Maybe seeing the Acropolis and enjoying the landscape is not all that you came to Greece for. Maybe, your materialistic tendencies need to be fulfilled with a little bit of Greek shopping. Well, we are not here to judge. What we are here for, is to help you and inform you about the best places to shop in Athens, whether you're into the high end or high street fashion.
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Shopping in Athens is a must-do for all the incurable shopaholics out there! From the imaginative trinkets and sublime food to famous designers and unique boutiques, the city has an answer for every shopping need that you might have - even for those you didn't know existed! Therefore, prepare yourselves, wear something comfortable, and let us show you the best way to savor your shopping experience in Athens!
Ermou Street - credits: Nataliia Sokolovska/Shutterstock.com
Let’s start from the basics, cue Ermou Street. Below Syntagma Square a delightful pedestrian street spreads, full of shops of all kinds. There, you will find -mainly- the biggest commercial chain stores, as well as cute little independent shops scattered in between. From Sephora and Mac for cosmetics to Foot Locker for athletic gear, Zara for clothing, and Flying Tiger for quirky bits and bobs, Ermou St. combines a large variety of stores with a welcoming and friendly atmosphere.
Athens flea market - credits: Milan Gonda/Shutterstock.com
Walking a little further down, you can find the famous market of Monastiraki. The Monastiraki market is a dreamland for travelers, since it is full of tourist memorabilia and leather accessories that carry the Greek signature. A great advantage of this place is also that, unlike most markets in Greece, it remains open on Sundays as well.
For trifles, Greek souvenirs, leather goods, and bohemian accessories the market of Monastiraki cannot be beaten. What’s more, within the area, you can find the antique market of Avissinias square. There, genuine vintage treasures at incredible prices await for you to discover them. The variety of the antique market is truly outstanding, extending from jewelry and records to decoration and furniture!
The neighborhood of Kolonaki
Kolonaki - credits: Yasemin Olgunoz Berber/Shutterstock.com
If you are a fan of luxury, then the district of Kolonaki, located in the center of Athens, along with the famous Voukourestiou St. will without a doubt meet and surpass your expectations with their out-of-this-world creations. Along the whole length of Voukourestiou St. you can shop at the world's biggest fashion houses, with Prada, Gucci, and Cartier being only a few of the luxury brands you're going to come across. Moreover, with the aesthetic of one of the richest neighborhoods of Athens, Kolonaki is ideal for unbridled shopping that is not prohibitive for people on a budget, due to shops like Pre-loved.
Whether you are looking for something simple or something more sophisticated, something from the 50s or something of the glorious 80s, Preloved will provide it. In this underground shop, you will find everything: Hermes, Marc Jacobs, Chanel, Dior, Louis Vuitton, Stella McCartney, Gucci, and Prada, second-hand, but in superb condition.
Vintage shopping in Exarcheia
Skoros, a second-hand shop in Exarcheia - credits: popaganda.gr
If vintage shopping is your thing, look no further than the municipal of Exarcheia. In this artistic neighborhood, vintage and second-hand shops will make vintage enthusiasts revel in the choices. Yesterday’s bread, with its hilarious name, is one of the most popular vintage shops in Athens. In its tiny space, you can find unlimited bags, accessories, shoes, coats, shirts, jackets, dresses, and jeans at very good prices (2-90 €), mainly from Amsterdam and Paris.
Despite the shop being so small, you might find yourself devoting a lot of time searching through a large variety of stock. Skoros and Execute Fashion, in close proximity to one another, are also some of the most prestigious second-hand shops in Athens, located in one of the city's most vibrant streets.
Skoros means 'clothes moth'; you have to admit that when it comes to naming their second-hand shops, Greeks don't lose their humor! In any case, one thing is for sure: there is no way that you won’t find something that tickles your fancy among the many interesting offers!
Aiolou and St.Markou Street
Girl shopping in Athens - credits: Chubykin-Arkady/Shutterstock.com
If you're on a budget but still want to treat yourself to some retail therapy, in Aiolou and Agiou Markou Str., located near the historic center, you will find a number of vendors with a wide variety of budget-friendly products. Those streets have been favored by the locals for decades and the love is still strong, judging by the sheer number of people that visit them daily.
From shoes, bags, clothes, and accessories to furniture and homeware, the streets of Aiolou and Agiou Markou won't disappoint you! Even if you don't find anything to buy, you can mingle with an enthusiastic crowd of locals, which will give you an insight into true Greek culture!
Another effective way to do your shopping without having to wander around the whole of Athens is to visit a mall. Malls are in fact a relatively new discovery for Greeks as they came to be in Athens only a few years ago. The first and largest mall is The Mall Athens, located at Maroussi, with Athens Heart, Athens Metro Mall, and Attica following.
Malls provide convenience and comfort while potentially protecting you from the unbearable heat in the summer and chilling cold in the winter. You can find most things you're looking for in the same well-kept place and you can also stop for a coffee, a bite, or a drink.
A few kilometers north of Athens, one will find the municipality of Chalandri, with one of the most beautiful markets of the northern suburbs. Offering a wide variety of local shops, one can wander around the pedestrian streets of Chalandri, combining shopping with coffee and snacks in a beautiful urban landscape.
Our favorite shop there is the bookshop Evripidis, which is cultural heaven on earth for all the bookworms out there, with nothing short of impressive stationery and book selection, both Greek and foreign. Evripidis offers at the same time the comfort of a modern bookshop and the intimacy and warm environment of a cozy coffee shop. Two tasteful coffee rooms, one in the bookshop on the 1st floor and the other in the courtyard, offer sweet and savory delicacies, putting a literal twist to the expression 'food for thought'.
Athens offers, among many things, the opportunity for great shopping no matter your taste or budget. What better way to explore a new city, discover her streets, and take in the local vibe than indulging in a little retail therapy? Whether you’re looking for something for you or your loved ones, the city is full of independent stores and much-loved high street brands, providing plenty of hours' worth of browsing. The shopaholics amongst you will not be disappointed.
Go for the classics!
Ermou street, Athens - credits: Nataliia Sokolovska/Shutterstock.com
Apart from the rich historical background, Athens' city center is popular among both visitors and locals for the vast array of shopping choices. Begin your shopping stroll from the island-like area of Plaka. Walking under the pink leaves of bougainvillea, you will find some hidden gems between coffee shops and restaurants and get the opportunity to explore original Greek and Byzantine jewelry, second-hand books, Greek boutiques, and traditional food shops.
Walk your way through the paved laneways of Monastiraki, where visitors and locals flock to buy traditional Greek souvenirs; dig out quirky antiques, real-leather products, handmade bags, jewelry, and baubles- you want it? You've got it!
Keep on roaming and make your way to Psirri, where you will find a variety of shops alongside local eateries; you can buy quaint worry beads - the famous Greek “kompoloi” – from many souvenir shops and the renowned handmade sandals by the Poet-Sandalmaker. Get off the beaten track and slip into the small Nika Street; if you love stringed musical instruments, there you can find a small shop with handmade Greek instruments, such as bouzouki and baglamas. When leaving Psirri, don’t forget to invest in some natural soaps and beauty products made with organic Greek ingredients. You won’t regret it!
Enjoy a foodies’ paradise!
Food shop in Athens - credits:Nataliia Sokolovska/Shutterstock.com
When it comes to food shopping, Athens is undeniably a foodie’s paradise. Whether you look for local products or distinctive Greek flavors, this is the place for you! Go back to Psirri and discover local food shops that offer the miracles of Greek nature n your plate.
Step in the 'Pantopoleio… Peri Lesvou'and admire all kinds of goodies the islands of Lesvos has to offer, from delicious cheese to ouzo. Shop for smoked meat, sausages, soutzouki, and pastourma in 'Aapian', a shop that has been standing tall in the heart of Athens since 1922. Carrying on with your food quest in Psirri, you will find all sorts of places that sell an unlimited variety of Greek spices and herbs.
Luxury shopping in Athens
Kolonaki neighborhood, Athens - credits: Yasemin Olgunoz Berber/Shutterstock.com
For those of you who are fans of unique designers or just enjoy luxury window shopping, the neighborhood of Kolonaki is the place to go for a more high-end shopping experience. Go wander around the streets of the expensive district, discover unique boutiques like 'Favela', and indulge in pure elegance, sophistication, and style.
If you are more of an artistic type, you can also explore popular contemporary art by visiting the numerous galleries of Kolonaki; culture and fashion make the best couple! Moving on to the North Suburbs, Kifisia offers a more extravagant lifestyle; you can wallow in the aesthetic fashion of vintage and modern clothes, one-off accessories, and high-quality shoes that are geared towards high society clients.
What's more, if you head to the southern part of Athens, the best place for high-end shopping is Glyfada; although the area is known for its nightlife and restaurants, you can find a vast array of unique shops for shopping as well.
What should I buy in Athens?
Not to sound like a broken record, but when visiting Athens you should focus on buying as many local products as you can physically fit in your suitcase. From local olive oil, wine, traditional spirits, and sweets, to olive oil soap, Greece-exclusive brands of clothes and jewelry, and a pair of leather sandals from Monastiraki Flea Market, as the locals for their favorite Greek product and go out to buy it!
Is Athens good for shopping?
Athens is excellent for shopping, boasting a lot of commercial streets in every neighborhood, ideal for satisfying all of your capitalist tendencies. Ermou street, in specific, is the most commercial street of Athens located right at its center with its beginning found opposite the Greek parliament. From international chains to small boutiques, there, you can shop to your heart's content, all while exploring the charm of the city's center.
Is Athens expensive?
While it has a number of high-fashion boutiques that are untouchable to middle-class budgets, Athens cannot be described as 'expensive'. On the contrary, in relation to the other European capitals, it is rather cheap, with a low living cost and a variety of budget options for its visitors.
No matter what your budget is, or what your preferences are, one thing is for sure: Shopaholism cannot be cured in this city! We hope you will find our shopping guide useful and you get to get an unmatched shopping experience in Athens.
If you'd like to avoid any organizing that a shopping adventure might entail, don’t hesitate to contact us for tailor-made shopping tours fully adjusted to your needs and tastes!