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ThessalonikiMuseum of Byzantine Culture

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Museum of Byzantine Culture | A journey into Thessaloniki's history

Established in 1994, the Museum of Byzantine Culture in Thessaloniki offers a remarkable journey through the history and culture of the Byzantine Empire. Its extensive collection of antiquities comprises over 3,000 items, including icons, mosaics, manuscripts, and sculptures. It provides visitors with a deep understanding of this influential civilization that shaped the Eastern Mediterranean for many centuries. Keep reading for more information about the Museum of Byzantine Culture, including ticket prices, opening hours, and other details to make your visit hassle-free.

Why Visit the Museum of Byzantine Culture?

  • Historical significance: Through 11 galleries of permanent exhibits divided by theme and era, the museum charts the history of nearly 1,000 years of the Byzantine Empire.
  • Invaluable antiquities: The museum has over 3,000 historical items, including wall paintings, friezes, frescoes, mosaics, icons, sculptures, architectural elements, detached Early Christian tombs, textiles, everyday artifacts, tools, and jewellery, on display.
  • Multimedia elements: Audio-visual material and interactive touchscreen displays alongside the exhibits provide in-depth information, enhancing visitors' experience and transporting them back into this fascinating period of history.
  • Architectural significance: The museum's building, designed by architect Kyriakos Krokos, is a modern architectural masterpiece. It blends contemporary design with elements inspired by Byzantine architecture.

Museum of Byzantine Culture Highlights

Byzantine fortifications

Using archaeological material, Gallery 6 showcases castles, fortified settlements, and the defence system of the Byzantine era. Visitors can also learn about the organization of a castle, everyday life and activities in and outside the castle walls.

5th century wall mosaic

Mosaics were a significant art form during the Byzantine era. Among its exhibits, the Museum of Byzantine Culture houses a rare fragment of a wall mosaic from the Church of the Acheiropoietos, which dates back to the mid-5th century AD.

Life during Early Christianity

Galleries 1 and 2 showcase the Early Christian Church and life during the Early Christian period. One of the most prominent exhibits is a 4th-century AD silver reliquary with themes from the Old and New Testament as reliefs on each side of the casket.

Byzantine icons & artwork

Byzantine icons are displayed throughout the museum. Gallery 9 has the largest collection with 146 icons from the late-14th to the 19th century. It also holds more than 1,000 items of Byzantine and post-Byzantine art from prehistory to the 19th century.

Plan Your Visit to the Museum of Byzantine Culture

Visitor Tips

Summer opening hours (from 1st April to 31st October): 8 AM to 8 PM

Winter opening hours (from 1st November to 31st March): 8.30 AM to 3.30 PM

The museum is closed on:

  • 25th December
  • 26th December
  • 1st January
  • 25th March
  • Easter Sunday
  • 1st May

Duration of Visit: 2-3 hours

Address: 2 Stratou Avenue, 54640 Thessaloniki, Greece

Find on Map

Getting there:

  • By Bus: 5, 6, 12, 33, 39
    Nearest bus stop: Museum of Byzantine Culture; Stratigeio, Museum of Byzantine Culture
  • By Car: The distance from Thessaloniki Airport to the Museum of Byzantine Culture is 14.7 km.
    Nearest Parking: The nearest parking site is at the Municipal Underground Garage of the Thessaloniki City Hall located next to the museum.
  • By Bike: Designated parking space for bicycles can be found in front of the museum entrance.

Audio guide: The museum offers visitors an audio guide to all its galleries and exhibits which can be used on smartphones or mobile devices. These are available in multiple languages including Greek, English, French, German, Spanish, Russian, Serbian, Bulgarian, Hebrew, Turkish, and Chinese.

Shop: The museum shop offers a variety of items like books, historical and cultural publications, souvenirs, small replicas of the museum’s exhibits, jewellery, clothing, posters and postcards, gifts, and toys, among others.

  • Wheelchair access: The museum is accessible for wheelchair users and people with impaired mobility.
  • Special audio guides: The museum provides special audio presentations about its exhibits for visitors with limited or impaired vision. These are available in Greek, English, French, German, Spanish, Russian, Serbian, Bulgarian, Hebrew, Turkish, and Chinese.
  • Sign language guides: Special audio-visual guides and tours are available in Greek Sign Language for people with hearing impairment.
  • Braille leaflet: For visitors who are blind or have limited or impaired vision, the museum provides a leaflet in Braille script (Greek-English).
  • Audio-haptic guided tour: The museum provides a special tour of some of the permanent galleries for visitors who are blind or have limited or impaired vision. Titled "Touch and be acquainted with Byzantium", it is available in English, German, Greek, and Russian.

The museum offers all these services free of charge.

  • Exploring attractions in Thessaloniki involves a lot of walking, so wear comfortable shoes.
  • Carry headphones and ensure your smartphone or mobile device is charged so that you can access the audio tour.
  • To access the audio tour, visitors require an Android (version 5.0 and later) or iOS smartphone with at least 200-300 MB storage.
  • Certain devices are not compatible with the audio tour including Windows Phones, iPhone 5/5C or older, iPod Touch 5th generation or older, iPad 4th generation or older, and iPad Mini 1st generation.

There are many restaurants and dining options available near the Museum of Byzantine Culture in Thessaloniki:

  • B. restaurant: Enjoy great Mediterranean cuisine at B. restaurant, a fine dining establishment located at the Museum of Byzantine Culture.
  • The Greek: If you want to experience some great authentic local food, visit The Greek. It is widely considered one of the best restaurants in Thessaloniki.
  • Thermaikos Garden: Located just a 10-minute walk away from the Museum of Byzantine Culture, Thermaikos Garden offers a great selection of Greek and Mediterranean cuisine.
  • Tarti: If you fancy some great authentic Greek seafood, head to Tarti restaurant. In the summer, you can enjoy eating in fresh air with their outdoor seating options.

Luxury: Makedonia Palace, Electra Palace Thessaloniki, The Excelsior Hotel

Mid-Range: Astoria Hotel, Blue Bottle Boutique Hotel, Park Hotel

Budget: Hotel Orestias Kastorias, Hotel Esperia, Egnatia Hotel

  • White Tower: Built sometime between 1430 and 1440, during Ottoman rule, the White Tower was originally part of Thessaloniki's fortifications and is now home to a museum showcasing the city's history.
  • Archaeological Museum of Thessaloniki: An extensive collection of artifacts from several periods in Thessaloniki's history, including Prehistoric, Classical Greek, Hellenistic, and Roman, are housed in the Archaeological Museum of Thessaloniki.
  • Roman Forum at the Thessaloniki Archaeological Site: The Roman Forum of Thessaloniki is the archaeological ruins of a public square dating back to the Roman era, where visitors can see the ancient agora (open space).
  • Church of Saint Demetrius: Originally built in the early 4th century AD, with significant changes made in the 7th and 8th centuries, the Church of Saint Demetrius is dedicated to the city's patron saint and is known for its stunning mosaics and architecture.

Frequently Asked Questions about the Museum of Byzantine Culture

Where can I buy Museum of Byzantine Culture tickets?

You can book your Museum of Byzantine Culture tickets online. Purchasing tickets online is easy and has many advantages. You do not have to stand in long lines and your spot is reserved upon confirmation of payment.

How much do Museum of Byzantine Culture tickets cost?

Museum of Byzantine Culture tickets are available starting from €16.

What is the cancellation policy for Museum of Byzantine Culture tickets?

You can cancel these tickets up to 24 hours before the experience begins and get a full refund.

Are there any special facilities for disabled visitors at the Museum of Byzantine Culture?

Yes, the Museum of Byzantine Culture is fully accessible to visitors with mobility, vision, and hearing impairments. It is wheelchair accessible including restrooms. It also provides special audio guides, sign language guides, a braille leaflet, and an audio-haptic guided tour for the disabled.

Can I bring children to the Museum of Byzantine Culture?

Yes, the museum provides educational activities for children of all age groups, enhancing their visit.

How much time should I allocate for a visit to the Museum of Byzantine Culture?

It takes about 2 to 3 hours to explore all the galleries in the permanent exhibition at the museum and to see the various historical exhibits and artifacts on display. If you want to explore in-depth or visit the temporary exhibitions as well, it will take you longer.

Is there a shop at the Museum of Byzantine Culture?

Yes, the museum shop offers a variety of items like books, souvenirs, replicas of the museum’s exhibits, jewellery, clothing, posters and postcards, gifts, and toys for visitors to purchase.