You will notice immediately that autumn is in full force with a visit to Budapest in October. The crowds are a little smaller, people are bundled up a bit more, and you can smell goulash coming from many of the city’s restaurants.
October is the perfect time of year to discover the many thermal baths in Budapest. You will hear jazz melodies floating through the air at times, shorter lines at all of the city’s best sights, and unique opportunities to embrace Hungarian culture become available.
If you have always wanted to see this fantastic European city, then consider visiting in October. You won’t need to hassle with the weather of winter, but you still get to take advantage of discounted prices.
How to Plan for Budapest in October
Budapest in October can get very cold at night. It tends to warm up by the afternoon to a comfortable temperature, so you’ll want to bring a variety of clothing options. It’s an exceptional time to go sightseeing in the city since the lines are short, and the sun loves to shine.
A chance of rain continues to increase as you get deeper into the month, but the cold fronts that come in autumn tend to bring more wind than rain. If you arrive early in October, then several opportunities to enjoy some hot coffee outside of a café will present themselves to you. If you’re not a fan of the wind, then a scarf can help to keep you warm. You’ll see most people outside are wearing jeans, a sweater, and some thin gloves in Budapest this time of year.
Events to Attend in Budapest in October
The best event that you will find in Budapest during October is arguably the annual Palinka and Sausage Festival. As with many of the food-related events that happen in the city, you’ll want to make your way up to Buda Castle to enjoy this experience. You’ll get to pair the fruit brandy that Hungary is famous for making with some of the best sausages that you can ever remember eating. Construction at Buda Castle can postpone or cancel events in some years, so you will want to check the schedule and location before making definitive plans.
The Budapest Autumn Festival begins in October, providing over 100 different programs at more than 40 various venues. Most of the activities are free to enjoy, so this option is an excellent way to get to know the local culture a bit better.
October also means that Halloween parties begin to appear across the city. The pubs and baths almost always host something, while the Danube river cruises often provide a bar and a DJ while you float along. Costumes are sometimes encouraged, but that decision is up to you during your stay.
The World Press Photo Exhibition comes to Budapest every year during October. It presents the award-winning images from the news from over two dozen countries. This event is a traveling show, so the days that it is active in the city can change each year.
You’ll still have access to an entire concert calendar in Budapest for the month. Each venue will have dates and times available for you to consider, so it may be helpful to secure tickets in advance if there is limited seating.
Tips to Follow for Enjoying Budapest in October
Rainy days can happen in October when visiting Budapest, so having some indoor options as a backup plan can be helpful. Having lunch in the 19th-century Central Market Hall is an experience to consider, as the first floor gives vendors a chance to sell everything from vegetables to wine. If you want an inexpensive meal in a light, airy space, this is the place to be.
After you are full, you can take some time to explore the second floor of the Central Market Hall for your souvenirs, such as traditional Hungarian embroidery.
Budapest celebrates Restaurant Week during the second week of October each year. You’ll find that the participating restaurants offer their menus at a discounted price for many items, and even exclusive dishes won’t make it feel like you’re going bankrupt. You will need to book your space in advance for this fun experience.
The Chimney Cake Festival happens at City Park during the second weekend in October. This event is delicious and fun as you get to try kürtőskalács. A variety of pastries are also available, often fried in oil or over charcoal. You can enjoy them plain or try them with several different toppings. Organizers host baking contests, magic shows for the kids, and drawing competitions to make it a family-friendly experience.
Then take some time to enjoy Art Market Budapest during your October stay at Millenaris. This complex feels like a maze where new wonders await around every corner. This program seeks to bring artists and communities together while you get to contemplate contemporary pieces in a fun environment.
What Will You Find in Budapest During October?
Budapest is a city filled with opportunities. When the weather is pleasant, then that is the perfect time to see the Parliament building, walk the Danube Promenade, and take in all of the other landmarks. If it begins to rain, then you have the chance to tour a gallery, see a museum, or enjoy the developing escape room culture.
You always have the option to visit the spas and baths in Budapest to relax. With several cinemas available throughout the city, you can still catch a movie.
Whether you are in Budapest for three days or three weeks, you will find that October brings a unique energy to the city. People are excited to transition away from summer as they look forward to the upcoming holiday season. The crowds are not as big, which means the costs are not as high.
If you don’t mind a little bit of chill in the air as you explore, then you will find October can help you to love Budapest even more.