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Hungarian Parliament Building

On the bank of the Danube, this impressive building displays an eclectic mixture of architectural styles and is home to the Crown of St Stephen.

TravelCurious Tip

To appreciate the sheer grandeur of the building, admire it from the opposite bank of the Danube — or better yet, from a boat!

After the Austro-Hungarian Compromise in 1867 resulted in a dual monarchy, Hungary was more independent: it wrote its own constitution, and resolved to build a new, impressive parliament building to underline its sovereignty. 40 million bricks, half a million precious stones and 40 kilograms of gold later, the spectacular Hungarian Parliament Building was complete.


It lies in Lajos Kossuth Square, on the bank of the Danube, and is currently the largest building in Hungary. It also holds the title of being the joint tallest building in Budapest, along with St Stephen’s Basilica. They both stand at 96 metres, and this was no accident: it symbolises the equal standing of worldly and spiritual matters in Budapest. The height of 96 metres refers to 896, the year when the Magyar tribes settled in the Carpathian Basin.


The architect, Imre Steindl, sought to combine historical architecture with modern techniques, and the Hungarian Parliament is a fine example of historical eclecticism. It features elements of the Neo-Gothic style, with its many turrets and towers, but also takes inspiration from Renaissance and Byzantine traditions. Steindl may have based his design on the Houses of Parliament in London, but the result was far from imitation.


The interior is just as stunning as the exterior: the staircase hall, for example, is a marvel, with its granite Corinthian columns, gilded ornaments and sprawling ceiling painting by Károly Lotz. The building also houses some treasures, including the Hungarian Crown Jewels which after World War II were given to the Americans for safekeeping from the Soviet Union. President Jimmy Carter eventually returned them in 1978.

Nearby Attractions

See all attractions in Budapest
St Stephen's Basilica
A neoclassical cathedral dedicated to the first Christian king of Hungary; his (alleged) right hand is housed in its reliquary.
Soviet War Memorial
Situated in a landscaped park, this white obelisk commemorates Russian military who served during the Second World War.
Chain Bridge
The Chain Bridge, also know as Széchenyi Bridge connects East and West Budapest through the River Danube
Liberty Square
Liberty Square or Szabadsag ter in Budapest is one of the largest squares in the city
Statue of Imre Nagy
Imre Nagy was the Prime Minister of Hungary during Soviet Rule, responsible for anti-Soviet uprising.
Ronald Reagan Statue
Ronald Reagan Statue stands in Liberty Square, Budapest, to commemorate the former United States president and his efforts to end the Cold War and Russian control over Hungary.

Related Tours

Highlights of Pest: Private Walking Tour
Explore the fascinating and vibrant Pest District of Hungary’s capital city, famous for its Jewish history, and its mix of stunning architectural styles. On your private tour you will:

  • Enjoy the personal attention of your expert private guide.
  • Discover the Pest district of Budapest, and learn why the two cities of Buda and Pest were united.
  • Wander along the eastern banks of the Danube River, whilst learning of its importance to the city since ancient times.
  • Learn about the Jewish community and their history in Budapest at the Holocaust Memorial centre
  • Visit the Great Synagogue, and enjoy a privately guided tour of Europe’s largest Jewish place of worship, with skip the line tickets included.
  • Tour inside the stunning Basilica of St Stephen’s, a neoclassical Cathedral (entrance included).
  • Learn about Hungary’s politics as you stand in front of the magnificent Parliament Building. 
  • Pass by the Vörösmarty tér statue and stop for a photo at the Ferris Wheel of Budapest.
  • Experience the friendly, buzzing atmosphere of downtown Pest, a vibrant, trendy, cultural and artistic neighbourhood. 
  • Stop by the Heroes Square, the Opera House, and House of Terror.
  • Admire the plethora of fabulous architectural styles – Gothic, Turkish, Art Nouveau and Neo-Classical among others.
  • Stroll through the tranquil park to see the beautiful Vajdahunyad Castle.
  • End your tour with the gorgeous Széchenyi Spa, a luxury bathing complex. (Entrance not included. Please note if you wish to enter you will need to have a vaccination certificate).

Budapest is really two cities, Buda and Pest, combined. The Pest district lies on the eastern bank of the Danube River and is famous for its vibrant atmosphere, Jewish community and history, and stunning mix of architectural styles from Gothic to Art Nouveau. Your private guide will show you all the most important highlights of the district on your private walking tour. 

Learn all about the Jewish community, as you step inside the Great Synagogue, a statuesque landmark that ranks amongst the world’s largest places of worship for the Jewish faith and was consecrated in the city in 1859. Stroll the leafy Andrássy út boulevard, passing by the neo-Renaissance National Opera House and other national buildings, including the formidable and magnificent Hungarian Parliament. Straddling the Danube, this stunning building is home to the Crown of St Stephen, a historically significant treasure of the Hungarian nation, bequeathed by Pope Sylvester II on Christmas Day in the year 1000. 

Walk into the Heroes’ Square, one of Budapest’s favourite public spaces: a popular gathering point with a monument dedicated to the Magyar (Hungarian) conquest at its heart. Your final destination on the half-day tour of Pest is the largest spa in Europe, the mosaic-rich Széchenyi Spa, an immense bathing complex built in elaborate Art Nouveau style, where you have the option of purchasing tickets to explore the bubbling hot springs and steaming pools of curative waters, enjoyed throughout the centuries by around 100-million bathers. 
Full-Day Private Tour of Budapest, with tickets included
On this six-hour tour, your expert local guide will direct you to some of the most important historical and cultural sites of Budapest. On your private tour, you will:

  • Commence your tour on Castle Hill, which offers phenomenal panoramas of the city.
  • Visit the Fisherman’s Bastion and Matthias Church with tickets included
  • Revel in the quietude of Buda and its characterful, storied streets.
  • Enjoy the buzz of Pest, a vibrant cultural hub on the eastern banks of the Danube.
  • Discover the significance of the monument at the heart of Heroes' Square. 
  • Find out what drove Buda and Pest to unify as one large capital city.
  • Discover Budapest’s stunning array of architectural styles, from the Turkish era to Art Nouveau.
  • Admire the scale and finery of the Hungarian Parliament Building. 
  • Visit two of Europe’s most important synagogues at Dohány Street Synagogue and Rumbach Street Synagogue
  • Admire the elegance of St Stephen's Basilica, a neoclassical cathedral (tickets included).
  • End your tour at  Széchenyi Spa, a colour-rich bathing complex in Art Nouveau style (tickets not included – please pre-book for the spa, if you wish). 
Budapest is blessed with some truly superb, grand buildings in Gothic, Art Nouveau, Romantic, Neo-Gothic and Turkish era style: a pleasing mix of genres that draws millions of culture buffs to the city each year.  The capital of Hungary is the administrative, cultural, economic, educational, financial and trade hub of the nation. The mighty Danube River, broad and sweeping, neatly dissects the city, with the old city of Buda extending into the hills on the west bank and Pest sitting in the lowlands to the east. As Hungary’s largest metropolitan hub, Budapest boasts more diversity in its ethnicity still, combined with the historical legacies of Asiatic conquer, Mongol invasion, Ottoman siege, German control and Soviet rule. 

Immerse yourself in the unique character of Budapest with its beautiful buildings, fairytale towers, storied streets, Hungarian culture, quirky communist-era sites and gritty spirit. Stroll some of the streets to access treasures best viewed on foot, and journey via luxury transport to the city’s far-flung corners. Your expert local guide will provide a narrative to your exploration of Budapest’s most compelling historical and cultural sites. Visit Castle Hill, an elevated focal point of Budapest’s history that is home to some of the city’s most iconic medieval monuments such as the fairytale towers at the Fisherman’s Bastion and handsome Matthias Church with its royal connections. 

The St Stephen’s Basilica, an elegant neoclassical cathedral named after the first king of Hungary, is the most sacred of all Catholic churches in the country and took 54 years to construct, finally opening in 1905. Similarly impressive is the Great Synagogue, one of the largest places of worship of the Jewish faith in the world. Your tour ends at Széchenyi Spa, an Art Nouveau bathing complex of grand decor filled with hot bubbling pools, outside baths and whirlpools. The largest spa bath in Europe, the Széchenyi Spa boasts iconic status in Hungary and is used by people of all ages, including families, for bathing rituals in its spring-fed curative bathhouse. You are free to enjoy the spa at your leisure at the end of the tour (price not included). 

Please note: if you wish to visit the spa, you must provide proof of vaccination. 
Hungarian Food Tasting & Private Walking Tour of Budapest
Explore Budapest’s thriving foodie scene on this private walking food tour with several tastings, so be sure to arrive hungry. Learn about the history of Hungarian cuisine as you sample its many and varied flavours, and admire the highlights of the city too. On your private tour you will: 

  • Enjoy the personalised attention of your expert private guide, a local foodie!
  • Sample many delicious authentic Hungarian tastings on this culinary journey through Budapest. 
  • Admire many of the architectural highlights of the city as you explore its foodie scene.
  • Browse the sensational food markets and soak up the vibrant atmosphere. 
  • Try delicious Hungarian goulash, succulent paprika chicken, fisherman soup and dumplings washed down with a Hungarian-style spritzer or a glass of white wine from the vineyards of the south of the country.
  • Visit local bars and cafes and authentic gourmet restaurants.
  • Eat like a local and meet chefs, kitchen staff and food vendors.
  • Learn the history behind the nation’s favourite dish.
  • Get the inside scoop on the best places to eat in the city.
  • Try some of Budapest’s tastiest street food.
  • End at a lively bar in the centre, to continue at your leisure.

Budapest boasts a diverse array of different dishes with abundant culinary influences. In its soups and stews, there are the tell-tale signs of Slovakia, Ukraine, and Romania, while stuffed vegetables and pickled salads are from Serbia, Croatia, Slovenia. To Austria, it owes many of its pastries and to Turkey, its coffee, with German and Russian occupation also leaving its mark. Yet with the regional towns and villages of Hungary’s culinary heartlands, Budapest’s focus is squarely on home-spun dishes - albeit with a modern, contemporary twist.

Delve into the city’s gastronomic history on this experiential, sensory and delicious food tour. 

Get to know Hungary through its incredible food. Experience for yourself how history and societal changes continue to add new complexity to the city’s foodscape. In the markets, in the cafes, in the kitchens and at the food stalls, you will meet some of the chefs and watch kitchens in the throes of creativity: smell the food, listen to it pop and spit, devour it with your eyes, before finally – tucking in! 

Budapest’s favourite local dishes read like a Hungarian map, with every corner of this landlocked country represented in restaurants in the city. Like any capital city, Budapest is home to people from all over the globe, adding further culinary bites to the city’s mouthwatering food mix. 

Traditional Hungarian cuisine is heavy, no surprise given the bitterly cold winters; however, demand in Budapest is increasingly for modern interpretations of these robust dishes, so lighter and smaller portions, tapas-style. 

Want to order like a local? Try delicious Hungarian goulash, succulent paprika chicken, fisherman soup and dumplings washed down with a Hungarian-style spritzer or a glass of white wine from the vineyards of the south of the country. This tour is a tantalising tasting adventure of authentic Hungarian baked goods, sumptuous slow-cooked meats, freshly cooked soup, pies and fresh local produce. Enjoy! Or as they say in Budapest: jó étvágyat!
Communism to Democracy: Private tour of Budapest with tickets to House of Terror Museum
Explore the beautiful city of Budapest on this private walking tour all about the turbulent political history of Hungary, from the Nazi Occupation to the rise and fall of Communism and finally the birth of democracy. On your private tour you will: 

  • Enjoy the personalised attention of your private guide. 
  • Explore the beautiful Hungarian capital of Budapest with a focus on its political past.
  • Commence your tour at the iconic Bem József Memorial Square – site of the 1956 revolution.
  • Walk outside the magnificent Parliament House and learn the backdrop of Hungarian politics in the preceding centuries to the 21st. 
  • Explore a collection of retro bars and butcher shops as you wander through the central district while discussing life under communist rule.
  • Stop my monumentssquares and statues commemorating the past, including Ronald Reagan in Liberty Square. 
  • Lastly finish your tour at the House of Terror Museum (entrance tickets included), where you will see exhibits and memorials to victims of those who lived behind the Iron Curtain.
Considered one of Europe’s most strikingly beautiful cities, Budapest, an amalgamation of Buda and Pest joined up in 1873, contains an incredible array of UNESCO World Heritage Sites. The city is split in two by the mighty River Danube, Europe’s second-longest river. The city is rich in geothermal water resources and is famous for its grand, mosaic-clad public bath-houses earning it the title of ‘World's Spa Capital’. 

Modern Budapest is a thriving metropolis, but it wasn’t always so, and on this private tour of the city, you will discover and explore the remnants of Nazism and Communism that still scar the soul of the city. Explore hidden backstreets, statues and open commemorative squares as your guide tells you the stories of the people that made Budapest: from the Ottoman Empire of the 16th Century through the revolutions of the 1800s, the tragedies of World War 2, the Nazi Occupation, the Soviet Liberation, the 1956 revolution, the rise and fall of ‘Goulash Communism’ from the 1960s-80s, and the birth of modern democracy in 1989 with the fall of the Iron Curtain: all while standing in the places in which it all happened, or by the statues of those involved. 

You’ll begin at Bem József Memorial Square, which saw 200,000 Hungarian students protesting against Soviet rule in 1956. (Bem József was a Polish general – a national hero of Poland and Hungary, who was one of the leaders of the 1848 Revolution). Following on from here you’ll stop by the statue of Imre Nagy, a politician and Chairman of the Council of Minister of the Hungarian People's Republic from 1953 to 1955, but, in 1956 he led the Revolution against the Soviet-backed government. For this, he was imprisoned and executed in 1958. He remains a heroic figure in the historic fight to topple Communism in Hungary.

You’ll wander down Falk Miksa street and see an unlikely statue of Columbo, the famous LAPD fictional detective, famous for his scruffy appearance and dogged determination to get to the truth at all costs. Why a statue of him here? It is believed Peter Falk, the actor who played him, was potentially related to the female political activist of the 19th century Miksa Falk and was also of Jewish descent. The statue is symbolic of uncovering the truth, and a homage to American efforts to end the Soviets power in Hungary. 

Next, you’ll walk into the magnificent Kossuth Lajos square to see the impressively vast, Neo-Gothic parliament building home of the national assembly. Stop for some spectacular photos and learn all about the emergence of contemporary Hungarian politics from 1989 onwards.

Just around the corner and not far from the river you’ll enter Liberty Square. A beautiful, leafy green square, dotted with statues, but with a bloody and turbulent history. It is symbolic of the history and politics of the past 250 years in Hungary, and Budapest.

Formerly a site of army barracks, in which Hungarian political prisoners were tortured and executed by the Austrian armies in the fight for independence in the 1800s, the barracks were demolished and the square replaced them in 1897. Throughout the 20th century, Liberty Square was the site of protests, revolutions, and war. Today it is a living monument to the turbulent past: with statues to commemorate the Nazi Occupation, the Soviet Liberation, and is now a symbol of freedom with a seemingly incongruous bronze statue of a very jolly looking Ronald Reagan. The people of Hungary erected it to honour Reagan’s role in ending the Cold War, which led to the end of Soviet rule in Hungary. Since 1989, the country has truly emerged from behind the Iron Curtain and become a parliamentary republic, joined NATO in 1999, and integrated with the EU in 2004.

Lastly, your guide will leave you at the House of Terror is a museum (your tickets are included) which is a memorial to the horrors of the past, to those detained, tortured, and killed inside the building and contains exhibits from the fascist and communist regimes of 20th-century Hungary. 
Private Budapest City Stroll with a Guide
Explore the highlights of the beautiful Hungarian capital of Budapest, including the entrance to St Stephen’s Basilica and enjoy a drink on us at a local tavern. On your private, guided tour of Budapest you will: 

  • Enjoy the personalised attention of your private guide.
  • Admire the scale and finery of the Hungarian Parliament Building in Kossuth Lajos Square. 
  • Find out what caused Buda and Pest to unify as one large capital city.
  • Learn of the importance of the Danube River to Budapest since ancient times.
  • Enjoy the tranquillity of the quaint and characterful historic streets of Buda as you learn the stories of famous Hungarians who lived here and shaped the destiny of the city.
  • Experience the buzz of Pest, a vibrant cultural hub on the eastern banks of the Danube.
  • Walk around Castle Hill, which offers phenomenal panoramic views over the city. 
  • Explore St Stephen's Basilica, a stunningly elegant neoclassical cathedral. 
  • End your tour at the local pub with drinks on us!
Considered one of Europe’s most strikingly beautiful cities, Budapest contains an incredible array of UNESCO World Heritage Sites. It is an amalgamation of two independent settlements of Buda and Pest that were joined in 1873.

Learn about Hungary’s complex political history outside the magnificent Neo-Gothic Parliament building, admire the elegance of St Stephen’s Basilica with a private guided tour of the interior, and enjoy the relaxed and famously friendly atmosphere of Trinity Square's lovely 13th Century Matthias Church. 

Budapest is split by a wide sweep of the mighty River the Danube, Europe’s second-longest river (the Volga is the longest) that stretches from the Black Forest to the Black Sea. The city is rich in geothermal water resources with thousands of subterranean pools spouting mineral-rich waters dating back over 2,000 years. Using 20-million litres of water, Budapest’s grand, mosaic-clad bath-houses are open to the public, earning it the title of ‘World's Spa Capital’! From the Ottoman Empire of the 16th Century through to the tragedies of World War 2 and the thriving modern city it is today, your guide will show you the major monuments, the hidden gems, and tell you the many stories that have shaped the city over many centuries. 

Also experience the buzz of Pest, the vibrant cultural hub on the eastern banks of the Danube. You’ll also walk around Castle Hill with its sweeping vista overlooking the city – the money shot! Your tour ends at a local pub with drinks on us!
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