Published: July 19 2023
Known as the 'Belváros-Lipótváros,' Budapest's 5th district is recognized as the political, financial, commercial and touristic center of Hungary. This post aims to provide you with detailed insights about this wonderful locale - its history, primary attractions, food culture, transport, and accommodation facilities.
Situated on the eastern bank of the Danube River, The 5th District is a confluence of history and modernity. It incorporated 'Belváros,' Budapest's "inner city", and 'Lipótváros,' the area named after Leopold II, Holy Roman Emperor, in the 18th century. Today, it stands as an emblem of Budapest’s history, carrying memories from different eras like the Turko-Hungarian wars and the communist period.
St Stephen’s Basilica
Named after Stephen, the first King of Hungary, St. Stephen’s Basilica is a must-visit in the 5th district. This neoclassical dome, one of the tallest buildings in Budapest, serves up stunning city views. Enjoy organ concerts and peek at the holy right hand relic of St Stephen housed here.
The Hungarian Parliament Building, or 'Parliament of Budapest,’ is an architectural marvel that resides in the 5th district. This gothic-revival style spectacle is adorned by 365 turrets representing each day of the year and a central dome symbolizing equality among Hungary's laws.
Szabadság tér (Liberty Square) is a public park characterized by memorials, fountains, green spaces, and eateries. It's famous for the Soviet War Memorial and a memorial about the German occupation, offering an open history book on the city's tumultuous past.
Other sites not to miss in the 5th District are the Museum of Ethnography, the Shoes on the Danube Bank memorial, and the lively Kossuth Lajos Square.
The 5th District’s culinary scene is diverse and mouthwatering. Hungarians are known for their café culture and the district boasts a thriving community of ‘kávéház’ (coffee houses). For a hearty Hungarian meal, visit 'Kárpátia' or 'Gerlóczy Cafe.' Be sure to try local favorites like 'Goulash', 'Chicken Paprikash', and 'Dobos Torte,' a Hungarian layer cake.
As the heart of Budapest, the 5th district is interconnected by extensive public transport - the Metro Lines (M1, M2, M3), numerous buses, and trams (2, 47, 49). The district houses Deák Ferenc tér, a major transport hub linking various metro lines. It’s recommended to opt for a Budapest Travel Card for unlimited travel within the city.
From luxury hotels like the Four Seasons Hotel Gresham Palace to budget-friendly options such as Pal's Hostel and Apartments, the 5th district offers a wide range of accommodations suitable for all types of travelers. Attractions are within a walkable distance or a short public transport ride, making it an ideal place for tourists to stay.
Undeniably, Budapest’s 5th District offers a glimpse of Hungary’s vibrant history, rich culture, delectable cuisine, and architectural masterpieces. Regardless, it doesn't stop there - take a walk, explore unchartered streets, bask in the ambiance and make your own memories within its heart.