Travels
  • 1Budapest sights
  • 2Budapest sights
  • 2Budapest sights
  • 2Budapest sights

PEST

1. Parliament

The world's second-largest parliament building its neo-Gothic design is inspired in part by Londons parliament. It is equally lavish on the inside, but tourists must be part of an organised sightseeing tour to enter. Near Margret Bridge. FREE.


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2. St. Stephen's Basilica

Named after Szent Istvn (St Stephen), founder of the Hungarian Christian state, the basilica towers over the surrounding buildings just a short walk from Dek tr. Though Budapest's biggest cathedral is not a basilica in the architectural sense tradition and the authority bestowed by the Pope have earned it this denotation. Its construction was begun in the neo-Classic style but later modified by Mikls Ibl according to architectural models from the Italian Renaissance. Dedicated in 1905, with a dome 96 m high Basilica holds up to 8500 persons. St. Stephen's statue of Carrara marble by Alajos Strbl stands in the Sanctuary. 9-5, 7-8 M-F, 9-1, 7-8 SA, 1-5 7-8 SU. FREE


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3. City Park / Vrosliget - Heroes' Square

In the Middle Ages, this former marshy region was notable for the Diets held there on St. George's Day. The drainage of the swamp and the building up of this territory began in the 19 th century, and soon the park became a popular resting-place. This park lived its most glorious days during the Millenial Exhibition in 1896 commemorating the Magyar Conquest. The "Castle of Vajdahunyad" was built for the Millennial Exhibition by Ignc Alpr to illustrate the most beautiful buildings in the history of Hungarian architecture.

Statues of Heroes, whos who of Hungarian history. Vrosliget (City Park) also inc Vajdahunyad Castle, Zoo, Szchenyi baths.


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BUDA

4. Fishermens Bastion

330ft, 9-11The Halszbstya has turrets with views of the city. The minarets and walls look medieval, but they were actually built in 1902 by Frigyes Schulek to complement Matthias Chruch - 600ft, 9-5 M-F, 9-1 SA, 1-5 SU.


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5. Buda Castle

1400/1100ft, 9:30-7:30. Residence of Hungarian kings. Built in the 13th century following the Mongol invasion, was destroyed and rebuilt many times. Built on medieval foundations, the Renaissance structures were destroyed by the Turks. Later, the Baroque Palace burned down, then its reconstructed buildings were damaged during the War of Independence (1848). In the late 19th century Mikls Ybl oversaw the reconstruction and enlargement of the Palace, which was completed in the neo-Baroque style by Alajos Hauszmann. Besieged 31 times, were laid in the 13th century after Mongol tribes had invaded Hungary. King Bla built a keep surrounded by thick walls in 1243 on a site which was previously occupied by a small farming community. Around the keep, a small town called Buda started to grow. During the Reign of King Lajos the Great, the keep was fortified and a palace was built. After the Austro-Hungarian Compromise of 1867, there was a new need for a castle in Budapest to express Hungary's larger independence. To the buildings left from Charles III and Maria Theresa, a new wing and central domed structure were added. At the end of W.W.II, the complex was damaged again by fire, but after the restoration started in the fifties, the Buda Castle can be seen in all its glory again. The Castle with its 203 rooms now houses several museums, among them the Budapest Historical Museum and the National Gallery.


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6. Gellrt Hill and the Citadella

Visible from everywhere, Gellrt Hill (hegy), with the Freedom Monument on its peak. The 14-metre monument was originally commissioned by Mikls Horthy as a memorial to his son, who died in a war. When the Russians arrived, they replaced the propellor that the figure was originally meant to hold aloft with a palm frond to symbolise the countrys liberation from the Nazis. Just beyond the monument is the Citadella 1200ft, is a fortress constructed by the Habsburgs following the 184849 War of Independence. houses Gellrt Spa. Cave Church is on your way up. Citadella It is a white-stoned fortress from the 19th century on the top of Gellrt Hill. 9-9

Caves

7. Castle Cave Church (Varbarlang)

Dripping of water. Temp constant 57 degrees, humidity 90%. Stretches 6 miles beneath the streets of the Castle District of Buda. Originally fashioned by the action of thermal waters were already in use over a half a million years ago as both hunting ground and shelter. It was much later, during the Turkish period, that for military and economic reasons the system was expanded. Individual chambers were not only joined together with each other but also to the cellars belonging to the houses above. Thus a real labyrinth was formed in the very belly of Castle Hill. Further systematic construction of tunnels linking the caves was carried out in the 1930s. There was even an underground shelter built that could accommodate up to ten thousand people. Its value became obvious during the siege of Budapest towards the end of the 2nd ww. 1000s of people took refuge here in the winter of 1944/45. There is a story perhaps apocryphal, nobody really knows any more that for a time post was delivered to families sheltering in the caves. Nowadays 43,000 square feet of caves can be explored and enjoyed in Buda Castles unique Labyrinth. Open 9.30am 7.30pm Near Chain Bridge West side in Castle District of Buda.

THERMAL BATHS

8. Szechenyi Furdo

Baroque architecture, hot & cold pools, steam rooms and a well stocked cafe for those who fancy a beer and a game of chess. Magical experience of swimming in the three naturally heated outdoor pools, with snow on the ground an air temperature of 5C and swirling steam masking the people standing next to you. The jacuzzi/whirlpool provided an invigorating contrast. An absolute must for a winter outdoor sensation. They give you a refund if you dont stay the full time allowed.

Ladies and gents' changing rooms are separate in the courtyard, you will be reunited with your bathing companion.

2 pools at each end of the courtyard are the best; the one on the left as you come out of the changing rooms is slightly cooler, so go in this one first, or it will feel really cold. The one on the right is warmer and old men play chess in it. You can also go inside through one of the creepy looking doorways in the walls, and there are more medicinal baths, steam rooms, and great big tubs of ice. You can get drinks and snacks inside, too. It is excellent, always gets good reviews and I would always recommend it, especially for families. There are quite a few indoor pools with varying temperatures, plus a couple of steam baths and two large saunas. They have a very nice bucket shower next to the sauna, you pull a chain and cold water is dumped on your head, very refreshing. Yellow subway to the Szechenyi Furdo stop (furdo means bath). Come out of the metro and walk towards the yellow building. The entrance hall for the baths is round the side, not the first one you come to out of the metro (that's the door for the medicinal baths).


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9. The Great Synagogue

The Dohny utca Synagogue, between the Dek tr and Astoria metro stations, is the world's 2nd largest (after the one in New York). It is also the focal point of Budapest's thriving Jewish community. Behind it, towards what was formerly Budapest's Jewish ghetto, the Raoul Wallenberg Memorial Park dedicated to the Swedish businessman who rescued thousands of Hungary's Jews from the holocaust contains a silver tree whose leaves are inscribed with the names of many of the victims. It is a beautiful tribute to those who lost their lives. The Synagogue of Pest is one of the most beautiful and largest in Europe. The Austrian Ludwig Frster was commissioned to design the building which was erected between 1854 and 1859, and displays Romantic and Morisco motifs. The three flat-celling halls of the Synagogue are of equal height. The celling and women's gallery are supported by cast-iron columns, testifying for the structure's advanced technical level. Heroes' Chapel was raised behind the Synagogue in 1931, and the Jewish Museum in 1932. Nearish hotel (South pest), Between Elizabeth & Chain bridge. 300ft, 10-3 M-TH, 10-2 F, 10-2 SU.


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10. Chain Bridge

Szchenyi lnchd was the first permanent link between Buda and Pest and is a fitting monument to Istvn Szchenyi known as the 'Greatest Hungarian'. 1832, count Istvn Szchenyi, "the greatest Hungarian" began to organize the construction of the bridge. While travelling in England, Szchenyi became personally acquainted with William Thierney Clark, who was commissioned to draft the plans for the bridge, and his namesake Adam Clark was asked to direct the construction , which was finished in 1849. The retreating German troops blew up the Chain Bridge in January 1945. This vital element of Budapest's cityscape was restored on the 100th anniversary of its inauguration.


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11. Elizabeth Bridge

Built at the start of the 20th century, Erzsbet hd was the worlds longest single-span chain bridge. Destroyed during World War II; rebuilt with a completely different design. Todays reincarnation is in striking white and is watched over by the spectacular statue of St Gellrt on the craggy side of Gellrt Hill.


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12. Margaret Island

Margitsziget has a huge Palatinus outdoor swimming complex, an open-air theatre, Japanese and Rose gardens, early-medieval ruins, 2 spa hotels and a low-key beer garden. This 2 km long island. Got its name after Princess Margaret who lived here in a convent in the 13th century. The island was inhabited from the 12th century. Dominicans and Franciscans established monasteries here. From the late 18th century it became a summer resort for aristocrats and later for the upper middle-class. Medicinal thermal baths and fine restaurants.

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