St Stephen's Basilica
Szent Istvan ter, Budapest, 1051
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- Recommended for:
- Backpackers / Students, Couples, Culture vultures, Design and architecture
Expert review of St Stephen's Basilica
The Basilica is a big beast of a church – the largest in Budapest and the second-largest in the country – and it took over 50 years to build (finally opening in 1905). Like the Parliament building, the church’s dome measures 96m in height – a symbolic reference to the arrival of the Magyar tribes in 896AD. Inside, the floor plan takes the shape of a Greek cross, and there are paintings and statues by 19th-century Hungarian masters including Mór Than, Alajos Stróbl and Károly Lotz. Perhaps of most interest to visitors, however, is an object in a bejewelled glass case in a chapel at the rear of the church – the mummified right hand of King Stephen himself. This is the country’s holiest relic, and on St Stephen’s Day (20th August) it is carried through the streets as part of a celebratory procession.
Church free entry; Treasury 400 forints (adult), 300 forints (concessions), Panorama Tower 500/400 forints, guided tours in English 2,000 forints.
More information on St Stephen's Basilica:
- Price guide:
- Religious site
- Szent Istvan ter, Budapest, 1051
- 1 403 5370
- Months open:
- All year round
- Opening times:
- Panorama Tower (Mar-Jun) 10am–5pm, (Jul-Aug) 10am–9pm, (Sep-whenever the weather allows) 10am–5.30pm; Treasury (Apr 1–Sep 30) 9am–5pm, (Oct 10–Mar 31) 10am–4pm. The Treasury is currently closed for refurbishment.