Something happens to all of us during the holiday season. Complete strangers exchange smiles, kids’ eyes light up with wonder and anticipation, and the lights, music, and festivities that spread through the city streets fill even die-hard pessimists with a warm glow. Athens is bustling with merriment these days, from Christmas bazaars to winter wonderlands. Take your pick and join the celebrations.

Technopolis Christmas Factory

Funfair rides, festive bazaars, escape rooms, elves, street food, and of course, Santa, fill the halls of four buildings set up especially for this annual Christmas spectacular for all ages.
Where: 100 Pireos Street, Gazi 118 54
When: through 6 January, 2019
Time: 10.00-22.00

City’s Angels

Look out for heavenly creatures that appear on streets all over the city, spreading Christmas joy and love. Borrow their wings and take a photo, or simply find the angel within.
Where: Various locations (Serafio, Olympia Maria Callas Theatre, Technopolis, Kypseli Market, City Hall)
When: through 7 January, 2019

Dance in Monastiraki Square

This city square transforms into a dancefloor under the Acropolis, with dance troupes stepping out some swing and rock ‘n’ roll.
Where: Monastiraki Square, Athens 105 55
When: 22 December, 2018
Time: 12.00-14.00

Christmas World at Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Centre

Ice skating, interactive light installations, a disco for kids, concerts, Christmas and New Year’s Eve celebrations — you name it, the city’s most user-friendly landmark has got it. Check out the full programme here.
Where: Stavros Niarchos Cultural Centre, 364 Syngrou Avenue, Kallithea 176 74
When: through 7 January, 2019
Time: Various times, check schedule info.

Christmas Fantasy Fun Park

This indoor Christmas extravaganza will put the whole family in the holiday spirit. There’s face painting, a fantasy circus, magic shows, carousels, trampolines, a baby park (ages 1-5) and lots more.
Where: Olympic Fencing Centre, Poseidonos Avenue, Elliniko 167 77
When: 7 December, 2018 - 6 January, 2019
Time: 10.00-22.00
Tickets: On the door or visit here.

Christmas Meet Market

A great place to pick up handmade gifts. This festive weekend craft market has over 100 stands of locally produced products, plus live music and special activities for kids in collaboration with the Children’s Museum next door. Check out the full programme here.
Where: Athens Conservatoire, 17-19 Vasileos Georgiou B Avenue, Athens 106 75
When: 15-16 December, 2018
Time: Saturday: 12.00-23.00, Sunday: 12.00-22.00

Christmas at the Athens Concert Hall

From “The Nutcracker” to “Cinderella” ballets to live streams from the New York Metropolitan Opera to the all-time favourite “The Nightmare Before Christmas”, the Athens Concert Hall has got plenty to keep the whole family happy this holiday season. Check out the programme here.
Where: Athens Concert Hall (Megaron), Vasilissis Sofias Avenue & Kokalli Street, Ilissia, 115 21
When: various dates
Time: various times

Kypseli Municipal Market

Buy your holiday gifts, join a swing dance party, check out the first Ethiopian Festival in Athens, at the recently revamped city market, while giving to good causes. All the shops are social enterprises that give back to their community.
Where: Kypseli Market, 42 Fokionos Negri Street, Kypseli 113 61
When: through 30 December, 2018
Time: Various times; the market opens at 8am daily

Photo credits to A Andreopoulos for Christmas Fantasy Park and Nikos & Pelagia Karanikola for SNFCC.