St. Stephen’s Basilica in Budapest

St. Stephen’s Basilica in Budapest

St. Stephen’s Basilica (Szent István-bazilika) is the largest church in Budapest. The building dominates the city centre with its height. It is 96 meter high, just like the Parliament, with this height the basilica is the 2nd highest church in Hungary. According to current regulations, there cannot be taller building in Budapest than 96 metres.

St. Stephen’s Basilica in Budapest

A brief history of St. Stephen’s Basilica

It is named in honour of Stephen, the first King of Hungary, whose mummified body is buried in the undercroft and his supposed right hand is kept in the reliquary.

The construction began in 1851 in accordance with the plans of József Hild. The dome collapsed in 1868, that required demolition of the completed works and rebuilding from the ground up. It was finished in 1905 after 54 years of construction, according to the plans of Miklós Ybl (he also designed the Opera House on the Andrássy Avenue) and was completed by József Kauser. It was built in neo-classicist style. The facade is framed by two large bell towers. Hungary’s biggest bell hangs in the southern tower, weighing over 9 tonnes.

St. Stephen’s Basilica in Budapest

The interior is characterized by rich ornamentation. Maybe it looks too much at first, just go closer and observe the details. Beautiful work is the five-part mosaic in the sanctuary displaying the allegories of the holy mass.

St. Stephen’s Basilica in Budapest

St. Stephen’s Basilica in Budapest

Panorama Lookout Tower

Don’t miss the panoramic view from the top. The ticket is cheap and the view is spectacular. The ticket office is at the church entrance. Walk up the stairs (364 steps) or take the elevators up to the dome’s observation deck. The stairs start at the ticket office, if you prefer to take the elevator, it’s on the other side behind the shop.

St. Stephen’s Basilica in Budapest

St. Stephen’s Basilica in Budapest

Up there you can walk around the dome, the view is amazing to every direction. The Parliament, Buda Castle and Citadel are also visible from there.

For more panoramas check out this other blog post: Top 5 viewpoints in Budapest, Hungary recommended by a local. (And yes, the local is me!)

St. Stephen’s Basilica in Budapest

St. Stephen’s Basilica in Budapest

St. Stephen’s Basilica in Budapest

Useful information


Opening time:

Monday-Saturday: 9:00am – 7:00pm

Sunday: 7:45am – 7:00pm


Free (donation at the entrance) / Guided tours: 2000 HUF (Monday-Friday: 10:00am-3:00pm)

St. Stephen’s Basilica in Budapest

Panorama Lookout Tower

Opening time (every day):

June, July, August, September: 10:00am – 6:30pm

April, May, October: 10:00am – 5:30pm

November, December, January, February, March: 10:00am – 4:30pm


Adult ticket: 600 HUF / Student, pensioner ticket: 400 HUF

St. Stephen’s Basilica in Budapest

How to get there?

Address: 1051 Budapest, Szent István tér 1.

By public transportation

St Stephen square (Szent István tér) can be reached from many directions.

By metro

It’s halfway between Deák Ferenc square and Arany János street M3 metro stations. Metro line M1 station called, Bajcsy-Zsilinszky street is also close.

By bus

Bus 9 station called Szent István bazilika

By tram

Tram 2 goes on the Danube bank, 5 minutes walk from Széchenyi István tér.

On foot

Located in the V. district, in the city centre, few minutes walk from Deák Ferenc square and from the Danube.

St. Stephen’s Basilica in Budapest

This is one of my favourite spot in Budapest. I showed it to my parents, always recommend it to my friends and their friends from abroad. Enjoy your visit there and take a walk around the area!

Interested in towers, viewpoints, scenic panorama? Read my other post for more ideas.

How did you like it? Did you visit the Panorama Lookout Tower?

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