Guide to the Agora of Athens: History, Tickets, Insider Tips

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The Agora of Athens represented the beating heart of ancient Athens. Social, political and economic life took place in this assembly and market place for 2000 years. The Roman Agora also adjoins the ancient Athens Agora. Today, the Agora is one of the top 10 sights in Athens.

In this complete guide, you'll learn all about the Agora's sights, history, and helpful information about how to get there, tickets, and tours.

Admission, Tickets and Guided Tours

Admission to the Ancient Athens Agora is free for children under the age of 5, EU citizens under the age of 25 and visitors with disabilities. The entrance ticket to the Agora includes access to the entire archaeological site and the Museum of the Ancient Agora. Tickets can be purchased at the ticket counters on site or online in advance.

In order to explore the extensive area with its numerous sights in more depth, we recommend a guided tour with an official guide. On the other hand, if you want to explore the historical site flexibly and on your own, you are best advised to use an audio guide on your own smartphone.


  • Skip the Line Ticket: Since long queues can form at the on-site ticket counters, we recommend buying an online ticket in advance without waiting in line.
  • Combo Ticket: There is a combo ticket that gives access to some of the most important sites of antiquity including the Ancient Agora, Roman Agora, Acropolis and Olympieion.
  • Guided Tour: A recommendation is the Mythological Tour "Ancient Athens" where you can visit three of the most important sites from antiquity with an official guide. It includes the Ancient Agora, the Acropolis and the Olympieion.

Tip: Admission to the Agora of Athens is free on the first Sunday of every month (November to March). Also on March 6th, April 18th, May 18th, October 28th and the last weekend of September.

Agora and Sky Athens Tourist Information

How Do I Get to the Agora?

The Agora of Athens is very centrally located in the heart of the old city, making it very easy to get to. The main entrance is on Adrianou Street. Another entrance is on Apostolou Pavlou street.

If you are in the Monastiraki district, it is a wonderful walk to the Agora. But you can also easily get to the Agora by public transport, the hop-on hop-off bus or a taxi.

Visitors arriving from the Piraeus cruise port can go to the nearby Piraeus Metro Station and board the M1 line. A single ticket is sufficient for the 16-minute journey to Monastiraki station.

At a glance

  • Public Transport: Take  Metro Line 1 or 3 to “Monastiraki”. From there it is only a short walk to the main entrance of the Agora.
  • On Foot: It takes only 4 minutes to walk from Monastiraki Square to the main entrance. Alternatively, you can also reach the main entrance via the Monastiraki flea market in a few minutes.
  • Hop-On Hop-Off Bus: You can take the hop-on hop-off bus to station A 14 “Monastiraki/Thession” and walk the few meters to the entrance
  • Taxi: Taking a taxi to the Agora from centrally located hotels or locations should cost less than €10.

Plan of the Athens Agora

Drone View of the Agora Athens Tourist Information

Sights at the Athens Agora

One of the main attractions at the Agora is the Temple of Hephaestus, one of the best preserved monuments of ancient GreeceThe marble temple dedicated to the god of blacksmithing has intricate decorations.

Also impressive is the Stoa of Attalos, an ancient portico that served as a meeting place and market hall. It was reconstructed in the 1950s and now houses the must-see Museum of the Ancient Agora.

A little further out, very close to Monastiraki Square, is Hadrian's LibraryIt was donated by Emperor Hadrian and is one of the largest libraries from antiquity.

More Buildings & Ruins

  • Church of the Holy Apostles: This Byzantine church, called Agii Apostoli, dates back to the Middle Ages. It was built in the 11th century and is well preserved today.
  • Buleuterion: In the old Buleuterion, a kind of official seat of the council, laws were discussed and decided. After it was destroyed during the Persian wars (5th century BC), it served as a state archive as a new Buleuterion was built a little above. Today only ruins can be seen.
  • Tholos: South of the ancient Buleuterion are the ruins of the 5th century BC Tholos. This is where food was served to the executive committee of the bule. Some of the MPs also had to be present at the headquarters at night.

Roman Agora of Athens

Guide to the Roman Agora: History, Sights, Tickets

In the 1st century BC the Roman emperor Augustus erected a second market and meeting place in the immediate vicinity of the ancient Agora of Athens, the Roman AgoraThe everyday life of the Athenians took place on the square surrounded by colonnades, similar to the ancient Agora, including shopping, political decisions and popular meetings.

The Roman marketplace housed impressive buildings, some of which are still well preserved today. 

Sightseeing Features

Attractions include the entrance gate of Athena Archegetes and the 15th-century Fethije Mosque, built during Ottoman occupation. The centerpiece, however, is the octagonal Tower of the Winds, which served as a weather station and clock and was probably was built in the 2nd century BC.

Admission: A single ticket purchase is required to visit the Roman Agora. Those who have the Ancient Athens Combo Ticket do not need one as entry is included in this combo ticket.

Greek Agora Athens Tourist Information

History of the Agora of Athens

The Agora of Athens, where famous philosophers including Socrates and Plato gave speeches, is considered the root of Western civilization. The political, economic and social life of Athenians took place here.

The Agora was founded in 600 BC. It first developed as a public area and a century later demarcated by boundary stones. It got its current rectangular shape in the 2nd century BC. The assembly and market place was severely affected over time by Persian invasions, the Romans and the Herulians. After the invasion of the Slavs in 580 AD, the agora was destroyed and gradually abandoned.

During the Byzantine era up to 1834, the Agora was used as a residential area. During excavations in the 19th and 20th centuries, a large part of the ancient meeting place was uncovered. Since then, the Agora has been considered one of the most important sights in Athens.   

Three Main Periods

  • Neolithic: In the late Neolithic (3000 BC) the area was already used as a place of residence and later as a cemetery.
  • Sieges: The Agora endured several sieges, during which it suffered severe damage. These include the Persian Wars (480/79 BC), the Roman invasion (89 BC) and the invasion of the Germanic tribe of the Heruli (267 AD).
  • End of Use: After the Slavs destroyed the Agora in 580 AD, it was finally abandoned.


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FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

What was the Agora of Athens?

The Athens Agora was the beating heart of ancient Athens. Here, for 2000 years, the social, political and economic life of the Athenians took place. At the same time, it was the seat of justice and the cultural and religious center.

When was the Agora of Athens built?

As a public space, the Athens Agora was first developed in 600 BC. It was extended and expanded several times. It received its present rectangular shape in the 2nd century BC.

What are the opening hours of the Agora of Athens?

The opening hours of the Agora of Athens vary depending on the summer and winter seasons. In the winter (November-March) the Agora is open daily from 8 am to 5 pm. In the summer months (April-October) daily from 8 am to 8 pm. The current opening hours can be found on the Athens Agora website

How much is the entrance fee for the Agora of Athens?

You can find the current entrance fee for the Agora of Athens here.

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