The Citadel and Independence Monument

Price guide: Budget

Gellert hegy, Budapest

Price guide: Budget

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By Adrian Phillips, your Budapest expert

I write for BBC Fast Track, BBC Radio .... Read more
#20 of 20
expert-rated things to do in Budapest
Expert overall rating:3.7 out of 5
Value for money:
Recommended for:
Couples, Families with teenagers, Families with younger children, Sporty types, Travellers with pets, Escaping the crowds, Great views / scenery, Sightseeing

Expert review of The Citadel and Independence Monument

There are great views from the forbidding walls of the Habsburg fort.

The sinister Citadel looming at the top of Gellért Hill was designed to encourage those with revolutionary thoughts to think again. It was built by the Habsburgs after they’d finally defeated the Hungarian rebels during the 1848-49 Independence War. Relations considerably improved in the years that followed, and in 1894 some parts were dismantled. Since then it has been put to several purposes – including serving as a homeless shelter – but today it contains an open-air exhibition about the history of the hill and a display charting its role as an air-defence bunker during World War II. Near the Citadel is the 14m Independence Monument. Originally conceived as a memorial to Admiral Horthy’s son, who had died in a plane crash, it was subsequently altered by the pragmatic sculptor to symbolise Russia’s ‘liberation’ of the city. When the Iron Curtain finally fell, the statues of Russian soldiers that stood at its base were removed to Memento Park.

Price advice: 

Citadella 400 forints, bunker exhibition 1,200 forints, children (under 14) free. 

More information on The Citadel and Independence Monument:

Price guide:
Landmark / monument, Museum, Viewpoint
Gellert hegy, Budapest
Months open:
All year round
Opening times:
Open-air exhibition and panoramic views 8am-11pm daily. Bunker May-Sep daily 9am-8pm, Oct-Apr daily 9am-5pm.

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