Athens' open-air cinemas

Athens' open-air cinemas, Athens, Greece (D)

Watching a movie in an outdoor cinema in Athens is an experience. The lights go down, beers are chilled, the familiar smell of jasmine invades the atmosphere and the starry sky is your companion for the night. Your favorite film is on and for a moment you forget you are in a foreign country as films in Greece are subtitled. This application introduces you to the best open air cinemas in Athens.
How it works: The full article is featured in the app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" on Apple App Store and Google Play Store. Download the app to your mobile device to read the article offline and create a self-guided walking tour to visit the sights featured in this article. The app's navigation functions guide you from one sight to the next. The app works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.

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Sights Featured in This Article

Guide Name: Athens' open-air cinemas
Guide Location: Greece » Athens
Guide Type: Self-guided Walking Tour (Article (D))
# of Attractions: 15
Author: Natali Lekka
Author Bio: Natali Lekka is a freelance translator, travel writer and a member of the Association of European Journalists, currently living in Athens, Greece. She is mad about foreign languages and distant cultures and cannot wait to be on that plane again.
Sight(s) Featured in This Guide:
  • Cine Thission
  • Cine Paris
  • Cine Aigli
  • Cine Psirri
  • Cine Athinaia
  • Cine Dexameni
  • Cine Riviera
  • Cine Vox
  • Cine Zefyros
  • Cine Oasis
  • Cine Palas
  • Cine Amyntas
  • Cine Anesis
  • Cine Lais
  • Cine Ekran
Cine Thission

1) Cine Thission

Built in 1935, Cinema Thission is one of the oldest open-air cinemas in Athens and it is conveniently located in one of the most picturesque neighborhoods of the city, Thissio. Reaching the cinema promises a great walk down the city’s most famous pedestrian street, Dionisiou Aeropagitou, where one can admire a large collection of architectural sites, including the new acropolis museum, as well as magnificent views of the Acropolis.

Cine Thission is ideal for classical movie lovers who are after an exciting variety of old classics – there’s nothing better than watching old Hitchcock movies under the starry sky. For those of you who can multitask, we propose you get a seat at the far back left of the cinema (looking from the entrance), so that you could enjoy your movie accompanied by a beautiful view of the night-lit Acropolis. Ask for the home-made sour cherry the owners have lovingly prepared for their customers or their fresh out of the oven cheese pie. General entrance costs 8 euros; students pay 6 euros.

Cine Thission has been voted as one of the best cinemas in the world by CNN in 2012.
Cine Paris

2) Cine Paris

Cine Paris is located in the oldest quarter of Athens, Plaka. A classic destination for tourists, Plaka doesn’t only offer a wide selection of restaurants and jewelry shops, but also one of Athens’ best open air cinemas. You will find Cine Paris on a roof garden, underneath the Acropolis, offering a spectacular view of the rock in parallel to the great choice of movies you are watching. The choice of movies shown here is not restricted to the old classics alone, as many award winning movies of the past winter often get projected. Cine Paris hosts a very interesting poster shop with a great variety of movie posters, old and new. Explore it to find your favorite poster and you will be surprised by the quality and quantity such a small shop can host. Tickets cost 8 euros; 6 euros if you are a student.
Cine Aigli

3) Cine Aigli

Lose yourself in the green oasis of Zappeion Garden. Cine Aigli is ideal for anyone looking for a fresh corner in the city away from the crowds. Given the surrounding greenery though, you may need to bring a jacket with you as it’s bound to get chilly when night falls.

Cine Aigli places special emphasis on customer service. Enjoy the latest arrivals of blockbuster movies or your favorite European films in a comfortable director’s chair. The cinema’s state-of-the-art sound system creates a super acoustic experience you will not forget easily. The bar is equipped with chilled beers and some of the most delicious souvlaki you will find in town. In the same area you will also find a bar, a café and a restaurant. Tickets cost 9 euros; 6 euros if you are a student.
Cine Psirri

4) Cine Psirri

This charming outdoor cinema is located in the center of Athens’ most artistic quarter, Psirri, next to the former gourmet restaurant, Kouzina. The latter has been taken over by Cine Psirri to become a most stylish and impressive open air cinema bar.

Cine Psirri, is a lover of the 7th art with exclusive European releases. Its industrial decoration, its perfect sound quality and ample green spaces promise you an experience you will not forget easily. Head to the bar for an interesting selection of beers or just for your chilled glass of sangria. If, after a strong dose of cinema, you wish to party into the small hours, there is a wide selection of clubs and bars a few meters away. If you are coming by car, there is a paid parking space next to the cinema. Tickets cost 8 euros but students and everyone above the age of 60 are entitled to a discount ticket which costs 6 euros.
Cine Athinaia

5) Cine Athinaia

Located in the heart of Kolonaki, admittedly the most elegant quarter of Athens, this friendly cinema with the fresh garden is an ideal spot for cinema lovers of classical movies and European releases. The comfortable chairs, the impeccable sound quality and the two stone fountains add a touch of style and comfort to this charming outdoor cinema. If you wish for some privacy, take the stairs to the small balcony overlooking the screen. If you feel hungry, ask for their famous brioche with turkey and gruyere cheese. Tickets cost 8 euros; 6 euros for students.
Cine Dexameni

6) Cine Dexameni

Named after Hadrian’s aqueduct, Cine Dexameni or Water Tank as it is called today has won a special place in the hearts of Athenians. Since 1991, this cinema in Kolonaki, has never failed to keep its loyal public duly entertained with its Dolby stereo acoustics, large screen and carefree atmosphere. Not surprisingly, Cine Dexameni has become one of the hottest haunts in town and is the perfect hangout place if you are looking to get some relief from the Athenian heat wave. The cinema offers a wide selection of new releases and re-releases. Head to the bar for a slice of Domino’s pizza or a mouthwatering hot-dog. The charming seating area next to the bar, for a limited number of guests, invites you to have a fresh drink or two before the film begins. There are plans to make part of the old aqueduct into a museum. Tickets cost 7.50 euros, 5 euros for students.
Cine Riviera

7) Cine Riviera

Cine Riviera, located in Exarhia, the alternative quarter of Athens, will mesmerize you with its fresh summer smells and carefree atmosphere. Come here if you are a lover of classical and European cinema. This cinema is one of the first in the city to open every year (mid-May) and one of the last to close (end of September). Two fountains underneath the projection screen create a small oasis at your feet. The venue is spacious and green making you believe the projection takes place in a garden. If you feel hungry afterwards or feel like nibbling a little something to accompany your ouzo or raki, you can visit one of the many cosy tavernas or bistros in the area. Tickets cost 8 euros; 6 euros for students.
Cine Vox

8) Cine Vox

Famous for its love for Hitchcock movies, the legendary rooftop of cine Vox is a classic hangout place for actors and artists living in Exarhia. This little cinema is frequented by locals who appreciate the history behind it. Tickets cost 8 euros; 6 euros for students.
Cine Zefyros

9) Cine Zefyros

Cine Zefyros is the pride of Petralona, Athens’ student quarter, a great food and drink hot spot for locals, which remains unknown to tourists.

This outdoor cinema has been projecting cinephile movies for more than 25 years and is admittedly the open air art-house of Athens. The quality of movie selections attracts intellectuals, artists, film critics and celebrities who like to call Zefyros their “summer home”. Fans of the cinema trust the owners’ choice blindly and do not hesitate to show up without having checked the program for the day’s projection. The two red velvet curtains at the entrance reek of old cinema, mentally preparing you for a somewhat neglected atmosphere. But Zefyros remains so, upon its fans’ requests, who wouldn’t want to see the cinema refurbished because they appreciate the memories of old Athens it emanates. Neoclassical buildings, tavernas and bars are all at your feet, and you will have a great time exploring secret corners of the city. Tickets cost 8 euros.
Cine Oasis

10) Cine Oasis

Amidst faceless blocks of flats, this little cinema is what it says it is; a small oasis. Follow the narrow mosaic alley to the small garden and that’s where you will find Cine Oasis, a family business operating in central Pangrati, since 1976. Well-known Greek intellectuals and artists are among its faithful visitors.

Cine Oasis has great history -it used to be a shadow theatre – and stands out for its eccentric art-deco atmosphere. The walls are covered in photos and posters, indicative of the classical films it projects here, while the small fairytale-like garden is filled with flower pots, ceramics, and statues. Tickets cost 7 euros; 5 euros for students.
Cine Palas

11) Cine Palas

Cine Palas opened up in 1925 and is a cinema with great history. It ticks all the boxes in the old aesthetics list, with its retro art-deco atmosphere and red velvet arm chairs. Its outdoor cinema is on the top floor and as many will tell you, it looks a bit like the deck of a ship. There is a downward inclination on the floor which allows for a better view of the screen. The cinema plays good quality movies regardless of their origin (Hollywood vs European) and is a favorite hangout place for people of all ages. At the bar you can find ice-creams, wine, beers and all sorts of spirits.

Locals are proud of their landmark, as cine Palas oozes nostalgic memories of an Athens long gone. Tickets cost 8 euros, but there is also a 10-euro ticket which allows you to watch 3 movies for an unlimited period of time.
Cine Amyntas

12) Cine Amyntas

Rosebushes and jasmine are the usual frequenters of open air cinemas and cine Amyntas is a fervent keeper of this tradition. Here you can enjoy a great variety of films with very good acoustics conditions on a 40 x 18 ft. (12.2 X 5.5m) screen. Interesting details: the slightly downward inclination of the floor, the cinema’s roofed seats which protect up to 80 viewers from the eventuality of a late summer shower and its disability access. Tickets cost 8 euros; 6 euros for students.

There is a square one street down from where the cinema is located with an interesting selection of bars and souvlaki joints.
Cine Anesis

13) Cine Anesis

This open air cinema, already on its 4th year, is located on a large terrace over the famous theater Anesis, a listed building from the 50’s. The name ‘Anesis’ means comfort in Greek and it looks like this cinema strives to keep true to its name. Two-seated sofas, reclining chairs and numerous tables on a wooden deck create a beach feeling, while the state-of-the-art screen and impeccable sound complete the carefree atmosphere. This cinema has it all; blockbusters go hand-in-hand with classic re-releases. Head to the bar for some chilled cocktails and a hot slice of pizza. Tickets cost 8 euros; 6 euros from Monday to Thursday.
Cine Lais

14) Cine Lais

Cinema Lais, on the terrace of the Greek Film Archive Foundation, is a fervent supporter of European films and classical movies from the golden era of cinema. The cinema, which opened last year (2010) offers a spacious screen with a Dolby surround acoustic system. Cine Lais is in perfect accordance with the surrounding industrial design of the Gazi area and is therefore the most modern looking open air cinema, Athens has to offer. Head to the bar for a large selection of beers, including Belgian, Czech and Irish brands, and a freshly prepared sandwich. Access to this terrace is possible for everyone as there is the option of taking the elevator. If you have some time in the city, try to catch some of the film tributes it organizes every summer in collaboration with foreign embassies. Cine Lais is only a few steps away from the funky bars and restaurants of Gazi, so don’t miss the opportunity to feel the night pulse of the city. Tickets cost 7 euros; 4 euros for students.
Cine Ekran

15) Cine Ekran

Cine Ekran, today a listed building, opened up in 1969. It is a fervent supporter of European films and classical re-releases. Its selection of rare films attracts visitors from all over Athens. A giant fig tree on one hand and a mulberry on the other frame the impressively large screen and will keep you company throughout the film. The bar is equipped with Domino’s pizza but if that is not enough for you, Cine Ekran is located close to one of the busiest avenues in Athens, Alexandra Avenue. An easy walk down Alexandra Avenue will take you to Pedio tou Areos, one of the largest parks in Athens. Tickets cost 7.5 euros; 6 euros if you are a student or over 65 years old. You can also apply for an Odeon card which will allow you to watch films for 5 euros.

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