View of Athens Parthenon at Sunset, typically the no. 1 attraction for cruisers visiting Athens

Getting to Athens Piraeus Cruise Port: DIY Transfer Guide from Airport or City

Embarking on a cruise from Athens? Getting to the bustling port of Piraeus is surprisingly easy, despite the cruise port being almost an hour away. In this DIY transfer guide, I’ll help you navigate through the three cruise terminals at Athens Piraeus port and how to get to each one easily by metro, by bus or pre-booked transfers.

Whether you’re arriving directly from the airport or enjoying a pre-cruise stay in Athens itself, here’s a stress-free guide to reaching the Athens cruise terminals for a smooth embarkation for your cruise vacation!

Finishing your cruise in Athens? Then check-out my in-depth guide on getting to Athens Airport or Athens city centre at the end of your cruise. Tips for late departure and luggage storage options included, so you can drop off your bags and sightsee in Athens for the day.

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Athens Piraeus (Greece) Port Essentials: All You Need to Know

From Athens City Centre: Athens’ (Greece) cruise port is located in the bustling coastal town of Piraeus, about 12 kms (or roughly 7.5 miles) from Athens city centre. Depending on traffic, it takes around an hour on public transport to reach the Athens Piraeus cruise port from the city centre.

From Athens Airport: Athens Piraeus cruise port is between 42 – 50 kms (26 to 31 miles) away, depending on which toll roads are used. On the express bus (X96), it takes about 90 minutes on public transport.

  • Athens Piraeus Cruise Port Schedule: Check the cruise port schedule for your visit
  • Currency: Euros
  • ๐Ÿ’ถ Cash or ๐Ÿ’ณ Card? Cards are very widely accepted in Athens. I spent 4 days pre-cruise in Athens and only needed cash once for a small falafel vendor. Still, it’s always a good idea to have some euros on hand. You’ll find ATMs easily at Athens International Airport.
  • Language: Greek
  • Official Tourism Websites:
  • Recommended Transport App: I used Citymapper while in Athens and highly recommend it. Public transit directions were correct and up-to-date. You can also find real-time information on the official OASA S.A. website.
  • eSIM for roaming in Greece: For a great data connection without the huge roaming fees, use an eSim data pack from Airalo. I always recommend having a smartphone with a valid plan when youโ€™re at port touring independently. Get US$3 off your first eSIM data pack from Airalo when you use ROXANN1666 when you sign up or apply it at checkout

FAQ: Is there a free port shuttle bus to the cruise terminals?

Sadly, the answer is no. You may have come across mentions of a port shuttle bus in Piraeus online, and that can be confusing! The free port bus actually services the ferry terminals, not the cruise terminals.

Each cruise terminal does have its own free shuttle to get you from the terminal building to the ship itself (perfect for anyone who might find the short walk tough – see my photo below to gauge the distance). But, this is only after you’ve checked in and ditched your bags. So, don’t get caught out thinking there’s a free ride all the way to your cruise terminal!

Walking from Terminal to Quay - Embarking on Celebrity Apex from Terminal B of Athens Piraeus Cruise Port, Greece
I was boarding the Celebrity Apex. It’s only short walk from Athens Piraeus Terminal B to the ship!

Athens Piraeus (Greece) Port: Which Cruise Terminal?

Athens Piraeus (Greece) Port is absolutely huge! So huge that it is crucial for you to know which cruise terminal your ship is docked at. Imagine ending up at the wrong terminal just as your ship prepares to set sail โ€“ talk about a stressful start to your vacation! Trust me, dashing between terminals with your luggage is not the kind of adventure you want in Greece!

Tip: If you’re embarking your cruise from Athens Piraeus Port, your cruise line will tell you exactly which terminal to head for. This info is usually tucked into your online check-in documents or the luggage tags they email you. Don’t leave this to the last minute โ€“ knowing your terminal in advance saves you a potential pre-cruise panic!

Aerial view of Terminals A, B, C in relation to each other at Athens Cruise Port, Piraeus, Greece
Photo courtesy of Piraeus Port Authority

Here are the 3 cruise terminals or jump straight to my guide if you’re coming directly from the airport or from the city centre:

  • Terminal A “Miaoulis” – This one’s closest to the metro, but hey, it’s still a 15-minute walk. Metro or bus will work for you, whether you’re coming from the airport or the city
  • Terminal B “Themistocles” – Now this one’s the furthest from the metro – a good 30 minute walk at least. Even if you packed light and your luggage has wheels, I don’t recommend it. But don’t worry, the bus stop is super close (under 5 minutes!). If your ship’s here, check out my guide below on how to switch buses easily from the airport or the city centre.
  • Terminal C “Alkimos” – Terminal C is next to Terminal A but in my opinion, is still too far to walk to the metro station (~25 mins). The bus stop is less than a minute away though. If your ship is docked at Terminal C, read my guide below on which bus to catch for an easy transfer!

Athens Piraeus Cruise Port & Cruise Transfers Map

UPDATED July 2024: Check out the Google Maps below: the Cruise Terminals A, B & C are marked, as well as the Piraeus metro station and the bus stops I mention below.

(If you’ve visited this page before, I’ve significantly revamped my map below to make it easier to read without Greek characters! Sorry that the last version isn’t as easy to read as it could have been. It was one of the first maps I made and I was learning! I can’t believe it’s been viewed 5,000+ times in less than 3 months!)

  • On Desktop | Laptop? Use buttons on bottom left to zoom in/out. Click on the upper right hand corner to see a bigger version.
  • On Tablet | Mobile? Pinch your screen to zoom in/out and use two fingers to move map around. If you have Google Maps installed on your tablet/mobile, my map will open in your Google Maps app if you click on the upper right hand corner.
  • If map is not loading correctly, click to see it directly on Google Maps

Getting from Athens Airport to Athens Piraeus Port: Your Options

Arriving in your embarkation city a day or two early is ideal, as it provides a buffer for unexpected travel delays. However, if a same-day arrival is unavoidable, reaching Athens Piraeus cruise port using public transport is a breeze โ€“ and much easier on your wallet than private transfers!

1. By Bus: Getting from Athens Airport to Athens Piraeus Cruise Terminals

The X96 Express Bus is a convenient and affordable way to reach Athens Piraeus cruise port from Athens International Airport. Here’s what you need to know:

  • Frequency: The X96 runs up to 3 times an hour during summer peak times. Find the current timetable here, selecting “AER/NAS Athinon – Peiraias” as the direction.
  • Journey Time: Expect around 90 minutes, but may vary due to traffic
  • Bus Stop: Located at the arrivals level between Exits 4 and 5.
  • Tickets: Purchase at the ticket booth before boarding (โ‚ฌ5.50 adults, โ‚ฌ2.70 kids 7-18/seniors 65+). Don’t forget to validate your ticket on the bus.
  • Luggage: Buses have space for luggage, so not an issue!

Terminal A Bus Stops

If your cruise is departing from Terminal A – check my map above on how to change buses:

  • Where to Get Off: Alight X96 at Stop “Pl. KARAISKAKH“, aka Piraeus Gate E7/8/9/10 stop
  • Change Bus to Cruise Terminals: Hop onto Bus 826, 843 or 859 from the same stop towards Piraeus cruise terminals and alight at either “TELONEIO” stop (4 stops away) or “PEIRAIAS” (5 stops away). Terminal A is between these two stops and is a few minutes walk away from either stop.
  • Hang onto your ticket: Your X96 bus ticket is valid for the transfer, provided it’s within 90 minutes of initial validation

Terminal B & C Bus Stops

If your cruise is departing from Terminal B or C, here’s how to change buses:

  • Where to Get Off: Alight X96 at Stop “Pl. KARAISKAKH“, aka Piraeus Gate E7/8/9/10 stop
  • Change Bus to Cruise Terminals: Hop onto Bus 826, 843 or 859 from the same stop towards Piraeus cruise terminals and alight at “PEIRAIAS” (Piraeus) (5 stops away)
  • Your X96 bus ticket is valid for the transfer, provided it’s within 90 minutes of initial validation
  • Once you arrive at “PEIRAIAS” stop, the Lions Gate (E12) is less than 100m (~300 feet) away. Terminal B is less than 5 minutes walk on flat ground away and Terminal C is right behind Lions Gate.

If you prefer not to change buses, a taxi to the cruise terminals from the X96 stop is โ‚ฌ7-โ‚ฌ10 depending on traffic.

Tip: The X96 is also especially handy if you’re taking a pre-cruise trip via ferry to one of the Greek Islands, as it stops on all the major ferry gates. Too bad it doesn’t stop right in front of the cruise terminals though!

2. By Metro: Getting from Athens Airport to Athens Piraeus Cruise Terminals

The Athens Metro Train is an easy direct route to reach Athens Piraeus Cruise Port
Source: Wikipedia

If traffic makes you nervous, the metro is a reliable alternative โ€“ though be prepared for a quick bus hop to reach your cruise terminal. Here’s the detailed guide from Athens International Airport:

  • Blue Metro Line: Take the M3 (Blue) line all the way to Piraeus (the second-to-last stop). This is the only line departing from Athens Airport station.
  • Frequency: Trains leave the airport every 36 minutes. Check timetables for the first and last train times to be safe.
  • Journey Time: It’s about an hour from the airport to Piraeus, but give yourself extra time for that bus connection to the cruise terminal.
  • Tickets: Grab yours at the ticket machines before hopping on the train (โ‚ฌ9 adults, โ‚ฌ4.50 kids 7-18/seniors 65+). You can use cash or card, including contactless. If your cruise is roundtrip, a 30-day return ticket to the airport is โ‚ฌ16. Hold onto your ticket โ€“ you’ll need it to exit and for the bus transfer!
  • Luggage: Good news โ€“ the M3 metro trains have luggage racks.
  • Interchange Bus Stop opposite station: Once you exit Piraeus metro station, cross to the opposite side of the street. If you’ve got heavy luggage, look for the lifts and escalators to make things easier.

Terminal A Bus Stops

  • Buses to Cruise Terminals: Hop onto bus #826, #843, or #859 heading towards the Piraeus cruise terminals.
  • Hang On to Tickets: Use your metro ticket as your transfer ticket
  • Where to Get Off: You’ll want to get off at either the “TELONEIO” stop (5 stops) or the “PEIRAIAS” stop (6 stops, also the last stop). Terminal A is nestled between these two, just a quick walk from either one.

Terminal B & C Bus Stops

  • Buses to Cruise Terminals: Hop onto bus 826, 843, or 859 heading towards the Piraeus cruise terminals. These buses run past Terminal A before stopping closer to Terminals B&C
  • Hang On to Tickets: Use your metro ticket as your transfer ticket
  • Where to Get Off: You’ll want to get off at either the “PEIRAIAS” stop (6 stops, also the last stop). Walk towards the Lions Gate (E12), less than 100m (~300 feet) away. Terminal B is less than 5 minutes walk on flat ground away and Terminal C is right behind Lions Gate.

Alternatively, you can get off at the last stop of the M3 line called Dimotiko Theatro. Then change to Bus 40 or Bus 49 for Cruise Terminals B or C. I prefer getting off at Piraeus as the buses to the cruise terminals run more frequently.

3. Airport to Port Pre-Booked Private Transfers

For a private transfer from Athens Airport to Piraeus Port, pre-book here. For two people, it will generally work out cheaper than a taxi. For larger groups, it will be easier than having to find a taxi van at the airport.

4. Taxis

A licensed taxi from Athens Airport to Athens Piraeus will be about โ‚ฌ60 – โ‚ฌ80 depending on traffic. The trip should take about 40-60 minutes depending on traffic. (There are no fixed rate fares to Piraeus port, so make sure the meter is turned on. The only fixed taxi fare is from Athens Airport to Athens city centre.)

Ubers do exist (and work) in Athens but all Ubers in Athens are licensed taxis. So you’re effectively just using the Uber app to call a “normal” taxi. Note that not all taxis accept card in Athens and they may prefer cash too. If you don’t want to pay in euros cash, check with driver first.

Getting from Athens City Centre to Athens Piraeus Port: Your Options

If you’ve arrived the day before your cruise or enjoyed a few days exploring Athens, you’ll need to get from the city centre to the cruise port in Piraeus. Here are three easy ways to do it โ€“ the bus options tend to be slightly simpler than the metro route.

1. By Bus: Getting from Athens City Centre to Athens Piraeus Port

(a) X80 bus from Syntagma Square to Athens Piraeus Port

  • Summertime Special: The X80 bus is a summer-only route (usually May to October). It’s the most direct way to reach the cruise terminals โ€“ no bus changes needed!
  • Find the Stop: X80 stop is on the western side of Syntagma Square, right outside McDonald’s
  • Ticket Tip: Only the 24-hour ticket (โ‚ฌ4.10, no concessions) works on the X80. (You can buy it the day before embarkation and sightsee with it.)
  • Covers all Terminals: The X80 stops at Terminals A, B, and C.
  • Afternoon Rush: If your embarkation time is mid-afternoon or later, the X80 gets crowded with passengers returning to the port. Buses 40 and 49 (below) are reliable alternatives if you’d rather avoid the rush or want a better chance at snagging a seat.

(b) Bus 40 or Bus 49 from City Centre to Athens Piraeus Port

  • Bus #40 from Syntagma Square and Bus #49 from Omonia both travel to the Piraeus cruise terminals. Bus #49 is especially handy if your hotel is closer to Omonia than Syntagma.
  • My Experience: I travelled on Bus #49 as a trial in October 2023, all the way to Athens Piraeus Port for Terminal B. The buses are long “bendy” buses. While there are no luggage racks (as these are more commuter buses), there were lots of room for both my check-in bag and my hand luggage. I picked a seat for my check-in bag to sit in front of me. I caught the bus around 9:30am on a weekday, deliberately avoiding the pre-9am rush. The trip took less about 50 minutes. I got off almost directly opposite “Lions Gate” – the cruise port gates for Terminal B & C. It was then an easy 5-minute walk on flat ground to drop off my check-in bag.
  • Where to Get Off:
    • Cruise Terminal A: Hop off at the last stop called “Piraeus
    • Cruise Terminal B & C: Get off at the second-to-last stop called “ZOODOXOS PHGH“. Keep an eye out on the bus monitors so you don’t miss it! If you do miss the stop, don’t despair. It’s just adds about 2 minutes to walk.
  • Tickets: Standard 90-minute single tickets (โ‚ฌ1.20 for adults, โ‚ฌ0.50 for kids/seniors) work on both routes.

Athens Stay Tip: Spending a few days in Athens? A 5-day ticket at โ‚ฌ8.20 could be a money & time saver! It’s even good for the trip to the cruise port on Buses 40 & 49. (Just remember, it doesn’t work on the X80). Days don’t need to be consecutive – each day you validate counts as one day. (This 5-day pass is valid on buses and metro, except on express buses and travel to/fro airport station.) I wasn’t even in Athens for 5 days but the pass was cheaper than buying single one-way tickets, not to mention less hassle! Ticket bundle: Another option is buying 11 single tickets for the price of 10 (โ‚ฌ12 adults, โ‚ฌ5 kids / seniors).

2. By Metro: Getting from Athens City Centre to Athens Piraeus Port

If your hotel is conveniently located near a metro station, this might be the way to go for reaching the Athens Piraeus cruise terminals.

  • M3 Blue Line: Find your nearest metro station and hop on the M3 (blue line) heading all the way to Piraeus.
  • Bus Interchange to Cruise Terminals: Once there, follow the same directions as above to catch a local bus to your cruise terminal.
  • Need to Change Metro Lines? If you’re changing lines at either Syntagma or Omonia stations, I recall them having step-free options, which is great if you’ve got luggage! So look out for escalators and lifts if you need them.
  • Tickets: Tickets for a single 90-minute ticket is โ‚ฌ1.20 for adults and โ‚ฌ0.50 for kids 7-18 or seniors 65+.

3. Athens to City Pre-Booked Transfer

Just want the convenience of a pre-booked door-to-door transfer from your hotel? Then you can either pre-book a yellow licensed taxi through your hotel. For larger groups, you may want to pre-book a larger van so you can keep the group together.

4. Taxis

Depending on where your hotel is in Athens, the estimated taxi fare varies quite a bit. I would estimate it from around โ‚ฌ25 – โ‚ฌ50 depending on which area you’re in and how bad the traffic is. Ubers exist but in Athens, it’s more just an app to call a licensed taxi.

Featured Image by Patrick on Unsplash

If you’re joining your cruise from Athens Piraeus cruise port, I hope you have the most wonderful cruise! Drop me a comment below if you have any questions! Zana

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