Budapest is famous for its stunning art nouveau buildings, so to get you inspired for your trip, here are the top 10 to check out.
Budapest is an architecture lover’s dream destination. If you love art nouveau architecture, you may want to add Budapest to the list. As you walk around the city, remember to look up and spot flowers, faces, and Zsolnay tiles staring back at you, but if you want a primer for the best art nouveau monuments, then you may want to tick the list below. Many of the sites are located in the city center, while others are out in the suburbs (but worth the trek if you are a true aficionado). So, once you’re done seeing Budapest’s main sites from the Hop-On Hop-Off tour, here are our recommendations for the top 10 art nouveau buildings and monuments in Budapest.
It’s no coincidence that Ödön Lechner gets the nickname “The Hungarian Gaudi.” Take a look up at his buildings with their colorful tiles and intricate motifs, and you can see a similarity between the two. The Postal Savings Bank resides at the heart of the city, in the V District and is an exquisite example of Hungarian art nouveau. It’s a blend of colorful Zsolnay tiles and architectural porcelain inspired by folk art and nature (see if you can spot the busy little bees making their way up to the hives). The best place to appreciate this building is from the rooftop terrace bar of the President Hotel opposite.
You can’t visit the city without paying a visit to one of Budapest’s famous thermal baths. The good news is you can both take the waters and admire stunning architecture at the same time at the Gellért Thermal Baths. The most beautiful part of the baths is in the indoor thermal baths, where turquoise and emerald Zsolnay tiles cover the room, from the base of the pools up until the glass ceiling. Then you have the main pool, with its colonnade of art nouveau columns, which is definitely the most beautiful place in the city to swim.
09:00:00 – 19:00:00
The Four Seasons Hotel resides in the stunning Gresham Palace, a former palatial apartment block that once housed the Gresham insurance company and other shops in its gorgeous arcade. Even if you are not staying here, you can come inside and admire the beautiful atrium with its lead glass windows. There is a bar in here belonging to the hotel, so come in for a drink and admire the architecture while doing so.
Located close to City Park in a neighborhood populated by embassy villas and a new football stadium, the Institute of Geology and Geophysics is one of the most beautiful buildings by Ödön Lechner. The blue tiles of the rooftop, accented by an Atlas figure holding up a globe, can be spotted at the end of the street and it’s a spectacular sight even from afar. From close up, details of the building echo geological themes, like the blue roof is meant to symbolize the Tethys Sea, while ceramic fossils adorn the walls and the interior mimics the stalactites of a cave in its mosaics.
This green-pastel-colored house is certainly a pretty sight from the outside, but it’s also home to the Museum of Art Nouveau, where you can see an interesting collection of art nouveau furniture and décor from the turn of the century apartments. Perhaps you could even stop by for a coffee in the small café in the museum.
This famous building by Ödön Lechner draws inspiration from eastern architecture, as Lechner wanted to find a style that was truly Hungarian. He followed the theory that the Hungarians came from Asia, so he turned to India and Iran as influences in the style of the building, but also combines Hungarian folk art and colorful ceramics in the building which houses the Museum of Applied Arts.
10:00:00 – 18:00:00
If you pay a visit to the Budapest Zoo, you’ll get to see more than just the animals. The Elephant House, designed by Kornél Neuschloss-Knüsli, resembles a mosque more than a building you’d find at the zoo. But its beautiful, blue-tiled domes, elephant sculptures, and oriental design has made it the architectural star of the zoo.
tuesday 09:00:00 – 18:00:00
wednesday 09:00:00 – 18:00:00
thursday 09:00:00 – 18:00:00
friday 09:00:00 – 18:00:00
saturday 09:00:00 – 20:00:00
sunday 09:00:00 – 20:00:00
If you’re taking a stroll through City Park, try to make a detour to the edge to see this stunning villa by Ödön Lechner. Although you won’t be able to go inside, you can snap a photo for the gram from the outside, as it’s a very photogenic building.
This incredible art nouveau mausoleum for the Schmidl Family by Béla Lajta is worth the long trek out to the Jewish Cemetery in the X District. Although this is the most striking, you’ll find many other gorgeous art nouveau mausoleums and graves in this vast and curious cemetery.
This residential house, with its blue pastel hues, is pretty from the outside, but if you can sneak in through the front door into the courtyard, you’ll be treated to stunning wrought-iron balconies shaped like butterflies. A true hidden gem and a thrilling reward for any art nouveau lover that makes it inside.
- Where can you find art nouveau in Budapest?
- You can find art nouveau architecture all across Budapest, but the most famous examples are in the V, XI, and XIV Districts.
- Which city is famous for art nouveau?
- Budapest is one of the top art nouveau cities in Europe after cities like Barcelona, Paris, Brussels, and Vienna, most notably for its buildings by Ödön Lechner.
- How do you know if something is art nouveau?
- Art Nouveau is often characterized by its curving lines inspired by flowers and nature, and some examples are very colorful. Hungarian Art Nouveau uses glazed, colorful ceramics and mosaics on its art nouveau buildings.