Black Sea Basin Joint Operational Programme

Black Sea - Unity and Diversity in the Roman Antiquity

Greece,  Thessaloniki, Archaeological Museum of Thessaloniki


The Archaeological Museum of Thessaloniki is the metropolitan museum of Macedonia in northern Greece. Designed by the prominent Greek architect Patroklos Karantinos, it was inaugurated in 1962 and is one of the most representative modern buildings in Greece. Its plan is austere, simple and functional, with two interior courtyards with stoas, inspired by the ancient Greek residence, which allow natural light come in and point out the exhibited antiquities. 

During the period 2002-2006, the building and its exhibitions were totally renovated. Its new permanent thematic exhibitions cover all the periods of Antiquity. At the ground floor, the Prehistory exhibition begins with the appearance of man and reaches the end of the Bronze Age. The exhibition named Towards the Birth of Cities presents the Iron Age settlements of Macedonia. 


Under the name Macedonia from the 7th century BC until Late Antiquity, the exhibition displays items pertaining to the public and private life of ancient Macedonians narrating the history of the Macedonian kingdom, from its creation in the 7th century BC to the 4th century AD, when Macedonia was a Roman province. Τhe exhibition Thessaloniki, the Metropolis of Macedonia includes historical and archaeological information about the city. The last gallery displays the architectural sculptures from an Archaic Ionic Temple, which, during the Roman rule, were transferred to the sanctuary area of Thessaloniki and adorned with statues of emperors.


The exhibition entitled The Gold of Macedon develops in the three interior galleries. It includes items of exceptional artistry from various sites, primarily from Archaic and Classical cemeteries. The exhibition Macedonia from Fragments to Pixels ( presents seven pioneer applications of “Ambient Intelligence”. In the outer courtyards of the Museum, the exhibitions Field, House, Garden, Grave and Stone narrate aspects of everyday activity in Antiquity with the help of honorary and funerary monuments, architectural elements and mosaics. 



Applications involving numerous recent digital technologies are installed among the exhibits. The restored Archaeological Museum of Thessaloniki, equipped with facilities for the disabled, climate and temperature control systems, entirely renovated storerooms and laboratories, is one of the most modern and attractive museums in Greece. Nevertheless, the modernization and renewal of a museum are never a completed process. Thus, apart from its permanent exhibitions, over the last seven years (2007-2013), the Archaeological Museum of Thessaloniki hosted more than 75 temporary exhibitions, about 5-7 educational programs annually and more than 600 cultural events, and published 24 books and leaflets in 22 languages.