The Athens combination ticket is one of the best attraction passes that you can buy for your trip to Athens. The ticket includes admission to the ancient Acropolis with its magnificent Parthenon, the ancient Agora, the Temple of Olympian Zeus, and several other historic and archaeological sites.
It works out cheaper to buy an Athens archeological site combo ticket than it does to purchase your admission tickets separately. You only have to visit two or three ancient ruins to get your money’s worth out of the ticket so it really is a no-brainer.
The ancient sites that are included with your Athens combination ticket are places that you should prioritise in your Athens itinerary anyway. They are not out-of-the-way or places that are just “okay” to see.
They are highlights of any visit to the Greek capital. This guide to the Athens combination ticket has been written by a British Travel Writer based in Athens (me!)
I have been living in Athens for five years and know the city like the back of my hand. In this post, we will look at what the Athens combination ticket covers, where to buy it, the money you save, and other useful pointers to know when planning a trip to Greece.
What is included in an Athens Combination Ticket
An Athens combination ticket costs €30 for adults and €15 for students plus an administrative fee for booking. It is a good idea to purchase it online in advance of your trip so that you know you have everything organised and you don’t need to spend eons queuing outside the various Athens attractions.
Children under 18 can enter the sites for free. However, both children under 18 and students need to be prepared to show photo ID if requested so that they can prove their age and eligibility.
The ticket is valid for five days from the date of purchase, giving visitors plenty of time to explore all the attractions included.
The ticket includes admission to the below attractions.
- The Acropolis, the Parthenon, and the Acropolis Museum
- Ancient Agora of Athens and the Agora Museum
- The Temple of Olympian Zeus (Olympieion)
- Roman Agora
- Hadrian’s Library
- Aristotle’s Lyceum
- Kerameikos archeological site
The Ancient Acropolis and its Museum
The Ancient Acropolis and its magnificent Parthenon need no introduction. This incredible ancient site, dedicated to the worship of the Goddess Athena is the entire raison d’etre that a lot of people decide to visit Athens in the first place.
The Parthenon, perched on top of a craggy bluff on Acropolis Hill is visible from virtually all corners of the city. It dates back to 460-430BC and was built using fine Pentelic marble sourced from nearby Mount Pentelikon.
Come just before sunset for some of the best views over downtown Athens. Although the Parthenon is the piece de resistance, the Acropolis of Athens is made up of numerous different ancient theatres, shrines, and temples.
Look out for the Erechtheion – the shrine where Gods Poseidon and Athena are said to have battled to decide who would become the patron God of Athens. And not forgetting the theatre of Dionysus, a 4th-century theatre named after the Greek God of Drama.
You should dedicate at least 3-4 hours to exploring the Acropolis complex.
When you’re done, cross the cobbled pedestrian boulevard of Dionysiou Areopagitou and visit the “New” Acropolis museum. The exhibits here contain artefacts recovered from the region (although sadly and controversially the Parthenon marbles are currently in the British Museum in London).
Entrance to the museum is included in both the Athens combination pass and the standard Acropolis ticket. There is a great coffee shop on the top floor where you can sip a Greek coffee (“Ellinikos kafes”) or a freddo cappuccino before heading to the next stop on your day in Athens.
The Ancient Agora of Athens and the Agora Museum
The Ancient Agora of Athens was the civic and commercial centre of the city during the Classical Age of Greece. Philosophers like Socrates and Plato were among those that strolled through the plateias (squares) and marketplaces.
Wander along the sunbleached remnants of the Panathenaic Way – the main road in Athens in ancient Greece that ran from the city gates up to the Acropolis. Immediately on your right when you enter the complex is the impressive Temple of Hephaestus.
This Doric temple is the best preserved of its kind in Greece today. It was built in honor of Hephaestus, the Greek God of Fire, and Athena Ergane, the Goddess of pottery and crafts.
When this area was excavated, a small shrine to the goddess Athena Ergane, as well as some buried pottery and ceramics were recovered close to the temple. The Temple of Hephaestus was built around the same time as the Parthenon and you will note some similarities between the designs of the two sites.
On your left after entering the Agora complex is the colonnaded Stoa of Attalos. This grand building, largely rebuilt in the 1950s, was a gift to the Athenians from King Attalos II of Pergamon in 159 BC, who loved the city deeply.
It was used as a marketplace and was home to dozens of bustling stalls selling everything from fresh fruit and veg to clothing and weapons. Today, the Stoa of Attalos houses the Agora Museum.
The museum entrance is included in both the Athens archeological site combo ticket and the general Agora site admission. It tells the history of the site in chronological order and showcases some artifacts recovered from the area.
The Temple of Olympian Zeus (Olympieion)
The Temple of Olympian Zeus (Olympieion) is an ancient Greek temple that sits behind Hadrian’s Arch and is accessible from Leof. Vasilissis Olgas Boulevard, close to the National Gardens and Syntagma Square. It dates back to 520 BC and was built in honour of Zeus, the king of the Ancient Greek Gods.
Once upon a time, more than 104 spectacular Corinthian columns stood here. Each one was decorated with intricate designs and stood proud at a height of 15m.
Today, only 21 of the original columns remain but it is easy to imagine how impressive the temple once looked in its heyday, decorated with shimmering gold statues of Zeus. At one point (131CE), this temple was the largest in the ancient world.
One fascinating thing to note about this temple is that it took 638 years to build in total. Construction was started and then abandoned at various times due to wars, funding issues, and political issues. It was the Roman Emperor Hadrian that finally completed it in 131 CE.
Check out Hadrian’s Gate nearby when you exit the site. It is literally next door.
It’s free to view from the road and was a gift to the Roman Emperor Hadrian from the people of Athens.
The Roman Agora was Athens’ main marketplace during the Roman era. It was founded by none other than the Emperors Julius Ceasar and Caesar Augustus themselves in the first century BC.
The site, also sometimes referred to as the Roman Forum sits on Polignotou 3 close to the historic Turkish district of Plaka and the modern marketplace at Monastiraki Square. There were once dozens of shops here that sold all manner of fruits, vegetables, meats, and other grocery and household items to the public.
One of the most notable structures to look out for here is the Tower of the Winds. This incredibly well-preserved, obscure octagonal monument functioned as a clock, a weather vane, a compass, and a sundial.
Hadrian’s Library is a sprawling 10,000-square-meter cultural complex that was built on the orders of the Roman Emperor Hadrian in 132AD. Hadrian (76AD – 138 AD) is one of only a handful of Roman Emperors that were considered “good”.
He was affectionately known as “Little Greek” because of his love of Athens and all things Greek and was responsible for building several notable buildings in the Greek capital. The three-story library that he built housed tens of thousands of important books, historic archives, and manuscripts.
Far more than “just” a library, it also featured teaching rooms, reading rooms, and rooms where people could listen to music. There were also porticoes, gardens, and a pond so that scholars and philosophers could walk, reflect, and spend time with their thoughts.
Aristotle’s Lyceum was a school that was founded by the famous Greek Philosopher Aristotle in 334 BC. Here, Aristotle would teach his students about politics, philosophy, ethics, physics, and all manner of other subjects.
The Lyceum was more than just a place to go to class. There were many peripatus (covered walkways) around the complex where students would walk, talk, and reflect.
The complex’s grand library contained books and journals on virtually every subject imaginable. Most of Aristotle’s most famous surviving works (the Organon, the Poetics, and the Nicomachean ethics) were written here.
Sadly, the Romans destroyed the Lyceym in 86 BC and the site was not rediscovered until 1996. What remains is not well preserved but it is worth stopping by nonetheless.
The school ruins sit on the opposite side of Leof. Vasileos Konstantinou to the Panathenaic Stadium, and next to the Hellenic Children’s Museum.
Kerameikos archeological site
The Kerameikos archeological site is a hidden gem waiting to be discovered in the vibrant Gazi district of downtown Athens. This 9th-century cemetery was used as a burial site until the Roman era and is notable for its ornate and elaborate tombs and crypts.
Several important figures in Ancient Greek history have been laid to rest here. This includes Pericles, the man who led Athens to greatness during the Golden Age, the naval commander Themistocles and the astronomer and mathemetician Hipparchus.
The onsite Archaeological Museum of Kerameikos is also worth visiting while in the area. It houses artifacts recovered from the cemetery and the wider region by the German Archaeological Institute.
How much money do you save with an Athens Combination Ticket?
There are a lot of attraction passes available in a loss of cities around the globe. Some can be seen as a sales gimmick and really do not save you any money.
The Athens combination ticket is not one of those. Considering the fact that a standard entrance ticket to the Acropolis costs at least 20 euros for an adult, you only need to visit the Acropolis and the Ancient Agora to get your money’s worth with the combo ticket.
Visit anything else (and you likely will during your Greece itinerary) and you are saving money. For your reference, the standard prices (in the Athens winter season and the summer season) for each of the various archeological sites included in the pass are summarised below.
|Attraction||Summer entrance fee||Winter entrance fee|
|Temple of Olympian Zeus||€6||€6|
|The Ancient Agora||€10||€5|
|The Athens Acropolis||€20||€10|
Tours of Athens historical sites
The Athens archeological sites combo ticket includes just the admission to the various sites. At each historical site, you will find plenty of information plaques in Greek, English, and several other languages that help provide background into the various buildings, structures, and sculptures you see.
But if you want to get a more in-depth look at the history, you might want to consider doing an Athens walking tour that enables you to explore the sites with a local guide. Many local tour companies sell the Athens combined ticket online along with skip-the-line entrance and the services of a multilingual guide.
Not only do you get a deeper understanding of the places you visit, but you also have an Athens expert on hand to ask for recommendations on the best restaurants in town, where to shop for souvenirs, where to go for drinks, etc.
A selection of reputable options is detailed below for your consideration.
Recommended tours in Athens
- Athens Acropolis, Parthenon, and Acropolis Museum guided tour
- Acropolis & top attractions ticket with audio guide
- Athens Acropolis guided tour with entry ticket
- Athens street food tasting tour
- Full-day private sightseeing tour of Athens
FAQs about the Athens Combination Ticket
Do you have any further questions or queries about purchasing an Athens combination ticket? The answers to some frequently asked questions on the topic are detailed below.
Hopefully, you’ll find the information that you are looking for there. If not, please do not hesitate to reach out to me
How to buy a combo ticket for Athens?
It is very easy to buy a combo ticket for Athens online in advance of your trip. You can do so via the link here.
You can also purchase it in person at the ticket office of any of the seven participating sites.
The ticket can be purchased at the ticket offices of the Acropolis, Ancient Agora, Roman Agora, Hadrian’s Library, Olympieion, Kerameikos, and Lykeion.
Is the Acropolis Museum included in the combo ticket?
Yes. Entrance to the Acropolis Museum is included in both the combined ticket for Athens and the standard admission ticket for the Acropolis.
Is the Temple of Zeus included in the Acropolis ticket?
The Temple of Olympian Zeus is a separate archeological site to the Acropolis and the Parthenon. Entrance is not included in the Acropolis admission ticket but it is included in the Athens archeological sites combo ticket.
Final thoughts on the Athens combination ticket
Do you have any additional questions about visiting Athens and its ancient Greek ruins for the first time? Click here to purchase your combination ticket today.
Do note that although having a combo ticket helps you skip the ticket line to purchase tickets, you may still have to queue to enter certain sites when it’s busy. Since the Acropolis and the Ancient Agora are two of the most popular attractions, the best time to visit them is early in the morning when you can avoid the long lines of tourists.
This is particularly important during the chaotic summer months. The combo ticket is single entry, meaning that you can only visit each historical site once.
You will be given a single ticket for all of the attractions so be careful to hang on to it!
You might also find it useful to join my Greece Facebook community “All Greek to Me” which provides support and advice for expats and travellers in Greece. Safe travels and enjoy Greece!
Geia sou! Melissa xo