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Pangrati: The Artsy, Hip Enclave in the Center of Athens

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St. Spyridon Square in Pangrati, Athens. The Goulandris Museum is located to the left. Credit: Tolisr/Wikimedia Commons/CC BY-SA 4.0

Located just a stroll through the National Gardens away from Athens’ iconic Syntagma Square, Pangrati is a thriving hub of arts and culture full of small boutiques, cafes, and cutting-edge restaurants.

Pangrati is a great place to spend an afternoon having coffee or enjoying the area’s many cultural centers. It’s also a great area to have a good time during the evening, as there is a wide variety of bars in the neighborhood ranging from hip spots for dancing to more low-key, cozy hangouts.

Long considered a middle-class, family-oriented neighborhood, Pangrati has transformed into one of Athens’ hippest neighborhoods due to an influx of young residents, artists, and cultural institutions while still holding on to its family-friendly reputation.

Pangrati has begun to transform into one of the hippest neighborhoods in Athens

Although Pangrati’s transformation began a few years ago, the arrival of the Goulandris Museum of Contemporary Art in the neighborhood in 2019 marked a shift in Pangrati’s culture.

The Goulandris Museum, filled with masterpieces of Modern Greek and European art, holding a collection that includes works by Picasso, Monet, van Gogh, and Cezanne, infuses the entire neighborhood with creativity.

The museum puts on educational events for all ages, including art classes, museum tours, and music events on its premises.

Featuring a store full of artsy gifts and a café with delicious treats, the Goulandris is a perfect spot for spending a Saturday.

Full of vibrant squares

Archelaou Street is a buzzing corner of the neighborhood, filled with boutique stores and some of the most popular cafes and bars in Athens.

Young social media influencers, celebrities, and even politicians have been spotted at Archelaou’s cafes and restaurants, which range from updated mezedopoleia, serving small, traditional Greek dishes, to cutting-edge restaurants that have received much buzz across the city for their forward-thinking plates.

Just steps off Archelaou, Plateia Proskopon, or Boy Scout Square, named after the headquarters of the Greek Scouts located there, houses hip bars and cafés, as well as historic tavernas. The square, full of lush trees and cafes with outdoor seating, provides city-dwellers with a serene getaway in the center of the city.

The taverna, Magemenos Avlos, with a vintage interior and seating out under the trees lining the square, was the haunt of many notable Greek artists and politicians, including the world-renowned composer, Manos Hatzidakis.

Plateia Varnava, or Varnava Square, is located in the vibrant neighborhood, just behind the iconic Panathenaic Stadium. It is surrounded by cafes, bars, and restaurants teeming with life.

Varnava Square has recently become a hotspot for young people who gather and socialize in the square during the evening.

Pangrati is also known for its architectural gems. Walking through the neighborhood’s winding streets, it is not uncommon to come across a well-preserved mid-century apartment building or even a single-family home, which is a rare sight in the Greek capital.

Pangrati’s proximity to the Greek National Garden, Panathenaic Stadium, Syntagma, and the Zappeion Mansion puts it in the center of Athenian life. Yet, its cozy vibe makes it feel like home.

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