The University of Patras was founded in the city of Patras in 1964 and started to operate in academic year 1966-1967. In June 2013 the University of Western Greece was integrated into the University of Patras. In 2019 the majority of the departments of the Technological Educational Institute of Western Greece were also integrated into the University of Patras.
The University is situated in Patras, Agrinion, Messolonghi, Aigio, Pirgos and Amaliada. The main campus is located 7 km North East of the city of Patras, in the suburb of Rion, covering a vast area of 4.5 km². The campus lies on the foothills of Mount Panachaico with a view over the Corinthian Gulf and to the mountains of Central Greece across the sea.
The University of Patras is the third largest University in Greece in τerms of students, faculty members, administrative personnel, number of departments and degrees awarded. The University of Patras includes 35 Departments covering a wide range of disciplines. It also hosts 161 laboratories and 17 fully equipped clinics. Besides its distinguished path in education, the University of Patras excels in various fields of basic and applied research. The University of Patras has acquired international prominence in research areas such as Health, Environment, Biotechnology, Mechanics, Electronics, Informatics and Basic Science. A number of its academic Departments, laboratories and clinics have been recognized as centres of excellence on the basis of international assessment. The University of Patras has acquired a reputation for producing quality and innovative research and for taking part in a plethora of research projects, scientific organizations and research groups. Τogether with its educational and research work, the vibrant campus life of the University of Patras attracts many students every year as their first and foremost choice for Higher Education studies.
The main University Campus is located in the suburb of Rio at 7 km North East from the city centre, within the Municipality of Patras. The General University Hospital of Patras is located next to the University. Rio has become a very important transport junction for Western Greece, especially since the construction of the Rio-Antirrio Bridge, which connects the suburb of Rio with the town of Antirrio, linking the Peloponnese peninsula with mainland Greece and thus giving residents and visitors quick and easy access by car to mainland Greece and Epirus, in addition to the frequent ferry boat service. Nowadays, the suburb of Rio has developed into a lively destination with plenty of schools, commercial shops, restaurants, nightclubs and hotels. The seafront of Rio with its pebbled beaches, clear blue waters and restaurants is one of the most beautiful tourist attractions within the prefecture of Achaia. There are many choices of entertainment for residents of Rio and Patras. One of the highlights of Rio is a large fortress built on the sea shore, with bastions and a courtyard surrounded by a sunken stone fence.
Various departments of the University of Patras are also located in the cities of Messolonghi, Agrinio, Aigio, Pyrgos and Amaliada.