Places of Interest in Budapest

Information on the main tourist attractions, places of interest and sights to see in and around Budapest...

Budapest offers tourists a wealth of character and tradition and has long been a popular tourist destination for its architecture and atmosphere.

The River Danube embankments, the Buda Castle District and Andrássy Avenue are all UNESCO World Heritage sites, and the city is home to some of the most important historical monuments in Hungary such as the Royal Palace, Mathias Church, Fishermen's Bastion, Liberty Bridge and Chain Bridge, the Parliament, the Citadel with the Statue of Liberty, Roosevelt Square, the Academy of Sciences and Gresham Palace.

The historical part of the city is, with the exception of the Buda Castle District, located on the Pest side of the River Danube, and the area is where most of the capital's business and official administration is conducted. It is also popular for its many bars, cafés, restaurants, shops and other leisure opportunities. Buda, to the west of the river, is more of a residential area and also contains much of the city's woodlands, hills and open spaces.

Cruises and Boat Services

A number of cruise companies offering sightseeing tours operate along the River Danube. Depending on the tour, there are optional stop-overs at Margaret Island and towns along the river such as Szentendre, Esztergom and Visegrád. Many of the tours also provide on-board dinner or lunch and live music.

Scheduled boat and hydrofoil services run by Mahart also operate along the river between Vigadó tér, Batthyány tér and Margaret Island. The services operate daily during the summer and on weekends during the rest of the year.

  • For more information from the Mahart website: Click here

The Budapest Transport Company (BKV) also operates riverboat services from May to September between Boráros tér and Rómaifürd? and between Újpest and Millenniumi Városközpont. BKV passes and tickets can be used on their boat services.

Parks and Gardens

The relaxing environment of the City Park, located behind Heroes' Square, makes it a popular location with both locals and tourists alike. It is also home to the Budapest Zoo, an amusement park and the Capital Circus. There are also restaurants, health resorts, baths and swimming pools, and special events are frequent. In the winter it has an ice rink which is converted into a boating lake in the spring though to autumn.

Margaret Island is the city's second most popular park. It is traffic-free and is much enjoyed by bikers and walkers. It is also home to the Palatinus beach and houses a small zoo, restaurants, monuments, swimming pools and lido.

The Népliget (People's Grove) is the largest park in Budapest, but due to its location in the south-eastern part of Budapest it is less visited. The 110-hectare park has statues and memorials and is preferred by cyclists. The Planetarium is also located within the park.

The Károlyi Garden is situated behind Károlyi Palace and is home to many rare plant species. It has a children's playground and is popular with families. It hosts the Summer Evenings during the Károlyi Garden cultural event in the summer.

Normafa, in the Buda Hills, is a very popular destination with hikers and offers panoramic views of the city. It is close to János Hill, the highest point in Budapest and is a popular winter sport destination among the locals. It is also accessible by the cogwheel railway.

Tourism with Children

Budapest has much to offer visitors with children. There are many adventure playgrounds such as Kopaszi Bay, where children can also have sailing lessons, the Csilleberc Playground (Challengeland) in District XII, the Jungle Adventure Park (website in Hungarian) and the indoor playground eXbox in District XI, or the Orczy Adventure Park in District VIII.

Also popular with families are the Tropicarium, a zoo for tropical and ocean animals, the Palace of Miracles, where science is demonstrated through interactive exhibitions and playgrounds. The Planetarium laser show (website in Hungarian) in Népliget Park and the Polaris Telescopic Observatory are also popular with both children and adults.

The Children's Railway is operated, under supervision, by children aged 10-14. It can be reached by car, bus or using the chairlift from Zugliget. The children's Railway is open every day from May to August, and from Tuesday to Sunday the rest of the year.

The most popular museums to visit with children are the Natural History Museum, the Museum of the Hungarian National Bank (website in Hungarian), the Hungarian Railway Museum and the Hungarian Museum of Science.