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A city of beautifully faded elegance

Panoramically divided by the Danube, Hungary’s capital exudes faded grandeur. Comprised of busy Pest and residential Buda, the Habsburg city of grand boulevards and elegant bridges was built in the late 1800s. With its five-star hotels, spa baths, landmark coffeehouses and key restaurants wonderfully restored, Budapest provides top-notch services. An underground counterculture and savage party scene complete the picture of this cool, modern city.

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Basilica of St Stephen

Basilica of St Stephen

Famous Budapest's largest church

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A gem of 19th century monumental architecture and decorative arts made exclusively by local artists. The greatest relic of the Hungarian church is exhibited in a separate inner chapel of the church. It is the right fist of their first king Saint Stephen, the oldest human hand in the world.

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Budapest's largest church Editors' Note

The Basilica of St Stephen was designed in 1845 by József Hild, but only consecrated in 1905. Construction was so disrupted by wars and the deaths of its two major architects that one wonders if God actually wanted it built at all. The original dome collapsed in an 1868 storm.

Miklós Ybl, the new architect, had the entire building demolished and rebuilt the original neo-classical edifice in the heavy neo-renaissance style favoured by the Viennese Court. It was devastated by Allied bombing and restored in the 1980s. The ceiling is pleasantly bright, with colourful frescoes of saints in gilt trim.

The main attraction is the mummified right hand of St Stephen, known as the ‘Sacred Right’, housed in its own side chapel. The gruesome relic is preserved in an ornate glass and lead trinket box that’s shaped like Matthias Church. The hand lights up if you drop a coin in a slot next to the box. On 20 August, St Stephen’s Day, the hand is marched around the square in a religious procession.

Basilica of St Stephen
Szent István tér 1, 1051 Budapest
+36 1 311 0839
9am-5pm Mon-Fri; 9am-1pm Sat; 1-5pm Sun. Treasury Oct-Mar 10am-4pm daily. Apr-Sept 9am-5pm daily. Tower Apr-May 10am-4.30pm daily. June-Aug 9.30am-6pm daily. Sept-Oct 10am-5.30pm daily.