National Archaeological Museum of Athens was established in 1829 which is considered to be one of the great museums of the world. It holds the most collection of artifact of antiques dating from ancient Greek times. The building of museum was opened by prime minister of Greece Ioannis Kapodistrias. During 1889, museum went through renovations using the funds from Greek Government, the Greek Archaeological Society and the society of Mycenae. Initially when the museum was opened it was named “The Central Museum” but in 1881 the name was changed to its current name by Prime Minister of Greece Charilaos Trikoupis. World War II time, the museum was closed and its collection of antiques were sealed in special boxes to refrain them from abolition. The museum’s exhibition was open to public again under the guidance of Christos Karouzos and from there during 1953-1960, the collection of National Archaeological museum grew enormously.
The building of this museum was designed in neo-classical style by architect Ludwig Lange which was later improved by architects Panages Kalkos, Harmodios Vlachos, and Ernst Ziller. Outside the museum is also a designed garden with many decorated sculptures.
The museum’s collection is divided into sections which are; Prehistoric collection, Sculptures collection, Vase and Minor Objects Collection, Santorini findings, Metallurgy Collection, Stathatos Collection, Vlastos Collection, Egyptian Art collection, and Near Eastern Antiquities Collection. Prehistoric collection displays items dating from Neaolitithic era of 6800-3000 BC and mid Bronze Age dating from 3000-2000 BC. Sculpture collection shows objects from ancient Greek from 7th to 5th centuries. Vase and Minor Objects Collection includes work of ancient Greek pottery. Metallurgy Collection includes statues, figures, and minor objects from different period. There is also Egyptian collection that is dating from 19th century displaying mummies and pharaohs of that era. Following is a list of few collection that are displayed in the museum; Frescoes from Santorini, Gold rhyton from Mycenae, Silver rhyton with gold horns, Funeral mask, mixing bowl the Warrioir Krater, Family group on a grave marker, Small temple of Aristonaftes, The Marathon Boy, The Artemision Bronze, Jockey of Artemision, Goddess Hygeia, statue of Augustus, Jewel for hair, Pot with letters of the alphabet, bronze vases, statue of a boy from 3rd century, Feet of a philosopher from 240 BC, Goddess Themis, and many more.
Annually, thousands of visitors visit the museum to check out the enormous collection of ancient Greek. There are exhibitions holds throughout the years displaying different objects. The museum is open every day from 8am to 7pm welcoming tourist and visitors from around the around the world.