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Things to do in Budapest

Things to do in  Budapest

Welcome to Budapest

Straddling a placid stretch of the Danube River, Budapest’s UNESCO-listed historic center thrums with rich culture and Bohemian flair. Explore centuries of history at St. Stephen’s Basilica, Andrássy Avenue, and Buda Castle by day, and join the revelers who pack the city’s ruin pubs until sunrise. To experience the city like a local, slip into the water at one of Budapest’s many thermal baths, which range from Ottoman-era bathhouses to art nouveau palaces with dozens of pools. And dining is a highlight of any trip to the city, from sampling aromatic paprika and rich pastries at covered markets to hunting for the perfect goulash to tasting Hungarian wines.

Top 15 attractions in Budapest

Budapest Danube River

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Flowing through the heart of Budapest, the Danube River is the lifeline of the Hungarian capital, as well as its geographic center, separating the hilly Buda district on the west bank from the bustling Pest on the east bank. The striking waterfront is also part of Budapest’s UNESCO World Heritage–listed treasures, home to landmarks such as the Szechenyi Chain Bridge, the Liberty Bridge, Buda Castle Hill, Matthias Church, the Hungarian Parliament Building, and Margaret Island.More

Széchenyi Thermal Baths (Széchenyi Gyógyfürdo)

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One of the largest and most famous thermal baths in Europe, Budapest’s Széchenyi Thermal Baths (Széchenyi Gyógyfürdo) are one of Hungary's most visited attractions. Soaking in the mineral-rich waters, with startling blue pools set against the backdrop of a grand neo-baroque palace, is a quintessential Budapest experience. It’s also a luxurious one, especially when coupled with a visit to the spa, which offers everything from saunas and mudpacks to rejuvenating massages and balneal therapies.More

House of Parliament (Országház)

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The Hungarian House of Parliament (Országház) is one of the world’s most photogenic government buildings. Perched on the UNESCO World Heritage–listed banks of the Danube River, the mainly neo-Gothic structure features 691 rooms, a handful of which are open to the public—including the Domed Hall, where the Crown of St. Stephen is on display.More

Buda Castle (Budai Vár)

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Perched on a hilltop overlooking the Danube riverfront, the Buda Castle (Budai Vár), or Buda Royal Palace, is one of Budapest’s most photographed landmarks. The magnificent palace dates back to the 13th century, but has been destroyed and rebuilt multiple times throughout history, most recently in a neo-baroque style.More

Matthias Church (Mátyás Templom)

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Matthias Church (Matays-templom), is a top sight in Budapest's must-see Castle Hill district. This Roman Catholic church boasts neo-Gothic architecture and intricate detailing, from ornately tiled roof and carved gargoyles, to frescoes and stained-glass windows. Visit Matthias Church as part of a Buda Castle complex tour.More

St. Stephen’s Basilica (Szent István Bazilika)

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With everything from holy relics to frescoes, the neoclassical St. Stephen’s Basilica (Szent István Bazilika) is a must for first-time visitors to Budapest. Marvel at the architecture, the clock towers, the stained glass windows—and the preserved hand of St. Stephen, the first king of Hungary.More

Heroes' Square (Hosök Tere)

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Heroes' Square (H?sök Tere) is a grand public space at the entrance to Budapest's City Park. Visitors find sweeping columns, statues, and monuments to Hungary's celebrated statesmen. A worthy place to visit, Heroes' Square is an ideal stop for visitors wandering the park, or before stepping into Budapest's well-curated Museum of Fine Arts.More

Chain Bridge (Széchenyi Lanchid)

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It's no surprise that the Széchenyi Chain Bridge (Széchenyi Lanchid is a top Budapest attraction since this 19th-century landmark offers fantastic views of Castle Hill. You can walk across for waterfront views, pose for a snapshot with the Buda Castle in the background, and marvel at the bridge's stone towers while crossing the Danube.More

Margaret Island (Margit-Sziget)

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Nestled in the Danube River, Margaret Island (Margit-sziget) is an oasis in Hungary’s capital of Budapest. This verdant park is packed with attractions, including a pool, a spa, playgrounds, and a Japanese garden. When the sun is shining, locals and tourists picnic on the island’s green lawns and, in summer, listen to free concerts.More

Fisherman’s Bastion (Halaszbastya)

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Fisherman’s Bastion, or Halaszbastya, is one of Budapest’s most picturesque lookouts. Nestled high on Castle Hill, the neo-Romanesque terrace was built between 1895 and 1902, in celebration of millennial Hungary. Though today’s structure is decorative, it sits on fortified walls that were used to defend the city throughout its early history.More

Citadella

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Situated atop Buda's Gellért Hill—just west of the Danube—the Citadella is a 19th-century fortress that's a prime destination for urban hikers seeking some of the best views in Budapest. You can ascend the hillside to reach the fortification, stop by the small museum on World War II history, and marvel at the unbeatable panorama from the viewpoint.More

Andrássy Avenue (Andrássy Út)

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Andrássy Avenue (Andrássy Út is an elegant Budapest thoroughfare not unlike Paris' Champs-Élysées or Madrid's Gran Vía. The avenue is known as an upscale area full of art nouveau buildings, ritzy shops, and chic eateries. Among them all, the State Opera House (Magyar Állami Operaház stands as a grand testament to times past.More

Gellért Hill (Gellert-Hegy)

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Gellert Hill (Gellert-hegy) is best known for its panoramic city views, 19th century Citadel, and historic monuments. While the hike up Gellert Hill’s stone steps can be challenging, the sweeping vistas of Budapest and the Danube River from the top are worth the climb.More

Central Market Hall (Nagycsarnok)

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Budapest’s largest indoor market is a hub of activity, with hundreds of stalls spread over three floors. Housed in a striking 19th-century building, it’s a place where local chefs shop for fresh produce, tourists haggle over traditional handicrafts, and the upstairs food court serves delicious Hungarian cuisine.More

Hungarian State Opera House (Magyar Állami Operaház)

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This neo-Renaissance opera house (Magyar Állami Operaház) has an illustrious history as one of Budapest’s greatest cultural venues, with legendary composer Gustav Mahler having once served as director here. Behind the Miklós Ybl–designed facade, which features statues of Puccini, Mozart, Liszt, and Verdi, is a plush interior with gilding, marble, and chandeliers.More
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Trip ideas

An Insider's Guide to Budapest

An Insider's Guide to Budapest

Top activities in Budapest

Budapest Evening Sightseeing Cruise
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Budapest Private Luxury Sightseeing Tour
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Budapest Private Luxury Sightseeing Tour

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$414.34
per group
Budapest Tuk Tuk City Tour

Budapest Tuk Tuk City Tour

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$104.67
Budapest Danube River Sightseeing Night Cruise
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Budapest Danube River Candlelit Dinner Cruise with Live Music
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Private Budapest City Tour by Car

Private Budapest City Tour by Car

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What people are saying about Budapest

Great introduction to city
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Christine_M
, May 2023
Great introduction to city
I always like to do a walking trip on arrival in a new city , then it gives me ideas about places to visit whilst there.
Day trip in Budapest
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GurbinderS_W
, May 2023
Day trip in Budapest
Our tour guide Atilla was very amusing & explained in English quite well.
Great Introduction to Budapest
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Jan_G
, May 2023
Great Introduction to Budapest
A tuk tuk can navigate busy streets and easy to see all the important sight.
Wonderful way to see Budapest at night!
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RS_S
, May 2023
Wonderful way to see Budapest at night!
Iit was wonderful to see Budapest light up at night.
Tuk tuk fun in Budapest.
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Gabi_W
, May 2023
Tuk tuk fun in Budapest.
They were interested in what we wanted to see and took that into consideration for our tour.
Great nighttime sailing.
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James_P
, May 2023
Great nighttime sailing.
This night time boat ride was a fabulous way to see the city lights.
A must do
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Ioannis_T
, May 2023
A must do
If you visit Budapest you definitely need to visit Gellert Spa.
Evening Cruise
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Jo_R
, May 2023
Evening Cruise
A lovely way to see Budapest at night.
Great Evening on the Danube
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Kate_L
, May 2023
Great Evening on the Danube
An excellent way for our final evening in Budapest - to see this beautiful city from the water with a glass or 2 of Prosecco!!
Night time
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Abbie_B
, May 2023
Night time
Great to see Budapest at night.
Great tour.
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Suzy_A
, May 2023
Great tour.
Also to see the lovely buildins.
Fabulous and personal tour of the historic parliament building.
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Richard_C
, Apr 2023
Fabulous and personal tour of the historic parliament building.
There were about 20 in the group with audio heatsets to listen to the english speaking guide.
Brilliant and insightful tour
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Sarah_S
, Apr 2023
Brilliant and insightful tour
Great, interesting and polite tour guide - brilliant English.
Excellent experience.
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George_M
, Apr 2023
Excellent experience.
It was a great way to see the key features in Budapest.
A wonderful way to see the highlights with plenty of wonderful insights
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David_S
, Apr 2023
A wonderful way to see the highlights with plenty of wonderful insights
This was a jam packed way to see the highlights and yet not feel rushed.
A True Gem of a Tour
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David_S
, Apr 2023
A True Gem of a Tour
This tour is a magical way to see and taste Budapest.
Danube Day Tour with Lunch
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Paula_G
, Apr 2023
Danube Day Tour with Lunch
So pleased we did this tour to see and hear the wider culture of Budapest.
This was simply awesome! ...
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Chad_T
, May 2023
This was simply awesome! ...
You get to see so much in so little time and can reach places you otherwise couldn't in a car/van/bus.
Sunny trip to the Danube Bend
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Ed_A
, Apr 2023
Sunny trip to the Danube Bend
We were lucky with the weather and had a great trip to see a bit more of the country during our stay in Budapest.