Greece Christmas 2023
Athens, Greece (Image credit: https://athina984.gr)

Dreamy Greek destinations for Christmas 2023

Experience the magic of winter holidays in Athens, Thessaloniki, Trikala, Drama, Corfu

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Christmas is round the corner and Greece offers a unique and enchanting experience during the festive season. Time-honoured customs, traditional culinary delights, illuminated central squares and streets in cities, villages and islands, Christmas markets, elaborately decorated windows of shops, open-air celebrations and the warmth of Greek hospitality guarantee the most memorable winter vacation ever. And on top of this, the mild winter climate also adds to the appeal for many visitors. Below we’ve put together a list of captivating Christmas destinations around Greece.

Athens (Attica)

The Greek capital shines even brighter throughout December and until January 7. The Christmas tree in Syntagma Square is a present in itself. Many bazaars and markets pop up around the city, live concerts and street parties are taking place, workshops for children and families are being organized, “Christmas Villages” are set up in 10 neighborhoods (from Acharnon and Lambrini to Pagrati and Hellinorosson), delighting young and old alike. This year’s programme has been curated by OPANDA (Organization of Culture, Sports and Youth of the Municipality of Athens) and Technopolis of the Municipality of Athens, in collaboration with This is Athens and Athens 9.84 radio.

Don’t miss out on the special events like:

Christmas Eve at Kotzia Square: The capital’s annual event, Night of Wishes, on Dec. 24.
In one of the biggest squares in Athens where the town hall is located Athenians will have the opportunity to illuminate the night sky with traditional paper lanterns.

New Year’s Eve at Syntagma Square: A unique audiovisual spectacle full of live music, dance, fireworks and many surprises. 

New Year’s Eve Party at Varvakeios Agora (Food Market): Renowned DJs and producers will turn our wishes into music.

Thessaloniki (Central Macedonia)

Aristotelous Square, Thessaloniki, Greece (Credit: Christmasmarketsineurope.com)

Like Athens, the “co-capital” Thessaloniki has a grand welcome in store at Christmas-time. The historic Aristotelous Square, Thessaloniki’s main central square, hosts a huge, illuminated Christmas tree beautifully decorated. The main Christmas market is on Aristotelous street, above Egnatia boulevard. If you are looking for seasonal specialties like melomakarona (honeyed cookies with walnuts, cloves, cinnamon, and orange), kourabiedes (crumbly butter cookies covered in powdered sugar),  handcrafted decorations, Christmas gifts, or even street food then the market is the place to buy.
People will greet you with a happy “Hronia Polla” (many years), “Kala Hristougenna” (Merry Christmas), or “Kali Hronia” (Happy New Year). There are also celebrations found throughout the city in individual neighbourhoods, putting the whole Thessaloniki into the holiday mood.  Numerous events take place. From Christmas carol singing (kalanda) to live brass bands and bouzouki-style singers, the atmosphere is festive.

Trikala (Thessaly)

The Mill of the Elves, Trikala, Greece (Credit: MilosXotikon.gr)

One of the most beautiful Christmas tales unfolds in the small and hospitable town of Trikala in Thessaly.  Since 2011, the historic Matsopoulos Mill  transforms into the largest Christmas theme park in Greece, The Mill of the Elves. A different theme is chosen annually which becomes the inspiration behind all the creations in the Park, for the entertainment of all. This year we follow the adventures of the Little Prince, based on Antoine de Saint-Exupéry’s famous French book “Le Petit Prince”.  Artistic activities, concerts, children’s events, unique workshops, amusement rides such as Carousel, Roller Coaster, Ferris wheel. Visitors can also also go ice skating or purchase wonderful gifts and treats at the Christmas Market which is hosted at the Park.

Drama (East Macedonia and Thrace)

Oneiroupoli, Drama, Greece (Credit: Oneiroupoli)

The city of Drama is the capital of Christmas thanks to Oneiroupoli (Dreamland). Every year, in early December till early January, the municipal garden and the city’s central Eleftheria square are transformed into fairy-tale scenes giving smiles, sweet memories and a festive atmosphere to millions of visitors.  You will find the typical wooden houses, colorful lamps, many great surprises, the ultimate Christmas village. Events vary, from concerts, theatre and dance performances, sports activities, games and other informative and entertaining programs. Apart from the events, visitors have the opportunity to taste delicious local and sweet dishes and beverages and buy souvenirs and pretty ornaments from local sellers.

Corfu (Ionian Islands)

Corfu, Greece, (Credit: Sindetiras.gr)

Renowned for it’s Easter celebrations, the Ionian island of Corfu is is just as festive, and charming during Christmas. The holiday season in Ionian island starts on the feast of Agios Spyridon (Dec. 12), Corfu’s patron saint. The streets and the squares of the old town, turn into a magnificent scenery, filled with bright lights. Philharmonic orchestras, which the island is famous for, go around the center of the town and play carols, a custom you will be delighted with. Many events are organized with traditional dances.