Attention, foodies and gourmet lovers! Built at the end of the 19 th century, Budapest’s Great Market Hall is home to the largest indoor market in the capital (which has 5 in total). The Great Market Hall is worth a visit both for its spectacular architecture and delicious delicacies!
Follow the guide! 🍖
💡 The Captain’s tip 💡
Want to know more about the history of Budapest? Captain Ulysses highly recommends this free guided tour of the city. It’s up to you to choose how much you wish to tip the tour guide!
Are you looking for a hotel in Budapest? Be sure to check out the Captain’s article: Where to stay in Budapest? Advice & recommendations
Planning your trip to Budapest? Take a look the Captain’s detailed article on the best things to do: A Guide to Budapest
Brief history of Budapest’s Great Market Hall
In the 19 th century, the city of Budapest struggled to maintain food supplies and the conditions of food preservation were questionable… to say the least! The capital therefore decided to build 5 indoor markets, so as to faciliate access to food supplies and help control the quality of the products.
Built at the end of the 1890s on the the famous pedestrian shopping street Váci utca, a stone’s throw from the Liberty Bridge and the River Danube, the Great Market Hall of Budapest (“Nagyvásárcsarnok” in Hungarian) is the largest and most iconic of these 5 indoor markets.
The construction of the market hall was entrusted to Hungarian architect Samu Pecz and the market opened in 1897.
⚠️ Beware of fake news ⚠️
Contrary to some online rumors, Budapest’s central market halls were not designed by Gustave Eiffel, but rather by Hungarian architect Samu Pecz!
During the Second World War, the building suffered heavy damage. Neglected for several decades, the Great Market Hall of Budapest finally closed down in 1991 due to unsanitary conditions.
But the story does not end there! The Great Market Hall was entirely renovated and reopened in 1997 (it even won the FIABCI award for excellence in 1999)!
Today, the Great Market Hall of Budapest is one of the top touristic monuments in the capital: locals and passing visitors both flock to the market to shop and enjoy delicious Hungarian specialties!
Visiting the Great Market Hall in Budapest
The architecture of the Great Market Hall of Budapest
If visitors flock to the Great Market Hall of Budapest, it is not just a question of gluttony!
The architecture of the building, blending Art Nouveau and Neo-Gothic influences, is reason enough for a visit! The brick facade looks just like a train station. The roofs are covered with colored tiles made by the Hungarian Zsolnay factory in Pecs, and inevitably recall Burgundian-style roofs, like those of the Hospices de Beaune.
With its monumental steel frame, the interior of the market (10,000 m2/107639,1 square feet in total) is just as impressive!
Shops, stalls & restaurants in the Great Market Hall
The Great Market Hall of Budapest are organized over 3 floors:
- The basement
- The ground floor
- The 1 st floor
The ground floor of the market hall is dedicated to food products. You’ll find plenty of fruits and vegetables, cold meats, pastries … not to mention many local specialties including paprika garlands, Tokay wines, salami, liquors …
The1 st floor of the market is dedicated to tourists, with souvenir shops, small restaurants and street food stalls .
The basement houses an exhibition on typical Hungarian products sold at the market.
Food tour in the Great Market Hall of Budapest
Foddies can indulge in a food tour in the Great Market Hall of Budapest.
You’ll discover the history of Hungarian cuisine, taste local specialties and meet local producers.
Find out more: 🍖 Food tour with 10 tastings 🍖
Getting to the Great Market Hall of Budapest
The Great Market Hall of Budapest is located in the former municipality of Pest (Budapest was founded following the unification of Pest, Buda and Óbuda), in the 9 th district of the capital.
The market is situated a stone’s throw from the River Danube and the Liberty Bridge, on Fővám tér square, at the end of the shopping street Váci utca.
The nearest public transports are:
- Metro : Fővám tér (line M4) or Kálvin Tér (line M3) stations
- tram : Fővám tér stop (lines 2, 47 and 49)
- bus : Fővám tér stop (lines 15, 83 and 115)
Hop-on hop-off sightseeing buses also stop near the market. They’re quite handy for traveling freely between the main sites and monuments in the Hungarian capital.
👉 For more info, click here.
Address : Budapest, Vámház krt. 1-3, 1093 Hungary
The opening hours of the Great Market Hall of Budapest are:
- Monday: 6 a.m. – 5 p.m.
- Tuesday to Friday: 6 a.m. – 6 p.m.
- Saturday: 6 a.m. – 3 p.m.
- Sunday: closed
👉 Skip the lines: book your tickets and visits in advance!
👉 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 Expedia. You’ll find a wide choice of hotels, hostels and apartments in the Hungarian capital. The Captain recommends in particular:
– tight budget: Avenue Hostel
– intermediate budget: Agape Apartments
– 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: airport 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 Rome (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.