Why are Greek taverna chairs so uncomfortable?

I don’t think there is a definite answer to this question, which has been
puzzling visitors to Greece for ages.  If you know the answer, then please share it with us!

I love taking photos of Greek taverna chairs….

– green chairs on the beach….


Brown chairs on the street…..


Blue chairs by the harbour….


But they’re not the most comfortable chairs to sit in. The seat is small and uneven, the wooden frame is very hard, they are often unstable. It’s as if they don’t want you to sit there for too long!


Greek chair, Paleros

I think Greek taverna chairs are beautiful, in their own right, although they are definitely not comfortable.  I always try to remember to take a scarf, or shawl to sit on when I have to use a taverna chair.  But what could be more representative of Greece, than a wooden chair with a woven rush seat, painted white or blue?  However, some Greeks would disagree about them not being comfortable – read one such article  here.


Greek chairs in Athens

Greek taverna chairs are described as having comfortable rush seating which gives ventilation, the back slats give support when you are sitting, and the supporting struts give you something to rest your feet on.  Here’s another link which is in favour of the traditional Greek chair. However, I’ve never really enjoyed sitting on one!


Greek chairs and tables, Vathi

They’ve certainly been around for a very long time, and unlikely to be redesigned in years to come.   But maybe things are changing – some visitors tend to prefer a comfortable padded seat when they drink their morning coffee, and are happy to leave the traditional Greek chairs to the old men in the kafeneion…..


Here’s another question – Why are greek buildings blue and white?




20 thoughts on “Why are Greek taverna chairs so uncomfortable?

  1. Welcome to Greece…
    I agree with you … they are uncoftable … but look how they look with the sea and the roads and the stairs and all the beauty of Greece……….

    You know that you are in Greece when you will see a photo with these chairs !!!!!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Just an hypothesis because I cannot help you with a logical explanation on comfort except to say that maybe as non-Greeks we have the wrong shape posterior. Maybe natives are raised from an early age to appreciate the beauty and not pay any attention to the comfort? Like people that wear those sandals with the thong between their toes? They are just used to them. The comfort of these lovely looking chairs must be something only natives understand or are willing to ignore. I only know that those old Greek men seem to sit for hours and hours in those appealingly quaint chairs. (I did notice in your photo of the old Greek he’s sitting on a cushion)

    Liked by 1 person

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