Solunski Ano Poli
Ano Poli, an enchanting mix of cobbled streets, traditional houses and impressive monuments of the Byzantine and Ottoman eras, is Thessaloniki’s most elaborate and beautiful qarter. It represents the old part of Thessaloniki with the most beautiful panoramic view of the bay. Our recommendation for visiting this part of the city is if you are in Thessaloniki for a long time and if it is not particularly hot. It is located about 4 km from the city center and it is the only part of the city that was not affected by the great fire of 1917.
Older residents help preserve the intimate character of the neighborhood by talking across narrow streets from their balconies or lowering baskets with bread and newspaper.
It’s a pleasure enough to just wander off the trail, get lost among the pomegranate trees and winding paved streets. Although it is so densely built, this most elevated area of the city is also the greenest. When you get tired of walking, take a break and sit in one of the cafes in one of these streets, to feel the spirit of this neighborhood, see the architecture of the surrounding buildings and breathe in the character and soul of Thessaloniki.
There are several ways to visit Ano Poli. The first is of course on foot. It takes about 50 minutes uphill from the center of Thessaloniki. The old town and the old walls can be a reference point from all parts of the city, and you will certainly easily reach the old town. You can also get there by bus lines number 23 and 24, or by tourist line 50 starting from White Tower (it is a tourist bus that also visits other sights of Thessaloniki), and you can get off at the bus stops and sightseeing.
Along the high walls are several large gates to enter the old town. In the eastern part of the wall is the entrance that leads to the Trigonion Tower, which offers the most beautiful view of the city. The view is especially beautiful when the day is windy and without haze. Then you can see the Olympus very clearly from the tower. In this part of the city there is also a small square, a church, several tavernas and cafes and several souvenir shops. In our opinion, the best time to visit the old town is in the late afternoon to enjoy the sunset from the fortress or the terrace of one of the cafes. The return is much easier so you can get to the city on foot, but not before visiting the Vlatadon Monastery and the small church of Osios David from the 5th century. The church is known for its 5th-century fresco featuring Christ without a beard. The small courtyard of the church offers a beautiful view of the city, the sea and the Olympus.