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Home> Destinations> Europe> Budapest> Overview

Information About Budapest

Updated: 2014-06-17 / (wtcf.travel)





City Introduction

Budapest, the capital of Hungary, is the major political, commercial and transportation center. As well, it is the largest city of the country. Located in the north-central border, Budapest is known as a famous ancient city in Europe, lying alongside the middle reaches of the Danube River since it used to be two isolated cities. After further expansion in several centuries, the city Buda and ancient Buda, which lies on the left side of Danube, amalgamated with Pest, a city standing on the right side of Danube, in 1873. The Danube runs through many European cities and Budapest has been hailed as “The Pearl on the Danube” and “Petite Paris". It is easy to recognize the directions in this city since the Danube is a south-north river. As a result, Buda is in the West and Pest in the East.





History and Culture

The recorded history of Budapest originated from the Castle Aquincum established in the 89th of Roman Empire and the residential areas to its north, in which today’s ancient Buda lies. The first official bridge between the two cities was built under the proposal of Istvan Szecheny, a reformer in Hungary, from1839 to 1849. Nowadays, this bridge is named after Istvan Szecheny.

Through centuries, the ethnic Hungarians had been wandering on the plateau of Eastern Europe. Afterwards, they moved to Carpathian Basin, the site of former Ava Kingdom, and finally settled down there. In the year of 896 AD, the Hungarians conquered this place under the leadership of Emperor Arpád. Before long, they discarded the nomadic life style and stopped hunting to begin farm. In 955, Ott, the late emperor of the Holy Roman Empire, defeated the Hungarians in Ostberg and forced them to abandon the plan of western expedition. Thereafter, the Hungarians began to get close to Western Christian countries and their culture. The theater art in Hungary is very famous in Europe, which has a long-standing tradition. Cinema art has played an important role in cultural life of Hungary since early 2000s. A number of Hungarian poets, writers, directors, musicians, singers, dancers, painters, architects, scientists and inventors are famous not only in Hungary but also throughout the world.





Natural Environment

Budapest lies alongside the Danube River, which flows into Hungary Plateau from the mountainous area in Mid-Hungary. The peak of Budapest is 527 meters in height. Lying on a geologic fault, Budapest is famous for hot spring resources.






Sheltered from the mountains and located in inland area, Budapest has a relatively dry climate in humid temperate continental climate zone. It is warm in winter and hot in summer. The average temperature is around -1°C in January and 21°C in July. The precipitation reaches the summit in early summer and the average annual precipitation is about 600 mm.





Useful Information


Budapest is one the cities in Europe with widest Wi-Fi coverage and there are hundreds of free Wi-Fi hotspots. You can get connected in cafes, restaurants, shopping malls, hotels and even in the park or on the street. The seventh zone (Erzsébetváros) surrounded by Károly körú Avenue, Király utca Avenue and Rákóczi út Avenue is covered by free Wi-Fi signals sponsored by the government. There are also many cybercafés in Budapest and the average cost is 200 forints per hour.

Post Office

Postage to EU countries is 235 forints and 300 forints to China. Larger postcards should be weighed by Posta and postage will be charged after further consulting. It is recommended to buy stamps from Posta if mails are sent to China since mails with an additional blue airmail seal are less easily to be lost.

Post offices are settled on main streets and scenic spots in Budapest with a symbol of green Posta. Postcard mailing from Budapest to China usually costs 300 forints. Office hours: Monday to Friday: 8:00 to 18:00; Saturday: 8:00-13:00; Closed on Sunday

Budapest Tourist Center

1052 Budapest,Sütő utca 2, Magyarország

Means of arrival:

Metro: Getting off at the intersection D e á k Ferenc tér Station by Metro Lines 1, 2 and 3.

Opening Time:8:00-20:00

Tel:+36 1 438 8080/800 36 000 000 (24h hotline)

Information of Embassy and Consulate

Address:Varosligeti fasor 20-22,1068 Budapest (see the map)



Consular Section

Reception Hours: Monday to Thursday: 9:00 to 11:45

Reception Hall Address: Benczur u.18, 1068 Budapest

Contact Phone: +361-413-338;+361-413-3373





Visa Information

1. Passport: A valid passport with a validity period of over three months after your obtaining of visa;

2. Photograph: One colored photograph taken within the last six months;

3. Application form: One fully and correctly completed and signed visa application form;

4. Health Insurance: (Including accident medical insurance, medical transportation and overseas health insurance, the amount insured shall be no less than 30000 euros .

5. Legal residence certificate for applicants from other countries;

6. Supporting Documents: In addition to all above-mentioned documents, the applicants shall provide the asset certificate of the travel expense bearer as well as other supporting documents to explain his/her travel purpose while submitting the visa application.

7. Documents for asset certification: Original copy of income certificate issued by the employer; or bank deposit certificate issued within the last three months; or pension certificate; or business license for private business owners or the self-employed; or valid air ticket, certificate of ticket order and pre-payment, hotel reservation document; or statement issued by any legal organization indicating to bear all travel expenses; or official invitation letters issued and stamped by Immigration Office of Hungary.





Currency Exchange

Unionpay is accepted by most banks, thus there is no need to exchange euro into forint. It is unnecessary to take too much cash. It is recommended to exchange a few forints for initial payment of bus and metro tickets. The exchange rate at the Watts Avenue in downtown area is most cost-effective. Deposit drawing is also available through ATMs with Unionpay symbols and no euro or dollar exchange rate conversions are calculated. Such ATMs can be seen at the exit of the airport.


It is recommended to make payments by unionpay debit cards for luxury consumptions since the credit card may set a consumption limitation. The limit of debit cards is only determined by your account balance (personal consumption limit excluded). And the password authentication method is safer for your account.

Credit Card

Though most restaurants, hotels and supermarkets in Budapest can accept credit card payment, the application of Visa, Master and many other types of credit cards are still not so widely accepted. Most ticket offices in major scenic spots only accept cash payment in forints. As a result, please have some cash ready for unexpected needs.


Generally, the tips equal to 10% to 20% of the total amount of the bill. When you get the bill from the waiter/waitress and total amount is 1,000 forints, you may add a sum of 100 to 200 forints to the bill. The waiter/waitress will sum the total amount and return the changes.


In Budapest, any consumptions exceed 50,000 forints may get a maximum of 16% tax refund. As in all European countries, you should remember to ask for the tax-refund form from the sales person after payments and check if all documents and bills have been collected. Remember to fill out your personal information and contact information.






The Hungarians mainly believe in Catholicism (66.2%) and Christian (17.9%).





Tourism Service Number

Police 107 Fire Alarm 105 Ambulance 104 Telephone Service 112

24h Medical Consulting: +36-1-200-0100

Night Pharmacy Inquiry: 31-1-443;35-5-4691






1. The face value of forint (Ft) is quite large, which varies from 10 to 20,000. Bank card payment is not so widely accepted in Budapest. In most occasions, including buying metro tickets and landmark tickets and shopping in souvenir shops, card payment is not acceptable. In addition to the unprofitable euro consumption and deposit withdraw from ATMs, tourists are recommended to bring enough cash to avoid troubles. You may then exchange your euro into forint around the Watts Avenue in the downtown.

2. Budapest has been known as the world's capital of hot spring, wit a history of over 2,000 years. Hence taking a bath in the hot spring must be listed on your itinerary to Budapest. Remember to bring the swimsuits.

3. If you plan to stay in Budapest for quite a short period, please take Tram2 trolley bus and D11, 12, 13 of public boat on the Danube. You can enjoy the beautiful night scene of the Danube on the boat.

4. Like many other European countries, the tickets are not valid until being punched by the little machine. Regular ticket checking is not available on aboveground buses; however, manual checking is conducted at the entrance and exit of metro stations. Please have your tickets ready.

5. The lift at M2 metro line is famous for its "long, steep and fast" characteristics. Please keep concentrated when stepping onto the stairs and take care.

6. Despite the Hero Square, the “square” in Hungary is much smaller than that in our original understanding. So stop imaging of a large scale of land when you see a tér / tere (square). Sometimes, even a small area for passengers to rest can also be called square, such as Ferenciek tere (Frenciek Square).





Festivals(Important/Historical/Folks Ones)

3.15 National Day: March 15th

To commemorate the 315 Revolution in 1848 when the Hungarians fought against the reign of Habsburg Kingdom.

Hot Spring’s Night: Date: July 31st, 2015

In Budapest, the city of hot spring, people celebrate this festival in five major hot spring sites, i.e. Széchenyi, Gellért, Rudas, Lukács and Király.

8.20 National Day: August 20th

August 20th must be the busiest day among all three National Days of Hungary. It was established to celebrate its founding. As well, it is a religious festival to commemorate the enthronement of Emperor Istvan in 1083.


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