There are lots of things happening in Budapest every year. There are annual events that take place every single year like the Christmas markets, the Sziget Festival, the Spring Festival, and the Hungarian Grand Prix. But, there are also standalone events like concerts and sports events that only occur once.
In 2023, the biggest event ever arranged in Hungary took place as Hungary arranged the World Athletics Championships. The event was a gigantic success and millions of people followed the event on their TV screens, while hundreds of thousands came to Hungary for the actual event.
What is there to look forward to in Hungary in 2024? Which are the hottest, best, and most interesting events, exhibitions, concerts, and festivals in 2024? In this article, we try to share information about what we consider to be the most essential events in Budapest in 2024.
Top events in Budapest in 2024
We will list the top events in Budapest in 2024 in chronological order. In other words, the first events come first on the list, meaning that this isn’t ranked in order of importance, but in order of time. You might not agree with the events added (or the ones left out), but we hope you will find this information useful and inspiring, maybe giving you an additional reason to visit the city of Budapest in 2024.
Illuminated Parks in Budapest (Garden of Lights / Lumina Park) (until March 2024)
More and more cities worldwide have beautiful illuminated parks open during the winter months. The same is true about Budapest in which you can visit the Garden of Lights in the botanical garden named Füvészkert or the popular Lumina Park at the Margaret Island. These are parks with beautiful lights and you can visit the parks from around 17:00 until 20:00 in the evening. It might not give you an adrenaline rush, but it is a very popular program for families or as a romantic program for an evening with your partner.
Depeche Mode concert (March 26)
Depeche Mode is an extremely popular band and it will return to Budapest during their concert tour in 2024. This time the band will perform in the MVM Dome, a new venue located along the main road connecting the inner city of Budapest with the airport. It is always packed as Depeche Mode comes to Budapest, so if this is a concert you might be interested in, you better book your tickets as early as possible.
Gourmet Festival (May 24-26)
Are you a fan of delicious food that tastes great and looks good? Would you like to learn more about techniques used by chefs or see what are the new trends in gastronomy? The Gourmet Festival in Budapest is an annual event in May and it is a festival you must visit if you are a gastronomy nerd.
Azahriah concerts (May 24-26)
Want to combine the Gourmet Festival with the most popular artist in Hungary at the moment? Azahriah is a YouTube artist who has become extremely popular and he will have three outdoor concerts at the Puskas Arena in May 2024. You might not understand most of the lyrics (as they are in Hungarian), but you will definitely get a feeling about what young Hungarians like to listen to at the moment.
EHF Final 4 2024 (June 1-2)
Which is the best club team for women in handball in Europe? Every year, the final rounds of the tournament is played in Hungary where the four best teams play semi-finals and then the finals of the tournament. The venue is the same as the venue used for the Depeche Mode concert in March. In the last two years, the Norwegian team Vipers has won the tournament, beating the Hungarian team Györ two years again, and the Hungarian team Ferencváros in 2023. Who will win in 2024?
Euro 2024 (June 14-July 14)
In the period between June 14 and July 14, 24 nations will compete to become the best football nation in Europe. Hungary is one of the countries that will participate in the tournament (in Germany) where they will play against Germany (the host nation), Scotland, and Switzerland. During such events, there are normally large screens set up at several locations in the city, but the most popular location is Szabadság tér (Liberty Square), a fantastic location between St. Stephen’s Basilica and the Hungarian Parliament. Here they also have stalls where you can buy something to eat and drink and the atmosphere is awesome, especially on match days and during the matches.
Coldplay concerts (June 16-19)
Do you need one more reason to visit Budapest in 2024? Coldplay will have three concerts at Puskas Arena, and thousands of people have already ordered their plane tickets to Hungary to be able to attend one of these concerts. It will be packed as one of the most popular bands in the world will come to Hungary. There are no more tickets left for the events, but if you are willing to buy tickets at a secondary marketplace, you can still be among the lucky people present at the Puskas Arena as Coldplay comes to Hungary in 2024.
Hungarian Grand Prix (July 19-21)
The traditional Formula 1 race in Hungary takes place on July 21 in 2024. There will be qualification races on July 19 and July 20, but the main event starts around 15:00 on July 21. Fans from all the world come to Budapest for this event, and the question is whether Max Verstappen will win at Hungaroring for the third time in a row in 2024, or if Lewis Hamilton or some other driver will get to the finish line before the Dutch driver.
Ed Sheeran concert (July 20)
There are times when you feel really privileged, and the summer of 2024 for the people of Budapest is a summer like that. Not only will Coldplay have three concerts in the city, but Ed Sheeran is also coming to the city. The special thing is that both Ed Sheeran and Coldplay will only visit a few cities in Europe during the summer of 2024, and both of them have decided to come to Budapest. Isn’t that just fantastic? Once again, the Puskas Arena will be full and all tickets are sold out for the concert, so you can only buy tickets for the concert from others who have already managed to buy a ticket.
Summer Olympics in Paris (July 26 – August 11)
Even though the Summer Olympics is arranged in Paris, it will still impact life in Budapest. Just like during the European Championship in football, there will be big screens at several locations in Budapest during the event. This is a perfect opportunity to cheer for your favorite athletes and to enjoy a cold beer while watching the competitions on a big screen somewhere. Once again, the most popular location is at the Szabadság tér in the city where hundreds of people often come together to have a good time and to watch the events.
It is also worth knowing that Hungary has a tradition of winning 8-10 gold medals during the Summer Olympics, so the Hungarians are very enthusiastic about this event themselves.
Sziget Festival (August 7-12)
The biggest festival in Budapest is the Sziget Festival, arranged at an island a little bit north of the city center. Each year more than 400,000 people come to the island for this festival and in 2023 the biggest artists coming to the festival were Billie Eilish and Imagine Dragons. In 2024, some of the coolest artists coming to Sziget are Sam Smith, Fred Again.., Martin Garrix, and Stormzy, but we expect even more names to be added to the list as we get closer to the event.
Budapest Wine Festival (September 12-15)
The biggest wine festival in Hungary is arranged in September in Budapest. At this event which lasts for four days, you can taste thousands of wines from different winemakers in Hungary, and there are also other countries representing themselves with wines from their own countries at the festival. This is a perfect place to speak about wine, taste wine, and to meet other wine lovers. If you are looking for partners for a wine trip to Hungary, this is the perfect place to make connections with the right people. We should also mention that the festival is arranged around the Castle, giving it the perfect scenery at one of the most beautiful places in Budapest.
Move your body at one of the many running competitions in Budapest.
In Budapest, the autumn is the number one period for running all sorts of running competitions. We have written about several running competitions in our Budapest Guide, so a great place to start is by looking at all the different sports events registered in our Budapest calendar. The biggest competition is the SPAR Marathon which is arranged in October (October 12-13), but the Wizz Air Half Marathon (September 8), and the annual Night Run are also great events for running enthusiasts.
Christmas markets in Budapest
It is quite incredible, but December is one of the busiest months of the year for those working with tourists in Budapest. The restaurants are packed, the hotels are incredibly busy, and if you try to drive a car in the streets close to the Christmas markets, you might have to stand in line for a very long time due to the enormous number of people walking across the pedestrian crossings.
The dates for the Christmas markets are normally published late in October, but our guess for 2024 is that the markets will open on November 15 and remain open until December 31. If things are delayed, the markets might only open on November 22, but we don’t find that very likely.
What should you eat, drink, and buy if you visit the Christmas markets in Budapest? Where are the different Christmas markets located? You can find answers to these questions and much more information in our article about the Christmas markets in Budapest.
These are some of the fantastic events we can all look forward to in Budapest in 2024. Do you have any questions or information about event more events you feel should have been on this list? Please write a comment below and let us hear from you.
Other things you should do no matter when you come to Budapest.
Maybe you cannot be in Budapest for the Sziget Festival or during the annual Christmas markets. Even if you come at a time when there are no big festivals, exhibitions, or concerts in Budapest, there are still lots of fantastic things worth doing in the city. A great place to start is our article with travel tips for Budapest in 2024.
A second thing you should do is to read general information about the permanent attractions and activities in Budapest. The city has so many programs waiting for you, and do not forget to walk along the Danube to enjoy the magnificent panorama. A river cruise on the Danube is always a recommended program, and so is tasting all the delicious wines produced in Hungary. If you like it even stronger, you should taste some of the Pálinka, the Hungarian fruit spirit.
Food is important, so read about all sorts of restaurants in Budapest and plan, at least if you want to get a spot in one of the Michelin-starred restaurants in Budapest, or if there is some other restaurant you really long to visit.
See you all in Budapest in 2024!