The city is over 2000 years old and in its hey-day Thessaloniki was a co-reigning city of the Eastern Roman or Byzantine Empire alongside Constantinople.
The city is well-known for its many festivals and cultural events with the Thessaloniki International Trade Fair and Thessaloniki International Film Festival held each year.
The city boasts many Byzantine monuments and has 15 listed Unesco World Heritage Sites including the Hagias Sophia and Hagias Demetrius which is said to be the largest basilica in Greece. It also boasts many Roman, Ottoman, and Sephardic Jewish monuments. The Aristotle University in Thessaloniki is the largest in Greece and the Balkans.
The city has many imposing hills, mountain ranges, and fault lines and is subject to earthquakes.
Thessaloniki has characteristics of both temperate and Mediterranean climates and has dry winters, fog, and very hot summers with humid nights.
Thessaloniki is a major transportation hub with the Macedonia International Airport and railways connecting the rest of Greece.