Nestled on the right bank of the River Danube, in the Castle Quarter, the Fisherman’s Bastion is undoubtedly one of the most iconic monuments in Budapest!
Follow the guide!
Accommodation, flights, activities, citypass …
You’ll find all the Captain’s suggestions in the section
Captain Ulysses’ favourites at the very end of the article!
Brief history of the Fisherman’s Bastion in Budapest
Despite appearances, the Fisherman’s Bastion ( Halászbástya in Hungarian) was built rather recently!
The Fisherman’s Bastion was built between 1895 and 1902 for the millennary anniversary of the Hungarian state, commemorating the arrival of the Magyar tribes led by Árpád who settled in 895 on the territory of modern day Hungary.
Hungarian architect Frigyes Schulek – who designed the Matthias Church – was charged with the construction of the Bastion.
🤔 Who was Árpád ? 🤔
Árpád was the founder of the Árpád dynasty, who ruled Hungary from 895 to 1301. Elected prince by the seven Magyar tribes, Árpád led his people away from the Pechenegs (a nomadic people) who threatened them, to the Carpathian basin where he founded his own dynasty.
During World War II, the Fisherman’s Bastion suffered extensive damage. And it is none other than the son of architect Frigyes Schulek, Janos Schulek, who was charged with overseeing the renovations.
When the Soviets took over Budapest, they placed a red star flag on top of the Fisherman’s Bastion, to signify that Budapest was henceforward a Sovietic capital.
Visiting the Fisherman’s Bastion in Budapest
Built by architect Frigyes Schulek, the Fisherman’s Bastion looks just like a neo-romanesque fairytale castle.
The Bastion’s seven towers represent the seven tribes that followed Árpád to Hungary. The conical shape of the towers also recalls the Magyar tents of the 9 th century. Each of them now houses the statue of one of the seven Magyar leaders.
Perched on the Castle Hill, on the banks of the River Danube, the Fisherman’s Bastion offers incomparable panoramic views on the river, the Chain Bridge and the Hungarian Parliament. At sunset, the cityscape is quite simply magical!
A few cafes and restaurants have now taken up residence in the Fisherman’s Bastion: perfect for a gourmet break while enjoying the viewpoint.
Before you go, take a moment to have a look at the statue of Stephen I st , founder of the Kingdom of Hungary.
🤔 Where does the name ‘Fisherman’s Bastion’ come from? 🤔
Why the allusion to fishermen? The Bastion was built on the site of ancient fortifications, which were once under the responsibility of the Buda Fishermen’s Corporation. A fish market was also once held on the current site of the Fisherman’s Bastion.
Despite its name, the Fisherman’s Bastion never held any kind of military office!
👍 The Captain’s tip 👍
Captain Ulysses highly recommends this Budapest free tour.
You’re free to choose how much you want to tip the tour guide at the end of the tour!
Getting to the Fisherman’s Bastion
To get to the Fisherman’s Bastion, head for the Castle Quarter, a few steps from the Matthias Church and Buda Castle.
The nearest bus lines are lines 16, 16A and 116 (Szentháromság tér stop). If you don’t feel like walking all the way up to the Fisherman’s Bastion, you can take the funicular.
Hop-on hop-off tourist buses also stop near the Bastion. They’re quite handy to navigate freely between the main tourist sites and monuments in Budapest.
Opening hours & admission rates of the Fisherman’s Bastion
The Bastion is open every day, all day. Access to the towers is chargeable:
- 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. from March 16 to April 30
- From 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. from 1st May to October 15
Admission rates are:
- Adults : 1000 ft
- Students, retirees and children under 14 : 500 ft
- Children under 6 : free
The Budapest Card also grants a 10% reduction on the price of tickets.
⚓Attention, sailors! ⚓
Want to find out more about Budapest’s top landmarks and museums? Check out the Captain’s article on the best things to do in the Hungarian capital!
👉 Skip the lines: book your tickets and tours beforehand!
👉 Looking for tips and recommendations? Here are all of Captain Ulysses’ suggestions!
🛏️ Accommodation: if you’re looking for an accommodation in Budapest, Captain Ulysses highly recommends Booking. You’ll find a wide choice of hotels, hostels and apartments in the Hungarian capital. The Captain recommends in particular:
– for small budgets: Avenue Hostel
– for intermediate budgets: Hedonist Lodge, Dolce Vita Rumbach and Tempo Life Apartman
– to treat yourself: Hotel Moments Budapest
🎟️ Activities: As for booking visits and tourist activities, Captain Ulysses recommends three websites: GetYourGuide, Tiqets and Civitatis. Guided tours, cruises, skip-the-line tickets, tourist activities… there’s plenty to choose from!
🎫 Citypass: If you are staying in Budapest for several days, you might want to consider investing in the Budapest Card. It includes free public transport, free entrance to the Lukacs Spa, two guided tours, free entrance to 17 museums, as well as numerous discounts.
🚐 Transfers: Budapest airport is located about twenty kilometers from the city. If you want to take a load off your mind, you can book a private transfer into Budapest’s city centre from the airport. A car will be waiting to take you to your accommodation in the city. Find out more: shared transfer or private transfer.
🚌 Transport in Budapest: Budapest’s public transport system is well-developped and quite easy to navigate: metro, bus, tram and even ferry. If you wish, you can also opt for a hop-on hop-off bus tour which stops at all the top tourist attractions in Budapest (audio guide included). Otherwise, there’s always the good old local ways of getting around the city: in a russian jeep or a Trabant.
✈️ Flights: Captain Ulysses highly recommends booking your flights on Skyscanner. You’ll be able to compare countless offers to find the best deal. If your dates are flexible, you can also compare prices over several months to find the cheapest flights possible.