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Municipality of Thessaloniki
Δήμος Θεσσαλονίκης (Θεσσαλονίκη)
Thessaloniki (Greece)
Basic data
State : GreeceGreece Greece
Region : Central Macedonia
Regional District : Thessaloniki
Geographic coordinates : 40 ° 39 ′  N , 22 ° 58 ′  E Coordinates: 40 ° 39 ′  N , 22 ° 58 ′  E
Area : 20.85 km²
Residents : 325,182 (2011)
Population density : 15,596.3 inhabitants / km²
Post Code: 54015 - 54655, 56404
Community logo:
Municipality logo of the municipality of Thessaloniki
Seat: Thessaloniki
LAU-1 code no .: 0701
Districts : 2 parishes
Local self-government : f122 boroughs
Location in the Central Macedonia region
File: 2011 Dimos Thessalonikis.png
f9 f8

Thessaloniki ( Greek Θεσσαλονίκη ( f. Sg. ) [ Θɛsalɔnikʲi ], also briefly Salonika Σαλονίκη , Turkish Selânik , Ladino Salonika or Selanik in southern West as well as all South Slavic languages Solun (Солун) ; in biblical used related German name Thessalonica ) is 325,182 (2011) inhabitants the second largest city in Greece , capital of the administrative region of Central Macedonia and the economic and cultural center of the entire Greek region of Macedonia . In 2001, the population of the narrower agglomeration of Thessaloniki including the immediately adjacent cities and municipalities was 954,027 and in 2004 an estimated number of 995,766.

The city is located on the northwestern foothills of the 1201 meter high Chortiatis and borders the Thermaic Gulf . It is an important modern university, trade fair, cultural, industrial and port city at the intersection of important, millennia-old north-south and west-east traffic routes ( Via Egnatia ). The patron saint of the city is Saint Demetrios , to whom a large early Christian basilica is dedicated. The landmark of Thessaloniki is the Lefkós Pýrgos ( Λευκός Πύργος 'white tower') built by the Ottoman architect Sinan .

The early Christian and Byzantine churches of the city already mentioned in the New Testament (two letters from the Apostle Paul are addressed to the parish in Salonika) were added to the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1988. In 1997 Thessaloniki was European Capital of Culture .


Macedonian time

Thessaloniki was founded in 315 BC. Founded by the Macedonian king Kassandros as Thessalonikē by amalgamation of 26 smaller towns on the site of Therme am Thermaischen Gulf , an originally Thracian settlement and named after his wife Thessalonikē , a half-sister of Alexander the great . The name Thessalonikē was reminiscent of the conquest of Thessaly by Macedonia ( Thessalonikē , 'victory in Thessaly', in ancient Greek νίκη nikē 'victory') under Philip V (359 to 336). 168 BC The Romans abolished the Macedonian kingdom and made Macedonia with Thessaloniki in 146 BC. To a province of their empire.

Roman time

Arch of Galerius (Kamara)

Thessaloniki was on the Via Egnatia , the main route between Rome and Byzantium , and on the Balkan road leading to the north. It became the capital of the Roman province of Macedonia . 58 BC Chr. Was Cicero temporarily here in exile. After escaping from Italy before Caesar in 49 BC. The consuls moved their quarters to Thessaloniki. About 200 senators accepted her invitation. They declared the meeting place to be Roman state soil so that Senate meetings could be held. Around 49 or 50 AD the apostle Paul stayed in Thessaloniki on his second missionary trip and founded the second named Christian community in Europe after Philippi . A few years after 260 attacks by the Goths were repulsed by the city.

Around 300, under Emperor Galerius , Thessaloniki became one of the imperial residences of the Roman Empire and was equipped with important buildings. a. with the Imperial Palace, the racecourse ( hippodrome ) parallel to the palace, the Galerius Arch (victory monument of Emperor Galerius next to Via Egnatia, built on the occasion of a victory over the Sassanids ), the rotunda (perhaps a mausoleum or a pantheon) and the forum as well as one Agora (pillar with magnificent relief figures from a two-storey hall is now in the Louvre , Paris) with an odeion. In 322, Emperor Constantine I (the Great) had an artificial harbor basin built on the southwest corner of Thessaloniki. In 325 Licinius (co-emperor from 308 to 324) was executed in Thessaloniki. As a result, Constantine finally became the sole ruler (totius orbis imperator) ; On May 11, 330, Byzantium was finally renamed the Christian capital of the empire (Second Rome ) and a little later Constantinople . The time when Thessaloniki was the imperial residence came to an end. In 390 Thessaloniki experienced an uprising against Emperor Theodosius I , which he had bloodily suppressed in the so-called massacre of Thessaloniki . After the division of the empire in 395 , Thessaloniki belonged to the eastern part of the empire under Emperor Arcadius and his successors.

Byzantine period

Byzantine city ​​wall

In the first two centuries of the Byzantine period (560 to 750), Thessaloniki was repeatedly besieged by advancing Avars and Slavs , including 586, 610?, 615 and 617 (see also the Balkan campaigns of Maurikios ). During the Slavic conquest of large parts of Greece in the early Middle Ages , the city successfully resisted and remained an imperial base: At the beginning of the 9th century, the Byzantine archonate of Thessaloniki was established. A long period of peace began in the 9th century, when Thessaloniki was the starting point for the Orthodox Christianization of the Slavs by Cyrillos (born in 826/827 in Thessaloniki) and Methodius, with the creation of a Slavic, Glagolitic alphabet from the Greek . In its heyday, Thessaloniki was the second most important city in the Byzantine Empire after the capital Constantinople , today's Istanbul .

In 904 the Saracens conquered and destroyed the city after only three days of siege. In 1185 it was conquered and devastated by Sicilian Normans . From 1204 Thessaloniki was the capital of a short-lived Frankish kingdom under Boniface I , Margrave of Montferrat, as part of the 4th Crusade . Hagios Demetrios and Hagia Sofia became temporarily Catholic churches. From 1224 to 1242 the despots of Epiros resided in Thessaloniki, in 1227 Prince Theodoros I Angelos (a cousin of Emperor Alexios III ) was crowned anti-emperor here. In the meantime, the city was incorporated into the Bulgarian Empire of Tsar Ivan Assen II . In 1246 the city was re-incorporated into the Byzantine Empire.

A glamorous epoch began for Thessaloniki, the second city in the empire, of which numerous church buildings still testify today, the Hagia Apostoloi, the Hagia Ekaterini, the Vlatades monastery or the large pier that protected the port and part of which is preserved to this day. The Venetians and Genoese expanded their influence during this time, and Venice even got its own district. Thessaloniki felt like a center of science: Thomas Magister (1270-1325), Demetrios Triklinios (1280-1340), Saint Gregorios Palamas (1296-1359) or Demetrios Kydones (1324-1397) worked here. In 1308 the Catalan Company besieged Thessaloniki unsuccessfully, and from 1342 to 1349 radical revolutionaries (the " Zealots ") established an autonomous city republic. From 1387 to 1391 and from 1394 onwards, Turks ruled the city. In 1403 Thessaloniki became Byzantine again and came to Venice in 1423 .

Ottoman time

Landmark: the "White Tower"
The Ottoman Bank after the bombing, April 1903

On March 29, 1430, Thessaloniki was conquered by Sultan Murad II after a siege of almost two months and incorporated into the Ottoman Empire . Thessaloniki became Selânik  /سلانيك. The art of printing reached the city in 1515 . In the 17th century it was the most important trading center in the Balkans . In 1821/1822 Ottoman troops put down the flaming Greek liberation struggle, which was successful in southern Greece and there led to the establishment of the Kingdom of Greece .

At the end of the 19th century, Thessaloniki experienced an enormous boom. While the city had around 50,000 inhabitants in 1865, there were 90,000 in 1880 and around 120,000 in 1895. In 1869 the southern parts of the Byzantine city wall were torn down to make room. On May 6, 1876, disgruntled Muslims killed the German and French consuls in a tumult, which put a considerable strain on diplomatic relations with the Ottoman Empire. In 1871 the railway line to Skopje was built and in 1888 it was connected to the European railway network via Belgrade and continued eastwards to Dedeağaç, today's Alexandroupoli, in 1896 .

The city was badly damaged by an extensive fire on September 4, 1890, which left 20,000 people, mostly Jews , homeless. Among other things, the European quarter with the British and the Greek consulate, the Greek hospital, the Sophia Church, the Byzantine Church with the government archive, the Metropolitan Church and seven synagogues burned down. In 1893 the first tram was installed, pulled by Russian and Hungarian horses, which contributed to the further expansion of the city. During this time the only Bulgarian grammar school in the Ottoman Empire, which was initially known as the Bulgarian School for Men "Grammar School Kyrill und Method" , was established. A women's school followed later. The German School of Thessaloniki was established in 1888 and was closed from 1915 to 1924 and from 1944 to 1956, i.e. as a result of the world wars.

Mustafa Kemal Ataturk , the founder of the Republic of Turkey , was born in Thessaloniki in 1881 (the house where he was born is now a museum and part of the Turkish consulate). After Vitaliano Poselli had successfully established himself as an architect in Thessaloniki, his compatriot Pierro Arigoni followed around 1890 , who both designed numerous private and public buildings and shaped the image of the city significantly.

In 1896 the strategically important railway line to Istanbul was opened. The 510 km long route followed the coast and was built with financial support from the Ottoman Empire by the French Société du Chemin de Fer Ottoman Jonction Salonique-Constantinople .

In April 1903 the city and its surroundings were the target of several terrorist attacks carried out by the Bulgarian BMARK . The French ship Guadalquivir was sunk in the port. The Ottoman Bank and other public buildings were also badly damaged by bomb attacks.

In 1908 the Young Turkish Revolution began in Thessaloniki. In 1909 the Young Turks banished the deposed Sultan Abdülhamid II to Thessaloniki and placed him under house arrest in the Villa Alatini. Thessaloniki remained under Ottoman rule until the Balkan Wars.

Balkan Wars and World War I

On November 8, 1912, 20 days after Montenegro, Serbia, Bulgaria and Greece declared war on the Ottoman Empire ( First Balkan War ), Greek and Bulgarian troops besieged the city. The commander of the Ottoman armed forces Hasan Tahsin Paşa negotiated a handover protocol and decided to leave the city to the Greeks (and not the Bulgarians) without a fight - 25,000 soldiers were taken prisoner with him.

On March 18, 1913, the Greek King George I was assassinated in Thessaloniki. On July 8, declared Serbia , Montenegro , the Turkey , Romania and Greece Bulgaria (after a Bulgarian attack on Serbia) war ( the Second Balkan War ), the Bulgarians from Thessaloniki during which sold were. In the Treaty of Bucharest on August 10, 1913, Thessaloniki and other parts of Macedonia were assigned to Greece. During the First World War , allied troops landed in Thessaloniki in mid-October 1915 with the support of the Greek Prime Minister Eleftherios Venizelos against the will of the Greek king from the house of Sonderburg-Glücksburg , in order to defeat the central powers (Austria-Hungary, Turkey, Germany, Bulgaria) to attack (see Salonikifront ). On October 18, 1916, Venizelos proclaimed a counter-government in Thessaloniki. From 1916 to 1918 Thessaloniki was the headquarters of the Allied occupation forces (Orient Army). On August 18, 1917, a major fire destroyed almost the entire southern city center. The reconstruction was led by Ernest Hébrard , who had previously come to Thessaloniki with the Orient Army.

The Greco-Turkish War (1919–1922) in Asia Minor , waged by Greece against Turkey after the First World War , resulted in the defeat of Greece and a refugee disaster. In the Treaty of Lausanne in 1923 was a population exchange agreement: A lot of the Greek refugees from Anatolia found a new home in and around Thessaloniki, in return, the Turkish population left the city.

The Thessaloniki International Fair took place for the first time in 1926 . Until then there were only the irregular industrial and goods shows in Athens' Zappeion . To this day it is the most important fair in Greece, even if special fairs have diminished its importance.

German occupation and the fate of the Jewish community

“Registration of Jews” in July 1942, inclusion of the propaganda company
Holocaust Memorial in the Thessaloniki Cemetery

Because of the large Jewish community, the city was formerly known as the " Jerusalem of the Balkans". More recent archaeological finds in the old Jewish cemetery indicate a Jewish settlement in Thessaloniki since the 2nd century AD. Most of the city's Jewish residents, however, were descended from Sephardic Jews who were expelled from the Iberian Peninsula in the 15th century ( Alhambra Edict ). Before World War II , the city was the seat of about 40 synagogues and had a Jewish population of about 56,000. This made it the largest Sephardic community in Europe. Up until the 20th century, Ladino was the dominant language alongside Greek. In 1910 David Ben-Gurion stayed in the city to study Turkish and was fascinated by the diversity of the Jewish community at the time. In 1927, the suburb of Florentin was built north of Jaffa ( Israel ) for Jewish refugees , after numerous Jews had become homeless as a result of a pogrom and fires.

From April 1941 to October 30, 1944, Thessaloniki was occupied by German troops as a result of the Balkan campaign and the Pavlos Melas concentration camp was located in a former barracks .

The German occupiers demanded large amounts of protection money from the Jewish community. This brought in the enormous amount of 3 trillion drachmas. This amount was felt to be too low. As a result, the occupiers confiscated the Jewish cemetery on December 6, 1942 and dismantled the tombstones to build a swimming pool for the German soldiers. Afterwards, stones were also given to the population as building material. On October 1, 1943, military advisor Karl Blaesing made marble from the destroyed Jewish cemetery available to a parish. The cemetery had about 300,000 to 500,000 graves and was one of the larger of its kind. They sold the area as building land, part of the Aristotle University is located on the area.

Between March 14, 1943 and August 7, 1943, almost all of the Thessalonian Jews were deported to Auschwitz in 19 train transports under the direction of Alois Brunner ; there they were murdered (see Extermination of the Jewish Community ). Only about 2000 Jews survived. The Italian embassy employee Guelfo Zamboni distributed 250 Italian passports to Jews to protect them from deportation. In view of the total looting of the apartments of deported Jews by members of the Wehrmacht, these were usually uninhabitable afterwards.

The German head of the naval meteorological station located here, Georg Eckert , gained influence with German military positions and occupation authorities and was able to establish contact with the Greek resistance movement under the guise of ethnological studies. He was able to save some of the persecuted and prevent retaliation. In autumn 1944 he brokered the non-fighting withdrawal of German troops from Saloniki between the Wehrmacht and the ELAS People's Liberation Army and then went over to ELAS with his followers. From politically reliable persons Eckert formed an "anti-fascist committee", which organized the German resistance, deserters and prisoners of war of ELAS who remained in Saloniki and who had evaded being handed over to the British troops into anti-fascist companies under Greek supervision .

post war period

After the end of the Greek Civil War in 1949, reconstruction and economic recovery began in the city. The city is also known as the “co-capital” ( Greek συμπρωτεύουσα , symprotevousa ) because its residents perceive it as being equivalent to Athens . To this day, however, it forms the opposite pole. This bipolarity is distantly comparable to the cities of Amsterdam and Rotterdam in the Netherlands . The Thessaloniki International Fair played an important role in the post-war period. The café frappé , which is very popular in Greece , was presented at the 1957 trade fair . In the 1960s, the new central station and the so-called Palais des Sports were completed. In 1966, Greek television broadcast for the first time from the OTE television tower , which had just been completed on the exhibition grounds.

1978, on June 20, Thessaloniki and its surroundings were shaken by a severe earthquake with a severity of 6.6 on the Richter scale : The epicenter of the quake was 30 km northeast of the city; the quake claimed 50 lives and caused considerable property damage.

In 1997 the city was European Capital of Culture . In this context, a predecessor of today's Jewish Museum was opened, and the Ministry of Culture acquired the George Costakis collection as the basis for the State Museum of Contemporary Art .

At the summit in Porto Carras near Thessaloniki in June 2003 , during the Greek Presidency of the European Union, the integration of the states of the former Yugoslavia and Albania was set as the next major goal in EU enlargement ( Thessaloniki promise ). The city hosted part of the soccer competitions of the 2004 Summer Olympics from 11 to 27 August 2004 . In 2006 the construction of the Thessaloniki metro began, which is due to go into operation in 2020 after many delays.

In 2010, the municipality of Thessaloniki was expanded to include the neighboring municipality of Triandria with the 2010 administrative reform .

Population development

Aerial view of the eastern districts of Thessaloniki and Kalamaria

Although the population of Thessaloniki Municipality has declined compared to the last three censuses, the metropolitan area has increased as residents move to the suburbs. The city forms the basis of a metropolitan region .

year Urban population modification Population in the metropolitan area
1981 406.413 N / A N / A
1991 383,967 -22.446 / -5.52% N / A
2001 363,987 -19.980 / -5.20% 954.027


Thessaloniki is in the area of ​​the Mediterranean climate . Due to the close land connection to the Balkans , the temperatures are a few degrees lower than in southern Greece (on average 1.6 degrees cooler than Athens). In winter, cold air ingress from the north is therefore more frequent, which leads to snowfall and ground frost almost every year.

Climate diagram
J F. M. A. M. J J A. S. O N D.
Temperature in ° Cprecipitation in mm
Average monthly temperatures and rainfall for Thessaloniki
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Max. Temperature ( ° C ) 9.6 12.0 14.1 19.6 24.8 29.6 32.3 32.7 27.9 22.0 16.7 12.0 O 21.2
Min. Temperature (° C) 1.4 2.4 4.6 7.9 12.6 16.9 19.4 19.5 16.1 11.6 7.9 3.4 O 10.3
Precipitation ( mm ) 39 40 46 36 44 31 22nd 21st 27 40 57 53 Σ 456
Hours of sunshine ( h / d ) 3.3 4.0 4.7 6.6 8.1 9.6 10.8 9.8 7.9 5.3 3.8 3.1 O 6.4
Rainy days ( d ) 7th 6th 7th 5 6th 4th 3 3 3 5 7th 7th Σ 63
Water temperature (° C) 12 12 13 14th 18th 22nd 24 25th 23 20th 16 14th O 17.8
Humidity ( % ) 75 71 72 68 65 58 52 52 61 67 78 78 O 66.4
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
  Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec

Transport and infrastructure

Road map of Thessaloniki and suburbs


The port of Thessaloniki is the most important ship transhipment point for the entire Balkans , offers ferry connections to the Aegean Sea and is used for international cruise ships. The international trading port handled around 16 million tons in 2008.

Air traffic

The Thessaloniki airport provides many links to national and European and non-European airports forth.


Thessaloniki is the most important railway junction for Greece and used to connect the country to Central and Eastern Europe. For many years, the importance of the railway transit route from Thessaloniki to Central Europe has decreased significantly. The reasons for this were the situation in the former Yugoslavia as well as the increased competition in passenger transport from inexpensive flight connections. The traffic flows south today; Goods for other countries in the European Union are shipped via Igoumenitsa .

The main train station of Thessaloniki has existed in its current form since 1962, is a terminus and is located in the west of the city center. The station has a loading point for motorail trains . The Greek State Railways (OSE) has expanded and electrified the country's main line to Athens, the Piraeus – Thessaloniki railway, on a large scale in recent years . The Intercity connection is a travel alternative to the Thessaloniki – Athens flight connection, especially since there is also a connection to the Peloponnese . From 2005 to 2011 a direct connection to Istanbul was offered on the Thessaloniki – Alexandroupoli railway line . Since May 10, 2014 daily connections to Sofia and in the summer season a connection via the Thessaloniki – Idomeni railway to Skopje and Belgrade have been offered.

Bus transport

Since the 1990s, people to and from Bulgaria and North Macedonia have been transported mainly by regular bus connections, which are cheaper and competitive in terms of time. From Thessaloniki there are numerous bus connections of the KTEL network to the closer and wider area of ​​the city as well as some long-distance bus connections to the rest of Greece.

Inner-city traffic

On April 7, 2006, after 15 years of planning and improvement, the contract for the construction of a 9.6 km long metro line with 13 stations in the first phase was signed. After some delays, mainly due to the Greek financial crisis , the completion of the tunnel bores was announced in August 2017. The main line is expected to open in 2020 and the southwest branch to Kalamaria is expected to go into operation in 2021. OASTH operates the city buses within Thessaloniki.

Road traffic

A modern expressway system (motorway and city motorway) leads in all four directions. The Highway 2 (A2, E 90 ) leading from the west Coming (Igoumenitsa, Ioannina , Kozani , Veria , Athens) in the north to Thessaloniki around (outer ring Thessaloniki) and continue towards Kavala , Xanthi , Alexandroupoli . In the south and south-east ( Chalkidiki ) there is a connection between the A2 and the inner ring of Thessaloniki ( national road 16 and A16 ). The inner ring of Thessaloniki bypasses the city on the heights of the Seich-Sou urban forest in the direction of Kalamaria , Thessaloniki Airport and Halkidiki. The inner ring has three lanes in both directions and is free of intersections and traffic lights. The outer ring of Thessaloniki is consistently three lanes with a hard shoulder in each direction. The national road 67 leads like a motorway (2 lanes to Nea Kallikratia) expanded to Nea Moudania in Chalkidiki and crosses the inner ring of Thessaloniki east of the city center of Kalamaria. The section of national road 67 from Nea Kallikratia to Nea Moudania is under construction: after completion of the expansion work, it will be possible to upgrade to a motorway. The airport of Thessaloniki is connected to the national road 67 (almost) free of intersections at the level of the towns of Tagarades and Thermi.

The motorway 1 (A1, E 75 , PATHE) from Evzoni on the border with North Macedonia to Athens, Larisa and Lamia does not go through Thessaloniki, but runs west of the city along the Axios river to the south.



In Thessaloniki and the surrounding area, there is an important food industry for the Greek market and for export (including Europe and the Middle East), as well as a tobacco industry. There is also a good furniture industry. A very modern oil refinery with Saudi Arabian participation has achieved great supra-regional importance. Thessaloniki is the headquarters of much of the Greek solar industry. The annual international autumn fair is the most important industrial and trade fair in Greece.


The city is the seat of the public television broadcaster ET3 and the private Makedonia TV ; the largest daily newspaper is Makedonia .


Although the city has many interesting sights and has an urban character, it is often only used as a stopover to the tourist areas on the Chalkidiki peninsula (which also includes the independent monastic republic of Athos ). In Ladadika (formerly the quarter of the olive oil traders ) is a quarter with many traditional and inexpensive taverns and ouzeries . The direct flight connection to Istanbul established by Turkish Airlines in 2011 has doubled the number of Turkish tourists.

Educational institutions

Thessaloniki has several universities: the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki , the University of Macedonia , the International Hellenic University and a Technical Training Institute in Thessaloniki. There are around 100,000 students in total. There are also research institutions such as the Institute for Balkan Studies .

Public administration

The seat of the authority for Macedonia and Thrace

The Ministry of Macedonia and Thrace , which was also responsible for issuing day visas for non-Greek visitors to the Republic of Athos , was located in Salonika until its dissolution in 2010 . His successor in the course of the administrative reform is the Decentralized Authority for Macedonia and Thrace , which is based in the same building.

Konstantinos Zervas has been the mayor since June 2019. The German news magazine Der Spiegel reported in February 2012 on the success of its predecessor, Giannis Boutaris , in restructuring the local government.


Thessaloniki historical center.svg
The "old" promenade
The Byzantine Panagia Chalkeon Church in the middle of the city center

The city's landmark is the White Tower, which dates from the Venetian or early Ottoman times and was probably built by Venetian master builders; Over the centuries it served the changing masters as an arsenal, as a prison for those sentenced to death, and under German occupation during World War II as a food store (primarily for the Wehrmacht). In times of Greek sovereignty before and afterwards it was at times a base for air defense, a university weather station and until 1983 a naval school. It is now used as a museum.

Buildings from the Roman period are the remains of the imperial palace with an octagon, the Galerius Arch (Kamara) with relief depictions of scenes from the battles of Galerius against the Persians in 296/297, a rotunda , built in the 4th century, perhaps as a mausoleum of Galerius , then orthodox Church and later mosque (remains of a minaret), now a museum. It has an inside diameter of 24.15 m and was the world's largest brick dome when it was built . There are also remains of a forum (145 × 90 m) with an underground stoa under the south stoa and with an odeion (theater).

One of the early Christian and Byzantine buildings is the Latomos monastery Osios David with a mosaic (5th or 6th century) depicting a beardless Christ. The church is a forerunner of the cross-domed church with mosaics and paintings from the end of the 5th to the 14th century.

There are numerous important early Christian and Byzantine churches. They were in 1988 as early Christian and Byzantine buildings in Thessaloniki on the List of World Heritage of UNESCO added. Some of them have excellent mosaics and paintings. Among them are

Buildings from the Ottoman period are the Besesteni , a covered market with six domes, mainly cloth merchants and goldsmiths housed, Turkish baths ( Hamama ) as the Giachounti Hamami , Bey Hamam , Pasha Hamam (Phoenix Hamam), the mosques Hamsa Bey Tsami , Alatsa-Imaret-Tsami and Yeni Cami (from 1902), the White Tower , Greek Lefkós Pýrgos (Λευκός Πύργος), Ataturk's birthplace and the Konak .


Entrance area of ​​the Jewish Museum

Art museums

The State Museum of Contemporary Art (SMCA) in the former Catholic Lazarist monastery houses the collection of George Costakis , one of the most important collections of the Russian avant-garde . It was acquired by the Greek state in 1997 on the occasion of the European City of Culture events . Works by internationally known Greek artists can also be seen, e.g. B. a sculpture by Joannis Avramidis . There is a branch at the port ("Warenhaus B1"). In 2004–2005 the exhibition “Light and Color in the Russian Avant-garde” was shown in the Martin-Gropius-Bau (Berlin) and in the Museum Moderner Kunst Stiftung Ludwig (Vienna), which was put together from works from the Costakis Collection.

The Municipal Pinakothek is housed in an Art Nouveau building. With the exception of an icon collection, the focus of the collection is similar to that of the SMCA in modern art. Here you can find u. a. Works by Salvador Dalí , Roy Lichtenstein , Lucebert and almost all nationally known artists. The Macedonian Museum of Contemporary Art with 2000 works a. a. by Joseph Beuys , Andy Warhol and Niki de Saint Phalle . There is also the Teloglion Art Foundation with regular exhibitions and the Artforum Culture Foundation in the Artforum VILKA center with exhibitions of Greek and international artists and annual exhibitions of the master students of the Aristotle University.

Other museums

The city is home to a large number of other museums, including the Museum of the City in the White Tower, the Archaeological Museum , the Museum of Byzantine Culture , a Cinema Museum, a Sports Museum and a Photography Museum, a Folklore and Ethnology Museum, the Museum of the Macedonian Struggle , the War Museum, the Museum of Musical Instruments, a Design Museum (without a building since 1997, as a traveling exhibition in the art museums), a Waterworks Museum, the Thessaloniki Railway Museum, the National Cartographic Museum, an Episcopal Museum, a Scout Museum and a Radio Museum.

The Noesis (science center and technical museum) and the Jewish museum are also important .

Cultural event

The Thessaloniki International Film Festival , which has been taking place since 1960, is the most important cultural event of supraregional importance.

The Thessaloniki Biennale of Contemporary Art has been taking place at the State Museum of Contemporary Art since 2007.


The Thessaloniki Concert Hall - Megaro Mousikis is the multifunctional event center in the city's port. The large hall can hold up to 1,400 spectators, there are concerts, ballet, opera and theater performances, as well as exhibitions and conferences. The building was designed by the Japanese architect Arata Isozaki ( Pritzker Prize Winner of 2019) and opened in 2000.

International cultural institutes

There is a Goethe Institute , an Institut français and an Istituto Italiano di Cultura .


A specialty from the city and the surrounding area is the puff pastry dessert bougatsa .


The two leading sports clubs in the city are PAOK and Aris . A variety of sports are offered by both, but the most important departments are soccer and basketball . Both clubs have already won several national championship titles there, and explosive city derbies occur regularly. Another big sports club is the Iraklis , whose volleyball players have won the Greek championship five times.

sons and daughters of the town

The Society of Macedonian Studies - Central Stage of the State Theater of Northern Greece


Twin cities



  • Niki Eideneier , Hans Eideneier (Ed.): Thessaloniki. Pictures of a city. With an introduction by IK Hassiotis and a timetable. Romiosini-Verlag, Cologne 1992, ISBN 3-923728-46-8 .
  • Lilli Herschhorn (Ed.): Refuge Saloniki: The Sephardi in Ottoman exile. A selection (1492–1556) from Joseph Nehama's “Histoire des Israélies de Salonique” . Bochum 2005, ISBN 3-89911-025-0 .
  • Bea Lewkowicz: The Jewish Community of Salonika. History, memory, identity. (English) Vallentine-Mitchell, Middlesex 2006.
  • Mark Mazower : Salonica, City of Ghosts: Christians, Muslims and Jews, 1430–1950, (English) Alfred A. Knopf, New York 2004, ISBN 0-375-41298-0 .
  • Joseph Nehama: Histoire des Israélites de Salonique , 6 volumes. Paris / Saloniki 1935–1978.

Web links

Commons : Thessaloniki  - Collection of images, videos and audio files
Wikivoyage: Thessaloniki  - travel guide

Individual evidence

  1. Results of the 2011 census ( Memento from June 27, 2015 in the Internet Archive ) ( MS Excel ; 2.6 MB) at the National Statistical Service of Greece (ΕΛ.ΣΤΑΤ)
  2. ^ Urban Audit - Data that can be accessed. (No longer available online.), archived from the original on April 6, 2011 ; Retrieved September 5, 2010 . Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  3. Christopher Mallan, Caillan Davenport: Dexippus and the Gothic Invasions: Interpreting the New Vienna Fragment (Codex Vindobonensis Hist. Gr. 73, ff. 192v – 193r) , in: Journal of Roman Studies 105 (November 2015) 203-226 shows, that the Goths appeared outside the city in the early 260s.
  4. Christine Stephan: A Byzantine image ensemble: The mosaics and frescoes of the Apostle Church in Thessaloniki (= manuscripts for art history in the Werner publishing company 7). Wernersche Verlagsgesellschaft, Worms 1986, ISBN 978-3-88462-906-2 .
  5. Ludwig von Thallóczy (Ed.): Illyrisch-Albanische Forschungen, Vol. 1, Munich, Leipzig 1916, p. 332.
  6. For the phase between 1830 and 1912 cf. Meropi Anastassiadou: Salonique, 1830–1912: une ville ottomane à l'âge des Réformes , Leiden, New York, Cologne: Brill 1997.
  7. Overview on the school's website ( Memento of the original from February 10, 2010 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was automatically inserted and not yet checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  8. V. Necla Geyikdagi: Foreign Investment in the Ottoman Empire: International Trade and Relations 1854-1914 . IBTauris, 2011, ISBN 978-0-85771-943-0 , pp. 85 ( [accessed July 1, 2018]).
  9. ^ Edward J. Erickson: Defeat in Detail: The Ottoman Army in the Balkans, 1912-1913 , Greenwood Publishing Group, 2003 pp. 224-226
  10. Deutschlandfunk, Schalom , November 25, 2011
  11. Nicholas Stavroulakis: Salonika, Jews and Dervishes . In:, Jewish Museum of Thessaloniki, The Jewish Necropolis ( Memento of the original from February 15, 2012 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was automatically inserted and not yet checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  12. Rena Molho: The Jewish community of Salonika and it's incorporation into the Greek state 1912-19 . In: Middle Eastern Studies Volume 24, 4: 391–403 doi: 10.1080 / 00263208808700753 .
  13. ^ NM Gelber: An Attempt to Internationalize Salonika, 1912–1913 . In: Jewish Social Studies . Volume 17, 105–120, Indiana University Press, 1955
  14. Esther Benbassa, Dilek Akyalçin Kaya, Hélène Guillon, Méropi Anastassiadou, Rena Molho, Devin E. Naar: Salonique. Ville juive, ville ottoman, ville grecque . In: Esther Benbassa (Ed.): Les Cahiers Alberto Benveniste . CNRS Éditions, Paris 2014, p. (Monograph) .
  15. ^ Rebecca Benhamou: Dictionnaire insolite de Tel Aviv . Ed .: Patrick Arfi, Vanessa Pignarre. Cosmopole, Paris 2015, ISBN 978-2-84630-093-3 , pp. 57 .
  16. ^ Isaac Jack Levy: And the World Stood Silent: Sephardic Poetry of the Holocaust, p. 10
  17. ^ Sara Berger, Erwin Lewin, Sanela Schmid and Maria Vassilikou: The persecution and murder of the European Jews by National Socialist Germany 1933–1945 , Volume 14, “Occupied Southeast Europe and Italy”, p. 104.
  18. The Greek Jerusalem. Conference on the History of the Jews of Thessaloniki , Deutschlandfunk, October 19, 2004, accessed: April 30, 2011.
  19. ^ Finissage for the “Madre d'Israel” memorial exhibition. Free University of Berlin, July 2, 2014, accessed on December 29, 2019 .
  20. Ulrike Tischler: FEZtgefahren: from everyday life in Istanbul and Salonika, 2007 p. 105
  21. which he actually operated. In 1943 he completed his habilitation in Bonn.
  22. Declaration on the EU - Western Balkans Summit, press release of the European Commission, Thessaloniki, June 21, 2003, see point 2.
  23. a b c Population of Greece. In: General Secretariat Of National Statistical Service Of Greece., 2001, archived from the original on December 1, 2007 ; Retrieved August 2, 2007 .
  24. Information (PDF) on the port administration website, accessed on February 14, 2012
  25. TRAINOSE (2014): International Railway Services. September 18, 2014.
  26. Thessaloniki Metro to .
  27. Overview maps can be found here .
  28. ^ Organization of Urban Transportation of Thessaloniki : timetables of the lines
  29. Julia Amalia Heyer: The winemaker, the garbage and the city: A politician of a special kind: In Thessaloniki a mayor clears the corrupt legacy of his predecessors aside. Foreign lenders shower him with praise . In: Der Spiegel . No. 7 , 2012, p. 86–87, here p. 87 ( online ).
  30. A list of educational institutions can be found here .
  31. Julia Amalia Heyer: The winemaker, the garbage and the city: A politician of a special kind: In Thessaloniki a mayor clears the corrupt legacy of his predecessors aside. Foreign lenders shower him with praise . In: Der Spiegel . No. 7 , 2012, p. 86-87 ( online ).
  32. Museum of Byzantine Culture , seventh paragraph, sentence 2 ( Memento of the original of June 22, 2012 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link has been inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. (English); in Greek ( memento of the original from March 1, 2007 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot / @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  33. Jürgen Rasch: The dome in Roman architecture. Development, design, construction. In: Architectura , 15, 117-139 (1985).
  34. ^, Museums
  35. Goethe-Institut Thessaloniki