v3.6.0.2
Document and Entity Information - USD ($)
12 Months Ended
Dec. 31, 2016
Feb. 20, 2017
Jun. 30, 2016
Document Information [Line Items]      
Document Type 10-K    
Amendment Flag false    
Document Period End Date Dec. 31, 2016    
Document Fiscal Year Focus 2016    
Document Fiscal Period Focus FY    
Trading Symbol ACHN    
Entity Registrant Name ACHILLION PHARMACEUTICALS INC    
Entity Central Index Key 0001070336    
Current Fiscal Year End Date --12-31    
Entity Well-known Seasoned Issuer No    
Entity Current Reporting Status Yes    
Entity Voluntary Filers No    
Entity Filer Category Large Accelerated Filer    
Entity Common Stock, Shares Outstanding   136,721,929  
Entity Public Float     $ 1,046,681,641