The multicultural spirit of Thessaloniki: archaeological sights

As we told you before, the city of Thessaloniki witnessed numerous changes  during its history. Like a patchwork quilt, it now consists of dozens of different cultures that passed through it in different eras. Let’s go and find their traces on the streets of the city.

Follow the Byzantine&Early Christian footsteps

Hagia Sophia

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The church of Saint Sophia, or Hagia Sophia, (late 7th century)  is a copy of the original Agia Sophia in Constantinople. It’s so-called “spiritual beacon” for the city. With its great sculptural decoration, mosaics and wall paintings, it’s considered as a masterpiece of religious art.

Address: Aghias Sophias square

Hagios Demetrios 

One of the most important early christian church built in the early 4th century AD is dedicated to the patron saint of Thessaloniki, in the late Byzantine years was the center of the Saint’s miraculous myrrh production.

Address: Agiou Dimitriou 97 St. Thessaloniki

Rotunda

Founded in the early 4th AD century as a temple or mausoleum of Constantine, it’s now one of the most imposing monuments of the city,balancing between the pagan and the Christian world, and also a functioning church.

Address: Ag. Georgios Square

Byzantine walls and Trigonion tower

The walls were built to protect the city from numerous enemies.
They were 7 kilometers long and 10 meters high and were surrounding the city until the end of 19th century. The tower of Trigonion was built in the second half of the 15th century aD it was used as an armory and an artillery tower. NB: a great point to enjoy the sunset!

Roman Route

Arch of Galerius

Also called ‘Kamara’, it was constructed to commemorate Galerius’s victory over the Persians between the years 295-305 AD. It’s now one of the most important moments of the city and a very popular meeting point.

Address: Egnatia st., 546 35 Thessaloniki

The Roman Forum

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The Forum was a social and religious center of Roman Thessaloniki, built between 2 and 3 A.D, including the large rectangular square, the ground floor of the double underground Cryptic Galleria (functioned most probably as a warehouse), the odeon, the mint, the city’ s registry, as well as the circle baths. 

Adress: Thessaloniki 54631

 Jewish heritage 

Monastirioton synagogue

The synagogue was founded in 1927. During the Nazi occupation,and was the ghetto  of Thessaloniki.Later was used by the Red Cross as a warehouse, now is mormally functioning as a religious place. 

Address: 35 Syggrou Street

Modiano Market

A food Market built by architect Eli Modiano in 1922 is organized in galleries (arcades). The locals nowadays come here for their foods shopping: meats, fish, cheeses, spices, etc. There are lots of traditional bars around to sit and relax.

Address: between Vasileos Irakliou St and Egnatia

Meet the Ottomans

Hamza bey Tzami

Also known nowadays as a cinema Alkazar, this building was constructed in 1467 by the daughter of the military commander Hamza Bey as mosque after the end of the Ottoman occupation.

Address: Egnatia, Thessaloniki 546 31

Textile market Bezesteni

If you cross Venizelou Street, you’ll find a typical enclosed Ottoman market, which was built during the rule of Sultan Mehmet II in 15-16 century. An old Ottoman building with a six dome roof houses several jewelry and silver stores. The place is full of small shops selling textiles, carpets and flowers.

Address: Between Venizelou and Solomou, Thessaloniki

Text: Elizaveta Loginova

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