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Budapest, Hungary

 Posted by Simon Laroche
Simon Laroche
, March 09, 2009 at 09:37:22 :: Hungary

Budapest, the capital of the Hungarian Republic (Hungary - Magyarország), serves as the country's principal political, cultural, commercial, industrial, and transportation center. Budapest lies in the centre of the Carpathian Basin in Europe, on both sides of the river Danube, with the unification on 17 November 1873, of right bank (west) Buda and Óbuda (Old Buda) together with Pest on the left bank (east). It has an area of 525 square km. About 2 million people or every fifth Hungarian lives in the capital.

Panorama of Budapest with the Margaret Island and the Margit híd or Margaret Bridge, connecting Buda and Pest across the Danube, Budapest, Hungary

The Danube (Duna; longest river in the European Union) enters the city from the north; later it encircles two islands, Óbuda Island and Margaret Island (Margit-sziget). The third island Csepel Island (Csepel-sziget) is the largest of the Budapest Danube islands, however only its northernmost tip is within city limits.

Although Budapest is administratively divided into 23 numbered districts, always written in Roman numerals, it can most simply be divided into the two cities of which it is comprised (Buda and Pest) and one historic district:
- Buda, the hilly West side of the Danube (Districts I-III, XI-XII).
- Castle Hill, district I of Buda, the oldest part of the city containing the eponymous Castle and many of Budapest's best-known attractions.
- Pest, the flat East side of the Danube, covering the modern commercial core of the city (Districts IV-IX).

Sights of Budapest

Hungarian Parliament Building (Országház)
After long discussion the construction of Parliament began in 1885 according to plans by Imre Steindl. Completed in 1904, it is one of Europe's most splendid Parliament buildings, reflecting its designer's taste and the nation's demands for representation. It lies in Kossuth Lajos Square, on the bank of the Danube.

The Hungarian Parliament Building (Hungarian: Országház), Kossuth Lajos Square, on the bank of the Danube, in Budapest, Hungary

Buda Castle (Budai Vár)
This was the historical castle of the Hungarian kings. Buda Castle was built on the southern tip of Castle Hill, next to the old Castle District, which is famous for its medieval, Baroque and 19th century houses and public buildings.

Château Buda (Hongrois: Budai Vár) à Budapest, Hongrie

Matthias Church (Mátyás templom)
Located at the heart of Buda's Castle District, Matthias Church was the coronation church of Hungarian kings since King Matthias. The records of 1247 first mention this church as the main church of Buda Castle. The originally French building in early Gothic style has been consistently enlarged and rebuilt over the centuries. In 1526, when the Turks conquered Buda, the church was transformed into a mosque. After the reconquest of the city (1686) the church belonged to the Franciscans and later to the Jesuits. Between the years 1874 and 1896, Frigyes Schulek completely reconstructed the Church of Our Lady in the neo-Gothic style.

Matthias Church (Hungarian: Mátyás-templom), façade, with the Trinity Statue, Buda's Castle District, Budapest, Hungary

Fishermen's Bastion (Halászbástya)
The Fishermen's Bastion is located on the Buda bank of the Danube, on the Castle hill, for impressive views across the Danube to Pest. It was designed and built between 1895 and 1902 on the plans of Frigyes Schulek.

Towers representing the seven Magyar tribes, Fisherman's Bastion (Halászbástya), on the Buda bank of the Danube, on the Castle hill in Budapest, Hungary

Széchenyi Chain Bridge or Széchenyi lánchíd
Széchenyi Chain Bridge is a suspension bridge that spans the River Danube between Roosevelt Square (with the Gresham Palace and the Hungarian Academy of Sciences) and Adam Clark Square (the Zero Kilometer Stone and the lower end of the Castle Hill Funicular, leading to Buda Castle). The bridge is named after István Széchenyi ("the greatest Hungarian"), who began to organize its construction in 1832. While travelling in England, Széchenyi became personally acquainted with William Thierney Clark, who was commissioned to draft the plans for the bridge, and his namesake Adam Clark was asked to direct the construction, which was finished in 1849. The retreating German troops blew up the Chain Bridge in January 1945. The rebuilding was completed in 1949.

Széchenyi Chain Bridge in Budapest, or Széchenyi lánchíd, named after István Széchenyi, a major supporter of its construction, Budapest, Hungary

The Heroes' Square (Hősök tere)
Hősök tere, designed by Albert Schickedanz and Fülöp Herczog, lies at the end of Andrássy Avenue. Heroes' Square has statues representing the founders of the Magyar nation over 1100 years ago, erected to commemorate the thousandth anniversary of the Magyar Conquest.

Heroes' Square (Hungarian: Hősök tere), end of Andrássy Avenue, Budapest, Hungary

Hungarian State Opera House (Magyar Állami Operaház)
The construction of the neo-Renaissance opera house, located in central Pest, completed in 1884, was executed according to plans by Miklós Ybl. An ornate interior and exterior in the neo-Renaissance style serves the needs of the metropolis. Fine art works from leading Hungarian artists decorate the building. The technical equipment was supplied by the Austrian Asphaleia Company. The Opera House was renewed on the occasion of the 100th anniversary of its opening.

St. Stephen's Basilica (Szent István-bazilika)
St Stephen's Basilica, the main church of Budapest, named in honor of Stephen, the first King of Hungary (c 975–1038), whose mummified fist is housed in the reliquary, is an important example of neoclassical architecture.

St Stephen's Basilica (Hungarian: Szent István-bazilika), ecclesiastic basilica in Budapest, Hungary

Dohány Street Synagogue (Dohány utcai zsinagóga)
The Great Synagogue in Dohány Street, located in Erzsébetváros, the 7th district of Budapest, is one of the most beautiful and largest in Europe. The Austrian Ludwig Förster was commissioned to design the building (with interior design partly by Frigyes Feszl) which was erected between 1854 and 1859, in the Moorish Revival style.

Danube Embankment
The Castle Hill, the River Danube embankments and the whole of Andrássy út have been officially recognized as UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

The Hungarian National Museum (Magyar Nemzeti Múzeum)
The Museum was built in 1847 according to plans by Mihály Pollack. Treasures of Hungarian history, including the coronation insignia are displayed here. The staircase of the Museum is adorned by the frescoes of famous Hungarian painters. In the garden, besides the statues of eminent representatives of Hungarian culture, are ancient relics, such as the column from the Forum Romanum. The museum is also one of the symbols of the War of Independence of 1848-49.

Széchenyi Medicinal Bath (Széchenyi-gyógyfürdő)
The Széchenyi Medicinal Bath, built in 1913 in Neo-baroque style to the design of Győző Czigler, is located in the City Park. It is the largest medicinal bath in Europe.

The Baths of Budapest, Szechenyi Baths

The Museum of Fine Arts (Szépművészeti Múzeum)
To the left of the Millenary Monument, facing the Palace of Art, stands the Museum of Fine Arts, built by the plans of Albert Schickedanz and Fülöp Herzog in an eclectic-neoclassical style, between 1900 and 1906. The Museum was founded with donations of collections, foremost from the Eszterházy family. The Museum later enlarged its collection with further acquisitions. Most notably, the "Old Picture Gallery" holds masterpieces by Spanish painters like Murillo, El Greco and Goya. The gallery holds the second largest collection of Egyptian art in central Europe.

The Museum of Fine Arts (Hungarian: Szépművészeti Múzeum), museum in Heroes' Square, Budapest, Hungary

Margaret Island (Margit-sziget)
This 2.5 km long and 500 meters wide island, in the middle of the Danube in central Budapest, is one of the popular resting-places in Budapest. Margaret Island got its name after Saint Margaret (1242–1270), the daughter of Béla IV of Hungary who lived in the Dominican convent on the island. The island spans the area between the Margaret Bridge (south) and the Árpád Bridge (north).

Margaret Island (Hungarian: Margit-sziget) on the left and the Hungarian Parliament Building (Hungarian: Országház) on the right, on the bank of the Danube River, Budapest, Hungary
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UNESCO World Heritage

Hungary, Tokaj Wine Region Historic Cultural Landscape

 Posted by Simon Laroche
Simon Laroche
, December 10, 2013 at 04:53:43

Location County of Borsod-Abaúj-Zemplén, Hungary
Coordinates N48 8 60 E21 21 0
Property 13,255 ha
Date of Inscription 2002

Brief Description ( )

The cultural landscape of Tokaj graphically demonstrates the long tradition of wine production in this region of low hills and river valleys. The intricate pattern of vineyards, farms, villages and small towns, with their historic networks of deep wine cellars, illustrates every facet of the production of the famous Tokaj wines, the quality and management of which have been strictly regulated for nearly three centuries.

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Vineyards, Tokaj wine region Hétszőlő vineyards, Tokaj wine region

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Hungary, Millenary Benedictine Abbey of Pannonhalma and its Natural Environment

 Posted by Simon Laroche
Simon Laroche
, December 10, 2013 at 04:44:35

Location Pannonhalma, county of Györ-Moson-Sopron, Hungary
Coordinates N47 33 32.004 E17 47 3.984
Property 47 ha
Date of Inscription 1996

Brief Description ( )

The first Benedictine monks settled here in 996. They went on to convert the Hungarians, to found the country's first school and, in 1055, to write the first document in Hungarian. From the time of its founding, this monastic community has promoted culture throughout central Europe. Its 1,000-year history can be seen in the succession of architectural styles of the monastic buildings (the oldest dating from 1224), which still today house a school and the monastic community.

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Territorial Abbey of Pannonhalma

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Hungary, Early Christian Necropolis of Pecs (Sopianae)

 Posted by Simon Laroche
Simon Laroche
, June 11, 2012 at 11:26:06

Location County of Baranya, Hungary
Coordinates N46 4 27.984 E18 13 40.008
Property 3.76 ha
Date of Inscription 2000

Brief Description ( )

In the 4th century, a remarkable series of decorated tombs were constructed in the cemetery of the Roman provincial town of Sopianae (modern Pécs). These are important both structurally and architecturally, since they were built as underground burial chambers with memorial chapels above the ground. The tombs are important also in artistic terms, since they are richly decorated with murals of outstanding quality depicting Christian themes.

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Early Christian Necropolis of Pecs

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Austria, Hungary, Ferto/Neusiedlersee Cultural Landscape

 Posted by Simon Laroche
Simon Laroche
, June 11, 2012 at 11:00:39

Location State of Burgenland (AT) / County of Györ-Moson-Sopron (HU), Hungary, Austria
Coordinates N47 43 9.4 E16 43 21.8
Property 52 ha
Date of Inscription 2001

Brief Description ( )

The Fertö/Neusiedler Lake area has been the meeting place of different cultures for eight millennia. This is graphically demonstrated by its varied landscape, the result of an evolutionary symbiosis between human activity and the physical environment. The remarkable rural architecture of the villages surrounding the lake and several 18th- and 19th-century palaces adds to the area’s considerable cultural interest.

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Lighthouse, Lake Neusiedl

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Hungary, Hortobagy National Park - the Puszta

 Posted by Simon Laroche
Simon Laroche
, June 11, 2012 at 07:13:55

Location Counties of Borsod-Abaúj-Zemplén, Heves, Hajdú-Bihar and Jász-Nagykun-Szolnok, Hungary
Coordinates N47 35 40.488 E21 9 24.408
Property 74,820 ha
Date of Inscription 1999

Brief Description ( )

The cultural landscape of the Hortobágy Puszta consists of a vast area of plains and wetlands in eastern Hungary. Traditional forms of land use, such as the grazing of domestic animals, have been present in this pastoral society for more than two millennia.

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Hortobagy National Park

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Hungary, Old Village of Holloko and its Surroundings

 Posted by Simon Laroche
Simon Laroche
, June 11, 2012 at 06:58:02

Location County of Nógrád, Hungary
Coordinates N47 59 39.984 E19 31 45.012
Property 145 ha
Date of Inscription 1987

Brief Description ( )

Hollokö is an outstanding example of a deliberately preserved traditional settlement. This village, which developed mainly during the 17th and 18th centuries, is a living example of rural life before the agricultural revolution of the 20th century.

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Center of Holloko

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Hungary, Budapest, including the Banks of the Danube, the Buda Castle Quarter and Andrassy Avenue

 Posted by Simon Laroche
Simon Laroche
, November 20, 2009 at 05:50:49

Location Budapest, Hungary
Coordinates N47 28 56.712 E19 4 14.412
Type Cultural
Property 473 ha
Date of Inscription 1987

Brief Description ( )

This site has the remains of monuments such as the Roman city of Aquincum and the Gothic castle of Buda, which have had a considerable influence on the architecture of various periods. It is one of the world's outstanding urban landscapes and illustrates the great periods in the history of the Hungarian capital.

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Buda Castle Saint Stephen Basilica Saint Stephen Basilica

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