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Visitors numbers to museums and sites in Greece have taken a favourable turn in 2012 and 2013 due to increased tourism.

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Greece/ 8.2 Cultural consumption and participation  

8.2.1 Trends and figures

There has not been a comprehensive survey of cultural participation practices in Greece, and academic research in this area is sorely lacking. Quantitative information is therefore partial, inconsistent and anecdotal, and not amenable to be presented in tabular form for fear of misinterpretation.

Figures concerning attendance at state-owned (mostly archaeological) museums and archaeological sites are presented in the following table:

Table 4:    Attendance at museums and archaeological sites, 2006 and 2010




Archaeological sites and monuments

7 516 665

5 547 053


2 795 465

3 136 779

Source:  National Statistical Service of Greece, Admissions to museums by month, 2006, 2011; idem, Admissions to archaeological sites by month, 2006, 2011.

The slight increase in visitor attendance for museums is clearly due to the opening of the new Acropolis Museum, which attracted 1 355 890 visitors in 2010; remaining archaeological museums show a disappointing decrease in visitor numbers, in tandem with the decrease in the attendance at archaeological sites and monuments shown above. The majority of visits are to archaeological sites of national importance such as the Acropolis of Athens, Knossos, Olympia, Lindos, Delphi and Epidaurus, and major museums such as the new Acropolis Museum, the National Archaeological Museum of Athens and the Archaeological Museum of Heraklion. These numbers do not include the attendance for non-state museums, such as the Benaki Museum or the Goulandris Museum of Cycladic Art.

The special Eurobarometer survey had found out (2007) that, within 12 months, 71% of Greeks attended a cultural programme on TV or radio at least once; 59% read a book; 46% have been to the cinema; 33% visited a monument or site; 30% have been to the theatre; 25% visited a museum (almost twice as many as in the 2002 survey); 21% have been to a concert; 15% visited a library; and, 12% have been to the ballet or opera. In addition, according to the Eurobarometer cultural values survey (2007), while non-professional Internet use in Greece is rather low at 29%, 35% of those who use it report using the Internet for information on cultural products and events, 28% for visiting museum, library or other educational websites; yet only 11% for buying cultural products such as books, CD / DVDs and theatre tickets online.

It is notable, nevertheless, that, according to the same source (2007), 61% of Greeks do not take part in any kind of active cultural participation (in the form of some amateur activity in the arts and culture taken in the broadest sense, including gardening and home improvement work). On the other side, 18% report that they had participated in dance in the last 12 months, 16% that in photography or film, 11% in singing, 7% had played a musical instrument, 4% had written something creative (a text, a poem, etc.), and only 1% had acted.

Chapter published: 14-08-2015

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