Thessaloniki Population 2017

Thessaloniki is a city located in Greece. It is the second largest city in the country, and it also serves as the capital of Macedonia. The city has become known as a major hub for economics, politics, and industry. It also has a very rich and unique culture, which attracts residents and tourists alike. Data from the Hellenic Statistical Authority puts the population of the city at 325,182.

Thessaloniki Demographics

Throughout its history, Thessaloniki has been home to many different ethnic groups, including Jewish, Muslim, Greek, Bulgarians, Roma, and other minor groups.

The Jewish population has declined throughout the years, falling from 51% of the population in the 1840s to just 0.27% in the 2000s. This means that the population has of Jewish residents dropped from 36,000 to just around 1,000. The population of Jews in Greece are the oldest in Europe’s mainland.

Thessaloniki has become known as the cultural capital of Greece, and the many immigrants that have moved to the city have contributed to this title. Since the 19th century, merchants from France, Italy, and other areas in Western Europe have come to the city. While some have left in more recent years, many stayed and their descendants remain in the city today. There is also a large Armenian community within Thessaloniki.

Thessaloniki History

Evidence shows that the city was founded around 315 BC. The city was established under the kingdom of Macedon, and following the fall of the kingdom, because the capital of Macedon, later becoming a free city.

During its earliest years, the city was an early center of Christianity. Even in its earliest days, Thessaloniki was a large and prosperous city. During the 12th century, the city had a population of 150,000. During the 14th century, the city continued to hold onto its population and was even larger than London in terms of population.

The city was invaded multiple times throughout its history, including by the Avars, Slavs and Arabs. Fast forwarding to the 1400s, the city fell under the rule of the Ottoman Empire. It established itself as an important hub for trading. During this period, the population rose significantly, primarily consisting of Ottoman Muslims. The city was revived under Ottomon rule, including the development of infrastructure such as a tram service and installation of electric streetlights. Throughout the late 1800s and early 1900s, the city experienced a boom in population.

When the Ottoman Empire fell apart, the population of the city changed significantly in terms of the ethnic groups. Ethnic Greeks were resettled in the city, while many of the Muslims residing in Thessaloniki were deported to Turkey. Later, during the Nazi invasion, demographics changed again as over 43,000 Jews were sent to concentration camps.

Following the war, the city began to rebuild through the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s. Through the wars and raids, many architectural monuments are still intact. The city has become known as the European Capital of Culture since the 1990s. Today, it is still very important in trade and business. Its port remains one of the largest and most important in Europe.

Thessaloniki Population Growth

Throughout its years, Thessaloniki has general seen strong population growth, expect during the early 1900s when the deportation of Muslims and later, the movement of Jews to concentration camps, caused a drop in population. However, the city’s thriving industry and incredible culture make it an appealing place to call home. The city has one of the largest student populations in Greece and continues to be an attractive option for younger generations. For these reasons, it is expected that Thessaloniki will continue to see the steady growth that has been observed throughout its history.

Thessaloniki Population Data (Urban Area)

Year Population Growth Rate (%) Growth
2030779,0002.91%22,000
2025757,0002.85%21,000
2020736,0000.55%4,000
2017732,000-0.68%-5,000
2015164,342,0002.71%4,343,000
2015737,000-2.77%-21,000
2010758,000-2.94%-23,000
2010159,999,00012.65%17,968,000
2005781,000-2.01%-16,000
2000797,0003.37%26,000
1995771,0003.35%25,000
1990142,031,0003.63%4,973,000
1990746,0003.04%22,000
1985724,0004.32%30,000
1980694,00012.48%77,000
1980137,058,0005.89%7,618,000
1975617,00013.84%75,000
1970129,440,0007.24%8,740,000
1970542,00021.25%95,000
1965447,00020.16%75,000
1960372,00013.07%43,000
1960120,700,00015.77%16,446,000
1955329,00012.67%37,000
1950104,254,00011.93%11,115,000
1950292,0000.00%0
194093,139,000-0.42%-395,000
193093,534,00027.34%20,081,000
192073,453,0004.40%3,098,000
191070,355,00010.64%6,764,000
190063,591,00017.41%9,430,000
189054,161,00023.14%10,178,000
188043,983,00021.85%7,887,000
187036,096,00041.74%10,629,000
186025,467,00049.47%8,429,000
185017,038,000117.99%9,222,000
18407,816,000903.34%7,037,000
Thessaloniki Population Growth

Thessaloniki's 2017 population is now estimated at 732,000. In 1950, the population of Thessaloniki was 292,000. Thessaloniki has grown by -5,000 in the last year, which represents a -0.68% change. These population estimates and projections come from the latest revision of the UN World Urbanization Prospects. These estimates represent the Urban agglomeration of Thessaloniki, which typically includes Thessaloniki's population in addition to adjacent suburban areas.

Data Sources
  1. World Urbanization Prospects - United Nations population estimates and projections of major Urban Agglomerations