Leisure time in Xanthi

Fun and entertainment for all ages

Xanthi city is built on the foot of the Rhodope mountains, on the plain that reaches the Thracian sea towards the south. With over 56,000 inhabitants and more than 4,000 students attending the Democritus University of Thrace, the city is a wonderful year-round tourist destination, which attracts both domestic and international visitors.

The city’s meeting point is the Old Clock Tower on Dimokratias Square. Around the square and thereabouts is where the city’s shopping and nightlife hotspots are. These extend a bit further to the north in the winding alleys and narrow streets of the Old Town. You will find bars, cosy tavernas and restaurants to suit your taste. The town’s nightlife breathes on Vasilissis Sofias and Idras Streets where  most of the coffee houses by day turn into bars & clubs by night.

The Progressive Association of Xanthi (known as FEX from the Greek initials) was founded in 1952 and since then it has consistently maintained a leading role in the cultural development of the region. Among its accomplishments are the creation of the Municipal Library of Xanthi, the Municipal Library of Avdira, the collection of folk art material and the establishment of the Folk and History Museum of Xanthi, the Film Club of Xanthi, the Cultural Radio, and the organising & running of many Cultural and Educational Workshops. The Association publishes an annual calendar which includes all its cultural activities, such as musical and theatrical performances, workshops and seminars. Its Film Club, one of the oldest in Greece (in continuous operation since 1971), has a varied programme in film tributes and it maintains a number of collaborations with other Film Festivals and Clubs so that audiences can learn about new film directors and trends. The Odeon Cinema is where you can watch all the new film productions in town. Theatrical performances are held throughout the year, by professional and amateur groups, and you can watch them in the Municipal Amphitheatre, in the Theatre East of Nestos, in the FEX Tobacco Warehouse, as well as in the city's Summer Amphitheatre.

A point of interest, for both locals and visitors, is the Bazaar, which takes place every Saturday in Emporiou Square, behind the Fire Department building, and covers an area more than one kilometre wide. Its history dates back to the 15th century and it is one of the largest and best-known open-air marketplaces in the Balkans. It’s a street lined with stalls so colourful and full of fragrances, maybe because they are the result of a melange of cultures. You can get almost everything, from fruits, vegetables and spices, to household items & utensils, tools, and clothes.

Avdira town is just a few kilometres away, and it has a very picturesque harbour that is bustling with life in the summer months, with pleasure boats docked next to fishing boats of various sizes.  

Porto Lagos, 26 km from Xanthi City, is a quiet fishing village, known for its harbour and fresh fish. The place is lively in the summer, while in the winter the pace of life is much slower.

As your journey comes to an end, apart from the beautiful memories you will take with you on your way back home, make sure you fill your bags with some of the delicious local products on offer: kasseri PDO cheese of Xanthi, bottled wines from the wineries of Avdira, syrupy sweets, seker pare cookies, kazan dipi and cariokes sweets, as well as delicious charcuterie.