There may be an official smoking ban, yet non-smoking bars in Athens are hard to find. Here are the exceptions.
Coffee to Drinks: Non-Smoking Nightlife in Athens
Athens has a great café culture, an easy one to ease into especially in the warmer months. You can just sit outside, enjoy the view and your company and, of course, a good Greek coffee. During the colder months, it is not so fun for non-smoking folks. That’s why I listed the top cafes to relax without the fear of getting smoke blown in your face. It turned out to be one of my most visited posts with some strong comments about the topic! You can check out the “controversial” post and comment on it here: Scenic and Smoke Free Cafes in Athens
Since then, I am happy to be able to write another non-smoking post centered on non-smoking bars in Athens. This is especially useful as the weather gets cooler.
Although there is an official smoking ban, it’s a cultural thing to smoke. So, it is overlooked in indoor settings including cafes and bars. This can be a shock for visitors coming from certain countries who are used to a smoke-free indoor environment.
Living here, I must say I have become used to the smoke. I have come to accept that many Greeks like to smoke anywhere they want. They can, even with the laws that have been passed. It is up to proprietors to follow the non-smoking ban. A handful of nightlife spots have followed it.
Here’s the top non-smoking bars in Athens to enjoy your nightlife experience here among locals…
Non-Smoking Bars in Athens
By the Glass
I remember meeting friends at this wine bar and was instantly and pleasantly surprised that the air was clear!
By the Glass took over an 19th century mansion near the National Gardens. Its title gives away its specialization — serving wines by the glass. There’s an extensive list of wines that are poured in 25 ml, 75 ml and 150 ml by-the-glass servings. Sommeliers here also serve vintage wines utilizing the Coravin (a machine that extracts wine without disrupting the cork). I’d say the crowd is more mature, quiet and there’s a leafy outdoor alley dining space too.
Souri 2, Athens, 105 57; www.bytheglass.gr
Heteroclito (First Floor)
It’s on the tiny side complete with a retro vintage feel. The menu is a map of Greece, so you can see where your wines are coming from.
There are two levels to the venue, the first floor is non-smoking and the second floor is for smokers – so don’t bother going up there if you are avoiding smoke. There are also a few tables outside on the pedestrian way.
Petraki 30, Athens, 105 63; www.heteroclito.gr
Open since 2008, Oinoscent is the capital’s first wine bar.
More than two dozen wines are served by the glass and accompanied with complimentary nibbles. International and Greek wines make the list here. Oinoscent’s vast wine cellar features more than 800 labels.
Voulis 45-47, Athens 105 57; www.oinoscent.com
The center of Athens has been hopping with all kinds of great bars as of late and at 42 Bar, they are keeping up with the energy.
Tucked away in an alley near Kolokotroni Square, the ambient bar is famous for making their own syrups that are added to their unique drinks and cocktails.
Kolokotroni 3 Athens, 105 62
Where to Go: Non-Smoking Bars in Athens
Looking over my list, the first three are wine bars. So you know, the city has a thriving wine bar scene which is a great experience.
As you can see, things are changing in Athens. There are actually non-smoking indoor cafes and indoor bars to write about, options for those of us who love Athens and would love to experience it without the second-hand smoke. I must add that it might still be a good idea call and check ahead of time as venues may revert to old smoking policies.
Athens is filled with great cocktail bars and even more wine bars. Although I cannot guarantee there won’t be indoor smoking, check out my earlier posts.
* Oh, definitely not smoke free at bouzoukia — but a really authentic nightlife experience to be had.
More Non-Smoking Bars in Athens?
Perhaps I am missing some non-smoking bars in Athens? If so, do scroll down and comment in the comment box below to help those who are seeking a smoke-free evening in Athens. I’d love to go check out your suggestions for myself!
Plan Your Trip to Athens
How to Get to Athens
To get to the Athens, many international travelers arrive by air in Athens. You can find the best flight deals here on Vayama.
What to Do in Athens
Athens is my adopted hometown and much of this blog is about that very topic. Check out more posts from nightlife to gastronomy on this blog here. It’s a wonderful city break you should plan at least two to three days for — even up to a week — depending on how much time you have and what you’d love to do.
I highly recommend the Athens City Pass, a discount city card that gains you access to many of the capital’s most loved sights. I reviewed it earlier and featured it on this blog.
If you want to hop to the islands or spend time at one of the many Greek island destinations – you should! Also, check out my Greek islands category for the best places to stay, eat and best things to do. I only recommend places and experiences that I have tried and tested myself.
Where to Eat in Athens
Check out my post, 17 Awesome Greek Food Experiences which also lists where to find these delicious experiences in Athens.
Where to Stay in Athens
A full rundown of places I recommend coming soon. Bes sure to sign up for my bi-monthly newsletter here for more tips and insights from my travels around beautiful Greece and amazing Europe.
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