Visits to ancient sites like the Parthenon and the Acropolis are highlights of any trip to Athens. But a great way to learn even more about Greek history and culture is by exploring some of the city’s excellent museums. Here are four not to miss.
New Acropolis Museum
Opened in 2009 on the southeastern slope of the Acropolis hill, this museum was designed to house every object found around the Acropolis, dating as far back as the Bronze Age. It also sits over Roman and early Byzantine ruins, the excavations of which are visible to visitors. Skip the line by booking a private tour of the museum.
National Archaeological Museum
This may be the best museum in Athens for an introduction to ancient Greek history and art. Five permanent collections feature items from Greece’s most important historical sites, and together they help tell the story of the Greek influence on Western civilization. Opt for a private tour of this museum alone or together with a tour of the Byzantine and Christian Museum.
Housed in a mansion in downtown Athens, this museum holds collections of Greek art from prehistoric to modern times, as well as a large collection of Asian art. It is the only museum in the city that features all eras of Greek history and celebrates foreign influences on Greek culture. Visit independently and at your own pace as a stop on an Athens hop-on, hop-off bus tour.
Byzantine and Christian Museum
Renovated just before the 2004 Athens Olympics, this museum presents rare exhibits of Byzantine art from the third century through medieval times. Combine a private tour of this museum with a tour of the National Archaeological Museum.