Thessaloniki Population 2021

812,964
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Thessaloniki's 2021 population is now estimated at 812,964. In 1950, the population of Thessaloniki was 291,675. Thessaloniki has grown by 798 since 2015, which represents a 0.10% annual 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.

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.

City Size and Population Density

The city of Thessaloniki covers a surface area of 19.307 km2 (7.454 square miles) in the city proper. The metropolitan area sprawls over a total of 1,285.61 km2 (496.38 square miles). The population density of Thessaloniki comes to approximately 7,100 residents per square kilometer (18,000 residents per square mile).

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, became the capital of Macedonia, 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 2021

Year Population Growth Rate (%) Growth
2035819,5560.02%148
2034819,4080.03%238
2033819,1700.04%311
2032818,8590.05%374
2031818,4850.05%421
2030818,0640.06%466
2029817,5980.06%508
2028817,0900.07%532
2027816,5580.07%544
2026816,0140.07%542
2025815,4720.06%492
2024814,9800.06%456
2023814,5240.09%731
2022813,7930.10%829
2021812,9640.10%798
2020812,1660.09%731
2019811,4350.08%644
2018810,7910.07%583
2017810,2080.07%583
2016809,6250.07%582
2015809,0430.07%581
2014808,4620.07%582
2013807,8800.07%581
2012807,2990.07%580
2011806,7190.07%580
2010806,1390.07%581
2009805,5580.07%579
2008804,9790.07%580
2007804,3990.07%580
2006803,8190.07%578
2005803,2410.07%578
2004802,6630.07%579
2003802,0840.07%577
2002801,5070.07%577
2001800,9300.50%3,957
2000796,9730.67%5,309
1999791,6640.67%5,266
1998786,3980.67%5,231
1997781,1670.67%5,190
1996775,9770.67%5,169
1995770,8080.67%5,128
1994765,6800.67%5,093
1993760,5870.67%5,053
1992755,5340.67%5,033
1991750,5010.62%4,595
1990745,9060.59%4,406
1989741,5000.59%4,374
1988737,1260.60%4,360
1987732,7660.59%4,328
1986728,4380.59%4,302
1985724,1360.59%4,272
1984719,8640.59%4,257
1983715,6070.59%4,227
1982711,3800.59%4,202
1981707,1781.95%13,515
1980693,6632.38%16,150
1979677,5132.38%15,752
1978661,7612.38%15,385
1977646,3762.38%15,008
1976631,3682.38%14,699
1975616,6692.38%14,337
1974602,3322.38%14,004
1973588,3282.38%13,660
1972574,6682.38%13,379
1971561,2893.48%18,880
1970542,4093.95%20,625
1969521,7843.95%19,814
1968501,9703.96%19,114
1967482,8563.95%18,361
1966464,4953.95%17,662
1965446,8333.95%16,969
1964429,8643.96%16,368
1963413,4963.95%15,723
1962397,7733.95%15,126
1961382,6472.88%10,711
1960371,9362.46%8,943
1959362,9932.46%8,716
1958354,2772.46%8,507
1957345,7702.46%8,291
1956337,4792.46%8,115
1955329,3642.46%7,909
1954321,4552.46%7,718
1953313,7372.46%7,523
1952306,2142.46%7,363
1951298,8512.46%7,176
1950291,6750.00%

Thessaloniki Population Data (Urban Area)

Other Cities in Greece

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

Sources