Programs, Activity Recommendations
August offers the richest selection of events, festivals and other programs in Budapest. The main event of the month is St. Stephen’s Day, on August 20.: a National Holiday ending with fireworks at 21.00.
Festivals, Other Events in the Last Month of Summer
Weather – Folk Art Festival – 20th August Festivities – Sziget Festival – Summer Festival Margaret Isl. – Cholent Festival – Concerts – Spash In The Gellért Bath – Sights, Tour Tips – Museum Exhibitions – Cafes, Pubs – Parties, Nightlife
August tends to be scorching hot and dry in the last month of summer.
There are heat waves with no clouds and rain in sight, so do bring your
- Summer cap,
- Sunscreen and
- Comfy, light clothes and shoes.
Plan your program to avoid the hottest hours on the midday sun, or if you do have to be outside, take frequent rests and have a bottle of water with you.
We pay honor to our first King, St. Stephen (cc. 970-980 – 1038.) who formed a stable Christian Kingdom of Hungary out of the seven nomadic tribes arriving in the Carpathian basin at the end of the IX. century.
It is also the holiday of the new bread baked from the newly harvested wheat and rye, as well as a thanksgiving for good harvest.
It is a sort of closing celebration of summer helping everyone to prepare in mind for the coming of autumn and the new school year.
The holiday ends with spectacular fireworks over the Danube and the bridges that you can enjoy from the open deck of a hsitoric cruise ship:
Quick TIP: If you wander around the city centre: Vörösmarty Square, Liberyty Square, Szent István Square/Basilica, Vigadó Square, and the banks of the Danube you will definitely bump into a festival, concert or other program that catches your interest over the 4 days of the festivities.
- State ceremonies on Kossuth tér in front of the Parliament building, 8.00 – 9.00
- Air show over the Danube in front of the Parliament starting at 09.00 – 10.00
- Festival Of Folk Arts in Buda Castle offers craft fair, folk dance and music, children activities, food and drinsk, 19 – 21. August
- Csárdafesztivál/Festival of Inns/Taverns On Vörösmarty Square, 18 – 21. August,
- Street of Hungarian Flavours August 19 – 21.: Gastro promenade between Várkert Bazaar and Döbrentei Square in Buda, starts at 10.00 on 19. August. Here you can taste and buy traditional local food, Hungary’s Cake and bread, as well as other bakery goods.
- Food Truck Show & Concerts – Liberty Square/Szabadság tér, 19 – 21. August 2022.
- Blessing the new bread at cc. 15.00 at the Statue of St. Stephen in Buda Castle (Part of the Folk Art Festival)
- Holy Mass and the procession of Saint Stephen’s alleged holy right hand at St. Stephen’s Basilica starting at 17.00,
- An impressive fireworks show that you can watch from the Danube.
One of Europe’s most popular outdoor pop-rock music festival takes place on an island in the Danube (hence the name: Sziget which means island).
The week-long Sziget Festival on Hajógyári-sziget brings an impressive line of international and local performers each year.
Besides concerts all sorts programs and activities await visitors of all ages.
FREE for everyone
- 10.00 – 23.00,
- except on 20. August: 10.00 – 21.00 (the folk art fair is open between 10.00 – 21.00 each day)
The 4-day festival is organised each year in the courtyards of the Royal Palace on Buda Castle Hill.
An ideal program for families because the festival offers a couple of great activities for children of all ages:
- Folk dance and music performances and
- Craft fair
- Folk art workshops,
- Kids’ programs: puppet show, toys and games, craft workshops
TIP: There is also a folk art market where you can buy quality products (ceramics, glass, wood, leather, and enameled artifacts).
Concerts, culinary delights, a harvest process round up the event that is tightly connected to St. Stephen’s day on 20. August.
Cholent Festival, Kazinczy Street, 28. August, 2022
- Újbuda Parkszínpad (Újbuda Park Stage) – at Feneketlen tó Lake
- 11.00 – 27.00, August 28., Sunday, 2022.
- FREE entry (You have to pay for food and drinks)
This Jewish gastronomy festival is held for the 6th time.
Besides offering an opportunity to taste the cholent of three countries – Hungary, Israel, and Libya – a series of concerts and children programs will entertain visitors.
The location moved from Kazinczy Street, a vibrant cultural and gastronomy spot of district VII to a charming green park next to a small lake Feneketlen-tó inBuda
The section of Kazinczy between Király and Wesselényi Streets will be turned into a cultural and foodie festival focusing on the emblematic Jewish dish, the cholent.
What To Expect?
- Lots of cholent – including vegan options – and other kosher food prepared in various ways.
- Kids program (puppet show, story telling, jump castle, contests) at 11.00 – 12.00 and at 15.30-16.15,
- concerts and magician show in the afternoon and
Entry to the event is free but you have to pay for food and drinks. A basic cholent is 1 000 HUF, extra cholent: 1 500 HUF.
Gellért Thermal Bath – Outdoor Pools In The City Centre
The open-air pools of this magnificent, historic spa are an ideal place to relax at on a sultry August day.
There are two pools:
- A larger one with wave function (doesn’t operate in 2022) and a
- Smaller one a level above the wave pool with some neck and back massaging jets.
You can also try the pools inside (children under 14 are not allowed to visit the thermal scetions).
TIP: If you go early enough in the morning you will escape the crowd and the hottest hours of the day.
- Kelenhegyi út 4., district XI., Buda, at the bridgehead of the Szabadság Bridge, at the foot of Gellért Hill
The bath is easily accessible either on foot or using public transport. It’s centrally located in Buda, next to the Liberty Bridge and Gellért Hill, also a must-see attractions of the city.
- M4 (green) metro,
- Trams 47, 49, (from Deák Ferenc tér metro hub in Pest), get off at Gellért tér stop, or
- Trams 19, 48, 49, 56, 56A also ahve a stop at Gellért Bath
- Buses 7, 133
- Every day 09.00 – 19.00
- Pools close at 18.45
- Casheir closes at 18.00
- Weekdays: 7 100 HUF (cc. 18 EUR, use of locker is included)
- Weekends/Holidays: 7 600 HUF (cc. 19 EUR, use of locker is included)
TIP: The hot August weather is ideal for visiting other famous Budapest Baths (Széchenyi, Gellért, Palatinus).
Read also our Tips on How to Beat the Heat in Budapest?
- Margaret Island-Open-Air Stage, Water Tower, Városmajor Open-Air Stage
The last month of the Budapest Summer Festival offers a wide range of cultural programs in various genres:
- Sukhishvili – evening of dance, by the National Georgian Ballet, 16., 17. August at 20.00
- Imre Kálmán: Die Csárdásfürstin – operetta in two parts, 09. and 10. August at 20.00
- National Holiday Concert on 20. August, at 20.00: László Tolcsvay – Béla Tolcsvay: Hungarian Mass László Tolcsvay: New Hungarian Rhapsody
Attractions Not To Miss In August, Unique Tour Tips
- Location: Ybl Miklós tér, district I., between the Chain Bridge and Elizabeth Bridge
- Getting There:
Exhibitions are opne Tuesday – Sunday: 10.00 – 17.00
What To Do At Várkert Bazar?
The refurbished Castle Bazaar & Royal Gardens (Várkert Bazár), historical building complex designed by Miklós Ybl, was inaugurated a few years ago
Explore the beautifully restored arcaded buildings and promenade to enjoy
- A fine view of the Danube and the Pest side,
- The green peacefulness of a neo-Renaissance garden on 5000 sqm,
- Exhibitions on various topics
- Cafes, bistros and an
The underground event hall usually offers great program for a summer afternoon.
There’s an escalator that takes you up almost to the Royal Palace (you have to walk a bit to get there).
The southern palaces regularly host exhibitions usually on Hungarian historical topic.
Guided Tour Tip
TIP: You can visit the palaces and gardens on a 90-minute guided tour, titled Sisi and her beloved Hungary. Expert guides will tell you about the life of Sisi, Hungary’s beloved queen and wife of Emperor Josef II.
During the walk you will also get a glimpse into the history of the buildings and the beautiful neo-Renaissance garden.
Price:4 000 HUF/prs. Tours depart from the Southern Palace/Déli palota, (Ybl Miklós tér 5., distr. I.) Duration: cc. 90 minutes.
Registration is required at the (+36 ) 30 -198 5274 mobile number. Tickets can be bought at the Ticket office in the Testőrpalota/ Guards’ Palace/(Ybl Miklós tér 2., distr. I.).
Location: at 16 venues in Budapest
Date & Time: till August 18.: at most venues: Friday, Saturday, Sunday
The Hungarian capital deserves to be called “The City of Music” as well.
This summer you can listen too mini concerts for free at various locations:
- balcony concert,
- brass orchestra in Hussar costume,
- nostalgic saxophone band,
- carillon music,
- string quartet,
- Transylvanian folk music.
all these at scenic landmarks of the city: the Basilica, Deák Square, Vörösmarty Square, Deák tér, Várkert Bazaar, Magyarság Háza in Buda Castle, Vajdahunyad Castle, Margaret Island
For example at the Basilica you can enjoy bell concert and flute music on Sunday, Monday and Tuesday at 16.00 and 16.30.
Concerts last cc. 15-20 minutes and are performed by musicians of Budapest’s prestigious orchestras.
Concerts in Matthias Church
Organ Night on 04. August, Sunday. 19.30
The Church of Our Lady in Buda Castle (better known as Matthias Church) hosts free organ recitals two Sundays a month.
The 20-minute program performed by Bertalan Hock can be attended with an entry ticket to the church.
Duna String Orhcestra – Matthias Church, 09., 23. August
Concert starts: 19.00
Tickets: 7 000 HUF, 9 000HUF, VIP: 11 000 HUF
Tickets can be purchased on the day of the concert at the entrance of the church, from 10.00 till the start of the program.
The concert inludes works by
- Albinon, and
Soloist: Gyula Gabora, violin
Ensemble Trecanum (Strasbourg Vocal Ensemble), 25. August, 19.30
Tickets: full price: 11 EUR/3 500 HUF, Students and retirees: 6 EUR/ 2 000 HUF, free under 18 yrs of age
- Ave Maria
- Gregorian chants, polyphonic works and songs by St. Hildegard of Bingen (13th, 14th and 15th centuries)
- Gregorian Chant, Hildegard of Bingen, early polyphony (13th, 14th, and 15th cent.)
Organ Concerts in St. Stephen’s Basilica
Address: Szt. István tér, district V., M3 (blue line) metro Arany János utca station
Concert Dates in August 2022:
01, 08, 15, 22, 29 Thursdays at 20.00, duration: 70 minutes (no break)
Tickets: 18 – 31 EUR depending on seat category
The grandest church of the city on Szt. István Square is an ideal for classical concerts.
The more than 110-year old organ was constructed when the Basilica was finished in 1905.
The lead musician is Miklós Teleki, one of the best organ player in Hungary.
The 70-minute concerts include works by
- Tommaso Albioni complete with
- arias and solo pieces.
See more organ concerts in Budapest!
The more than 100 museums and exhibition halls of Budapest always offer some exciting exhibits.
Museum of Fine Arts Exhibitions
Address: Dózsa György út 41., Heroes’ Square, XIV. district
Getting There: M1 (yellow) line, Heroes’ Square station
Opening Hours: Tue – Sun 10.00 – 18.00 (cashier: 17.00), Closed: Mondays
Changed Opening Hours around the National Holiday: 19. Aug/Mon: Open, 20. Aug/Tue: Open (FREE visit), 21. Aug/Wed: CLOSED
- 2 800 HUF/adults, 1 400 HUF/students (6-26 years old) and pensioners (62-70 years old), FREE with Budapest card.
Visit the refurbished Fine Arts Museum and its renewed exhibits!
Basement level – Egyptian Art, Classical Antiquities
Ground floor – Renaissance Hall, Romanesque Hall:
- level 1 – European Art 1250–1600
- level 2 – European Sculpture 1350–1800
- level 3 – Art in Hungary 1600–1800 (display of the baroque collection from the Hungarian National Gallery in a new exhibition area)
Budapest is chock full of restaurants, cafes bars and pubs. Here are our picks to try in August.
Address: Múzeum krt. 15.
- Mon – Fri: 07.30 – 19.00,
- Sat – Sun: 09.00 – 19.00
A new specialty coffee bar is behind the unoriginal name on Múzeum krt (just across the Hungarian National Museum) in a spacious, airy historic building (
The cafe – formerly antique and used books shop incorporates parts of the medieval city wall of Pest.
The road already has a new wave coffee shop, Fekete (translates to black, though they seem to focus more on milky coffee beverages) just a few blocks from Bp baristas.
Anyway, the compulsory
- La Marzocco espresso machine,
- Hario V60,
- AeroPress and
- other gadgets for alternative ways of getting the most out of the freshly roasted beans supplied by one of Hungary’s best micro-roasteries, Casino Mocca are all there on the shiny new counter.
You can enjoy your choice of drink up on
- the gallery, though it seemed a bit narrow when I first visited the place, or
- behind the shopwindows facing the street.
Besides quality coffee, you can have muesli, fresh croissant, and cake and dessert creations ranging from brownie, strawberry cheesecake, tapioca pudding, and paleo (sugar and dairy free) goodies.
TIP: If you love third-wave coffee try also Fekete just a short walk from BP Baristas also on Múzeum körút, No. 5.
It started out as a tiny cafe with a La Marzocco machine then opened a second place in the courtyard next door where they’re focusing more on filtered coffee and also serve cakes and simple, tasty food.
See other favourite cafes, espresso bars in Budapest!
Léhűtő Pub – Craft Beers on Tap
Address: Holló utca 12-14., district VII., Gozsdu court
Open: Mon: 16.00 – 24.00, Tues – Wed – Thurs: 16.00 – 02.00, Fri – Sat: 16.00 – 04.00, Sun: 16.00 – 24.00
There are few things better than a nice glass of cool, fresh draught beer – and if it’s a specialty made by a local micro brewery that’s even better.
Besides local tastes, Léhűtő offers a nice selection of
- import IPAs,
Some snacks are also available to go with your beer.
The outdoor clubs are still full of life at night. The major clubbing hot spots of the city are:
- Kazinczy utca in district VII. – a range of retro, garden pubs like Szimpla Kert, Kirakat, Kocka, or 400 Bar
Barba Negra Track
open air concerts at the Buda end of the Rákóczi Bridge
Address: Ajtósi Dürer sor 19-21., district XIV. Facebook
Dürer Kert is one of the most popular underground party places in Budapest at the southern edge of City Park.
- Several dance rooms,
- a garden,
- great parties and
- DJ nights.
Besides the wide selection of drinks, they also offer food: sandwiches, toasts, burgers, breaded cheese or chicken breast fillet, fries.
Although it’s a bit far from the centre, Dürer is an excellent place to have a great time on a warm August night.