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Name: Duna-Korzó
Category: Architecture, castles and historic districts
Location: 1051 Budapest, Duna-korzó

Description

If you want to breathe in a good deal of Budapest as keepsake but have no time to see all of the city, take a stroll on Duna-korzó, a promenade by river Danube. Turn your head to both sides, Buda and Pest, and take your time to check out the sights by the second longest river in Europe while enjoying the fresh air.

Duna-Korzó
Duna-Korzó

 

Some of them even deserve a longer sip of said air to be had at: Downtown Parish Church (Belvárosi Plébániatemplom), Vigadó, a concert hall operating since the 19th century and the statue of the Little Princess (Kiskirálylány).

Tips: If you continue along the river bank beyond the promenade you can get to the Parliament. Take tram line 2 to travel along the Danube on Pest side for a beautiful view of the Danube, the Parliament, the Royal Castle and Palace and other great attractions.

Good to know about Danube Promenade

  • The Danube Promenade (Dunakorzó) spans from Elizabeth Bridge to Chain Bridge on the Pest side banks of the Danube
  • It was once lined with luxury hotels, restaurants and cafés overlooking the Danube and Buda castle
  • After it was established in the 19th century, the area became immensely popular; there is an effort to recreate the pre-war ambiance
  • Highlights: Elizabeth Bridge, Vigado Concert Hall, Little Princess, Chain Bridge
  • Elizabeth Bridge is named after Emperor Franz Joseph's wife. The original bridge, built in 1890s, was destroyed in WWII; a new one was built on the old pillars in the 1960s
  • Little Princess is a cute small bronze statue sitting on the promenade's railings at Vigado Square; one of Budapest's newest attractions
  • Vigado Concert Hall (1865) is the city's second largest concert hall. Such masters performed here as Liszt, Mahler, Wagner, Von Karajan, Brahms or Debussy

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A buzz with pavement cafés, street artists, vendors, boutiques and nightclubs, the dowtown (belváros in Hungarian) or Inner City is the hub of Pest.

A buzz with pavement cafés, street artists, vendors, boutiques and nightclubs, the dowtown (belváros in Hungarian) or Inner City is the hub of Pest and, for tourists at least, the epicentre of what’s happening. Commerce and pleasure have been its lifeblood as long as Pest has existed, first as a medieval market town and later as the kernel of a city whose belle époque rivalled Vienna’s.

Since their fates diverged, the Belváros has lagged far behind Vienna’s Centrum in prosperity, but the gap is fast being narrowed, at least superficially. It’s now increasingly like any Western city in its consumer culture, but you can still get a sense of the old atmosphere, especially in the quieter backstreets south of Kossuth Lajos utca.

Pest

Pest, on the left bank of the Danube, also has many historic districts, resorts and famous sights. There are nine bridges spanning the Danube, the oldest being the Széchenyi Chain Bridge built in 1849.

Széchenyi Chain Bridge
Széchenyi Chain Bridge

 

Downtown - Pest The Downtown Parish Church on Március 15. tér was the city’s first church. Examples of all architectural styles, ranging from Romanesque to Classicist, blend into the interior of the church.

At 2 Dohány utca Europe’s largest synagogue is found, serving also as a concert hall of excellent acoustics. The Jewish Museum in the courtyard of the synagogue is a centre for Jewish studies.



The Hungarian National Museum (14-16 Múzeum körút) is the finest example of Hungarian Classicist architecture. In existence since 1846, it is the most significant public collection in Hungary, tracing the history of the Hungarian people from prehistoric times to the present day.

Hungarian National Museum
Hungarian National Museum

 

The Vásárcsarnok (Grand Market Hall, 1-3 Fővám körút) is striking in its architectural inventiveness.

The finest examples of Art Nouveau architecture in Hungary include the Museum of Applied Arts (33-37 Üllői út) with its wide selection of permanent and temporary exhibitions, the houses on Szervita tér (Pest town centre) and the building of the former Postal Savings Bank (4 Hold utca).

The Parliament (Kossuth Lajos tér) is the largest and the most lavishly decorated building in the country. Built between 1885 and 1902 by Imre Steindl, this exquisite edifice is 96-m high and 118-m wide, and has 10 courtyards, 29 staircases and 27 gates. Europe’s first area heating system was put in service in this building. Seat of the Hungarian Parliament and government offices, it provides a place of safety for the Holy Crown and the royal insignia. It is accessible only by guided tours in groups.

The neo-Renaissance St. Stephen’s Basilica (Bajcsy-Zsilinszky út), elevated to the rank of basilica minor, is the largest church in Budapest, and the second largest in Hungary. The right hand of St. Stephen, Hungary’s first king (970-1038), preserved intact for over 1,000 years, is the relic of the Chapel of the Holy Right. The tower balcony of the basilica offers a splendid uninterrupted panorama of the whole of the city.



It is worth taking a walk along the straight Andrássy út, a boulevard that is now a World Heritage site. It is lined with 19th- and 20th-century Eclectic-style palaces.

The State Opera House (22 Andrássy út), with its frescoed interior, seating an audience of 1,200, is a splendid work of by Miklós Ybl, Hungary’s most famous architect, and has been the centre of musical life in Hungary since 1864. There are guided tours.

State Opera House
State Opera House

 

After a stroll along Váci utca from Vörösmarty tér and a look at the splendid view of Várhegy from the embankment, the best way to appreciate the dowtown is by simply wandering around. People-watching and window-shopping are the most enjoyable activities, and though prices are above average for Budapest, any visitor should be able to afford to sample the cafés. Shops are another matter – there are few bargains – and nightclubs are a trap for the unwary, but there’s nothing to stop you from enjoying the cultural life, from performances by jazz musicians and violinists to world-class conductors and soloists.

Somewhat swamped in the midst of a group of blocks of buildings, the villa of Hercules, a rich Patrician's home, owes its name to its pavements made of mosaics depicting the myth of Hercules (3rd Century).

Name: Villa of Hercules
Category: Archaeological and historical sites
Location: 1031 Budapest, Szentendrei út 139.

Description

Somewhat swamped in the midst of a group of blocks of buildings, the villa of Hercules, a rich Patrician's home, owes its name to its pavements made of mosaics depicting the myth of Hercules (3rd Century).



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Included amongst the remains of the civil town in the Roman era, this amphitheatre, which is smaller than the amphitheatre in the military fortress, could hold 8,000 spectators.

Name: Amphitheatre in the civil town
Category: Archaeological and historical sites
Location: 1031 Budapest, Chemin Szentendrei

Description

Included amongst the remains of the civil town in the Roman era, this amphitheatre, which is smaller than the amphitheatre in the military fortress, could hold 8,000 spectators.



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At the time of the Romans, a military camp had been installed on the site of the current suburb of Óbuda.

Name: Amphitheatre in the military camp
Category: Archaeological and historical sites
Location: 1036 Budapest, Pacsirtamezo utca 6.

Description

At the time of the Romans, a military camp had been installed on the site of the current suburb of Óbuda. The amphitheatre from this camp is today one of the remains from it. Measuring the seats, around 15,000 spectators could attend the competitions, races, fights and games in the circus which were held in the arena. This measured 131 m in length and 107 m in width. For the record, the Coliseum in Rome had 45,000 seats.



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