The Buda Castle, constructed in the 13th century, was once the residence of Hungarian kings. It used to be called The Royal Palace or The Royal Castle, but it has had the name it bears today for quite some time. A part of the Buda Hill, which gave the castle its name, is still called the Royal Quarter. It contains medieval houses and various other buildings from the time, and some of them have baroque elements dating back to the 19th century.
Apart from being beautiful from the outside, the interior has a lot to offer as well. It contains the Hungarian National Gallery and the important Budapest History Museum. The garden of the castle is enclosed, and the castle itself is connected to the Fisherman’s Bastion with a big balcony. The Bastion is a five-minute walk away from the castle itself.
The construction of the castle started in 1247, by the orders of King Bela IV. The construction process lasted for the next 20 years. In the ensuing years and centuries, each new Hungarian king enlarged and re-decorated the castle, adding their own spirit to it, as well as the spirit of the time they lived in. During its existence, the castle suffered demolitions and reconstructions. In the 19th century, a fire was started inside the castle, which further bolstered the political turmoil of the time. After World War One, the castle was the residence of Hungarian regent ruler and Austro-Hungarian admiral Miklós Horty, who would continue living in the castle all the way until the end of World War Two.
The Axis Powers used the castle as their own stronghold. Time significantly damaged the castle, but thankfully it was renovated and is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Underground chambers were discovered in the castle during its exploration. Apart from the museums it contains, you should also visit the Castle Chapel, the King’s Cellar, the Ball Room, as well as the Royal Chambers. Some of the items in the castle’s art collection require special attention, such as the Statue of the Holy Trinity, the Statue of Prince Eugene of Savoy, The Horseherd Statue, The Turulbird Statue, as well as its many altars and Baroque and Renaissance paintings.
The garden of the castle is open for visitors and it provides a wonderful view of Budapest and the Danube. We especially recommend visiting the castle during Museum Night, which starts on the same day in the whole of Europe.
Sometimes the Hungarians refer to the castle simply as Buda. Apart from its magnificent view, the castle is attractive because of the many interesting festivals that take place within its bounds. For example, the Pálinka and Sausage Festival, the Easter Festival, the Wine Festival and the Folklore Festival all offer interesting and never-before-seen spectacles. Beautiful streets surround the castle, containing many souvenir shops and restaurants, which all offer a must-try daily special: Hungarian goulash.
Ticket price for Buda Castle
Regular ticket price 8.5 €
Entrance to the castle courtyard is FREE.
Working hours of Buda Castle
The castle is open every day from 10 am to 7 pm.
!! It is possible to reach the castle on foot from the city, by cable car, bicycle, also by city bus anyone which crosses the bridge on the right side of the castle. For only 1.00 euros.
!! On the other side of the river, small blue carts with the inscription "Official Budapest Castle bus" will take you to the castle. This bus ride costs 9 euros (return ticket) or 2700 forints and departs every 15 minutes. Budapest Card holders have a free ride.
Author of the text: Ljubiša Đuričić
Photo by Ádám Berkecz on Unsplash