Each year's fair has a unique theme. During the second half of September, the Athens International Film Festival takes place. It promotes independent filmmaking by screening films from all throughout the world, regardless of genre. Every year in late September, a festival honors the European Day of Languages with singing, dance, tales, and activities.
Athens In October
Average Temperature : 16°C to 24°C
Though it may seem like ideal weather to many, the weather begins to chill drastically around October. It may be warm enough to swim during the first half of the month, with the sea remaining pleasant from the summer heat. The later in the month you travel, the more likely you will need a jacket or sweatshirt, but during any visit in October, it is a good idea to carry a variety of clothing. Every year on October 28, Greeks all around the country commemorate Ohi Day, the day when the country refused to surrender to the Italians during World War II. Halloween is a fantastic occasion for bars and nightclubs in Athens to hold costume parties and offer special themed menus.
Recommended Experiences in Athens during Autumn
Athens In November
Average Temperature : 12°C to 19°C
The average high temperature in November in Athens drops another five degrees, making it feel as if someone turned on the air conditioner. The first half of the month normally has more sunlight than clouds, but the second half has more dreary days with a good probability of rain. If you are visiting Athens this month, bring layered clothing as well as a rain jacket and/or travel umbrella. The days will be shorter as well. The Athens Marathon, which takes place every year in the first half of November, is said to cover the same ground that Phiedippides traversed as he conveyed news of triumph from the Marathon battlefield. This day, which falls on November 17 each year, commemorates the 1973 student rebellion at Athens' Polytechnic University.
Athens In December
Average Temperature : 9°C to 15°C
Athens experiences some of the lowest temperatures of the year in December, but the winters are moderate. If you visit now, pack a travel umbrella and waterproof clothing because there is a lot more rain. There may even be snow on a few days, though it will most likely be a light dusting. More bright days are expected in the second part of the month. A wide selection of Christmas-themed events will take place in the run-up to the holiday, including music performances at the Athens Concert Hall. In Syntagma Square, there is a Christmas tree lit up in blue and white, the Greek holiday colors, as well as holiday bazaars and the Santa Claus Kingdom with interior ice skating, activities, attractions, and fast food.
Depends on how much of the city you want to explore, but ideally, 4 days should be enough to cover all the main sites.
August. Temperatures can reach upto 40 degree celsius at the time.
December, with an average of 97.6mm of rain.
That would have to be August when the average sea temperature is 25°C. Paired with August being the hottest month, and the sea at a comfortable temperature, this would definitely be most ideal.
The chilly weather lasts for about 4 months, from November to March, with an average daily high temperature below 62°F. The coldest month of the year in Athens is January, with an average low of 42°F and a high of 55°F.
May, June and September would be the most ideal to visit the country, because the days are sunny, but just enough for it not to be scorching.