Take A Look At Greece’s Ancient Second City Of Thessaloniki

Keri Jones reports from Greece’s second city of Thessaloniki, a bustling metropolis of a million people set alongside the Aegean. He visits the winery with a very special museum collection and he tours some of the city’s incredible Roman remains. Keri also visits the vast second hand goods and bric-a-brac market areas, a must for anyone who loves searching for antiques, collectables or bargains.


Take A Look At Greece’s Ancient Second City Of Thessaloniki

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Much of Thessalonki was rebuilt following a blaze in 1917 that destroyed the homes of almost a quarter of a million people. That’s why the city appears modern.

One building, the Modiano Market, took the name of its local designer.

The market is still trading but it appears dilapidated and rather unkempt.

Most of the markets are in the same area of the centre. We browsed outdoor displays of paintings of religious icons, tablecloths and luggage at knockdown prices

Fresh and dried fruit and veg make a colourful display at the Kapani Market.

There’s also a good Fish Market.

The fast food fish café is called Aegean.

A few stores in the Tosista Street Second-hand Market sell a curated selection of antiques, but most of the shop windows are piled up with random junk! Who knows what you’ll find? I spotted carpets, old typewriters and retro toys. I thought this was Thessaloniki’s most interesting attraction! The bustling nightlife area of cobbled streets and restored warehouses lies next to the port.

You can also take a free harbour cruise!

There’s a great view of Mt Olympus from the seaside suburb of Nea Kiri.

The hilltop view from the 14th century Trigonia Tower, next to one of the old city gates set within the impressive city walls.

The slightly more modern OTE television tower.

Thessaloniki’s waterfront – the wide Esplanade – is one of the city’s most famous features. It straddles the seafront for miles and it really is wide – up to 150m in places.

The White Tower is possibly the city’s most famous landmark.

There is a museum inside the tower and you can climb the steps to the top to take in the view.

The old Roman Forum occupies a site in the centre of the city.

A few streets back is the church of St Demetrios, a Christian martyr. He is revered because he was connected to a number of miracles, which reportedly saved the city.

The Rotunda is a cylindrical, 30m high roman structure with walls 6m thick. It was built in the fourth century as Emperor Galerius’ mausoleum, the place where his tomb would be on display.

Galerius’ Arch is two minutes walk from the Rotunda. Its stonework is decorated with images of the Emperor’s victory over the Persians.

Yammis Papadopoulous is famous for his Bougatsa. This pastry dish is said to have been introduced by the immigrants from what was then Constantinople – modern day Istanbul. Yammis offers three different types of filling – cheese, meat or a sweet mix of custard with cream and cinnamon.

Jugglers perform for tips at a traffic intersection outside the city centre.

The Gerovassilliou Winery is 25 km southwest of the city, on the airport side. The grounds are filled with artworks and there’s a museum dedicated to corkscrews!

There’s more information online at Thessaloniki.travel.

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