Athens Museum of Cycladic Art

The Athens Museum of Cycladic Art houses a remarkable collection of Cycladic figurines and other items and is one of the best museums in Athens.

Athens Museum of Cycladic Art
Photo by C. Messier

This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 International license.

This first-class modern museum houses the remarkable private collection of Nicholas and Dolly Goulandris. Nicholas Goulandris was a shipowner and a patron of the arts and in the 1960s he and his wife started collecting Greek antiques and art objects, and had a special interest in the unique ancient art of the Cycladic islands. The museum was founded to house the collection in 1986, with a new wing added in 1991.

Athens Museum of Cycladic Art: Highlights

The displays span many centuries of ancient Greek art – vases, glassware and other items – but the central exhibits are the beautiful artefacts from the Cycladic civilisation of 3000–2000 BC.

Cycladic Statues
Photo by Jean Housen

This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 International license.

The statues are especially memorable – the figures seem to float in their display cabinets as subtle lighting brings out their shape and texture. It will be a rare visitor who is not tempted to take home a copy from the attractive museum shop.

Photo by Donna Dailey

The actual Cycladic items only take up one of the four floors in the main building, and the rooms are quite small – just one main room on each floor. The others are given over to a collection of Bronze Age items, one from the Mycenean period and a remarkable collection of beautiful Cypriot antiquities, the largest one in Greece.

Photo by Jean Housen

This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 International license.

Athens Museum of Cycladic Art: New Wing

On the corner of Irodotou and Vasilissis Sofias is the entrance to the newer wing of the Cycladic Museum, joined to the main building by a glass-covered walkway. This wing is as interesting for the building that houses it as for its contents.

It was designed by and was the home of the German architect Ernst Ziller, the man also responsible for the Olympic Stadium, the Presidential Palace, and Heinrich Schliemann's house on Panepistimiou.

Some rooms of the museum display furniture and watercolours, giving an impression of the mansion's appearance when Ziller lived in it during the late 19th century. Other rooms contain an extension of the main Cycladic collection. There is a shop downstairs, and space upstairs for temporary exhibitions.

Cycladic Museum Shop
Photo by Jean Housen

This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 International license.

More Information

Visit the Museum of Cycladic Art website.

Where to Stay in Athens

Some other Athens pages

  • Pictures of Athens from the Greece Travel Secrets website

    Pictures of Athens

    Pictures of Athens from the Greece Travel Secrets website

  • The Athens Acropolis has the city's most iconic building, the Parthenon, along with other historic buildings and is where the Elgin Marbles were taken from.

    Athens Acropolis

    The Athens Acropolis has the city's most iconic building, the Parthenon, along with other historic buildings and is where the Elgin Marbles were taken from.

  • Greece Travel Secrets gives its choice of the best hotels in Athens from budget and moderate options through to 5-star luxury choices.

    The Best Hotels in Athens

    Greece Travel Secrets gives its choice of the best hotels in Athens from budget and moderate options through to 5-star luxury choices.

  • Amusing children in Athens is easy as there is lots to do including a children’s museum, planetarium, beaches, and easy excursions to the nearest islands.

    Amusing Children in Athens

    Amusing children in Athens is easy as there is lots to do including a children’s museum, planetarium, beaches, and easy excursions to the nearest islands.

  • Ten Fun Things to Do in Athens include eating in the Central Market, watching the sun set over the Acropolis and seeing one of the world's oldest theatres.

    Ten Fun Things to Do in Athens

    Ten Fun Things to Do in Athens include eating in the Central Market, watching the sun set over the Acropolis and seeing one of the world's oldest theatres.

  • The Athens National Historical Museum is in the former Greek Parliament building and houses an archive of historical artefacts and documents.

    Athens National Historical Museum

    The Athens National Historical Museum is in the former Greek Parliament building and houses an archive of historical artefacts and documents.

  • This walk around the Kolonaki neighbourhood of Athens starts and ends in Syntagma Square and takes you to several museums, Kolonaki Square and Mount Lykabettos.

    A Walk around Kolonáki

    This walk around the Kolonaki neighbourhood of Athens starts and ends in Syntagma Square and takes you to several museums, Kolonaki Square and Mount Lykabettos.

  • If visiting Athens it helps to know when major events and public holidays take place, as some shops and attractions may be closed, but to be there at times like Easter can make for a magical trip.

    Athens Events and Public Holidays

    If visiting Athens it helps to know when major events and public holidays take place, as some shops and attractions may be closed, but to be there at times like Easter can make for a magical trip.

  • This drive around Attica offers visitors high hills, beach resorts, small villages and classical sites like Marathon and the Temple of Poseidon at Cape Sounion.

    A Drive around Attica

    This drive around Attica offers visitors high hills, beach resorts, small villages and classical sites like Marathon and the Temple of Poseidon at Cape Sounion.

  • Around Monastiraki is the flea market, Athens cathedral, Kerameikos Cemetery, the Benaki Museum of Islamic Art and the Psirri and Gazi nightlife districts.

    Monastiraki and Around

    Around Monastiraki is the flea market, Athens cathedral, Kerameikos Cemetery, the Benaki Museum of Islamic Art and the Psirri and Gazi nightlife districts.

  • The Changing of the Guard in Athens takes place outside the Parliament building at the top of Syntagma Square and is a must-see for visitors.

    Changing of the Guard in Athens

    The Changing of the Guard in Athens takes place outside the Parliament building at the top of Syntagma Square and is a must-see for visitors.

  • The best views in Athens include views from the Acropolis and of the Acropolis from the top of some of the city’s several hills and from hotels and restaurants.

    Best Views in Athens

    The best views in Athens include views from the Acropolis and of the Acropolis from the top of some of the city’s several hills and from hotels and restaurants.

  • The beach resorts of Athens are easily reached from the city and also close are Cape Sounion with the Temple of Poseidon, ancient Marathon and Rafina's port.

    Cape Sounion and the East Coast

    The beach resorts of Athens are easily reached from the city and also close are Cape Sounion with the Temple of Poseidon, ancient Marathon and Rafina's port.

  • Athens International Airport is east of Athens city centre with its own Metro train station, buses to Athens and Piraeus, taxis and car rental offices.

    Athens International Airport

    Athens International Airport is east of Athens city centre with its own Metro train station, buses to Athens and Piraeus, taxis and car rental offices.

  • This extract of Artistic Athens in the Lonely Planet book Culture Trails takes visitors on a journey through the artistic side of Athens..

    Artistic Athens

    This extract of Artistic Athens in the Lonely Planet book Culture Trails takes visitors on a journey through the artistic side of Athens..

  • Athens walking tours and other experiences like cookery lessons, ceramics workshops, dining with a family, and street art are available from Alternative Athens

    Athens Walking Tours and Other Experiences

    Athens walking tours and other experiences like cookery lessons, ceramics workshops, dining with a family, and street art are available from Alternative Athens

  • The Athens War Museum is a fascinating look at Greek history through the lens of warfare from ancient battles to the Greek War of Independence and World War II.

    Athens War Museum

    The Athens War Museum is a fascinating look at Greek history through the lens of warfare from ancient battles to the Greek War of Independence and World War II.

  • The Greece Travel Secrets guide to the original Athens Olympic Stadium, built for the 1896 Olympic Games and open to the public for jogging and photography.

    Athens Olympic Stadium

    The Greece Travel Secrets guide to the original Athens Olympic Stadium, built for the 1896 Olympic Games and open to the public for jogging and photography.

  • Athens in the rain isn’t something you’re likely to experience but here are suggestions for things to do in the rain in Athens including museums and shopping

    Athens in the Rain

    Athens in the rain isn’t something you’re likely to experience but here are suggestions for things to do in the rain in Athens including museums and shopping

  • The best things to do in Athens, Greece, include top archaeological sites like the Acropolis and must-see attractions such as the National Archaeological Museum

    The Best Things to Do in Athens

    The best things to do in Athens, Greece, include top archaeological sites like the Acropolis and must-see attractions such as the National Archaeological Museum

  • A History of Athens from the first people to live on the Acropolis through the Golden Age of Pericles and Alexander the Great to the military junta.

    A History of Athens

    A History of Athens from the first people to live on the Acropolis through the Golden Age of Pericles and Alexander the Great to the military junta.

  • Mount Lykabettos is the highest hill in Athens and provides some of the best views of the city, with a funicular cable car the easiest way to get to the top.

    Mount Lykabettos

    Mount Lykabettos is the highest hill in Athens and provides some of the best views of the city, with a funicular cable car the easiest way to get to the top.

  • In My Athens on Greece Travel Secrets travel writer Mike Gerrard describes what he loves about Athens including the Acropolis and eating!

    My Athens: a Portrait by Travel Writer Mike Gerrard

    In My Athens on Greece Travel Secrets travel writer Mike Gerrard describes what he loves about Athens including the Acropolis and eating!

  • The Athens Agora or ancient market is a must-see site and one of the best things to do in Athens with its restored arcade building, the Stoa, and its museum.

    Athens Agora

    The Athens Agora or ancient market is a must-see site and one of the best things to do in Athens with its restored arcade building, the Stoa, and its museum.

  • Athens' Benaki Museum is one of the city’s top museums with an outstanding collection, especially of Greek and Egyptian artefacts, in a beautiful mansion.

    Athens’Benaki Museum

    Athens' Benaki Museum is one of the city’s top museums with an outstanding collection, especially of Greek and Egyptian artefacts, in a beautiful mansion.

Enjoy this page? Please pay it forward. Here's how...

Would you prefer to share this page with others by linking to it?

  1. Click on the HTML link code below.
  2. Copy and paste it, adding a note of your own, into your blog, a Web page, forums, a blog comment, your Facebook account, or anywhere that someone would find this page valuable.

Latest Posts

  1. Spetses: The Ultimate Autumn Guide

    Timeless hangouts, useful addresses and cool tips for an unforgettable weekend on the Saronic island of Spetses, just two hours by ferry from Athens.

    Read More

  2. Recipe: Soumada, the Drink of Happiness

    Traditionally served at happy occasions, this sweet almond drink scented with orange flower water is easy to make, and a wonderful treat for guests.

    Read More

  3. Samothraki: Another Greece, Forgotten by Time

    With its rugged, untamed beauty and rich history, Samothraki in the northern Aegean doesn't fit into any of the familiar molds.

    Read More

  4. 8 Excellent Athens Restaurants for Sharing Food

    These restaurants in the heart of Athens celebrate the quintessentially Greek tradition of bringing people together to share plate-loads of delicious food.

    Read More

  5. The Best Hotels in Athens

    Greece Travel Secrets gives its choice of the best hotels in Athens from budget and moderate options through to 5-star luxury choices.

    Read More

  6. Athens listed as a Top 10 most beautiful city for the second time

    Greece has not stopped breaking one record after another in recent years - from tourism to important economic indicators that testify to the enormous dynamics that the country has developed in recent…

    Read More

  7. Jet2 Adds New Routes to Greece, Increases Seat Capacity to 1.3 Million

    UK airline and tour operator to Greece Jet2 on Tuesday announced that it was expanding its 2023 program for the country even further with the addition of new routes, increase of seat capacity and seas…

    Read More

  8. Ultra-runners to Set Off for the 40th Spartathlon from the Acropolis on Friday

    Nearly 400 super athletes from across the globe will set off from the foot of the Acropolis in Athens on Friday, September 30, morning to run 246km (153 miles) to the Peloponnesian town of Sparta for…

    Read More

  9. ‘Athens Full of Tourists’ as Greece Extends Tourism Season

    International travelers are still visiting Greece in the shoulder season which validates the Tourism Ministry’s efforts to extend the season and keep visitors coming into the fall and winter, said Tou…

    Read More

  10. A Walk around Kolonáki

    This walk around the Kolonaki neighbourhood of Athens starts and ends in Syntagma Square and takes you to several museums, Kolonaki Square and Mount Lykabettos.

    Read More