Thessaloniki or Salonica is the capital of Macedonia, the second city of Greece and one of the oldest cities in Europe. It was founded in 316 BC, on a site of old prehistoric settlements going back to 2300 B.C., by Cassander, King of Macedon. He named it after his wife Thessalonica, the sister of Alexander the Great. Today, Thessaloniki is an important commercial port with a population of 1,000,000, located on the shores of the Thermaikos Gulf, besides it is an active center of commerce and culture not only of Greece but also of the Balkan Peninsula. The local industry has been continuously developing, while trade, traditionally the strong point of the city, is prospering. Recently Thessaloniki has become the seat of CEDEFOP (European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training) and the Black Sea Trade and Development Bank headquarters.
The city is composed of two sectors, the modern sector and the old city. The old city is where most of the views are. In the old city it will be mostly Byzantine churches and buildings that you are looking for. They are what Thessaloniki is famous for. You can get glimpses of Old Salonica in the walled Kastra quarter of the city, on the hillside beyond the modern grid of streets. While the modern areas are full of excellent examples of recent architecture that are interesting enough if you are into that kind of thing. The city s landmark is the White Tower, which also houses a Byzantine museum. Worth visiting is the Archaeological museum that exhibits findings of the archaic, classical and Roman periods as well as the church of Saint Dimitrios, the holy patron of the city. Thessaloniki is also known for its exceptional nightlife with the famous Ladadika quarter. Here you will find bars and clubs playing great music as well as restaurants and ouzeris among the best in Greece.