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Acropolis: Measures to limit daily visits on the way

With several weeks delay and at the peak of the tourist seas, Greece’s Culture Ministry finally decided to apply some measures and change the number of daily visitors to the Acropolis of Athens. “The monument cannot withstand more than 20,000 visitors per day,” Minister Lina Mendoni said.

Mendoni had a meeting with institutional bodies and tourism professionals seeking the so-called “golden ratio” to decrease the daily visits to the Holy Rock of the Acropolis, without at the same time badly “surprise” the tourists at the peak of the tourist season.

At the meeting, a study was reportedly presented which concludes that “the comprehensive protection of the Acropolis does not allow the daily limit of visitors to exceed 20,000,”

For this reason, a new system of tourist visits to the Acropolis will be implemented on a pilot basis, however, its start time remains to be yet defined.

The pilot program could be implemented either on August 1 or September 1.

After the pilot program evaluation, the system of “visiting zones” and number of visitors will be fully operational from April 1, 2024.

According to the data presented in the study, the ever-increasing traffic to the Acropolis recorded a daily record of 23,000 visitors.

21,000 visitors per day is mentioned as an ideal number, in order to implement a policy of a protective nature at the monument.

Four traffic hour zones are to be created:

-from 8.00 a.m. to 12.00 p.m., with the possibility of visiting a total of 8,000 people. It should be noted that approximately 50% of visitors today choose the morning hours, 8.00-12.00.

More zones will be created 12:00 noon to 08:00 p.m. with 13,000 visitors.

In the proposed number of visitors there are quotas in categories, such as group or individual visits, while there are no zones for people with disabilities who can visit the monument according to their own planning.

Μinister Mendoni dismissed the multiple complains about the long queues of tourists and some fainting during the heat wave last week and blamed “certain circles of interest.”

“If the Acropolis did not exist, there would be no queues, there would be no great tourist movement,” she cynically stressed adding that “monuments have a decisive contribution of our cultural stock to the competitiveness of the tourist product and to the national economy.”

All relevant bodies are expected to have come to an agreement on the new changes by July 21, 2023

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  1. But the queue experience is part of the tourist’s overall experience to the Acropolis. After I read this post, I looked on TripAdvisor and every post I read from July mentioned the long queues, the heat, the confusion at the site (mainly related to skip line tickets that don’t really work) and the slippery walk.

    I’ve experienced worse queues abroad, like at the Louvre in Paris. But thankfully, it wasn’t ungodly hot or slippery.

    • keeptalkinggreece

      paraphrasing the cultminister: If the Acropolis was in Paris, we wouldn’t have queue complaints in the heat.

      • But the Acropolis is not in Paris; it is in a very hot & slippery place. So they have a different version of the long queue problem. Paris doesn’t have to deal with the heat (mostly). Athens does.