Visegrad Castle is an interesting castle located in Pest County, north of Budapest.
The town of Visegrad is a small but pretty town on the banks of the Danube river. With its elevated location, the Castle of Visegrád offers some of the best possible views over the famous Danube Bend.
Visegrad was the hometown of King Matthias of Hungary and it was also home to the Summer Palace of the King. The area obviously is a great location for thriving cultures and the Visegrad area was inhabited since the Bronze Age. It’s also a prominent place in Hungarian history.
Find out what’s so special about the castle, which attractions you can explore there and how to get there on a day trip from Budapest.
Keep reading to get some interesting Visegrad info.
Watch this short & cool video of Visegrad Castle
What’s so special about the Castle of Visegrad
Visegrád Castle is quite special due to its perfect location and stunning sights from this hilltop castle in the popular tourist town of Visegrad. For that reason, it is sometimes called Danube Castle. It is, in fact, one of the most beautiful castles on the Danube.
The castle offers some of the best possible Danube Bend views and they’re just awesome any time of the day.
Aside from the picture perfect views from the castle terraces, the castle was around long enough to witness the Mongol invasion. It is also a symbol of peace between Hungary and its neighboring countries.
We were mostly interested in the Visegrad Upper Castle and most visitors visit the town just for this sight. But Visegrad has more to offer and all of its sights and attractions have a lot of history, as well as interesting information about the long and turbulent history of Hungary.
So these are the main tourist activities in Visegrad.
Visegrad Upper Castle
Visegrad Upper Castle is the main castle sight with the best views over the Danube Bend. It consists of several parts, most of which are included in the entrance fee. This part of the castle is the main stronghold and it’s actually Visegrad fortress. It was used to keep the royal family safe during invasions.
The Wax Museum is located inside the Upper Castle and you can access it for a small extra fee. We didn’t visit it while we were there since we’re not that into wax sculptures. If you are curious, it might be a very interesting and fun extra to visit while you’re at the Upper Castle in Visegrad.
Visegrad Lower Castle and Solomon Tower
The Lower Castle connects Visegrad to the Danube river and it is built around the Solomon Tower. The tower itself is currently home to a museum about King Matthias.
The Summer Palace or Royal Palace
The Royal Palace in Visegrad was first built, then extended, dismantled and rebuilt over time. At some point in history, the palace was completely deserted and covered with debris.
But it was excavated and restored in the 19th century. The current Summer Palace is built in a Gothic style. You can visit the restored summer palace and there are usually exhibitions and history showcases.
Military Camp on Sibrik Hill
On Sibrik Hill, a little north of Visegrad town, visit the remains and ruins of the old Roman military camp that once flourished on this location.
- Upper Visegrad Castle Entrance Fee for Adults 1700 HUF - 5,3€
- Upper Castle Entrance Fee for Children and Seniors 850 HUF - 2,7€
- Visit the WAX museum for just a few extra HUF
- Opening hours for all Visegrad attractions are different each month
Spend the night in Visegrad
Visegrad is not only a beautiful town to spend the night, but you can also combine it with wellness. Visitors tend to stay longer in this town because of its beautiful location and because it’s so close to loads of other interesting sights.
Hotels in Viségrad offer great service for their guests, like included breakfast and dinner.
Hotel Viségrad is a place of luxury and relaxation. The Hotel has an indoor and outdoor swimming pool, sauna, and hot tub with views over the Danube. Could you wish for anything else? During the summer months, they even organize medieval tournaments.
The Royal Club Hotel also offers a wellness center with different sauna’s, a salt chamber, inside and outside pools. On top of that, they also provide a billiard table, table soccer, table tennis, … Visitors could stay here forever!
How to get from Budapest to Visegrad
Visegrad is located about 50 kilometers north of the capital of Hungary, near the border with Slovakia. It’s easy to reach Visegrad on a day trip from Budapest and it’s also easily combined with a visit to Budapest.
The easiest method to reach the town and castle of Visegrad is by car. Parking is available at the castle, but you have to pay a parking fee of 300 HUF (around 1€) per hour. You can drive from Budapest to Visegrad in an hour by following route 11 North. The distance from Budapest to Visegrad is a little less than 50 kilometers.
Other Ways of getting to Visegrad
It’s possible to get the Budapest to Visegrad train. But this trip takes quite a long time. You need to catch a train from the north side of the river in the Nyugati Railway station. It’s also possible to catch a bus from Budapest to Visegrad from the Újpest Városkapu bus terminal. Buses ride every hour and they take you there in little over an hour.
Visegrad town to the Upper Castle
The climb from Visegrad town up to the castle on the hill is a serious climb. If you don’t have your own car, consider catching either a bus or a taxi from the town to the Upper Castle.
Visegrad Castle History
The Castle on the Visegrad hilltop was built for the first time in the 4th century as a Roman stronghold. Back then it looked very different. The castle was destructed during different wars and invasions. But the Danube Bend location was always the main theatre setting for this stronghold. At some point in history, the Castle at the Danube was abandoned and the castle supposedly died.
When King Charles and later King Matthias turned Viségrad into their royal residence in the 14th century, the town became the royal seat of Hungary and gained even more in popularity again. More parts of the castle were finished during this timespan.
This exact location is also a symbol of peace for Hungary. Actually, it was the location where Hungary and Poland signed a peace treaty in 1335. After that, another peace contract with the former Czech Republic followed. They signed this contract at the same location looking over the beautiful Danube Bend.
Conclusion Visegrad Castle
Visegrad is just one of many tourist attractions and beautiful sights in Hungary.
The country has over a hundred castles you can visit. Check out other castles like the fairytale castle of Bory and the impressive fortress of Boldogko.
Aside from a city trip to Budapest, you can visit cities like Eger. In Eger, you can actually also visit another castle! Take a road trip to some natural treasures like Lake Balaton and the never-ending grasslands in Hungary.
You can either visit some sights in Hungary during a train trip in Central and Eastern Europe. But I must admit that if you want to see more of Hungary, it’s probably your best choice to do it by car.