Before the Hungarian royal family settled on Castle Hill, the family lived in Óbuda, the oldest part of Budapest. The Celts already founded a settlement here. Then came the Romans and in the 19th century the remains of their army place Aquincum were uncovered. These ruins are open to the public. The Aquincum Museum exhibits Roman objects found during the excavations, including a sarcophagus of red marble, ceramics and jewellery. The Roman amphitheatre, which is located further north, can be visited for free. Take a relaxing stroll through this old part of Budapest and admire the special sights.
The heart of modern Óbuda is the square Flórián tér. Roman ruins were found here at the end of the 18th century and now adorn the centre of the square. This square is not special though: lots of traffic and ugly blocks of houses. Much more fun is Szentlélek tér, the centre of old Óbuda. The eye-catcher is the Baroque Zichy Palace (Zichy Kúria), which is now a cultural centre. In the summer there are often concerts in the garden and the building itself houses works by the Hungarian op-art artist Victor Vasarely. There is also a Historical Museum.
Concerts and cultural events are also held at other places in Óbuda in a historical setting. On the Óbudai Island in the Danube there is an annual international youth and music festival, usually in the first week of August. This Sziget-festival now attracts around 400,000 visitors.
It is a long climb to the Kiscelli Museum, which is housed in a Baroque building from the 18th century. Originally a monastery, it now houses historical paintings, engravings and sculptures. The showpiece is a printing press on which the revolutionary Sándor Petofi printed his famous poem 'Nemzeti Dal' in 1848. This song revolted the Hungarians against the Habsburgs.
Óbuda is located northwest of Budapest and can be reached via the long Bécsi-út (Vienna Street).
Website: Official website Óbuda
Website: Aquincum ruins and museum
Address: Szentendrei út 139
Opening hours: 10.00-18.00 (in winter until 16.00)
Website: Kiscelli Museum
Address: Kiscelli u. 108
Opening hours: 10.00-18.00 (November-March to 16.00, closed on Mondays)
Website: Concerts and cultural events
Consult the websites of the places of interest for up-to-date price information and opening hours.