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How to enjoy the best of the coldest months with a list of top 10 things to do in budapest in winter. Budapest is without any doubt my favourite city of this year.

In the past year, we have been in 13 countries in 2018, and absolutely Budapest has taken a piece of my heart (Toti said). It is in our opinion more magic than Paris or Vienna. It has a shadow surrounding makes everything romantic.

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Budapest will become soon one of the prettiest location to visit, worth to visit like Rome or Brussels. it is suitable for any kind of tourism. If you are a backpacker you will fly to Budapest for cheap and stay in a cosy accommodation for less than 20 euro for a night, or stay in a hostel for 15 euro for night or less.

If you are looking for a relaxing vacation abroad, Budapest has hundreds of Spa and thermal baths ready for you.

Road Trip lovers? Start to plan your trip following the river, the Danube path, visiting Vienna, Bratislava and Budapest. Hungary is not just Budapest, but even other cities around, you can easily plan a day trip away from the great city on the Danube. 

It is a Capital city, and as you know there are so many things to do in Budapest in Winter.

This is just a list of top 10 things to do in Budapest in Winter. In this post, you will find some of the best Budapest winter pictures, suggestions for your next breakfast in the local coffee houses, eat the famous and typical Chimney cake.

 We have tried to summarize all the best about Budapest. How to visit the Central Market Hall, or go up to the hill and visit the Buda Castle and enjoy at the best Budapest winter.


  1. Breakfast with a view

  2. Budapest thermal baths

  3. Szechny baths winter

  4. Shopping in the city centre

  5. Visit the Fisherman’s Bastion

  6. Pub crawl visiting the famous Ruin Pubs

  7. Budapest Hannukah

  8. Hungarian Wine Tasting

  9. Skating in the City Park

  10. Christmas Markets

Top 10 things to do in budapest in winter - 2

The best Breakfast Budapest

As you know Budapest is plenty of fancy places where eat, the prices could be really cheap or really expensive. If you will get the best breakfast with a view in Budapest, you need to go to the Icon Restaurant, as you can understand it is not just for a fancy breakfast, but you can also have a dinner or lunch.

The view from the top of the restaurant is amazing. You will see the Hungarian Parliament in front of view. The landscape is awesome on the daylight and at night, where it becomes magic and breathtaking.

But, the crown of the fanciest breakfast in the city, according to locals is at the New York Palace, in the centre of Budapest. The New York Palace is in the Jewish Quarter, the interiors are old style with great attention to the details.

budapest baths in winter

Budapest Thermal Baths

Budapest is becoming one of the best fancies destinations for relaxing vacation and water therapy. The Budapest Thermal Baths are not just for relax and take off the tension from your muscle, but it also becoming a nice destination for who needs Spa treatments.

According to a recent census, it is estimated there are approximately 1000 natural spring water sources in Hungary. Most of the SPA in Budapest are century old and are built on a natural spring water source.

There are many kinds of baths in all Budapest, with different kinds of treatments. The most important baths on a natural spring water source are the Turkish bath, Kiraly Bath and Ruda Bath.


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Szechny baths winter

The Szechny baths are the most instragrammable Spa in Budapest. You will have seen a photo of this incredible building with outdoor pools and relaxing treatments. Szechny baths winter is the best option if you are heading in Budapest in December, January or February. It will be open every day, with special parties at night. You will have the full list of parties on the official website (check it here)

The price for the Szechny baths starts from 20 euro, you can add a lot of features like the fast track entrance. If you don’t have towels, the swimwear doesn’t worry, you can hire or buy the necessary clothes at the local shop. Be aware, some pools need the swimming cap, without you will see yourself denied to use that pool, you can buy it at the entrance. Check all the price on the official website.

If you are heading to Budapest in December, we will suggest you don’t miss the amazing Budapest parties. There is the best New Year’s Eve Budapest Parties ant the Szechenyi Baths on December 30. There is party indoor and outdoor. If you don’t feel to be involved in a SPA new year party, take a break for a day and at night go for riverboat parties on the Danube.

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Shopping in the city centre

The city shopping centre is amazing, full of well-known brands from all over the World. Like any Capital in the World, Budapest collects the best of the fashion, food and technology in the city shopping centre. Walking around the main way of looking at the shop windows will be one of the top things to do in Budapest in Winter.  The main fashion street with the best trendy brands is on Deak Ferenc U., you will also find on this street coffee shops like Starbucks and the great Hard Rock Cafè.

Even if Hungary is not jet in the Euro monetary system, some shop accepts to be paid in Euro, even some restaurants and bar, will allow you to pay with the European currency. But when you are paying in Euro, be away about the exchange rate.

Visit the Fisherman’s Bastion

The Fisherman’s Bastion is the monumental building on the top of the hill of Buda, the south part of the city. It is amazing on the daylight and incredible at night. This place needs to be on the top of your list if you are visiting Budapest in winter.

Fisherman’s Bastion is one of the top Budapest attractions, a breathtaking ticket to heaven. It is a fortification around the city of Buda, it was built in the 19th century and served as a lookout tower. The fortress is becoming one of the top photo spots in Budapest.

The panoramic view on the Parliament, especially at night give to this fortress the crown of one of the best instagrammable spot in Europe. Check our list of the best photo locations in Budapest.


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Pub crawl visiting the famous Ruin Pubs

Ok, for sure you don’t know what is a ruin pub. Well, we didn’t know as well before head to Budapest. The Ruin Pubs are the local icons of Budapest, they are really proud of this kind of bars, even if the history on how those are been built is not the best.

The ruin pubs are occupied buildings, those have the main character to be a really artistic and recycling place. Well, explaining better, those pubs have been built with old sofas and chairs, furniture in disuse and renowned. Some of the Ruin pubs don’t have stylistic sense, it has mad with furniture of different places.


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So, why visit Ruin Pubs is a great Budapest experience? First of all, you will be catapulted in a different word, sometimes garden, sometimes a grandmother living room. The Ruin Pubs are also the cheapest solution for your travel, a craft beer will cost you even less than a euro.

Some Ruin Pubs has inside a local market, where you can find a farmer selling their own products for a ridiculous price. Visit a Ruin Pub will also contribute to saving the environment, reducing the impact.

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Budapest Hannukah

Budapest Hannukkah is one the best winter event in the Hungarian Capital. It is a celebration of the Jewish community, really large in Budapest. The Jewish quarter in Budapest is special during this period, which has no set date and could come anytime between November and December.

The Hannukkah is organized in the Districts 6 and 7 of Budapest. There are a lot of tours around the Jewish Quarter in Budapest, some are free and really worth to do. The Jewish community remember very well the Holocaust period, they lose hundreds of thousands during the black period of Europe, and the memory is still vivid and strong in the mind of the people and on the walls of the Jewish Quarter.

Eight days of celebration during the Hannukkah will be lighting up Budapest with concerts, theatre performances and live show, which is the best way to welcome travellers.

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Hungarian Wine Tasting

We will bet not many people know Hungary is a really good producer of tasty wine. It is true, the wine tasting tours is an upcoming market for Hungary because not everyone knows they are an excellent producer of wine.

All around Budapest is full of grape tree. In the river city, are growing the places offering a wine tasting and a tour of the wine cellars. You will also find a lot of day tours outside of Budapest, showing you where are growing the grape tree and can take you to an amazing experience discovering the Hungarian wine.

Stroll around the city centre looking for the dozen of wine bars, taking the best of your time in Budapest in the winter months.

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Skating in the City Park

It is maybe one of the best experience to do in Budapest in winter. The most known ice ring in Budapest is at the City Park, it is also one of the biggest in the city. Skating in the City Park needs to be on the top of your list of things to do in Budapest at Christmas.

The City Park ice skating rink is the famous one because in 2012 was the pitch of the European Speed Skating Championship. So be ready to go fast, it is the place choice from the best of Budapest.

In Budapest, there is not just the City Park ice rink, more artificial skating park are present in the two parts of the city, Buda and Pest. In Buda, you will find an ice rink at the Christmas Market of St. Stephen’s Basilica. On the opposite side of the river, in Pest, you need to head to the Obuda Christmas Market, in the homonym district.

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Christmas Markets

The best period of the year for visit Budapest is without any doubt Christmas. The Hungarian Capital is plenty of Christmas Market, selling all kind of locals products, from handmade goods to craft beers and wine.

One of the top things to try at a Christmas Market in Budapest is absolutely the mulled wine and the roasted chestnuts. Those are the typical Christmas products.

Top 10 things to do in budapest in winter - 10

As we said before there are a lot of Christmas Markets from November to January. It has become one of the biggest concentration of Christmas markets in Europe. The Verosmarty Square Christmas Market, in the Buda part, really close to the local Hard Rock Cafè, is the oldest one and has won many winter travel top list in Europe.

The newest city Christmas market is also in the Buda part, down of the St. Stephen’s Cathedral, in the homonyms square. So as you can read, visit a Christmas Market is one of the best things to do in Budapest in December. Why not visit all of them, there is a lot of the Budapest Christmas market tour, with also a focus on the local wine for a perfect tour of the city in the Xmas period.

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Go to Budapest!

We will conclude like this our personal guide about the 10 top things to do in Budapest in Winter. We suggest you wear warm clothes.

Budapest could be really cold in winter, the temperature is going easily below the zero,  and relaxes in a Spa all the day is not the best way to enjoy all the amazing sightseeing of Budapest.

Budapest in January is really cold, the same for February. The weather in December in Budapest is cold as well, but if you are lucky you can get some sunshine days, enjoying a walk on the riverside or a wine tasting on a boat on the Danube.

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  3. Budapest is not really expensive. We have been out for a dinner, two of us, starter, two main courses and drink, everything £25 both of us. It’s not expensive at all.

  4. I would love to visit Budapest. So many interesting sights to see. Am curious to know how expensive it is compared to the rest of Europe.

  5. Great post guys! Budapest is very close to my hometown so I’m there quite often and I’m glad that you enjoyed your stay! 🙂

  6. Well, once you pay the entrance you can stay as much as you want. Me, for example, I would stay all day!!
    But I would say about 3 – 4 hours. I think it is the best solution so later you can enjoy the best of Budapest.

  7. That’s a lot of fun activities! I’ve always wanted to visit Budapest ever since we booked tickets for visitors there during my stint with SQ (Singapore Airlines). Lovely place!

  8. The Szechny baths look wonderful! About how much time would recommend spending at one of the baths?

  9. The thermal baths sound like a great reward after a day of sightseeing. The pub crawl sounds like a lot of fun.

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