Budapest’s Best Museums
With its world-class restaurants, breathtaking views, amazing architecture, and unbeatable nightlife, it is quite unsurprising that Budapest is fast becoming one of the world’s hottest tourist destinations.
In addition to all of the food, churches, castles, and bridges, however, Budapest is also home to some truly incredible museums, places that are great to visit, rain or shine, and which can provide an interesting, engaging, and even exciting way to gain a deeper understanding of the city and of Hungary as a whole.
While Budapest has far too many museums to mention in one article, here are a few of the city’s best and most unique ones, whose galleries and exhibitions are well-worth paying a visit to while in the Hungarian capital.
Opened in 2005 on the shores of the Danube, Budapest’s Ludwig Contemporary Art Museum is named after the collection’s primary donors, the German art collectors Peter and Irene Ludwig, and is located inside the Palace of the Arts (Müpa), one of the city’s most exciting contemporary buildings. In addition to housing a permanent collection that includes both Hungarian artists and internationally-known names such as Picasso, Richard Estes, and Claes Oldenburg, the Ludwig also regularly hosts exciting and varied travelling exhibitions.
Castle Museums (Budapest History Museum, National Gallery)
While you might not be able to tell at first glance, the Royal Palace of Buda (which was rebuilt after being bombed in the Second World War) is in fact home to not one, but two major museums.
One is the Budapest History Museum, which makes use of the castle’s regal halls and rooms to present exhibitions on the Hungarian capital’s past, ranging from the Roman settlement of Aquincum up until the city as it stands today.
The other is the Hungarian National Gallery, which is located in the central portion of the castle. Here, you can view the works of Hungarian Masters from the Middle Ages to the present; in addition, while in the National Gallery, you can also take a look around from the top of the castle’s cupola, which provides one of the most breathtaking views of the city.
When looking for a place to stay in Budapest, it is only logical to try to find accommodations close enough to the city center to be able to truly experience all that the city has to offer. In addition, following days of sightseeing, relaxation, and incredible gastronomic experiences, it would only make sense to look for lodgings that provide luxury and comfort; in terms of location, amenities, and favorable off-season rates, Fraser Residence Budapest is a perfect choice.
Located in the heart of Pest, Fraser Residence features 50 luxury serviced apartments ranging in size from studios to penthouses. The Hungarian capital’s robust public transportation system means that, from Fraser Residence’s location at the Corvin Quarter, you can make your way to iconic landmarks such as St. Stephen’s Basilica, Gellert Hill, the Central Market Hall, or the Parliament Building in next to no time at all.
In addition, Fraser Residence’s central location means that every single one of the Hungarian capitals’ most interesting and significant cafes and coffee houses are but a short walk, metro, bus, tram, or taxi ride away. It also means that, rather than staying in a hotel located so far away from Budapest’s downtown that the trek home from a day of sightseeing, guided tours, visiting museums, or relaxing at the thermal baths will seem like a daunting task, booking at Fraser Residence gives you the opportunity to experience all of the incredible things that Budapest has to offer without having to worry about spending hours getting back to your bed. And not to worry; at Fraser, that bed will be a comfortable one, no matter what time of day or night you fall into it.
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As it is conveniently located in the city center, some of Budapest’s most important museums are, in fact, located quite near Fraser Residence. One such location is the National Museum, which, in addition to showcasing Hungarian history, has in fact played an extremely significant role of its own in the life of the country. Built between 1837 and 1848, the National Museum quickly etched itself into Hungary’s national memory thanks to the 1848-49 Revolution and War for Independence. On March 15th, 1848, it was here that famed poet and revolutionary Sándor Petőfi recited his “Nemzeti Dal (National Song)”, a call to arms and independence so important to the national psyche that it served as a rallying cry a century later, during the short-lived 1956 Revolution.
Yet another museum with immense historical significance, and which is likewise located quite close to Fraser Residence, is Budapest’s Holocaust Memorial Center. Located in a renovated synagogue that was built in 1923, the Holocaust Museum powerfully chronicles the horrors of hatred and genocide that took place both in Hungary and throughout Europe during the years of the Second World War. With an award-winning architectural design, as well as exhibits that are incredibly engaging and moving, the Budapest Holocaust Museum is one that every visitor should see at least once.
Night of Museums
While Budapest is home to far more interesting and engaging museums than just the ones listed here, luckily, there is a special day, or more precisely a special night, when almost all of the city’s museums participate in the Night of Museums, which will be held this year on June 24th. On this night, Budapest museums remain open until late in the night, and, in addition to their collections and galleries, also play host to gastronomic and cultural events, musical and theatrical performances, children’s programs, and much more. Tickets for this unique event are already on sale now, so if you are planning to make your way to Budapest this June, the Night of Museums is one event that should definitely be on your to-do list.