Athens After Dark: The Ultimate Nightlife Guide to the Greek Capital

Whether you’re craving the energy of a traditional rebetika venue, the sophistication of a craft cocktail bar, or the laid-back vibes of a beachfront lounge, Athens delivers.

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In Athens, Dionysus' hedonistic spirit thrives long after the Acropolis closes its gates. While tourists capture daytime selfies with ancient ruins, savvy night owls know that the city's true essence emerges at dusk. As darkness falls, Plaka's souvenir-laden streets metamorphose into a maze of clinking glasses and lively taverna chatter. And if you found the Acropolis awe-inspiring by day, just wait until you're gazing at its gravitas from a Kolonaki rooftop bar, craft cocktail in hand. This is Athens after dark—where the god of wine and pleasure still reigns supreme.

Speaking of libations, Athens' drink menu reads like a history book with a twist ending. Ouzo still flows freely, but it's no longer flying solo. This anise-flavored classic now shares bar space with mastiha cocktails and small-batch Greek gins. Natural Assyrtiko wines from Santorini sit alongside bold reds from Nemea, creating a liquid landscape as diverse as the country itself. Athens has not only evolved its drink scene but also embraced its queer-friendly side. Nowhere is this more evident than in the Gazi district, where former industrial spaces have swapped smokestacks for disco balls, thrumming with inclusive vibes and electronic beats until sunrise.

As summer heats up, Athenians migrate southward to the Athens Riviera, stretching from Piraeus to Cape Sounion. Here, many of the Greek capital's famous bars and clubs open seaside outposts, transforming the coast into a playground of beach clubs and lounges. Locals and visitors alike trade ancient marble for golden sand, sipping frosé by day and club-hopping by night.

Whether you're craving the energy of a traditional rebetika venue, the sophistication of a craft cocktail bar, or the laid-back vibes of a beachfront lounge, Athens nightlife delivers. So leave your preconceptions at the Parthenon and dive into Athens after dark. From time-honored traditions to avant-garde hotspots, this guide will be your Hermes, leading you through a city where ancient and modern dance in perfect harmony—usually until about 6 a.m., or whenever that late-night souvlaki craving hits.

Wine Bars

Heteroclito

  • Fokionos Street 2, Syntagma Square, Athens 105 63

This neon-lit corner in Syntagma is a mecca for oenophiles specializing in organic, low-intervention wines. Heteroclito spotlights pet nats and indigenous Greek varieties, including the standout Robola, a saline-forward white from Gentilini in Kefalonia. Pair your wine with Levantine small plates from nearby Feyrouz for a perfect taste of Mediterranean fusion.

Heteroclito. Heteroclito.

By the Glass

  • Souri Street 3, Syntagma Square, Athens 105 57

True to its name, this Syntagma staple offers 200 wines by the glass, from Greek Moschofilero to locally-grown cabernet sauvignon. Choose between the high-ceilinged interior or the alfresco charm of Rallou Manou Square, where a stone statue presides over your tasting journey through an extensive list catering to all palates.

By the Glass. By the Glass.

Paleo Wine Store

  • Polidorou Street 5, Piraeus 185 45

Housed in a converted Piraeus warehouse, Paleo is owner Giannis Kaimenakis' ode to Mediterranean wines. With 200 labels and a rotating by-the-glass selection, this liquid tour of Italy, Spain, France and Greece pairs perfectly with their concise menu of grilled meats and pasta dishes in a relaxed, rustic setting.

Paleo Wine Store. Paul Jebara.

Wine is Fine

  • Adrianou Street 12, Monastiraki, Athens 105 55

This French-Greek collaboration does a more-than-fine job at bringing a slice of Paris to Monastiraki, with natural and low-intervention wines sourced from both countries. Enjoy your pour alongside chef Stavros Chrysafidis' French-inspired Greek cuisine for a true cross-cultural experience that bridges the Mediterranean.

Wine Is Fine. Thomas Brengou

Oinoscent

  • Voulis Street 45-47, Athens 105 57

Athens' first wine bar continues to impress after nearly two decades. Its rotating 50-glass list showcases Greek varietals like Nemea's agiorgitiko and Santorini's assyrtiko. Chef John Tsikoudakis elevates the experience with dishes like grilled calamari and nori-crusted tuna Waldorf salad, proving that Oinoscent excels in both oenology and gastronomy.

Oinoscent. Oinoscent.

Cocktail Bars

Baba au Rum

  • Klitiou Street 6, Athens 105 60

This 15-year-old institution, helmed by Thanos Prunarus, blends Modernist art with mixology. Signature cocktails like "Basquiat's Daisy" (featuring Lillet Rouge, fermented raspberry wine and jasmine-infused gin) and "Beatnik Paloma" (an earthy twist on the classic with beetroot and black cardamom) showcase their creative flair. For rum enthusiasts, their 400-strong collection takes a detour to the Caribbean and beyond.

Baba Au Rhum. Baba Au Rhum.

Line

  • Solonos Street 8, Athens 106 73

Sustainability meets mixology at Line, courtesy of The Clumsies' award-winning team. Their "green" cocktails, crafted with an in-house distillery transforming local fruits into wine-like elixirs, push eco-conscious boundaries. This zero-waste approach landed Line on the World's Best Bars list in 2023, just a year after its opening.

Feelin' Good

  • Georgaki Olympiou Street 1, Athens 105 60

Housed in a former bakery, this bar in Koukaki is a homage to American blues, jazz and hip-hop. Sip on classics like their take on Dante's Garibaldi or pair crispy chicken nuggets with Jack Daniel's BBQ sauce. With 1970s tile floors, cinema light boxes and nightly live music, Feelin' Good offers a retro trip across the Atlantic.

Feelin' Good. Feelin' Good.

Galaxy

  • Stadiou Street 10, Athens 105 64

Operating since 1972, Galaxy blends cocktail tradition with Athenian nostalgia. Textured glass globes illuminate wood-paneled walls adorned with Greek personalities' portraits. Their perfectly executed classics come with a side of history: sip a classic Dirty Gin Martini alongside the signature Athenian bar snack of olive oil-painted toasted bread strips.

Galaxy. Yiorgos Domianos

Black Duck

  • Paparrigopoulou Street 5-7, Athens City Museum, Athens 105 61

A 15-year Athens favorite, Black Duck now nests in the City Museum, offering a cultural-culinary fusion. Its historic garden, featuring Queen Amalia's alleged palm, provides year-round outdoor dining. Inside, gallery walls and Roman sculptures create an artful ambiance. Catering to the post-theater crowd, the kitchen serves until late. Standouts include grouper with chickpea puree and lamb with trahana (fermented wheat) from the island of Kardamyli.

Black Duck. Dimitris Kolios.

Hotel Bars

Alexander's Cigar Lounge at Hotel Grande Bretagne

  • Vasileos Georgiou A' Street 1, Syntagma Square, Athens 105 64

Step into old-world sophistication at this dark wood and marble-adorned lounge. Named for its 18th-century tapestry of Alexander the Great, it offers classic cocktails and rare whiskeys served by knowledgeable bartenders, with a cigar room on the first floor for aficionados.

Hotel Grande Bretagne. Hotel Grande Bretagne.

Dolli's at The Dolli

  • Mitropoleos Street 5, Athens 105 56

This rooftop aerie serves up views of the Acropolis with fusion cuisine from chef Athanasios Tzanetos, who expertly blends Asian ingredients into authentic Athenian dishes. Try the black truffle beef carpaccio with wines from local artisanal vineyards while gazing at the Parthenon and historic Plaka neighborhood below. 

Dolli's at the Dolli. The Dolli Hotel.

LGBTQ+ Friendly

Sodade2

  • Triptolemou Street 10, Gazi, Athens 118 54

Athens' gay clubbing cornerstone offers a dual music venue experience: mainstream pop up front and trance in the back. Despite its intimate size, Sodade2 delivers high energy and easy socializing for locals and visitors alike.

Sodade2. Sodade2.

Backdoor

  • Ioannou Paparrigopoulou Street 6, Psyrri, Athens 105 61

This charming Psyrri cocktail bar keeps the party going until 4 a.m. Known for skilled mixologists and a welcoming vibe, Backdoor blends crafted drinks with a low-key LGBTQ+-friendly atmosphere, perfect for pre-dinner aperitifs or a nightcap.

Backdoor Athens. Backdoor Athens.

Bequeer

  • Keleou 10, Athens 104 35

A fresh addition to Gazi's scene, Bequeer offers an alternative, inclusive clubbing experience. The highlight? Next-gen drag shows, among Athens' most daring and innovative. Expect a night of surprises and boundless self-expression.

Seaside Setting

Manko

  • Apollonos Street 10, Glyfada, Athens 166 74

Located behind the compound walls of the chic One&Only Aesthesis hotel, Manko provides island vibes without leaving the mainland. Opened in June 2024, it transforms from a beach club and Peruvian restaurant to a stylish lounge. Featuring Peruvian "quipu" art, a sleek pool and sea-view dining, Manko hosts world-class DJs and VIP experiences like "Sunset Sundays" throughout summer.

Manko. LefterisK.

Island

  • 27th km Athens - Sounio Road, Varkiza, Athens 166 72

Just a 30-minute drive from Athens in the beach town of Varkiza, this clifftop oasis rivals the best clubs of Saint Tropez. Built from scratch by the Panas brothers, Island Club and Restaurant offers a mix of cocktails, sushi, an expertly curated wine cellar and a cigar vault. In the height of summer, the party continues until sunrise.

Island Club and Restaurant. Island Club and Restaurant.

Barbarossa

  • Poseidonos Avenue 91, Voula, Athens 166 73

The acclaimed Paros restaurant Barbarossa has set sail for the mainland, dropping anchor at the exclusive 91 Athens Riviera members' club. At the helm is chef Dimitris Nikolis, from the island of Evia, who transforms Aegean ingredients into simple but standout dishes include grilled white eggplant with smoked eel, yogurt and za'atar, and shrimp ravioli with lobster oil and crispy leek. Nestled in a chic indoor-outdoor space by the pool and mere steps from the shore, Barbarossa serves up a taste of island sophistication infused with the salt-kissed air of the Athens coast.

Barbarossa. Barbarossa.

Bolivar Beach Bar

  • Alimos Beach, Athens 174 55

Experience an island castaway vibe just minutes from central Athens. Bolivar hosts international DJs and serves up gourmet Mediterranean cuisine right on Alimos Beach. With its top-notch service and distinctive aesthetics, it's become one of Athens' most attractive dining and partying destinations.

Bolivar Beach Club. Bolivar Beach Club.

Vinilio

  • Summer Address: Ribas, Varkiza Beach, Athens 166 72
  • Winter Address: Triptolemou Street 3, Gazi, Athens 118 54

This dual-location disco club has been keeping the spirit of Greek disco alive since 1996. In winter, enjoy Acropolis views from Gazi; in summer, dance under the stars at Varkiza Beach. With its retro decor and mix of disco, rock and Greek music hits from the ‘60s to ‘90s, Vinilio is a nostalgic night out for all ages.

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