Athens, the capital of Greece, is one of the most established centers of tourism in Europe thanks to its classical legacy. However, many visitors pass through on their way to the islands. By skipping town so quickly, you miss out on the best of the city, truly one of Europe’s underrated gems at the moment.

In Athens, ancient marvels meet modern energy. Visit the iconic Acropolis to witness the enduring legacy of Greek civilization, explore the lively streets of Plaka for a taste of local culture, and savor delicious food in bustling Monastiraki.

There are many things to do in Athens as a solo female traveler – and this post is all about the best activities to do solo, as well as important travel tips for a smooth solo trip to Athens.

This post was written by Stephanie from The Mediterranean Traveller


The central area of Athens is small and walkable, with plenty to discover beyond the archaeological sites. It’s a sociable city with a strong cafe and taverna culture, and the ongoing financial crisis has left its mark in the form of a resilient and exciting creative energy.

Greeks are known for their warmth and hospitality; it’s an easy place to make new friends. And it’s currently great value compared to other European capitals.

Acropolis in Athens - @Pixabay
Acropolis in Athens – @Pixabay

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Here is the most important travel tip for your solo trip. But of course, they are valid for couples, friends, and families traveling to Athens together, too.

Athens as a Solo Female Traveler

Athens is generally considered safe for solo female travelers. Like any major city, it’s essential to exercise standard precautions such as staying aware of your surroundings, avoiding poorly lit areas at night, and securing your belongings.

Greek people are hospitable, and Athens has a bustling and vibrant atmosphere. Take common-sense precautions, but overall, Athens is a popular destination for solo travelers, including females.

Athens is a city that really rewards a little time and exploration. All in all, it’s a perfect choice for the solo traveler, but of course, all these activities are also recommendations for all other travelers to Athens.

Where to Stay in Athens

If you can afford to stay in the center, then do. Central hotels and apartments come at a slight premium – especially if there’s an Acropolis view attached – but it’s worth it to be within walking distance of the sights.

If you decide to look further afield for value, pick an area close to a metro station.

First-time visitors should avoid staying in the Omonia area, which has a bit of a seedy reputation.

Many areas of Athens look a bit run down, but generally, it’s a very safe city. Just keep a close eye on your bags on the metro and around Monastiraki Square, which is notorious for pickpockets.

  • Luxury Hotel: New Hotel is a luxury hotel close to the Acropolis. It is one of the best-rated hotels in Athens and staying here surely has many perks! Check out rates here.
  • Mid-Range Hotel: InnAthens is a very well-rated and centrally located 3-star hotel in Athens. As with central hotels in Athens, they are not cheap, but the reviews speak for themselves. Click here to find out more about the hotel and rates.
  • Budget Hotel/Hostel: If you prefer staying in a hostel, check out City Circus Athens. This is a great place to stay as a solo (female) traveler. Check out rates here.

How to Get Around Athens

RENTING A CAR: Ditch the car and use public transportation in Athens.

When getting around by car you should keep in mind that the city’s traffic can be dense, and the streets are often narrow and winding. Be prepared for assertive driving styles and a mix of motorbikes, pedestrians, and other vehicles. Also, finding parking can be a challenge.

So, public transportation in Athens it is.

PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION: Public transport in Athens is generally safe for solo female travelers. The city’s extensive network of buses, trams, and the metro provides reliable and affordable options for getting around. Stick to well-lit and populated areas when using public transport at night, and be vigilant with your belongings. 

The metro is cheap, clean, efficient, and easy to navigate. At weekends it runs until 2 am. The main metro stations in the center are Syntagma, Monastiraki, Acropolis, and Thissio – it’s about 15 15-minute walk between each.

SIGHTSEEING BUSES: If you enjoy sightseeing bus tours that allow you to hop off and hop on, you should get your hop-on and hop-off ticket in Athens.


Let´s get started with the best things to do in Athens (by yourself).

City Tour

Before you get to Athens, make sure to check out the fantastic guided tours to get to know Athens from a local´s point of view. You will see many places in Athens, but no one can explain a city and its secret as well as a local. Some of the places mentioned here will be covered with a tour guide.

Admire the Acropolis

One of the most famous historical landmarks in Europe, the Acropolis will undoubtedly be top of your to-do list.

It represents the most significant architectural and artistic complex passed down by Greek Antiquity to the world. In the latter half of the fifth century BC, Athens, propelled by its victory against the Persians and the establishment of democracy, emerged as a leading city-state among its ancient counterparts.

During an era marked by flourishing thought and art, a visionary group of artists, guided by Athenian statesman Pericles and sculptor Pheidias, meticulously executed ambitious plans, transforming the rocky hill into an unparalleled monument of intellect and the arts.

Athens Acropolis @shutterstock
              Athens Acropolis @shutterstock

Go early (before 10 am if possible) to avoid the worst of the heat and crowds, and take plenty of water for yourself.

The excellent Acropolis Museum requires a separate ticket but is well worth it, and has a fabulous restaurant.

You can also purchase a combined ticket which includes entrance to all of Athen’s major archaeological sites, but I wouldn’t recommend this unless you’re a serious history fan. Most sites can be admired from the streets.

Acropolis and more places to visit as a female traveler @shutterstock
Acropolis and more places to visit as a female traveler @shutterstock

Get Lost in Plaka

One of the great joys of a trip to Athens is wandering around Plaka, the oldest and most classically good-looking part of the city.

With its neoclassical houses, elegant balconies, and well-tended foliage, it’s unsurprisingly the most touristy part of town, but there are plenty of charming backstreets to explore.

Plaka_A must see place as a solo traveler_@shutterstock
Plaka @shutterstock

Plaka is situated between the Acropolis and Syntagma, the main commercial district where you’ll find banks, pharmacies, and high street stores.

Come here for photo ops, search out the hidden village of Anafiotika, and stumble across intriguing ruins such as the Tower of the Winds.

Souvenir Shopping

Monastiraki Square in Athens is knick-knack heaven, so make time to pick some unique souvenirs and write your postcards. The streets are dotted with bric-a-brac, leather sandal sellers, and local food specialties amongst the typical tourist tat.

Monastiraki Square in Athens
Monastiraki Square in Athens @shutterstock

The goodies stretch all the way into the Psirri district, where you’ll find the Central Food Market, which is a great area to shop for picnic snacks to fuel your walks (although those of a delicate disposition be warned that the large indoor section houses the meat and fish).

On Sundays, a famous flea market takes over Monastiraki. Vintage records? Fez hats? Antique kitchenware? Musical instruments? It’s all here.

Coffee with a View

Arguably Athens is best seen from above, and the best views of the Acropolis are from another hill or one of Athens’ many rooftop bars.

Athens at sunset_view œshutterstock
Athens at sunset @shutterstock

One of the easiest to find is the A for Athens hotel. You can see the sign from Monastiraki Square, and the entrance is via one of the side streets.

Lunch to Go

The center of town is predictably filled with mediocre restaurants aimed at the passing tourist trade.

Skip the overpriced salads and keep on walking to Aiolou Street. This shady pedestrian street is home to a few of Athens’ most hipster joints and has some great cheap spots for lunch.

Join the locals in line for the city’s best falafel at Falafellas, Lebanese street food at Pera, and honey-drenched Greek doughnuts at Lukumades.

Explore Psirri

Don’t miss the vibrant, arty area of Psirri on the north side of Monastiraki Square.

Athens Psirri - Top things to do in Athens for solo female travelers

It has a Bohemian vibe with its mix of cobblestones, wine bars, workshops, and cafes. It’s also home to some of Athens’ best street art – taking a street art walking tour is a great way to engage with a different side of the city.

Eating out in Athens

Greek taverna meals are designed to be shared, making it difficult to find an economical meal if you’re eating solo unless you really enjoy Greek salads and huge mountains of tzatziki.

For a break from taverna food, Avocado is a popular vegetarian restaurant just off Syntagma Square. Wine bars are also a good bet for solo dining, they tend to serve bistro-style portions, and you’re less likely to be asked by a curious waiter why you’re alone.

Going Out in Athens

Athens eats and socializes late in the evening – expect to eat at 10 pm, meet at a bar at midnight, and don’t even think about hitting a club before 2 am.

Solo Travel in Athens _ Going out at night @shutterstock

Solo travelers should talk their way up to the rooftop bar at Athenstyle Hotel for cheap beers and incredible views of the Acropolis lit up at night.

Allow Yourself Some Beach Time in Athens

Athens can be hectic and stressful, especially in the summer’s crushing heat, but visitors often forget that it has a beach.

Beach close to Athens-Astir Beach in south Athens @shutterstock
Beach close to Athens-Astir Beach in south Athens @shutterstock

If you haven’t been to Athens´ Riviera stretching south of the city, then you’ve only seen half of Athens. Take the tram to one of the city’s swanky beach clubs (I recommend the Balux Project or Bolivar), which have lockers to stash your stuff while you swim.

In the summer months, the beautiful beaches near Athens get busy – understandably, people try to avoid the heat in the city by spending some time in and at the water. 


Athens offers many great solo activities that cater to diverse interests, making it an ideal destination for independent travelers.

Solo female travelers can confidently navigate Athens, benefiting from the city’s generally safe environment and warm hospitality. Whether strolling through historical sites or engaging with the modern pulse of the city, Athens ensures a harmonious blend of cultural exploration and personal reflection.

Ultimately, the best solo activities in Athens encapsulate the spirit of discovery, inviting individuals to forge their unique narratives against the backdrop of this captivating city’s ancient wonders and contemporary charms.

Safe travels and a great time in Athens!

Author Bio:

Steph Edwards spends all day dreaming about island-hopping in the Mediterranean and writing about it on her blog, The Mediterranean Traveller. She visited Athens at the start of a round-the-world trip and was still there 9 months later!

Safe Travels, Arzo


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