In Athens, as in all of Greece, traffic is on the right.
The maximum speeds shown can of course be reduced or increased by means of traffic signs. Regardless of the information given here, it is advisable to obtain detailed information from the ADAC, the AvD or the traffic clubs in the country concerned.
According to getzipcodes, driving in Athens is hardly recommended. The traffic density is very high and the driving behavior from reckless to chaotic. Mopeds and motorcycles are better suited to city driving, but they are also more dangerous. Despite the chaos in Athens’ road traffic, accidents rarely occur and usually do not result in major damage, which is due to the low speed that is driven and the impressive attentiveness of the Athens road users.
In Athens there is a speed limit of 50 km / h for motorists and motorcyclists. The speed limit is 80 km / h on Greek country roads, 100 km / h on expressways and 120 km / h on motorways.
Alcohol per mille limit
In Athens there is an alcohol per mille limit of 0.5 for all motorists and motorcyclists.
Rental vehicles If you are an EU citizen and want to rent a car in Athens, you can do so without any problems. Only the respective national driver’s license is required for this. The license plate serves as proof of insurance, although it is advisable to take the international green insurance card with you.
You can also rent scooters everywhere. However, the prices of the individual providers should be carefully compared beforehand. Scooters with large wheels are clearly to be preferred: They have greater driving stability.
The following special regulations must be observed
- Children under 10 years of age are only allowed to ride in the back seat
- It is compulsory to wear seat belts
- Filled petrol cans must not be carried in the vehicle
There are many travel options to get to Athens. Traveling by plane is often preferred, but Greece can also be reached by trains, cars and ships.
Athens International Airport opened in 2001 and is located about 30 kilometers from the city center. It is a major transport hub for the Aegean, the Balkans and the eastern Mediterranean region. Direct flights to North America are offered by Delta and Olympic Airways. There are good connections to the most important European cities via the European airlines.
The airport is well connected to Athens by the metro system – metro every 30 minutes – the suburban train, taxis and bus routes X92, X93, X94, X95, X96 and X97.
The Athens Public Transport Pocket Map can be obtained free of charge at the airport. It is a great help for orientation in the center of Athens and in the port area of Piraeus.
The Greek trains (OSE) connect Athens to other Greek cities, although one should not be surprised to find no such wide range and variety in rail transport as in other European countries. The railway network in Greece is quite poor and consists of only two train lines. One of them goes south to the Peloponnese and the other goes north (via Thessaloniki, Alexandroupolis) or further east (via the Greek-Turkish border towns Pythion and Üzünköprü) to Istanbul.
Two types of train are differentiated in Greece: the normal trains, which are very slow and equipped with beds, and the so-called “Intercity” trains. The latter are more expensive, but also much faster.
There are two train stations in the center of Athens: the Peloponnisos train station, which is on the Piraeus / Athens line to the Peloponnese, and the Larissa train station, which serves northern connections. Both stations are close to each other.
Further information on train traffic in Greece and Athens is available at www.ose.gr.
Athens and all of Greece can also be reached very cheaply with the so-called Interrail ticket. Greece belongs to one driving zone together with Italy and Turkey. The price also includes deck spaces on the ferries between Italy (Bari, Ancona) and Greece (Patras). Information can be obtained from Deutsche Bahn.
The modern Athens underground network – established on the occasion of the Olympic Games (2004) – is integrated into the city’s S-Bahn network and is considered to be the most modern in Europe. The metro has since become the most popular and best means of transport to get around the city or to all of Athens’ main attractions. However, many of the metro stations, some of which are made of white marble and function as small museums, are particularly impressive. Historical material found during the underground excavation was unceremoniously exhibited in the underground stations. A visit to the metro station “Syntagma” is most worthwhile. In addition, the stations are accompanied by pleasant music.
There are currently three underground lines
- Line M1: Piraeus – Kifissia (05:00 a.m. – 00:30 a.m., every 3 to 10 minutes)
- Line M2: Agios Antonios – Agios Dimitrios (05:30 a.m. – 00:00 a.m., every 3 to 10 minutes)
- Line M3: Monastiraki – Doukissis Plakentias – International Airport (05:30 a.m. – 00:00 a.m., every 3 to 10 minutes)
After validating your ticket, you can use it for 1.5 hours. However, you can only drive in one direction. However, changing is permitted.
Further information is available at www.ametro.gr.
The tram, while slower than the metro, has the advantage of allowing you to see more of Athens. Syntagma Square in particular offers transfer options from the tram to the subway. The trams run to the west, drive over the “Athens Recreation Area” south of Piraeus and finally stop in Glyfada.
The following lines are currently available:
- Line 1 (T1): Syntagma – Palaio Faliro – Neo Faliro
- Line 2 (T2): Syntagma – Palaio Faliro – Glyfada
- Line 3 (T3): Neo Faliro – Palaio Faliro – Glyfada
Diesel, natural gas and electric buses run regularly and at short intervals through the city. They stop at several stops and thus ensure a good and convenient connection in the city area. They are served by the “Athens Urban Transport Organization”. There are also several night bus routes (X14, 11, 040, and 500) and various airport buses (X92, X93, X95, X96 and X97)
Information on the extensive and sometimes complicated Athens bus system can be found at www.oasa.gr.
Regional buses (KTEL) connect Athens with other cities in Greece.
There is also a tourist bus that goes to the main attractions of the city. This is the “Athens Sightseeing Public Bus Line”, which has the number 400 (Tel. 185). Information is available at www.oasa.gr.
Taxis are plentiful in Athens. The prices are relatively cheap, with a guideline that a 10-minute drive should not exceed around 5 euros. You should refrain from negotiating prices with the driver unless you know the distances and prices. Otherwise you should insist on the taximeter. Attempts to take more money from tourists are common. If the bill seems excessive, it is advisable to get a bill, note down the driver number and contact the tourist police (Tel: 171).
Taxi drivers don’t always speak English. You should therefore always have the name of the destination in Greek on a piece of paper with you. A tip is not expected, but is always gladly taken.
Athens is surrounded by easily accessible mountains. In the north from the Parnes and the Pentelikon, in the southeast from the Hymettos and from the Aegaleo in the west. The largest of these mountains is the Parnes, which reaches a height of 1,453 meters and functions as a national park. The four mountains are very popular destinations for mountain biking enthusiasts.