• Hungarian Parliament

Budapest

Europe's most underrated big city, Budapest is as challenging as it is enchanting. The sprawling Hungarian capital on the banks of the Danube is a city of nuance and paradox — a unique metropolis at the heart of a unique nation. Here you'll find experiences like nothing else in Europe: Feel your stress ebb away as you soak in hundred-degree water, surrounded by opulent Baroque domes...and by Speedo- and bikini-clad Hungarians. Ogle some of Europe's most richly decorated interiors, which echo a proud little nation's bygone glory days. Open your ears to a first-rate performance at one of the world's top opera houses — at bargain prices. Ponder the region's bleak communist era as you stroll amidst giant Soviet-style statues designed to evoke fear and obedience. Go for an after-dinner stroll along the Danube, immersed in a grand city that's bathed in floodlights.

At a Glance

In Pest

▲▲▲ Széchenyi Baths Budapest's steamy soaking scene in City Park — the city's single best attraction.

▲▲ Hungarian Parliament Vast riverside government center with remarkable interior.

▲▲ Great Market Hall Colorful Old World mall with produce, eateries, souvenirs, and great people-watching.

▲▲ Great Synagogue The world's second-largest, with fancy interior, good museum, and memorial garden.

▲▲ Hungarian State Opera House Neo-Renaissance splendor and affordable opera.

▲▲ House of Terror Harrowing remembrance of Nazis and communist secret police in former headquarters/torture site.

▲▲ Heroes' Square Mammoth tribute to Hungary's historic figures, fronted by art museums.

▲▲ City Park Budapest's backyard, with Art Nouveau zoo, Transylvanian Vajdahunyad Castle replica, amusement park, and Széchenyi Baths.

▲▲ Vajdahunyad Castle Epcot-like replica of a Transylvanian castle and other historical buildings.

▲▲ Holocaust Memorial Center Excellent memorial and museum honoring Hungarian victims of the Holocaust.

St. István's Basilica Budapest's largest church, with a saint's withered fist and great city views.

Hungarian National Museum Expansive collection of fragments from Hungary's history.

Margaret Island Budapest's traffic-free urban playground, with spas, ruins, gardens, a game farm, and fountains, set in the middle of the Danube.

In Buda

▲▲ Matthias Church Landmark Neo-Gothic church with gilded history-book interior and revered 16th-century statue of Mary and Jesus.

▲▲ Gellért Baths Touristy baths in historic Buda hotel.

▲▲ Rudas Baths Half-millennium-old Turkish dome over a series of hot-water pools.

▲▲ Memento Park Larger-than-life communist statues collected in one park, on the outskirts of town.

Hungarian National Gallery Top works by Hungarian artists, housed in the Royal Palace.

"Hospital in the Rock" Fascinating underground network of hospital and bomb-shelter corridors from WWII and the Cold War.

In Óbuda

Vasarely Museum Mind-bending works by Op Art founder.

Imre Varga Collection Evocative works by Hungary's top sculptor.

Plan

Photos

  • Statue Park, Budapest, Hungary
  • Szechenyi Baths, Budapest, Hungary
  • Chess Players, Szechenyi Baths, Budapest, Hungary
  • Gellert Baths Interior, Budapest, Hungary
  • Ruin Bar Courtyard, Budapest, Hungary
  • Ruin Bar Interior, Budapest, Hungary
  • hungary-budapest
  • budapest-chain-bridge
  • budapest-great-market-hall

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