ATHENS — Omonia and Metaxourghio

This area is found between the two squares of Omnia and Metaxourghio. Omnia Sqaure is the oldest in Athens and you will find many restaurants, hotels and shops around its borders. In the past it was considered one of the most attractive squares but over time it has become congested with traffic and isn’t as popular an area as it once was. Metaxourghio district took its name from the Silk-Mill, a factory that manufactured silk until 1875.

Traveller's Tip

To see what the square would have looked like in former times visit the metro station found here. There are vintage photos of when cars were first introduced into Athens.
  • If you have time visit the metro station at Metaxourghio which contains works by the artist Alekos Fassianos who is one of the most widely recognised painters in Greece.

    The sights found here are:
    Islamic Art Museum
    Athens Municipal Art Gallery
    Athens Central Market
    National Theatre of Greece
    Notos Galleries
    Greek National Opera

    Islamic Art Museum
    This is part of the Benaki Museum and its collection of Islamic art ranks among the most important in the world. Here you will find objects from India, Persia, Mesopotamia, Asia Minor, the Middle East, Arabia, Egypt, North Africa, Sicily and Spain.
    For information about the museum visit the following website at:http://www.benaki.gr/index.asp?id=40203&lang=en

    Athens Municipal Art Gallery
    This small gallery is an alternative to some of the larger museums and if you have time it is well worth a visit. The exhibits rotate every few months and there are over 3,000 pieces in the collection. All of the artists are Greek and are from the 19th and 20th centuries. The gallery is located in a lovely area full of cafes.
    For information about the Athens Municipal Art Gallery visit the following website at:http://www.cityofathens.gr/en/municipal-art-gallery-0

    Athens Central Market
    This market is found in the Athinas district and it is one of the best markets in Athens. It is bordered by Athinas, Evripidou, Eolou and Sofokleous Streets. It is best visited in the morning but can be very busy at any time. You will find all manner of gastronomic delights including meat, fish, fruit and vegetables, olives, cheeses as well as other delicious deli delights.

    Traveller's Tip

    If you are travelling with children or if you are interested yourself there are two pet shops on Athinas Street between the market and Platia Kotzia. The shops have an amazing array of exotic pets such as toucans, exotic ducks, snakes and monkeys amongst others.
  • If you are game to try different food there are several ‘no frills’ restaurants in the vegetable market near the olive shops. You may have to wait in line as these places are very popular. An unusual dish to try is pastas soup which is made of lamb stomach and feet and is supposed to be very good for you.
    National Theatre of Greece

    National Theatre of Greece
    The National Theatre of Greece is housed in a magnificent building designed by German architect, E. Ziller and it was built between 1895 and 1901. The exterior was partly influenced by Hadrian’s Library and the interior was based on Vienna’s People’s Theatre. Many plays both modern and classical are staged here.
    For information about the National Theatre of Greece visit the website at: http://www.n-t.gr/en

    Notos Galleries
    This is one of Athens’ oldest department stores and here you will find a variety of Greek and imported clothing, footwear, cosmetics and homewares.
    For information about Notos Galleries visit the website at: http://www.notoscom.gr/page/default.asp?la=2&id=4

    Greek National Opera
    This is Greece’s state opera company under the supervision of the Greek Ministry of Culture. Opera performances as well as ballet, musical theatre, and concerts are held here. One of its most famous stars is Maria Callas, one of the world’s greatest opera singers.
    For information about what is happening at the Greek National Opera visit the website at:http://www.nationalopera.gr/index.php?lang=en