Athens Goulandris Natural History Museum

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Location: Kifisia
Don't miss: Museums guide (free admission dates and other useful info)

The Goulandris Natural History Museum in Athens: Established in 1964, the Goulandris Natural History Museum (GNHM) was the first of its kind to be established in Greece and to initiate environmental education in the country. Located in the suburb of Kifisia, 12 kilometers northeast of Athens city center, it is housed in an elegant neoclassical 19th-century building, which was converted and expanded in order to satisfy its educational and scientific requirements. Over the years, it has received several honorary awards and prizes for its significant work both nationally and internationally.

Today, the Museum’s complex is composed of two interconnected buildings, the GNHM building and the Gaia Center for Environmental Research and Education, which offers visitors the unique opportunity to get acquainted with Earth and the diversity of its landscapes, flora and fauna via interactive technologies. It also promotes an understanding of the impact human activity has on the environment.

Collections

The Museum is home to the following permanent collections:

•Mineral
•Botanical
•Entomological
•Marine biology
•Herpetological
•Paleontological
•Ornithological
•Mammals

They comprise thousands of specimens and are constantly enriched thanks to the museum’s laboratories, which gather, record and study specimens from the Greek territory.

Another feature that stands out is the Digital Earthquake exhibition, which makes use of interactive applications and innovative high-tech models, complemented by a seismic bank, a virtual reality chair and much more. However, this particular exhibition is available in the Greek language only.

Amenities

The museum’s amenities include an interesting shop, a rich library with extensive scientific material in the fields of environmental sciences, fully equipped halls that can host conferences, seminars and corporate presentations, as well as a restaurant serving Mediterranean dishes, prepared with first-quality ingredients. Here, next to a little lake with water lilies, among cedars and cypresses, olives and pines, laurels, myrtles, pomegranates, lavender and other aromatic Greek plants, you can enjoy a great meal in the coolness of Kifisia.

Other branches

The Goulandris Natural History Museum also boasts branches in other parts of the country. One of them is the Greek Biotope/Wetland Center (EKBY), which is housed in Thermi, at the Thessaloniki University’s farm.
It was founded in 1991, to avert the loss and degradation of wetlands and terrestrial natural ecosystems in the Mediterranean region, as well as promote sustainable management of renewable natural resources.

What is more, the GNHM has restored the Mastaba Mosque in Rethymno, Crete, which is an authentic local monument due to its characteristic 9-dome architecture. After this renovation, it began to operate as a paleontological museum, housing the collection of findings of the Municipality of Rethymnon, as well as real-size representations of endemic mammals, such as polymorphous Cretan deer, and dwarf Cretan elephants and hippopotamuses.

Official website: www.gnhm.gr

How to get there

There are many ways to reach the Goulandris Natural History Museum from any location in Athens.

Private transfers: We recommend using an online pre-booked transfer service, which provides transfer by taxi, minibus, or private VIP car and arranging a pickup directly from the port, airport, or your hotel. Alternatively, there’s the option of arranging a pickup by a local driver directly at the following numbers: (0030) 18288, (0030) 18222, (0030) 18180. You can also book your taxi online.

Car rental: There is the option of renting a car and picking it up directly from the airport, port, or your hotel. Using a car rental allows visitors to discover the Goulandris Natural History Museum and many other places of interest in Athens at their own pace.

By metro: The closest metro stations is Kifisia (Green Line). Note that in order to reach the Goulandris Natural History Museum from the metro, a 10-minute walk is needed. Get a map of the metro here.

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