Many people come to Budapest with limited time. Maybe you only have 48 hours in the Hungarian capital. What are the most important places to visit? Which are the activities it would be a mistake to skip? Is the Margaret island worth a couple of hours during your trip to Budapest?
We have just updated our guide to Margaret island in our Budapest Guide. We have included what we believe are ten of the most convincing reasons to visit the island as you come to Budapest. If you read the article and think that it isn’t for you, then it probably isn’t worth prioritizing.
But, if you read the article and think this sounds fun, then you should probably add Margaret island to your itinerary. Are you ready to learn more about what the island has to offer?
Do not forget that you can read about many other cool activities, programs, and attractions in Budapest in our Budapest Guide. If you are looking for events taking place in Budapest during your trip to the city, look at our Budapest calendar to find out what’s going on.
Budapest is a fantastic city, and it isn’t a coincidence that you found this article. You are looking for information and inspiration because you want to visit Budapest in the future. The enchanting capital of Hungary awaits, but there are a few things you should think through before you arrive. This article will give you tips on six mistakes you should avoid making in Budapest!
There are different ways to define a mistake. Not all the mistakes you make in Budapest are bad, and if you look at an error from the proper perspective, it might make you more prosperous and come home with even more memories. Read on, and you will soon understand what we mean!
Six mistakes to avoid in Budapest.
Are you ready? Here we go!
Don’t be too proud to ask for help and advice.
There are things locals know that you don’t know. What is evident to them may be unclear to you. It is a joy to discover a city on your own, and many find it charming to spend hours trying to find a location only to discover that they could have reached it in 5-10 minutes had they asked the receptionist at the hotel or some other local.
Many tourists love to travel by public transportation from the airport. It is much easier to travel with a taxi, but it feels more authentic to travel the way the locals do. As a result, only some people want the easiest solutions and the fastest ways between A and B.
However, sometimes pride can be too big, and you spend way too much energy and time on something that would have been much easier with some tips and advice from a local. Maybe you plan on using a bus to reach an attraction that you could have reached much easier using a tram or a metro line. Or what if you spend all day trying to reach a shopping mall where you can find a Zara store, only to realize that one was located a few hundred meters from your hotel?
What do we mean? It is often wise to ask locals for advice and help. It is fun to discover a city on your own and make mistakes in the process. You often see much more due to your mistakes, which is one of the most charming experiences during a holiday in Budapest. But be humble enough to realize when enough is enough, and it is time to ask someone for help!
Don’t change money in the shopping street or at the airport!
The local currency in Budapest is HUF, Hungarian Forint. As Hungary joined the European Union in 2004, it was expected that the Euro would be introduced within a few years. We were wrong! We are far into the 2020s, and the Euro is nowhere, at least not as an official currency.
It is possible to pay with Euro in most stores, but you will often pay more than you would using the Hungarian Forint. The exchange rates used by stores are poor, which means that you, as a tourist pay a higher price for the same product if you decide to pay in Euro.
Consequently, it is wise to pay with the HUF whenever possible. How can you get some HUF in your wallet? The easiest is to use an ATM or an exchange office. But if you decide to use an exchange office, do not use those at the airport or in the shopping street Váci utca. The exchange rates there are unfavorable, making you pay much more than elsewhere. A good piece of advice is to compare the prices at 2-3 exchange offices and select the one with the best rates based on what you see. Otherwise, using an ATM is often easy and quick, and you get a good exchange rate.
We should mention that the Hungarian Forint is quite strong at the time of writing. The price of 1 Euro is about 370 Forint. Not all restaurants and cafés have remade their menus to reflect these changes. As a result, you will find a few places in Budapest where they wrote banners and menus during a weak Forint period in which 1 euro equalled 430 Forint. This is interesting because they created a banner that said that a Chimney Cake’s price is 800 HUF or 2 Euro. Back then, you would have paid more for the product if you paid in euros. The banner still says the same, but today 2 euros is only 740 HUF. In other words, you get the product cheaper if you pay in euros.
In other words, look at the exchange rate before you arrive because knowing it will give you an advantage whenever you decide whether to pay with Euro or with Forint.
Only use a taxi whenever needed, and choose your taxi wisely.
Ten years ago, the taxis in Budapest had a terrible reputation. Things have improved, but there are still things you should watch out for whenever you use a taxi in Budapest. But let us also tell you one thing first… you don’t need to use cabs in Budapest frequently. Why is that?
Budapest’s most important sights and attractions are located in the fifth district of Budapest or very close to the district. It is easy to reach this district and area using any of the four metro lines in Budapest and getting off at stops such as Astoria, Kalvin tér, Fövarm ter, Deak Ferenc tér, or Kossuth tér.
Once you are in this area, all other attractions in the area are available within less than 2 kilometers of walking (most are much closer). Here you will find fantastic restaurants, cafés, bars, and of course, popular attractions such as the St. Stephen’s Basilica, the Parliament, the Danube, the most famous bridges, and by walking across the street into the seventh district of Budapest you can see the Great Synagogue and the Hungarian National Museum.
What are we trying to say? The inner city of Budapest is fantastic and if you have some energy in your body, you can easily walk around on foot without using public transportation or taxis.
Two popular areas fall outside this category: the City Park and the Castle area. If you want to visit them, consider using a taxi. But if you visit Budapest, you should travel with the second-oldest subway in Europe! This metro dates back in 1896 and it connects Vörösmarty tér (the end of the shopping street) with the City Park. As a result, you can experience the fantastic metro and see the City Park simultaneously. Isn’t that cool? Not only is it a nicer way to travel to the City Park, it is also cheaper! Do not forget to validate your ticket beforehand; if not, you might make another mistake that the controllers love to punish!
A nice way to go to the castle area is by walking across the Chain Bridge (the oldest bridge between Buda and Pest) and then walk up the hill yourself. It is possible to use the funicular, but it is unnecessarily expensive and you spend more time standing in line than the time of the ride itself.
Once you have reached the castle area, feel free to travel by taxi back to the Pest side. Another option is to walk, or you can use one of the castle buses connecting the castle area with Deak Ferenc tér on the Pest side.
If you decide to use a taxi in Budapest.
You don’t need to use taxies a lot in Budapest. But if you need one, is there anything you need to watch out for?
Generally, it is wise to order a taxi from the hotel you live in or via the restaurant you are in. They have partners who guarantee normal fees on your taxi ride.
Another option is to use the Bolt application. Here you order the taxi yourself and you get an estimated price making it an easy-to-use application with few surprises. The prices are good, making it one of the cheapest taxi options in Budapest.
You should be careful catching cabs on the street just waiting for passengers to come. If you still do, look for one with a big phone number and a brand name on the side of the taxi. If all you can see is a yellow cab with a taxi sign on the roof and nothing else, you should look for another taxi instead.
Take some risks whenever you eat!
It isn’t dangerous to eat and drink in Budapest. Some people believe that the tap water is dangerous in Budapest, but it isn’t. You can drink and enjoy life without worrying. What do we mean then?
It is easy to choose the safe road as you visit a restaurant or buy food at a market in Budapest. The Wiener Schnitzel is fantastic, and so is a good Italian pizza, but we have seen it before and tasted it before. Still, many people end up ordering the safe and well-known instead of taking some risks. It is understandable, especially if you travel with kids, but leave your comfort zone and try something new!
When you return to work after your trip to Budapest, people will immediately ask you: “What was it like? Did you enjoy the city? What did you eat and drink?”
What sounds cooler, if you tell them that you ate a Big Mac in McDonald’s, a pizza in Vapiano, and drank some Coca-Cola next to your meals, or if you tell them that you ate a “hen testicle stew with homemade noodles”, or that you tasted the special Hungarian sausages, some fried goose liver, or maybe a real authentic Hungarian Goulash soup? Then you can tell them about the Hungarian Fruit spirits (Pálinka), followed by a Hungarian liquor named Opium (which contains poppy seeds), or that you have tasted the world-famous sweet white wine from the Tokaj region. There are endless opportunities, but you will only discover them if you leave your comfort zone and dare to order some risky food at restaurants and markets you visit.
Don’t think Budapest goes to bed at 24:00.
It is amazing to accompany people to the airport after some days in Budapest. Some have barely been sleeping, while others say all lights were turned off, and bars and restaurants were closed at 24:00. As a result, they went to bed like everyone else.
What is the difference between the two stories and the two impressions? Haven’t they been to the same city? The answer is that they have all been to Budapest, but if you don’t know where to look, it may feel as if Budapest goes to bed at midnight.
If your goal is to discover Budapest by day and sleep at night, just skip the next part of this article. If you, however, want to experience Budapest by night, the following information is crucial.
While the fifth district of Budapest is the most popular during the daytime, it gets quite quiet and dead after midnight. Would you like the party to go on? Leave the fifth district and enter the seventh district (close to the Great Synagogue). Here you can find some of the best bars in the world, including Budapest’s super-famous ruin bars. The most famous of them all is Szimpla Kert which is located in Kazinczy utca. Walk up and down this neighborhood and you will meet crowds of people walking between bars and nightclubs in an excellent mood.
Now you know where to find the parties after midnight! But remember to get some sleep because Budapest has a lot to offer during the daytime as well!
Plan ahead! Do you have any special desires for your days in Budapest?
During our guided tours, we often share information about exciting programs and activities in Budapest, and we also talk about popular restaurants, cafés, bars, and other places worth visiting in Budapest. Many guests start to discuss which programs they want to try themselves, but often we have to tell them that this restaurant is fully booked for the following days, or that the given program must be booked days ahead.
You can visit the famous thermal baths of Budapest every day without any preliminary booking. The same is true about the New York Confectionary. You might need to stay in line to get your ticket or entrance, but if you are patient, you will get in!
The same is only sometimes true regarding popular restaurants in Budapest. These are often fully booked days ahead, especially during holidays and big events. Suppose you come in the middle of the summer, or during the Formula 1 weekend, or during the Easter holiday, or during the Christmas market season. In that case, restaurants are frequently fully booked days ahead.
Finding a restaurant with a free table in Budapest isn’t hard. Still, suppose you have a burning desire to eat a medieval meal accompanied by belly dancing in Sir Lancelot. In that case, you might find it disappointing to eat a Goulash Soup accompanied by Gypsy music in a traditional Hungarian restaurant instead, as there were no free tables in Sir Lancelot.
Valentine’s Day is beautiful. Many people make special programs for this day, which has become a worldwide celebration of love. Are you spending Valentine’s Day in Budapest this year? Are you looking for program suggestions and ideas for where to eat? This is your guide to Valentine’s Day in Budapest.
Many think Valentine’s Day lasts from 18.00 until midnight on February 14th. That isn’t true, so why don’t you make Valentine’s Day a fantastic day with romantic programs from early morning? Have you ever thought about how your heart beats faster if you are full of adrenaline or feel anxious if you do something scary? If you are in love with someone, you will often experience similar feelings for a very different reason. You might feel anxious or feel your heart beating much faster as the person shows up. These emotions can often get mixed up. If you take a person to a program where they feel anxious and get scared, they might mix it for being in love. A boring program might not have the same effect. In other words, why not bring forth feelings that might give you an advantage this year?
Romantic Budapest programs for Valentine’s Day.
Let us first look at some cool programs that will bring forth lovely feelings in both of you (hopefully) on Valentine’s Day in Budapest.
A romantic cruise on the Danube.
This program will not give you an adrenaline boost (unless you are afraid of boats). It will, however, give you a fantastic experience of Budapest, especially if you travel in the evening when the buildings are illuminated. It is possible to combine this program with a dinner on the Danube. This is one of the most romantic programs you can do in Budapest on February 14th.
Some companies have special trips available on Valentine’s Day in which they decorate the boats with hearts and special decorations. If you want to upgrade to a special Valentine’s Day river cruise in Budapest, you should consider such opportunities.
Visit a dripstone cave in Budapest.
Doesn’t it sound romantic and a little scary to walk around in a dripstone cave in Budapest? The cave was discovered at the start of the 20th century, and hundreds of thousands of visitors have visited it since then. A tour of the cave lasts for approximately 50 minutes.
Visit the Opera in Budapest or enjoy some other cultural program.
Valentine’s Day is special, but for many, it is business as usual also on this day. If you are lucky, you might be able to buy tickets for a performance in the Hungarian State Opera, something that would give you an unforgettable experience. Suppose you don’t like opera or there are no free tickets left (or maybe there is no performance on February 14th). In that case, you can look at our Budapest Calendar to see if there are any other programs available in Budapest on this special day.
One of the most romantic places in Budapest is the Margaret Island, especially when the weather is nice. If you are lucky, you can experience early spring weather in Budapest on February 14th with sunshine and 10 Celsius. If that is so, hurry up and visit the Margaret Island. Here you can walk hand in hand, bring some snacks and picnic in the grass, or rent a bike and discover the island while riding the bike together. At this time of the year (until March 1st), you can only rent bikes in the northern part of the island, not far from the Árpad bridge and the two hotels.
If you like history, you can discover ruins from the 13th century on the island, along with a mini-zoo, a Japanese garden, and much more.
What about a romantic massage?
Is there a better way to celebrate Valentine’s Day than with a romantic massage in Budapest? Why not visit one of the many spa salons in Budapest and receive a treatment that will lighten you up and fill you with positive vibes and good feelings? There are different options available, but you can read more about an option very close to the synagogue in Budapest where you can receive a couples treatment or standalone massage treatments right here.
If you don’t feel like getting a massage, you will still get some plus points with your girlfriend/boyfriend/spouse if you buy them a treatment for Valentine’s Day!
Visit a thermal bath in Budapest.
The thermal baths in Budapest are amazing. The most popular is Szechenyi thermal bath, which is amazing, especially in the evening. Here you can swim in warm water outside all year around. The warmest outdoor pool is approximately 37 Celsius. What is the result? When the sun goes down, and it gets cold outside, you will be covered by steam from the water. The combination of hot water, steam, and illuminated pools is one of the most romantic combinations you will find in Budapest.
The picture above is from the Szechenyi bath, the most popular and famous in Budapest. If you’d rather visit some other thermal bath you should consider Gellert or Rudas, both located in the center of Budapest.
Go to the cinema.
Are you a movie freak? Or would you like to do something romantic in Budapest on Valentine’s Day? Why don’t you go to the cinema? That might sound boring, but you can do a couple of things to boost the experience.
You can go to a Premium cinema where you sit in big chairs and enjoy unlimited consumption of popcorn, nachos, drinks, and other stuff during the movie. You can also eat and drink different food for 30 minutes before the movie starts.
Several cinemas in Budapest have double chairs in which you can sit together without anything separating you from one another. That immediately makes it more romantic and different from a normal cinema experience.
Do not forget lots of movies are dubbed, meaning it is essential that you reserve tickets for a movie with audio in a language that you understand.
Go ice skating in the city park.
Budapest has one of the world’s nicest and most romantic ice skating rinks. It is located in the City Park of Budapest, next to the fantastic Vajdahunyad castle. It looks especially beautiful in the evening, and it is very romantic to hold hands while ice skating, especially if one lacks practice and needs a lot of help. It is possible to borrow ice skates by the entrance to the area. All in all, a fantastic program.
The ice skating rink normally opens in November. It remains open until late February. If it is cold outside, it might open earlier and stay open longer. During its opening times, it normally opens around 10.00 and stays open until 14.00 and then again between 17.00 and 21.00 in the evening. You can find the exact opening times, prices, and more here.
Visit the zoo in Budapest.
Wouldn’t it be nice to walk hand in hand while looking at zebras, giraffes, elephants, crocodiles, lions, and other animals in Budapest zoo? The zoo is located in the city park of Budapest, one of the best places to be in Budapest. Besides visiting the zoo, you can visit the Szechenyi bath, the Vajdahunyad castle, the Gundel restaurant and walk around in a beautiful environment.
We have now given you some ideas for romantic programs in Budapest for Valentine’s Day. Most of them can also be enjoyed throughout the year so don’t worry if you only read this article in March or any other month.
After a day full of awesome activities, what should you eat in the evening? Here you have some suggestions for romantic dinner opportunities in Budapest.
Romantic dinner opportunities in Budapest for Valentine’s Day!
Would you like to enjoy a romantic dinner in Budapest? Where should you go? Here you have some romantic dinner suggestions for Valentine’s Day in Budapest.
A romantic dinner in Gundel.
The Gundel restaurant is in the City Park, near the zoo and the Szechenyi bath. It is one of the most famous restaurants in Budapest and it is the place to go for traditional Hungarian courses in a very fine dining environment. While most restaurants in Budapest don’t have a dress code, Gundel is where you dress up in your nicest clothes for a magnificent dinner in a royal environment. It isn’t a coincidence that the Gundel restaurant has served guests such as Pavarotti, Angelina Jolie, Arnold Schwarzenegger, and many other celebrities and state leaders.
A Hungarian dinner accompanied by romantic gypsy music in the background.
Would you like a fantastic Hungarian meal in the center of Budapest in an area known for brilliant restaurants and fine dining? Visit the Aszu restaurant or Rezkakas Bistro. They are located near one another and close to the St. Stephens Basilica. In both restaurants, you can listen to gypsy music in the background, and if you have a particular favorite song, you can tell them, and they will do their uttermost to play it for you during the dinner. The food is upper-class in both restaurants, but if we had to pick one, it would probably be Aszu.
A romantic dinner in a restaurant with Michelin stars?
Budapest has several restaurants with Michelin stars. If you want to dine in such a restaurant on Valentine’s Day, hurry up and reserve a table as quickly as possible. You are not the only lovebird who would like to dine in a restaurant with a Michelin star in Budapest on February 14th. It might be easier to get a table in such a restaurant on another day, but you should book your table months in advance no matter what time of the year you plan to visit such a restaurant.
There is only one restaurant in Budapest with two Michelin stars: Stand. It is easier to get a table in one of the restaurants with one Michelin star, and a recommendation from us is to try and get a table in either Borkonyha or Essencia. Both restaurants are located on the same street as Rezkakas and Aszu, mentioned earlier in this article.
Prove that you are a knight in Sir Lancelot.
Would you like a very different dinner in Budapest? Visit the restaurant Sir Lancelot. It isn’t very romantic, but it will give you an experience you will remember. In this medieval restaurant, you normally eat from giant plates using a mixture of your hands and a knife and a fork. The experience is accompanied by live medieval music (flute and guitar), belly dancing, and sword battles during the evening. Maybe this is your chance to prove that you are a real knight. Some people call this a tourist restaurant while others call it a genuine and awesome experience in Budapest. Are you willing to take the risk?
Sir Lancelot is often fully booked during weekends and special occasions like Valentine’s Day. It is recommended to book a table as early as possible if you want to dine here. Since the restaurant has a genuine medieval atmosphere, almost all tables are made for larger groups. As a result, a romantic dinner for two will often end up being a romantic dinner for four as you have to share the table with others. Who knows, maybe more people means more fun?
Dinner on the Danube.
We mentioned it in the start of the article, but let us mention it once again. A wonderful way to celebrate Valentine’s Day in Budapest is on a river cruise with dinner. If you are a lover of fine dining, you should probably eat somewhere else, but if you don’t care and want to combine a fantastic view with good food, wine, and maybe some live music, a river cruise with dinner equals success!
We hope the suggestions in this article have inspired you and given you some brilliant ideas for celebrating Valentine’s Day in Budapest. We have mentioned it several times, and it is essential to know that most programs mentioned here are available throughout the year. In other words, you can enjoy a romantic dinner on the Danube, a couples massage, a romantic swim in a thermal bath, and all the other programs in every month of the year, not only on February 14th.
If you have comments, questions, or ideas for other programs, write them below. We would love to hear from you!
We wish all our readers a happy Valentine’s Day!
Did you know Valentine’s Day was named after the Christian saint Valentinus? The most popular martyrology associated with Saint Valentine was that he was imprisoned for performing weddings for soldiers who were forbidden to marry and ministering to Christians persecuted under the Roman Empire. During his imprisonment, he is said to have healed the daughter of his jailer Asterius. (source: Wikipedia)
Budapest is a fantastic city, and it is worth visiting all year round. It fills your heart with joy to walk barefoot in the grass at Margaret Island on a warm summer day, just like it feels awesome to take a bath in the hot spring of the Szechenyi thermal bath on a cold winter day. Would you like to combine such experiences with a fantastic event in Budapest? What are the highlights coming up in Budapest in 2023? Here you can read about some of the most significant upcoming events, concerts, festivals, and markets in Budapest in 2023.
It is a somewhat cold January day as we write this article. The Christmas markets closed some days ago, but people are already looking for information about the Christmas markets in 2023. What other events should you look forward to in Budapest in 2023 besides the Christmas markets? The dates for the biggest festivals and events are released, but there are also some uncertainties. Let us take a closer look at what we believe will be the highlights in Budapest this year.
The events, concerts, festivals, and exhibitions are not listed in chronological order.
Top events and festivals in Budapest in 2023
Which are the hottest events and festivals arranged in Budapest? 2023 is the year in which Hungary will arrange the biggest event ever arranged in the country. It isn’t a music festival, but the World Athletics Championships.
World Athletics Championships
A brand new stadium named National Athletics Centre has been built for this event. Approximately 35,000 people will gather in this stadium every day between August 19 and August 27 this summer. The best athletes will compete, and even though Usain Bolt has retired, we have a lot to look forward to. Nearly everything is happening at the stadium, but the race walking and the marathons are held in the streets of Budapest. This is a fantastic chance to see some of the best runners in the world as they compete for a gold medal.
This is the biggest music festival in Hungary and attracts nearly half a million people yearly. Billie Eilish, David Guetta, Florence + The Machine, and many others will come for this event, and so should you. If you have ever been to this event, you know why people love it so much and return to Budapest to experience it year after year. Maybe 2023 is the year when you will experience the Sziget Festival for the first time?
Hungary is well known for its wine. Is there a better way to enjoy a warm summer day than with a glass of bubbled water mixed with rose wine? Or would you instead taste some sweet white wine from Tokaj? The annual wine festival in Budapest attracts winemakers from all across Hungary, and visitors can taste thousands of wines produced in Hungary. The event is arranged surrounded by the castle, giving a fantastic scenery and panorama while enjoying the outcome of Chardonnay, Merlot, Pinot Noir, and other types of grapes.
The Hungarian Grand Prix is a highlight, and it attracts speed lovers every year. The Hungarian Grand Prix is arranged at Hungaroring, a track located about 30km from the heart of Budapest. Have you never seen a Formula 1 race live? This is your chance. You can easily fly to Budapest with low-cost airlines such as RyanAir and WizzAir. It is easy to find a cheap hotel room (if you book early), and the tickets are cheaper than in many other locations. Ultimately, it will still be expensive, but it will be a memory to remember for a lifetime.
Lewis Hamilton has won the Hungarian Grand Prix eight times. Michael Schumacher, the pilot with the second-most victories in Hungary, has won the race four times. Even though Lewis Hamilton has won eight times, he hasn’t won since 2020. Since then, Esteban Ocon (2021) and Max Verstappen (2022) has won. Who will win in 2023? Come to Budapest and find out!
It is impossible to list the highlights in Budapest without mentioning the Christmas markets. They are absolutely stunning and attract tens of thousands of tourists. The Christmas markets are located in the center of Budapest, and it is a perfect place to drink traditional Hungarian drinks, eat food that Hungarians love, and to buy all sorts of souvenirs and Christmas presents you didn’t know you needed before you saw them.
The dates of the Christmas markets in Budapest in 2023 are not yet released. The dates for the Christmas markets at Vörösmarty square are usually published in September, while the dates for the Christmas market by the St. Stephen’s Basilica are published in late October. We are still allowed to guess, and based on the dates in earlier years, we expect the Christmas markets to open on November 17th. If we are wrong, they will for sure open on November 24th (unless something like COVID should hit again).
Christmas markets 2023 Not yet announced More information (here you will find the dates as they are published)
The top concerts in Budapest in 2023
There will be several fantastic concerts in Budapest this year. Do not forget about all the artists coming to the Sziget Festival (such as Billie Eilish and David Guetta), but there will also be several stand-alone events and concerts worth checking out.
Rammstein will go on an extensive tour in 2023, and Budapest is one of the stops. It was initially supposed to be only one concert, but due to the ticket demand, two concerts will be arranged in Budapest in 2023. This might be a perfect event if you like hard rock and loud music. It is arranged at Puskas Arena, the national stadium for football matches and other giant events.
Depeche Mode has been to Budapest several times. As they come this summer, they will again perform at the Puskas Arena. They have been to the same stadium before, but then it was called Nepstadion (The People’s Stadium). The concert is a part of their Memento Mori Tour in which they will visit Krakow, Oslo, Helsinki, and many other cities.
Would you like to celebrate spring with Robbie Williams and more than 12,000 people in Budapest in March? The popular singer from England will tour Europe again in 2023, and Budapest is one of the stops. This tour celebrates his 25 years as singer, meaning that he will sing his most popular hits. A perfect event if you want to walk down memory lane with Robbie Williams.
Måneskin, Eros Ramazotti, Michael Buble, and many others.
There will be lots of other artists coming to Budapest to perform in 2023 besides Robbie Williams, Rammstein, and Depeche Mode. We could write a very long article if we were to mention them all. Look around at our page about what’s on in Budapest to read about other concerts and events in Budapest.
No matter when you come to Budapest…
The abovementioned events depend on you being in Budapest at the right time. What should you do if you cannot be in Budapest during these events? Many other things are happening that we haven’t mentioned in this article, so take a look at our calendar before you cry.
No matter when you come, there are some events, activities, and programs you should check out in Budapest. Here you have some recommendations.
Visit a thermal bath!
One of the most important things to do in Budapest is to go to a thermal bath. The most popular and people’s favorite is the Szechenyi thermal bath in the City Park. This is a fantastic place all year round, especially when it is cold outside. There are more than ten pools to choose from, and most of the water temperature is between 30 and 38 Celsius. The warmest outdoor poor is 38 Celsius. Doesn’t that sound nice?
Enjoy a river cruise.
The city of Budapest is divided in two by the Danube. The city is built around the Danube, meaning that many of the most beautiful buildings are located by the Danube. What better way to discover and see them than during a river cruise on the Danube? There are lots of river cruises available throughout the year. Some cruises come with food and drinks, while others are guided tours where you listen to information about Budapest and what you see while traveling up and down the river.
The city is beautiful 24/7, but if you want a memorable experience, travel on a river cruise after sunset when the buildings are illuminated. It is true magic. You can read more about different river cruises in Budapest here.
Taste the local foods and drinks.
Hungary is world-known for its gastronomy. We have mentioned the wine production earlier, and no matter when you come, you should drink some glasses of Hungarian wine. The story doesn’t end there. Hungary also produces fantastic Palinka, the Hungarian fruit spirit. It might be too strong for some (40% alcohol or more). If it is too strong for you, taste the Hungarian Unicum instead.
You shouldn’t drink all that alcohol by itself. Why don’t you combine it with a traditional Hungarian Goulash soup? Another great option is to drink Hungarian red wine combined with a traditional stew made from pork, chicken, or beef.
Are you afraid of tasting new things? Eat the traditional Hungarian schnitzel with french fries instead (a big favorite among kids).
You can read more about all sorts of restaurants in Budapest right here.
We hope you have found the content of this article useful and interesting. If you have further comments, questions, suggestions, or thoughts on your mind, use the comment field below.
The Hungarian Forint is a currency that moves quickly in all directions, mostly downwards. What does that mean? The currency is falling in value compared to bigger and more popular currencies such as the Euro, Dollar, British Pound, Swiss Franc, and smaller currencies such as the Swedish Krone and other currencies.
Would you like to find out how much one Euro is in Hungarian Forint?
If the price of a product is 10,000 HUF, how much is that in USD?
It is easy to find an answer to those and similar questions if you use the currency converter available on our page about the currency in Hungary. Not only can you find a currency converter there. You can read about where to exchange money in Budapest, what you need to look out for, the different bills and coins used in Hungary, and also some price examples. Are you only interested in how much you have to pay to buy a Big Mac in Budapest? Click the link to find out.
The HUF compared to other currencies.
Hungary joined the European Union in 2004. At that time, you could buy one Euro for approximately 250 HUF. It was at its strongest in 2008 when you “only” had to pay 230 HUF for one Euro. Since then, however, the general trend is pointing downwards (meaning that the Hungarians don’t like the trend). As a result, you must pay more to buy euros in Hungary.
The last year has been quite terrible for the Hungarian currency, seeing that it has jumped from 350 HUF per euro to a peak of 435 HUF per Euro. The current price as we write this article is 401 HUF per Euro, but to get an accurate number, use the converter below or at the currency page.
What is the value of the Hungarian Forint right now?
Check the actual prices of the Hungarian Forint compared to the USD, Euro, GBP, CHF, NOK, SEK, DKK, and other currencies right now.
It is evident that the political situation in Hungary impacts the value of the Hungarian Forint. The present situation in which the Hungarian government often opposes the EU doesn’t help people trust the Hungarian currency. Many people also complain and say that the government doesn’t manage the gas crisis in a good way. To help people, they force shops to sell certain products at lower prices. What is the result? Those products are almost impossible to buy (as they are always sold out), and to earn money, the stores push the prices on all other products much more. In the end, customers pay much more than they did before. It is not a coincidence that inflation in Hungary is among the highest in Europe.
Does this influence you?
If you come to Budapest, you don’t really have to worry. You will get more HUF for your money than you would one year ago. But, at the same time, the prices have increased a lot, meaning that you will pay more in the end anyway. Even though you get 20% more HUF per Euro, you have to pay 50%-100% more for several products, meaning that we all lose. The biggest losers are, of course, the Hungarians.
Do not forget, however, that many stores in Hungary seem to have forgotten about the real value of the Euro. What do we mean?
If you enter a store and buy products that normally cost 1000 HUF, you can nearly always pay with euros. The only problem is that stores still believe that the price of one euro is 350-370 HUF. So, when you pay 1000 HUF which should be approximately 2.5 Euro, you will pay 3 Euro instead (or something like that). In the end, you pay even more than needed. How can you solve this? The best is to pay with card (and set the currency to HUF if asked) or to pay with cash.
If you want Hungarian Forint in cash, the best is to use an ATM. It is possible to use an exchange office as well, but you should avoid those in or near Vaci utca, as those use pretty bad exchange rates.
We love to create new content in our Budapest Guide. But, it is very important to update the content we have written earlier. That is why we have spent quite a lot of time today updating articles we wrote a long time ago. As a result, you can now see the correct prices if you read about the prices for public transportation tickets, and you can also see the new prices of the different river cruises in Budapest.
You probably don’t hear this in the news every single day, but Hungary is one of the countries in Europe that is suffering the hardest due to inflation at the moment. That is why we have seen a drastic increase in the prices of most goods. Not only have the gas prices skyrocketed, but so have the grocery prices. The official number tells us that the prices have increased by about 40% since the start of 2022, but for many products, the reality is much higher. While you could easily buy cheese for 5 Euros per kilo in January, you are now lucky if you find anything cheese costing less than 10 Euros per kilo. That is just one example.
This is a negative spiral because customers have less money to spend, and thus they buy less (but pay more). To earn more, producers ask for more for their products, and the prices increase.
That is why you will see that the prices for the different river cruises in Budapest have increased a lot. The programs are still cheaper than what a similar program would cost in big cities elsewhere in Europe, but seen with the eyes of a local, it all feels very expensive.
Luckily, the prices for public transportation in Budapest haven’t increased a lot, meaning that it still feels cheap to buy a single ticket, a day ticket, or maybe a 3-day pass for public transportation in Budapest.
Would you like to see the updated articles about river cruises and public transportation in Budapest?
Would you like to find out what’s happening in Budapest when you come to visit the city? Or are you looking for a special program and maybe you want to make this event the focus of your trip to Budapest?
If you like to run, then there are several marathons arranged in Budapest every single year. Would you rather drink wine? Then you can come to Budapest for the annual wine festival in the Castle area (in September) or maybe to the Rozalia festival in June?
There are many options. We have just updated our Budapest calendar with information about quite a lot of upcoming events in 2023. In other words, head over to the calendar to find out what’s going on in Budapest!
After a break in 2020 due to COVID, the Christmas markets in Budapest will once again shine and bring joy to the local population and tourists in 2021. The famous Christmas markets at the Vörösmarty square and the Szent Istvan square will open on November 19th. This is great news for those who want to drink some hot wine, buy souvenirs, and for those who long to taste some Hungarian Christmas fair food.
It has been promised that the Christmas markets in 2021 will be made better for the local population as well. Normally, it has been considered a very expensive experience to eat on these markets, and that is why it is a requirement that all the companies serving food at the Christmas markets should offer meals costing no more than 1500. Of course, there will be plenty of meals costing a lot more, but there should be some cheaper options on their menu to support and to help make this event worth visiting, also for the locals.
New in 2021 is the fact that a vaccination passport is required to visit the Christmas markets. We do not know how they will actually do this, but there is supposed to be such a requirement. It might be that they will have guards checking the validity of your vaccination at the different entry points to the Christmas market. If such a thing will take place, then you can show it with your cell phone or a vaccination proof (card).
No matter what, we really look forward to be able to enjoy the beautiful Christmas markets in Budapest together with all of you once again!
Are you living in an EU country? Have you received your vaccines and now you have a valid vaccination passport? If your answer to those questions is yes, then you are currently very welcome to visit Budapest.
Traveling within the EU has become quite a lot easier since July 1st, and the same is true for people who would like to visit Budapest. If you have a vaccination passport you are free to enter the country without any need of going into isolation. You can travel straight from the airport to your hotel and later walk the streets of Budapest, drink a coffee, sip a glass of Tokaj wine, and then eat a nice Goulash in a Budapest restaurant.
Since July 4th, Hungarians no longer need to wear a mask inside stores. There is no guarantee for how long these regulations will remain like this, but hopefully, the worst is over and tourism will return to normal within not so long.
What if I come with kids?
Adults with a vaccination passport can bring their kids along. Children under 18 years traveling with vaccinated adults do not need any further tests or vaccination in order to enter the country.
What if I don’t have a certificate?
If you have gone through COVID within the last 6 months and have official papers to confirm that, you are still allowed to enter the country with no need to be in quarantine.
If you don’t fit into any of the groups above, the best is probably to stay at home and get a vaccination!
Would you like to know even more?
You can find the official information about entering Hungary at http://www.police.hu/en/content/information-on-general-rules-of-border-crossing
The information might be a bit hard to understand, but if you read it through a couple of times, you should find all the answers you need!
We had a little break from the coronavirus topics in the newspapers for some week, but now they are returning once again. Due to the raising number of cases worldwide, and also in Europe, Hungary has decided to alter the rules and regulations related to who can enter Hungary.
Based on the new rules, valid from July 15th in 2020, the world is divided into three zones.
The Green Zone
EU countries not mentioned in the yellow zone.
People from these countries can freely enter and enjoy their summer in Budapest and in Hungary. There is no need to enter a quarantine after arrival.
The Yellow Zone
UK, US, Serbia, Romania, Sweden, Portugal, Bulgaria, Norway, Russia, China and Japan.
For people from these nations to come to Hungary, they will need to have two tests made within the last five days to confirm that they are well. If not, they will have to enter a 14-day quarantine upon arrival to Budapest.
The Red Zone
Albania, Bosnia, Belarus, Kosovo, North-Macedonia, Moldovia, Montenegro, Ukraine, and all other countries of the world not mentioned elsewhere in the other zones.
People from these countries are not allowed to enter Hungary at all.
Make sure to stay up to date before coming to Budapest, because things change very quickly!