Time travel back to the Middle Ages: 6 must-see attractions in Buda Castle Quarter

Castle District in Buda takes you back to the Middle Ages.

The Buda Castle Quarter is located in the I. district of Budapest. It has been home to the Hungarian kings since the 13th century - walls and some buildings survive from this era and stand silently, remembering the past.

Time travel back to the Middle Ages: 6 must-see attractions in Buda Castle Quarter

It is worth visiting the Castle District in Buda because of its immersive atmosphere, which takes you back to the Middle Ages.

The Buda Castle Quarter is located in the I. district of Budapest. It has been home to the Hungarian kings since the 13th century – walls and some buildings survive from this era and stand silently, remembering the past. At the top of Buda’s Castle Hill, you can explore a few other fascinating things – it is not by chance that the Castle District became part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Among the ancient walls are hidden treasures such as the seven-towered Fisherman’s Bastion, the Matthias Church with its colorful tiled roof, and the Sandor Palace, which serves as the residence of the President of the Republic. Set the time machine because we are traveling back to the Middle Ages in Budapest!

The Fisherman’s Bastion

The Fisherman’s Bastion is located on Holy Trinity Square, behind the architectural masterpiece Matthias Church. Its name pays tribute to the fishermen’s guild, whose members protected this section of the castle wall in the Middle Ages. And also, there is the statue of Saint Stephen, which has been standing next to the Fisherman’s Bastion for more than a hundred years.

This is the most popular area of the Buda Castle Quarter, where you can enjoy an indescribable panorama of the Danube River and marvel at the city’s opposite side. It’s a must-see attraction if you visit Budapest. The upper level of the Fisherman’s Bastion opens daily from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. For adults, the entrance fee is 1000 HUF.

The Matthias Church

Just right next to the Fisherman’s Bastion stands the marvelous Matthias Church. The foundation and construction of the church were around 1246 -1247. Later a museum was created inside the building, to present the art collection of the Matthias Church or the Church of Our Lady in Buda Castle.
Following the more than 300-year church music tradition, many foreign church choirs and ensembles give concerts in the historic building with a unique atmosphere – you can also listen to organ performances.

General opening hours of the church and museum on weekdays are between 9.00–17.00, but they can change. If you want to explore the tower, the entrance fee is 2200 HUF, and visiting the church costs 2000 HUF.

Habsburg-gate and Turul statue

If you’re walking around the quarter, visiting the Habsburg gate with the Turul statue next to is a must. This beautiful monument is located in Szent György Square. The Turul is a mythological bird of Hungarian legends and was once a Hungarian military emblem. It stands in front of the Sandor Palace.

The Sandor Palace

Behind the Habsburg-gate stands the Sandor Palace. The historical building was built between 1803 and 1806 in classicist style. It is beautiful on the inside, and outside too, but sadly the interior can only be admired once a year, on the Days of Cultural Heritage. You should not despair, as it looks gorgeous from the outside, sometimes you can even watch military parades there.

Not so far from it, you can find a tiny Kolodko statue representing a heart-warming figure from a Hungarian children’s animated series from the late ’70-s, the bunny with checkered ears. That little bunny watches the chain bridge with a telescope. Kolodko is a Hungarian-Ukrainian artist, who became famous because of his tiny statues, which are hidden gems in Budapest.

Labyrinth of Buda Castle

It is worth discovering other places in the area. Did you know that there is a hidden labyrinth under the Buda Castle? You can find the entrance to the Labyrinth of Buda Castle in Úri Street.
The cave system of the Labyrinth has been used for many things since the Middle Ages: it was a shelter, cellar, hospital or prison.

The best-known underground “guest” of Várhegy was Vlad Tepes, the famous Dracula, imprisoned here in the second half of the 15th century – as a prisoner of King Matthias. The interesting place opens every day of the year until 7 pm, and the entrance fee costs 3000 HUF.

View from the Buda Castle Quarter

But people visit the Buda Castle District not only for the buildings, the statues and the charming medieval atmosphere but also for the spectacular view from the castle hill. From Holy Trinity Square a great panorama awaits the visitors. You can see the Hungarian Parliament, the dome of St Stephen’s Basilica, the chain bridge and so on. The panoramic view starts from the Margaret Bridge and lasts to Gellért Hill.

Restaurants and pastry shops

Luckily, if you feel hungry, there are places where you can try out delicious Hungarian dishes. You won’t be disappointed with The Baltazár Grill or the Pest-Buda Bistro, but there is also a really good Italian restaurant, which is recommended to the visitors, named Jamie’s Italian.

Or if you just want to sit down for a short period, you can also visit pastry shops there. The Ruszwurm Pastry Shop is next to the Matthias Church, you can taste the country cake there. It started its operation in 1827 in the Buda castle and has been operating since then.

How to get there?

To reach this magnificent, and unique area, you can go up to the hill by Funicular. The
Buda Castle Funicular station is situated on Clark Ádám tér at the Buda side of the Chain Bridge beside the Tunnel. The other option, next to walking up, is to catch bus number 16, whose two terminals are Széll Kálmán Square and Clark Ádám square.

If you want to visit the captivating Buda Castle Quarter, or discover other parts in Budapest, don’t hesitate to contact me! Let’s explore the city together.