Athens metro is a model metro that has been appreciated, praised and has been a source of
inspiration for the biggest experts in the field. It's real jewel that shouldn't be missed, as it
is increasingly seen as one of the most beautiful and original metros in the world!!!
"A real ancient and contemporary art museum under the city", "a drawing room", "an ultra modern environment",
"a unique metro in the world", "it provides impeccable service", are some of the comments made by
visitors and foreign journalists who have had used it.
Moreover, from research carried out by IOBE in collaboration with the EOQ (European Organism for Quality),
it emerges that the Athenian metro is the first in Europe for the quality of its service
(EPSI - European Performance Satisfaction Index) and for customer satisfaction (CSI - Customer Satisfaction Index).
On the contrary to what we are used to seeing in metros in the rest of the world,
in the Attik˛ Metr˛ stations (this the name of the Athens metro and of the company that
is in charge of the two new lines), there's no graffiti, dirty tiles or beggars, but spotless marble
walls and granite floors. In its clean and light environment are displayed some of the archaeological
finds discovered when excavating for the metro.
In its stations you can also view the work of Greek contemporary artists, like Giorgos Zoggolopoulos,
Yannis Moralis e Chryssa. It's a true museum where ancient art and modern art coexist in a fascinating environment.
The metro is therefore like an art salon under the city turning the journey around Athens into a unique
and pleasurable experience, like nowhere else in the world.
It is protected daily by modern security systems, rescue squads, policemen, qualified staff and smoking, begging
and selling are strictly forbidden.
The Athens metro has been built 40 metres below the ground to avoid ruining the many archaeological
layers of the city. It is therefore a perfect model of technology, efficiency and cleanliness as well as a
real museum to count among the dozens in the city.
Among the loveliest stations we mustn't forget Sidagma with many archaeological finds and Monastiraki housed
in a splendid neoclassical building of the end of the 1800s. In the latter there's a very interesting room
where protected by a glass partition, you can see the bed of the river Eridanos as if was more than
2500 years ago.
All stations are equipped with glass lifts that take you metro making it much more convenient for elderly and disabled people
to reach the level of the trains.
The Athens metro is made up of 3 lines. The old line number 1 is controlled by ISAP and crosses the city
from south to north, from the Pireaus port to the elegant suburb of KifisiÓ. It has 25 stations and is 26.5 km
long. The two new lines 2 and 3 are controlled by Attik˛ Metr˛ and they cross the historical centre northbound
to the international Airport and southbound to the area of Iliupoli. There are 29 stations and 45.3 km of tracks.
Line 1 (green) dates back to the end of the 1800s, making it the oldest in the city and one of the
first metro lines to be built in Europe. It was originally perceived as the first suburban line
and so nearly all runs above the ground. In 1930 it was converted and the three central stations where
added metro (Monastiraki, Omonia, Attiki). Recently the line has been totally renovated and it appears
very original with multicoloured stations all different from each other, embellished with contemporary works
of art. There are also some old but perfectly restored stations.
They were the first stations to be built and date back to the XIX century. (see Piraeus, Omonoia and Monastiraki stations)
The new 2-3 lines, controlled by the Attik˛ Metr˛ are surely the best known and impress
with their minimalist and ultramodern style. Their airy, white, orderly rooms are decorated
with displays of archaeological artefacts and contemporary art. The lines are the ideal way to get to the
main sites of the historical centre of Athens.