What to see in Budapest? Top 50 things to do, visit and explore in the capital of Hungary

What to see in Budapest?
Top 50 things to do, visit and explore in the capital of Hungary

In this article we, Purpleliner Budapest, would like to recommend to you a top list consisting of the 50 most wanted sights and programmes in Budapest. Discover the rich cuisine of Hungary, visit the marvelous landmark of the city, and enjoy some of the coolest activities available in town. Feel free to browse our suggestions and enjoy your stay here.
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1. Visit Buda Castle

The Matthias Church and the Fisherman’s Bastion and the Hilton Hotel – Photo: Purpleliner Budapest

Obviously number one on our list is to visit the Castle district. That’s right, it is an entire district filled to the brim with wonderful sights. Explore this historic castle complex offering panoramic views of the city, and many other sights to behold. Explore the centuries-old church Matthias Church, enjoy panoramic views of the city and the Danube from the fairy-tale fortress of the Fisherman’s Bastion. Check out the torture chamber of Dracula within the Labyrinth of the castle, visit former home Houdini near Dísz tér, explore the unusual museum of Hospital in the rock. Discover the Buda palace and the museums inside. Finally descend with the Funicular after an exhausting day’s tour to leave the Castle District.

2. Take a Danube river cruise

purpleliner budapest cruise

Best pic taking opportunities onboard a river cruise – Photo: Purpleliner.hu

Enjoy breathtaking views of Budapest’s landmarks from the water. Opting for a boat cruise is easily the best way to explore the city. You can admire the main highlights of Budapest, while avoiding crowded areas. Depending on where you would hop on board and start your tour, on the Pest side Silverline Cruises, on the Buda side Purpleliner Budapest got you covered in terms of sightseeing boat programmes.

3. Relax in thermal baths and spas

Interior of the Gellért Bath – Photo: The Common Wanderer

Budapest is also known as the capital of spas. Numerous thermal spas are scattered in town. Experience the city’s famous thermal waters in a stunning Neo-Baroque setting. The largest spa complex of Budapest boasts 18 thermal pools. During weekend nights this bath organizes the so-called “Sparty” events. Take a dip in one of the pools of Lukács Thermal Bath or visit the Rudas and bathe in history in this medieval Turkish bath. The choice is yours!

4. Stroll along the Danube Promenade

The quiet morning promenade with a magnificent view – Photo: Purpleliner Budapest

Take a leisurely walk along the riverbank, admiring the iconic Chain Bridge. Peak inside the luxurious hotels along the riverbank, pass the Vigadó building and admire the vivid and lively statues along the promenade on the Pest side. The Pest Promenade, also known as the Danube Promenade, is a picturesque walkway along the eastern bank of the Danube River in Budapest. Stretching between the Chain Bridge and the Elisabeth Bridge, this charming promenade offers stunning views of the river and the city’s iconic landmarks. Lined with historic buildings, elegant cafes, and scenic parks, it’s a popular spot for locals and tourists alike to take leisurely strolls, enjoy outdoor dining, or simply relax and soak in the beauty of the river. Additionally, during summertime the lower quay is closed off from traffic making it a lovely walkway for pedestrians and biker alike. During this time of the year there are additional facilities, catering units along this section of the quay extending between Margaret Bridge and Liberty Brigde.

5. Visit the Hungarian Parliament building

The Parliament and its vicinity – Photo: Purpleliner Budapest

Marvel at the impressive architecture of Hungary’s largest building and take a guided tour. Behold the Hungarian crown jewels, kept under the main dome of the Parliament. Take in the beauty of the other gorgeous buildings on Kossuth square. Visit the lapidary or the museum of the 1956 revolution located underground on both sides of the majestic building. The Parliament Guest Centre, located on the northern side of the building, offers visitors a unique opportunity to explore the history, architecture, and significance of this majestic landmark. As one of Europe’s largest and most impressive parliamentary buildings, the Hungarian Parliament is a symbol of the country’s rich history and traditions.

6. Experience the Ruin Bars

The concept of a “ruin bar” brought to you by Csendes Bár – Photo: placesofjuma.com

Dive into Budapest’s nightlife scene by visiting unique bars set in abandoned buildings. Szimpla is a must experience staple for sure, but feel free to explore the Ruin-bar district in its entirety. This circa 1 square kilometer wide area is filled to the brim with fun clubbing and barring activities. Go easy on your stomach and before (or after 🙂 a party-hearty night out be sure to sample some of the finest street cuisine that Budapest has to offer. Caravan could be a good place to start, but be prepared, there is more!

7. Explore Heroes’ Square

The back of the Heroes’ Square – Photo: projectexpedition.com

Admire the grand monuments celebrating Hungary’s history and culture. After the obvious main sights near the Danube, the Heroes’ Square is the most iconic landmark to represent Budapest. The statues and monuments on this square encapsulate the Hungarian history until the 19th century. The detailed statues and the grandeur layout of monuments, not to mention the two spectacular art museums, the Art Hall, and the Museum of Fine Arts, are a great way to get your bearings history-wise when visiting Budapest.

8. Explore City Park

Toward the Hunyadi Castle in the Park – Photo: budapest-bound.com

City Park Budapest, known locally as Városliget, is a sprawling green oasis in the heart of the city, offering a wealth of recreational and cultural attractions for visitors of all ages. Here are some highlights of what you can do in City Park: Visit the Vajdahunyad Castle, Budapest Zoo, and the Széchenyi Thermal Bath. This park is where the grand outdoor events, such as Mayday, Children Day, or Wine festivals are held annually. If none of the above-mentioned are interesting for you, just take a casual walk in this lovely wide parky area.

9. Enjoy the breath-taking panorama

Best view of the city – Photo: rtrp.jp

Balloonfly Budapest will provide you with the best vista of the city from a hot air balloon in the City Park. During your 15 minute “float” you can enjoy the 360 degree, birds-eye view of the city from 150 meters height in the sky. If you want to catch the most spectacular sight of the city, this is a must-do attraction. From the safety and comfort of the balloon’s gondola, passengers can enjoy breathtaking vistas of Budapest’s skyline, including its historic architecture, winding waterways, and lush green spaces. Whether you’re a photography enthusiast looking for the perfect aerial shot or simply seeking a memorable way to see the city from a new perspective, Balloonfly Budapest promises an unforgettable experience.

10. Tour the Great Market Hall

The hustle and bustle and the magnificent structure of the Great Market Hall – Photo: culturalheritageonline.com

Indulge in local delicacies and shop for traditional Hungarian souvenirs. From fresh products to local delicacies, spices, meats, fruits, and vegetables, also artisan crafts the market offers a wide variety for everyone. Don’t miss the opportunity to sample traditional dishes like lángos (fried dough), goulash, and chimney cake, or to pick up souvenirs such as paprika or embroidered textiles. Whether you’re a foodie, a culture enthusiast, or simply curious, a visit to the Central Market Hall is an essential Budapest experience.

11. Take a day trip to Szentendre

Szentendre a scenic little town at the Danube bend – Photo: szallas.hu

Explore this charming riverside town known for its art galleries and museums. Szentendre, is a charming riverside town located just north of Budapest. Known for its picturesque streets, colourful buildings, and vibrant arts scene, Szentendre is a popular day trip destination from the capital. Explore the town’s cobblestone streets lined with art galleries, museums, and souvenir shops. Don’t miss the Serbian Orthodox Church with its stunning frescoes or the Marzipan Museum for a sweet treat. Enjoy a leisurely stroll along the Danube River or relax in one of the cozy cafes overlooking the water. With its blend of history, culture, and artistic flair, Szentendre offers a delightful escape from the hustle and bustle of the city.

12. Discover Gellért Hill

The Citadela on top of the Gellért Hill – Photo: Puplreliner Budapest

Hike to the top for panoramic views of Budapest and visit the iconic Citadel, a fortress built in the 19th century, which now serves as a popular lookout point. Admire the majestic Liberty Statue standing atop the hill, symbolizing Hungary’s liberation from Nazi occupation. Explore the Gellért Hill Cave, a natural cave system turned into a chapel.

13. Visit the House of Terror Museum

The seemingly calm building holds many dark secrets – House of terror – Photo: Discover Budapest 2014

Learn about Hungary’s turbulent 20th-century history at this thought-provoking museum. The House of Terror, or Terror Háza in Hungarian, is a museum located in Budapest that commemorates the victims of both the Nazi and Communist regimes in Hungary during the 20th century. Housed in the former headquarters of the Nazi secret police (Arrow Cross Party) and later the Communist secret police (ÁVH), the museum provides insight into the dark periods of Hungarian history. Exhibits include artifacts, photographs, and personal accounts detailing the oppressive regimes, political persecution, and the struggle for freedom. Visitors can explore the haunting exhibits, including prison cells and interrogation rooms, gaining a deeper understanding of the atrocities committed during Hungary’s tumultuous past.

14. Experience Hungarian cuisine

A bonafide gulash soup – Photo: Purpleliner.hu

Sample traditional dishes like goulash, lángos, and chimney cake at local eateries. Hungarian cuisine is renowned for its rich flavors, hearty dishes, and unique culinary traditions. Here are some quintessential Hungarian dishes to try:

  • Goulash (Gulyás): A flavorful soup or stew made with tender beef, onions, paprika, and vegetables, often served with bread or noodles.
  • Venison Stew (Szarvas pörkölt): Venison (deer) cooked in a creamy paprika sauce, with added red wine, typically served with dumplings or noodles.
  • Stuffed Cabbage Rolls (Töltött Káposzta): Cabbage leaves stuffed with a savory mixture of ground pork, rice, onions, and spices, then simmered in a tomato sauce.
  • Chicken Paprikash (Csirkepaprikás): Similar to paprika chicken, but with a thicker sauce and served with sour cream.
  • Lángos: Deep-fried dough topped with garlic, sour cream, and grated cheese, a popular street food snack.
  • Dobos Torta: A delicious, layered sponge cake with chocolate buttercream and caramel topping, named after its creator, József Dobos.
  • Hortobágyi Palacsinta: Savory crepes filled with a seasoned meat mixture, then topped with rich paprika sauce, complete with sour cream.
  • Fisherman’s Soup or Stew (Halászlé): A spicy soup made with freshwater fish, (typically carp) paprika, onions, and tomatoes, often served with bread or noodles.
  • Hungarian Sausage (Kolbász): A variety of flavorful sausages made with pork, paprika, garlic, and other spices, often grilled or fried.
  • Kürtőskalács: Also known as chimney cake, a sweet pastry made from rolled dough coated in sugar, then roasted over an open fire.

These are just a few highlights of Hungarian cuisine, which reflects the country’s diverse culinary influences and agricultural abundance. Enjoy exploring the flavors of Hungary!

15. Attend a concert at the Hungarian State Opera House

The stunning interior of the Opera – Photo: betm.theskykid.com

Marvel at the stunning architecture and enjoy world-class performances. The Opera House frequently hosts special gala evenings, concerts, and other cultural events, providing excellent opportunities for entertainment and unique experiences. Take a guided tour of the Opera House to learn about its history, architectural details, and behind-the-scenes insights.

16. Relax on Margaret Island

The mesmerizing water show of the Musical Fountain on Margaret Island – Photo: Purpleliner.hu

Escape the hustle and bustle of the city and unwind in this peaceful park. Margaret Island, nestled in the heart of Budapest on the Danube River, is a serene oasis of greenery and relaxation. Spanning 2.5 kilometres in length, this island retreat offers a perfect escape from the city’s hustle and bustle. Steeped in history and natural beauty, it boasts lush gardens, scenic walking paths, and historic landmarks. From its medieval ruins to its modern recreational facilities, Margaret Island offers something for everyone, whether it’s a leisurely stroll along the riverbanks, a refreshing dip in its pools, or simply a peaceful moment of tranquillity amidst nature.

17. Explore the Jewish Quarter

Discover the Dohány street Synagogue – Photo: thermalfudo.hu

Discover historic synagogues, trendy cafes, and street art in this vibrant neighborhood. The Jewish Quarter in Budapest is a vibrant and historic neighborhood known for its rich cultural heritage and dynamic atmosphere. Once the heart of Jewish life in the city, it’s now a bustling district filled with trendy ruin pubs, eclectic street art, and bustling markets. Amidst its lively streets, you’ll find architectural gems like the Dohány street Synagogue – Great Synagogue, the largest synagogue in Europe, alongside cozy cafes, kosher restaurants, and bustling markets. The area is a testament to Budapest’s multicultural past and present, offering visitors a unique blend of history, culture, and contemporary flair.

18. Take a ride on the Budapest Eye

The Budapest Eye located in the middle of the city – Photo: Discover Budapest 2014

Enjoy panoramic views of the city from this iconic Ferris wheel. The Budapest Eye, also known as the Sziget Eye, is a prominent landmark in the heart of Budapest, offering panoramic views of the city. This giant Ferris wheel stands tall on Erzsébet Square, providing riders with breathtaking vistas of Budapest’s iconic landmarks, including the Danube, Buda Castle, and the Parliament Building. Whether day or night, a ride on the Budapest Eye promises a memorable experience, allowing visitors to capture stunning photos and create lasting memories of their time in the Hungarian capital.

19. Visit the Hospital in the Rock

Patient room nr. 1, deep within the Hospital in the rock – Photo: Sziklakorhaz

Explore an underground hospital and bunker system used during World War II. The Hospital in the Rock is an extraordinary historical site nestled within the Buda Castle district of Budapest. Originally a natural cave system, it was converted into a hospital during World War II to accommodate wounded soldiers. Later, during the Cold War, it was further developed into a nuclear bunker and hospital facility. Explore this extravagant museum to learn more about the hardships of the Cold War era in Hungary.

20. Take a tour of the Hungarian National Museum

A temporary exhibition in the National Museum – Photo: Expedia.com.au

Learn about Hungary’s history and culture through fascinating exhibits. Located in a magnificent Neoclassical building in the heart of the city, the museum boasts an extensive collection of artifacts spanning various periods, from prehistoric times to the present day. The National Museum provides a compelling insight into the diverse and fascinating story of Hungary.

21. Experience a Hungarian folk-dance show

Traditional folk performance on board of a river catamaran ship – Photo: Silverline Cruises

Hungarian traditional dances reflect the rich cultural heritage of the country, with each region boasting its own distinctive style. Watch traditional dances and performances showcasing Hungarian culture. Better yet, combine your dance experience with a Danube cruise. Silverline Cruise’s Dinner & Folk programme will guarantee you both, plus it includes a complete dinner as well. What more can you ask for? These dances, with their vibrant rhythms and expressive movements, are an integral part of Hungarian culture, preserving the traditions and heritage of the country for future generations to enjoy.

22. Visit St. Stephen’s Basilica

The front façade of the St. Stephen’s Basilica – Photo Discover Budapest 2014

Admire the stunning architecture and climb to the top for panoramic views of the city. Named in honour of Hungary’s first king, Stephen, this majestic church is a testament to the country’s rich religious heritage and architectural prowess. Completed in 1905, the basilica’s grandeur is evident in its soaring dome, which reaches a height of 96 meters, symbolizing the equality of church and state. Offering panoramic views of the city from its dome and hosting regular concerts, St. Stephen’s Basilica is not only a place of worship but also a cultural and artistic hub, inviting visitors to experience the grandeur and spirituality of Budapest’s architectural gem.

23. Explore the Hungarian National Gallery

The early baroque style building of the Hungarian National Gallery – Discover Budapest 2014

Admire Hungarian art spanning centuries, housed in the beautiful Buda Castle. Housed within the historic Buda Castle complex, the gallery showcases a vast collection of Hungarian fine art spanning centuries, from medieval to contemporary works. Visitors can explore diverse exhibitions featuring paintings, sculptures, and decorative arts by renowned Hungarian artists, offering insight into the nation’s artistic evolution and cultural identity.

24. Take a walk across Liberty Bridge

The Liberty Bridge from the Buda side – Photo: Discover Budapest 2014

Enjoy views of the Danube and Gellért Hill from this iconic bridge. Plan your route wisely after visiting the Market Hall. Use this bridge to get to Gellért Bath on the Buda side. In addition, the bridge connects two major university districts, these parts of the city are always on the move. Engage in a conversation with local youngsters! Get to know locals or expats alike.

25. Visit the Shoes on the Danube bank memorial

Bronze shoes on the riverbank, a grim reminder of the Holocaust – Photo: Purpleliner Budapest

Pay homage to the victims of the Holocaust at this poignant memorial. The Shoes on the Danube Bank Memorial is a poignant and somber tribute located on the banks of the Danube River in Budapest, Hungary. It serves as a powerful reminder of the tragic events that occurred during World War II, specifically the atrocities committed against Hungarian Jews. The memorial consists of 60 pairs of iron shoes, representing the footwear left behind by Jewish victims who were ordered to remove them before being shot and thrown into the river by members of the fascist Arrow Cross militia. The memorial, created by film director Can Togay and sculptor Gyula Pauer, is a solemn commemoration of the thousands of innocent lives lost during this dark period of history.

26. Experience the Széchenyi Chain Bridge

The lion statues guarding both sides of the Chain Bridge – Photo: Purpleliner Budapest

Walk across this iconic bridge connecting Buda and Pest. The Chain Bridge, spanning the majestic Danube River in Budapest, is an iconic symbol of the city’s architectural grandeur and historical significance. Built in the 19th century, it was the first permanent bridge to connect the two distinct halves of Budapest: Buda and Pest.

27. Visit the Hungarian National Museum of Ethnography

The Museum of Ethnography and the ’56 memorial in the middle – Photo: amazingarchitecture.com

Explore exhibits showcasing Hungary’s diverse cultural heritage. The Hungarian National Museum of Ethnography, located near the Heroes’ Square, is a treasure trove of cultural heritage and traditions. It showcases the rich diversity of Hungarian folk art, customs, and everyday life, offering visitors a fascinating glimpse into the country’s history and identity. The museum’s extensive collection includes traditional costumes, handicrafts, household items, and religious artifacts, providing insight into the customs and beliefs of Hungary’s various ethnic groups and regions.

28. Take a day trip to Eger

The main square of Eger from one of the defensive towers – Photo: travelbus.hu

Explore this charming town known for its historic castle and thermal baths. Steeped in history, Eger boasts a stunning Baroque town centre adorned with elegant buildings and cobblestone streets. At the heart of the town lies the imposing Eger Castle, a symbol of Hungarian resilience against the Ottoman Empire during the 16th-century Siege of Eger. For wine enthusiasts, Eger is synonymous with the renowned Egri Bikavér, or Bull’s Blood, a robust red wine produced in the region’s vineyards. Visitors can explore the historic wine cellars and vineyards dotting the surrounding hills, sampling exquisite wines, and learning about Eger’s winemaking traditions.

29. Enjoy a scenic cruise on Lake Balaton

Lake Balaton and the Badacsony hills on the horizon – Photo: tripsavvy.com

Relax on Hungary’s largest lake and explore charming lakeside towns. A ferry service operates between Tihany and Fonyód, providing a convenient and scenic way to cross Lake Balaton between these two charming destinations. The ferry ride offers passengers breathtaking views of the lake and its surrounding landscapes, making it a memorable experience for travellers. The journey typically takes around 30 minutes, allowing passengers to relax and enjoy the tranquil beauty of Hungary’s largest lake.

30. Visit the Budapest History Museum

Entrance of the Budapest History Museum – Photo: Laguiadebudapest.com

Learn about Budapest’s past through archaeological finds and historical artifacts. The Budapest History Museum, located in Buda Castle, offers a captivating journey through the rich history of Hungary’s capital city. Housed within the historic Royal Palace, the museum’s exhibits chronicle Budapest’s evolution from its ancient origins to its modern-day identity. Visitors can explore archaeological artifacts, medieval treasures, and interactive displays that bring the city’s past to life.

31. Explore the Underground Labyrinth

In the depths you can explore the dimly lit caverns – Photo: viajarbudapest.com

Discover a network of tunnels and caves beneath Buda Castle. This fascinating labyrinth spans several kilometers and has a history dating back to medieval times. Visitors can explore the labyrinth’s winding passages, secret chambers, and hidden corners, immersing themselves in a mysterious subterranean world. Throughout its history, the labyrinth has served various purposes, from wine storage to military defenses and even as a shelter during World War II. Today, it offers visitors a unique and immersive experience, with guided tours highlighting its historical significance and intriguing legends.

32. Discover the Museum of Fine Arts

The stunning Baroque Hall of the Museum of Fine arts – Photo: pestbuda.hu

Admire masterpieces by European artists spanning centuries. The Museum of Fine Arts in Budapest is a prestigious cultural institution housing an extensive collection of European art spanning from antiquity to the modern era. Located in Heroes’ Square, the museum’s neoclassical building is itself a magnificent architectural landmark. Inside, visitors can admire masterpieces by renowned artists such as Raphael, Rembrandt, Velázquez, El Greco, Goya, Monet, and Van Gogh, among others.

33. Visit the Budapest Zoo & Botanical Garden

A peaceful scene at the Budapest City Zoo – Photo: zoochat.com – Sun Wukong

Explore one of the oldest zoos in the world and discover a diverse range of animal species. The Budapest Zoo, located in the heart of the city’s historic Városliget, is one of the oldest and most beloved zoos in Europe. Founded in 1866, it is home to a diverse array of animal species from around the world, making it a popular destination for families, animal lovers, and tourists alike. The zoo’s spacious and beautifully landscaped grounds provide a natural habitat for its residents, including elephants, giraffes, lions, tigers, bears, and numerous species of primates, birds, and reptiles. Whether you’re exploring the tropical rainforest pavilion, marvelling at the majestic big cats, or simply enjoying a leisurely stroll through its picturesque gardens, the Budapest City Zoo offers a memorable experience for visitors of all ages, highlighting the wonders of the natural world and the importance of wildlife conservation.

34. Take a ride on the Children’s Railway

Children railway – photo: offbeatbudapest.com

Enjoy a scenic train ride through the Buda Hills operated by children. The Children’s Railway (Gyermekvasút) in Budapest is a unique attraction that offers children the opportunity to work as railway staff under adult supervision. This narrow-gauge railway, operated almost entirely by children aged 10 to 14, runs through the scenic hills of the Buda side of the city. As passengers ride along the route, they can enjoy stunning views of Budapest’s lush greenery, forests, and charming neighbourhoods. The train stops at various stations, such as János-hegy, Normafa and Hűvös-völgy allowing passengers to disembark and explore the surroundings of these areas before continuing their journey.

35. Explore the Palace of Arts

The entrance of the so-called MÜPA – Photo: Purpleliner Budapest

Attend concerts, exhibitions, and cultural events at this modern arts complex. The Palace of Arts (Művészetek Palotája), also known as Müpa Budapest, is a prominent cultural institution located in the heart of Budapest. It serves as a major hub for the performing arts, hosting a diverse array of concerts, theatrical performances, exhibitions, and other cultural events throughout the year.

36. Discover the Hungarian Railway History Park

Locomitives resting in the railway museum – Photo: pestbuda.hu

Explore vintage trains and locomotives in this open-air museum. The Hungarian Railway History Park (Magyar Vasúttörténeti Park) in Budapest is a fascinating destination for railway enthusiasts and history buffs alike. Situated on the outskirts of the city, this open-air museum offers a unique glimpse into Hungary’s rich railway heritage.

Visit the Hungarian Natural History Museum

Prehistoric creatures in the Natural History Museum – Photo: Körösi Tamás

Discover exhibits showcasing Hungary’s rich natural heritage. The Hungarian Natural History Museum (Magyar Természettudományi Múzeum) in Budapest is a treasure trove of natural wonders, showcasing the rich biodiversity and geological history of Hungary and the wider world. Situated in a majestic Neo-Renaissance building near Heroes’ Square, the museum invites visitors to explore the wonders of the natural world through captivating exhibits, interactive displays, and educational programs. Inside the museum, visitors can embark on a journey through time and space, from the formation of the Earth to the present day. The museum’s extensive collection includes fossils, minerals, rocks, and preserved specimens of plants and animals, providing insight into the evolution of life on our planet.

38. Escape the Puzzle Rooms of Budapest – if you can!

Work together as a team to beat the puzzles and earn freedom – Picture: Thelogicescapesme.com

Did you know that Hungarians “invented” the concept of the escape rooms? Inspired by movies such as Saw the first puzzle rooms appeared in 2007 in Budapest. Escape rooms in Budapest offer thrilling and immersive experiences for adventure seekers. Gather your friends and test your puzzle-solving skills as you attempt to escape from elaborately themed rooms within a set time limit. With a variety of themes to choose from, including historical mysteries, espionage missions, and supernatural adventures, there’s something for everyone. Whether you’re navigating through ancient ruins, solving a murder mystery, or unraveling the secrets of a haunted house, Budapest’s escape rooms provide an exciting challenge and an opportunity for teamwork and fun. So, gather your team, sharpen your wits, and embark on an unforgettable escape room adventure in Budapest!

39. Visit the Botanical Gardens in district VIII.

Tranquil gardens in the heart of Pest – Photo: Pixabay

One of the highlights of the Botanical Garden is its glasshouse complex, which shelters delicate and rare plant specimens in carefully controlled environments. Here, visitors can admire colorful orchids, carnivorous plants, and other tropical treasures, all thriving under the protective canopy of the glasshouse. Visitors to the Botanical Garden can wander along winding paths lined with exotic flowers, towering trees, and lush foliage. The garden features themed areas, including sections dedicated to alpine plants, tropical rainforests, and desert succulents, providing a rich tapestry of botanical diversity to explore.

40. Experience the Budapest Christmas Markets

Stalls near the Basilica, the first day of the Christmas Market – Photo: Pinterest.com

Shop for unique gifts and enjoy festive food and drinks. The Christmas market in Budapest is a festive extravaganza that fills the heart of the city with holiday cheer. Set against the backdrop of historic landmarks like St. Stephen’s Basilica and Vörösmarty Square, the market offers a magical atmosphere where visitors can immerse themselves in the spirit of the season. Browse through rows of quaint wooden stalls adorned with twinkling lights, selling a variety of traditional handicrafts, festive decorations, and unique gifts. Indulge in delicious Hungarian treats like kürtőskalács (chimney cake), kürtős confectionery, roasted chestnuts, and mulled wine, filling the air with irresistible aromas.

41. Take a walk along Andrassy Avenue

Andrássy Ave. towards the inner city. Photo: Terezvaros.hu

Explore Budapest’s grand boulevard lined with shops, cafes, and historic buildings. Andrássy Avenue, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is one of Budapest’s most iconic boulevards, renowned for its elegant architecture, cultural landmarks, and vibrant atmosphere. Stretching for over 2.5 kilometres from the city centre to City Park (Városliget), this grand thoroughfare offers a fascinating journey through Budapest’s history and heritage. Lined with majestic buildings, Andrássy Avenue showcases an impressive array of architectural styles, including Neo-Renaissance, Neo-Baroque, and Art Nouveau. Prominent landmarks along the avenue include the, the Hungarian University of Fine Arts, and the Hungarian National Opera House and several foreign embassy buildings.

42. Discover the Museum of Applied Arts

Explore exhibits showcasing Hungarian design and craftsmanship. – Photo: pinterest.com

The Museum of Applied Arts in Budapest is a cultural gem showcasing the beauty and innovation of applied arts and design. Designed by renowned Hungarian architect Ödön Lechner, the museum itself is a masterpiece of Hungarian Secessionist architecture, often referred to as “Hungarian Art Nouveau.” Located in the heart of Budapest, the museum’s striking exterior features intricate ceramic tiles, colorful mosaics, and unique architectural details inspired by Hungarian folk art and motifs from the Far East. Inside, visitors can explore a diverse collection of decorative arts, including ceramics, glassware, textiles, furniture, and metalwork, spanning various periods and styles.

43. Experience the Sziget Festival

The world renowned Sziget Festival main stage – Photo: Thetravelmagazine.net

Attend music concerts, performances, and cultural events, celebrating in the middle of the summer. The Sziget Festival is one of Europe’s largest and most vibrant music and cultural events, held annually on Óbudai Island (Óbudai-sziget) in Budapest, Hungary. This week-long festival attracts music lovers, artists, and performers from around the world, creating a diverse and immersive experience for attendees. Spanning multiple stages and venues across the island, Sziget offers an eclectic lineup of musical acts, ranging from international headliners to emerging artists across various genres, including rock, pop, electronic, hip-hop, and world music. Concertgoers can enjoy live performances from their favorite bands and discover new music from diverse artists representing different cultures and styles.

44. Enjoy the city’s sky bars

Reach out for the sky at the High Note Skybar – Photo: Enjoytravel.com

The sky terraces of Budapest offering breathtaking views of the cityscape from above. Perched high atop buildings, these open-air terraces provide a panoramic vista of Budapest’s iconic landmarks, including the Danube, Buda Castle, and the Parliament Building. These are ideal spots to capture stunning photos, relax with a drink, or simply soak in the beauty of the Hungarian capital from a bird’s-eye perspective. Whether you visit during the day to admire the city bathed in sunlight or in the evening to witness the sparkling lights below. Next to the Basilica High Note SkyBar, in the south the panorama of the MOL Tower, in the central park of Pest the 360 Bar promises an unforgettable experience for visitors seeking panoramic views of Budapest.

45. Explore the historic Royal Palace of Sissi in Gödöllő

Sissi’s summer residence at Gödöllő – Photo: sweettravel.com.

The Sissi Palace in Gödöllő, Hungary, is a magnificent Baroque-style palace that served as a favorite retreat for Empress Elisabeth of Austria, also known as Sissi. Built in the 18th century, the palace is renowned for its stunning architecture, beautiful gardens, and connection to the Habsburg royal family. Visitors to the Sissi Palace can explore its spacious interiors, including lavishly decorated rooms, grand halls, and elegant salons. Highlights of the palace tour include the Empress’s living quarters, which have been faithfully restored to reflect the luxurious lifestyle of the imperial family.

46. Go to a concert on the A38 ship docked in the Danube

The stranded freighter, used as a party boat – Photo: Purpleliner Budapest

The A38 Party Boat in Budapest is an iconic nightlife venue situated on the Danube River. Housed in a converted Ukrainian stone-carrier ship, the A38 offers a unique setting for unforgettable parties and cultural events. Throughout the year, the A38 hosts a diverse range of entertainment, including live concerts, DJ sets, theatrical performances, and art exhibitions. With its dynamic programming, the venue attracts both locals and international visitors seeking an immersive cultural experience.

47. Use MOL Bubi, the Budapest’s city bike system

“Bringóhintó” quad bycicles and more common one in the front – Photo: Purpleliner Budapest

MOL Bubi is Budapest’s public bike-sharing system, providing convenient and eco-friendly transportation options for locals and visitors alike. Operated by MOL Group, one of Hungary’s leading oil and gas companies, MOL Bubi offers a network of bicycle rental stations located throughout the city. With MOL Bubi, users can easily rent bicycles for short trips around Budapest, allowing them to explore the city’s attractions, parks, and neighborhoods at their own pace. The system is designed to promote sustainable urban mobility and reduce traffic congestion, offering a convenient alternative to traditional forms of transportation.

48. Find all the Kolodko Mini Statues

Broken tank in front of the Parliament – Photo: Purpleliner Budapest

Find all the miniature statues hidden in Budapest. In the last decade many tiny statues of cartoon figures appeared in random places scattered across downtown and later outside of Budapest as well. Most of them are not easy to spot, and many of the city folk just pass them by without notice. The “culprit” behind these small wonders is Mikhail Kolodko, a Carphatian sculptor artist, who places these mini statues at seemingly random places unannounced. So, keep an eye on the numerous tiny surprises at various locations all over Budapest. It’s fun to start a scavenging hunt to find as many Kolodko Statue as you can and be sure to take a picture with them.

49. Play your favourite board games in Board Game Bars

Tough decisions in play: focus on the gameplay or have a sip of coffee – Photo: LAist

Board game bars in Budapest offer a cozy and laid-back atmosphere where you can enjoy good company, delicious drinks, and a wide selection of board games. Whether you’re a casual player or a serious strategist, these bars provide the perfect setting for a fun-filled evening with friends or family. With shelves stocked with classics like Monopoly and Scrabble, as well as modern favorites and niche titles, Star Wars games or LORT, AD&D, Eldritch or Arkham Horror, Nemesis, there’s no shortage of options to choose from. So, grab a drink, pick a game, and let the good times roll as you engage in friendly competition and laughter at Budapest’s board game bars. It’s the perfect way to unwind and enjoy some quality time with loved ones while exploring new games and making memories together.

50. Observe the thought-provoking street art in Budapest

Flimsy or detailed the downtown is full of inspiring graffiti – Photo: Gauvin.pictures

Last but least we would like to close our list with an alternative tour recommendation revolving around the street art and graffiti of Budapest. Street art in Budapest is a vibrant expression of creativity that adds colour and character to the city’s streets. From striking murals to whimsical graffiti, Budapest’s urban landscape is adorned with a diverse array of street art pieces that reflect the city’s dynamic culture and spirit. Wander through neighbourhoods like the Jewish Quarter, District VII, and the Inner City to discover hidden gems tucked away in alleyways and on building facades. Admire the talent of local and international street artists whose works range from thought-provoking social commentary to whimsical illustrations. Keep an eye out for guided street art tours that provide insight into the stories behind the artworks and the artists who created them. We hope you enjoyed our list as much as we loved to prepare it. Expect to hear from us real soon. In our next entry we would like to give you a Festival & Concert calendar for 2024. Stay tuned and thank you for choosing Purpleliner Budapest.