Where to Stay in Budapest Hungary St. Stephen's Basilica

Where to Stay in Budapest: 6 Best Districts

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Budapest is fast becoming one of the most popular cities to explore on a short city break. With castles, museums, churches, famous squares and monuments to explore, you will not be short of things to do. Top of your planning list is the best place to stay in Budapest. With 23 districts, this can be a minefield of hotels, hostels, and apartments. This guide will take you through some of the best hotels in Budapest and help take the legwork out of this part of your holiday planning. 


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Best Places to Stay in Budapest Overview

  • District I Buda Castle: Best for history fans
  • District VII former Jewish Quarter: Best for drinking
  • District III: Óbuda-Aquincum: Old Buda, affordable
  • District VI Terézváros: Best for shopping trips

Budapest’s Districts

Did you know that Buda and Pest are two separate areas divided by the Danube flowing through its center?

There is so much to do packed into every district in the city so I am going to look at six popular districts and show you what they have to offer in the way of interests and hotels.

District I Buda Castle

The famous Buda Castle is located on the Buda side of the Danube. This district offers you cobbled streets, grand monuments and medieval architecture. With the castle on the top of a hill overlooking the whole city, you are drawn into this historical part of Budapest. 

District III

Óbuda-Aquincum: The oldest and second-largest district, Obuda, or Old Buda, is in the north part of the Buda side of Budapest. With impressive Baroque style buildings, this district offers you the Zichy Palace, museums and fabulous Hungarian restaurants.  

District V Belváros (Inner City) or Downtown Budapest & Lipótváros

This district is on the Pest side of the Danube. It is right in the heart of the city center and boasts the beautiful Hungarian Parliament Building, St Stephen’s Basilica as well as more upmarket hotels such as the Four Seasons. 

District VI Terézváros 

With a thriving cultural life, this district offers you Budapest’s Broadway. Here you can visit the Hungarian State Opera House, the Liszt Ferenc Music Academy, and the Operetta Theater. The historic Andrássy Avenue runs the whole way through District VI and offers you shopping along with great restaurants and bars.

District VII the former Jewish Quarter

his is the heart of the Jewish community in Budapest and has several synagogues. The Great Synagogue in Dohány utca is the second largest and the most beautiful synagogue in the world. It is perhaps the most hipster part of the city with ruin bars, street food, beer gardens and more speciality cafes situated here. It is also the district where the famous New York Palace Hotel is.

District VIII 

Known as the Palace District because aristocratic families of the Austro-Hungarian Empire built more than 30 palaces and mansions. With most now restored after the Wars and the revolution of 1956, they are now home to universities, museums and hotels.

St Stephen's Basilica Budapest


Getting Around Budapest

Most of the city center and the attractions are suitable for walking. However, to get to all the different attractions in the various districts you will need to consider transport.

Budapest has an extensive public transport network and it is also very easy on the pocket.

With the Metro offering the M1,2,3, and 4 lines, you can easily hop on underground and most stops are near a tourist attraction.
The Yellow Streetcars are also easy to navigate and will save your feet as you go between attractions.

I visited Budapest in July this year and I bought the Budapest Card. It gives you free use of the public transport network around the city. It also provides free access to the Castle and many other top attractions. I would highly recommend this card.

The card comes in 24,48 and 72 hour passes.

Another way to get around by wheels is to use a hop on hop off sightseeing tour bus.

With tickets for 24, 48 or 72 hours, this bus will take you to the furthest away attractions without you wearing your feet out.

So easy to use, and stops all over the city on both sides of the Danube, it is well worth the money.

I also bought this ticket while I was in Budapest.

It gave me respite from walking all day and allowed me to see the whole of the city before I decided what I wanted to see first.


Best Area to Stay in Budapest

District I Buda Castle

With this district being right in the center and of course beside the Castle, expect to pay a premium price for your accommodation. That doesn’t mean that you won’t find a wee hidden gem, though.

Budget Hotel

The Art’otel Budapest is situated right on the banks of the Danube River. It offers panoramic views of the Castle and the Fisherman’s Bastion. Within a ten minute walk, you are at Buda Castle. A modern hotel with wifi, and free access to the sauna and fitness facilities, this is an excellent choice for a budget hotel in Budapest.

Boutique Hotel

The Monastery Boutique Hotel is a new addition to the hotel accommodation in Budapest. Situated in a 300-year-old Abbey, built by the Capuchin Order, this trendy hotel is close to the Fisherman’s Bastion and the famous Chain Bridge. 

Luxury Hotel

As far as the best location to stay in Budapest goes, The Hilton Hotel is all about location, location, location. With unprecedented views over the city and situated right next to the main attractions, The Hilton offers you luxury in the historic part of this breathtaking city. 


District III: Óbuda-Aquincum

This is the district I stayed in when visiting.

Known as Old Buda, it offered us the hotel accommodation at a great price, while being on the mainline for public transport. The restaurants in this district, offer authentic Hungarian food and the wine is delicious. A quieter area to the hotels in Budapest City center. 

Budget Hotel

The Holiday Beach Budapest Wellness Hotel is the only boat-shaped hotel in the city. Featuring an outdoor pool, views over the Danube and free wifi, this is a great wee find to rest those weary legs and feet after a full day’s exploring. 

Mid Range Hotel

We opted for the Aquincum Hotel. It is a three-minute walk away from the train station, right next to the tram stops and looks right over the Danube. We decided not to take breakfast in the hotel and opted to grab a pastry and coffee from the bakery at the train station. I like a lie-in! It is also one of the many hotels with a pool in Budapest. 

Chimney Cake Budapest_


District V Belváros (Inner City)

Right in the heart of the city centre, District V can be classed as the best area to stay in Budapest. With the Hungarian Parliament Building, St Stephen’s Basilica and many different restaurants all within walking distance, you are spoiled for choice as to where to start your day. 

Budget Hotel/Apartments

The TG Design Suites Aparthotel offers modern accommodation in Budapest city center. These apartments are within walking distance of everything that district V has to offer. If it’s a good base for the nightlife that Budapest has, then this is for you!

Boutique Hotel

As far as hotels in Budapest’s city center go, Hotel Parliament is one to grab while you can. Situated in a beautiful stone building, you are offered the modern with the historical by this boutique hotel Budapest. Air Conditioning, a spa, and free wifi are just some of what this hotel has to offer. 

Luxury Hotel

If you are looking for the best hotel location in Budapest, then the luxurious Four Seasons Hotel offers you just that. Right in front of the Chain Bridge and within walking distance of all of the main attractions that Budapest has, the Four Seasons offers you everything you want in a luxury hotel.

Hungarian Parliament Building Budapest_


District VI Terézváros

If it’s shopping you love, then District VI is the place for you. The main shopping street, Andrassy Avenue is here, as well as close proximity to the many shopping malls that Budapest has to offer. Know also as Budapest Broadway, the Hungarian Opera State House is a must for music lovers.

Budget Hotel/Apartment

When it comes to cheap accommodation, Budapest offers you modern apartments. The Karma Boutique Apartments are close to the public baths – which should be on everyone’s must-visit list. The metro yellow line is only a couple of minutes’ walk away. 

Mid Range Hotel

The Medosz Hotel Budapest is one of the most searched for hotels in this area. Near the Liszt Ferenc Square and around a ten-minute walk to the various attractions, this hotel should be on your Budapest where to stay list.

Luxury Hotel

Everyone has a little prince or princess tendencies – right? Well, my inner princess has always wanted to stay in a palace and Budapest offers just this! The Mystery Hotel Budapest is situated in an eclectic palace which was built in the 19th Century. This luxury hotel is historically themed and each room has its own special decor. Again it is near to the Hungarian State Opera and St Stephen’s Basilica. 

Christmas tree, decorations, Vaci Street shopping Budapest


District VII the former Jewish Quarter

Hotels in the Pest side of Budapest are often close to the public transport stations and offer some of the cheapest hotels Budapest city center has to offer.

The former Jewish Quarter is no exception. Giving you the best in nightlife and ruin bars – yes that’s bars set in run-down buildings but with the most amazing atmosphere, this district is for those of you who want to explore the city in the day and enjoy the nightlife of Budapest.  

This is the district that Gemma and Craig from Two Scots Abroad stay when they visit Budapest. Craig has visited every year since 2016.

Budget Hotel

Although budget, The Eurostars Danube Budapest gets a great review from visitors. Staff are friendly, rooms are clean and the location if ideal for stumbling into bed after drinking palinka. 

Boutique Hotel

As far as 3-star hotels in Budapest go, The Roombach Hotel is a cozy boutique feel hotel. Close to amazing restaurants and within a short walk of the historic attractions, this hotel offers you everything you need. 

Luxury Hotel

One of the best hotels in Budapest Hungary is the New York Palace Hotel. Situated within a 19th Century building this hotel offers luxury like no other. At the heart of the hotel is the famous New York Cafe. Here you can feast on fine dining Hungarian cuisine while soaking in the frescos and stucco columns.

Budapest Central Market Unicum, Taste Hungary

 


District VIII Palace District

All of Budapest districts have their own unique qualities to offer the traveler. None more so than the Palace District. This district is perfect for those who are interested in monuments, architecture and sightseeing.

Budget Hotel

When it comes to cheap hotels in Budapest, the Silver Boutique gives you a modern clean room with air conditioning and wifi  – all with a boutique feel. It is close to the historic attractions that Budapest offers and public transport. 

Mid Range Hotel

If you are looking for a beautiful building both inside and out, Hotel Museum Budapest offers you this option. It boasts its own Turkish Bath, free wifi, air conditioning and close proximity to everything Budapest has to offer. 

Luxury Suites

If you are traveling as a group and want something a little different, these luxury suites offer you just this. Giving you the independence you want combining with all the hotel services you need, these suites are perfect for a more independent traveler. 


Pin to your Budapest board for later

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Final Words 

So, when you ask what is the best district to stay in Budapest, the answer is it is up to your own itinerary. The choice of hotels is huge and hopefully, this guide has narrowed the field down for you. I would say that while there are bed and breakfast options in Budapest, it is much nicer to explore the city in the morning and find a cafe to enjoy breakfast in.  

Gemma and Craig are full-time workers with a life-long travel habit. Flirting with 30 and let loose on the world! Gemma writes, Craig looks good in the photos.

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