Visit the Athens Acropolis: tickets, prices, opening hours

Travelling to mainland Greece? Don’t miss out on a visit to the Athens Acropolis: here’s our mini tour guide!

It’s on every photo of a trip to Athens, and the image comes to mind whenever Greece is mentioned: the Acropolis of Athens immediately conjures up the ruins of the Parthenon, standing proudly above the districts of the modern Greek capital. But the Acropolis of Athens is much more than a heap of ancient ruins: it’s a rocky plateau 156 metres above sea level, 300 metres long and 85 metres wide, covering a total area of 3 hectares. This rocky outcrop, with its many historic monuments from Greek antiquity, is one of the world’s most visited tourist sites, and a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Visiting the Acropolis in Athens? These priceless relics, which have withstood the ravages of time, earthquakes, looting, greed and man’s destructive tendencies, offer history buffs a unique tour through the corridors of time. Here’s our mini-guide to the Athens Acropolis.

Tickets, Prices, Schedule

Our 4 ways to visit the Acropolis:

Generation voyage Editorial opinion
« The ticket including a visit to the Acropolis and 6 other archaeological sites is a sure bet for a first visit to Athens! »

Acropolis opening hours

  • 🕛 The Acropolis monuments in Athens are open to the public every day from 8am to 5pm. Please note that the monument closes at 3 p.m. on certain public holidays.

Getting to the Acropolis

📍 To get to the Acropolis, you have several options:

On foot: the Acropolis is a 15-minute walk from Syntagma Square.

By metro: by metro, you need to stop at the « Acropoli » station on line 2, the red line.

By bus: lines 1, 5, 15, 040, 230.

More details at the end of this article.

The Acropolis of Athens: presentation and history

Acropole Athènes

The Acropolis of Athens plunges us back into the 5th century BC. Following the Median Wars against the Persian Empire, the Athenians were forced to abandon their city, and the Persian army took advantage of the situation to sack the city during their exile. At the beginning of the 5th century B.C., the Acropolis of Athens consisted of an ancient temple – dedicated to the city’s patron goddess, Athena – at the foot of which the Greeks held ritual processions known as the « Great Panatheneas ».

Following the sacking of the fortifications by the Persian king Xerxes I (-519;-475), the Athenians set about rebuilding the Old Temple. The Greek cities, still threatened by the Persian Empire, join forces to create the League of Delos, in which Athens enriches itself by imposing a tax to protect neighboring cities, including Sparta.

The war against the Persians ended in 449 BC, that against Sparta in 446 BC: this was Athens’ golden age, when peace allowed it to dominate ancient Greece in the arts, architecture, culture and philosophy. Socrates, Plato, Thucydides, Sophocles and Euripides all lived in this sumptuous era. The Acropolis of Athens became the Mecca of Athenian democracy, where citizens came to the Acropolis to debate and vote, with the exception of women, metagods, the poor, merchants, craftsmen and slaves.

The Parthenon became the symbol of Athenian power, under the impetus of Pericles (-494;-429). Over the centuries, the monuments of the Acropolis of Athens suffered the imprecations of successive empires (Alexander the Great, Roman Empire, Christianity, Byzantine Empire, Ottoman Empire, Venetians): in 1687, Venetian troops bombarded the Parthenon on a massive scale – during the siege of Athens, the Turks stockpiled gunpowder and sent women and children into the building, thinking that Christians would not attack an ancient church – destroying the roof, the central part and many statues. The Parthenon became a church (6th century), a mosque (15th century) before becoming an archaeological and tourist site in the 20th century, after over 2000 years of looting. Nevertheless, it’s one of the most reproduced monuments in the world, right up to the U.S. Supreme Court.

What to see and do at the Athens Acropolis?

Acropole Athènes

A visit to the Acropolis in Athens is an opportunity to see many historic monuments:

  • The Propylaea, the « gateway » to the sanctuary
  • Athena Nikè’s time
  • The Erechteion
  • The Parthenon
  • The theater of Dionysus

A visit to the Acropolis of Athens also allows you to see some ruins that have been almost completely destroyed or are in an advanced state of disrepair:

  • The odeon of Herod Atticus
  • The sanctuary of Asclepius
  • Pericles’ odeon
  • Themistocles’ wall
  • The temple of Rome and Augustus
  • The statue of Athena Promachos

If you visit the Acropolis in Athens, you’ll start with the Propylaea, the entrance to the site via the steep slope and staircases (restoration underway). Continue to the Parthenon, built between 447 and 432 BC (the site’s oldest monument). Then on to the Temple of Athena, and finally theErechteion, with its statues of the Caryatids. Spend some time meditating on the Agora, where you can imagine yourself in a toga debating the laws of the land.

Don’t miss theHephaestheion, the city’s best-preserved ancient monument dedicated to Hephaestus. On the southeastern slope of the Acropolis in Athens, the Theater of Dionysus, cradle of Greek tragedy, is a must-see. At the foot of the plateau, visit the Acropolis Museum. From Philopappos Hill, you can immortalize a superb view of the Acropolis.

How to visit the Athens Acropolis?

Plan visite acropole d'Athènes

Photo credit: Pepette en vadrouille

Visiting the Acropolis in Athens requires thorough preparation, including a review of the most important information about the site. We’ve listed a few important points for you:

– Your visit should last at least 2 hours, especially if you want to get the most out of the place!

– The best time to visit the Athens Acropolis is early in the morning (to avoid not only the crowds, but also the high temperatures during the summer months) or late in the afternoon, shortly before closing time.

– As regardsaccessibility, there are toilets for people with reduced mobility, an elevator and an elevator (max 160kgs).

Pets are not allowed on site.

– Visitors are only allowed to enter the archaeological site with small backpacks and handbags.

To visit the Acropolis in Athens, you can take advantage of a guide to find out all about the site, the context in which the monuments were built, the history of Athens, Greek mythology and historical developments. A guided tour with a French guide is also available: French archaeologists work on the site on a permanent basis, and are on hand to provide information to tourists.

You’ll discover, for example, that the Parthenon’s Doric columns are not straight and rectilinear, but convex. Also, its lines, which intersect at right angles, are not straight, but curved: this testifies to the civil engineering genius of the Greek architects, who understood the laws of optics and geometry, as well as the interpretative capacities of the human brain. We’ll also discover how the Greeks were able to assemble the huge, heavy blocks of marble to form columns and drums that would stand for almost 2,500 years.

Of course, a self-guided tour is possible, but you’ll certainly discover less.

How to get to the Acropolis in Athens?

  • On foot: If you’re staying in Athens, it’s easy to get to the Rock: the Acropolis in Athens is a 15-minute walk from Syntagma Square.
  • By metro: By metro, stop at the « Acropoli » station on line 2, the red line. Head down Dionysiou Areopagitou Street to find the site’s main entrance. But this entrance promises to be crowded at any time of day. There is another way to enter the site, through the Theater of Dionysus, which is much less crowded.
  • By bus: Lines 1, 5, 15, 040, 230

Athens Acropolis prices

Acropole Athènes


There are two ways to buy a ticket: on site, at the box office (but beware of the queue!), or online, by reserving a ticket for the girl.

The rates are :

  • Full-price one-way ticket: €20 in summer (April 1 to October 31) and €10 in winter (November 1 to March 31).
  • Reduced-rate one-way ticket : 10 €
  • Full-price combined ticket (admission to the Acropolis, Ancient Agora, Keiramikos, Hadrian’s Library, Roman Agora, Olympion and Aristotle’s Library): €30
  • Reduced-price combined ticket : 15 €

Good to know:

– Reduced rates are available for non-EU students and EU citizens over 65.

– Admission is free for minors under 18 and for students from EU member states.

– Admission to the Acropolis is free on the first Sunday of every month from November 1 to March 31, on October 28, April 18, May 18, March 6 and the last weekend in September.