Hungary is rich in long-back history. Because of vast historical empires and different types of Carpathian surroundings and basin, massive palaces had been built for their protection. Furious sieges and battles destroyed most of them, but a few castles in Hungary still exist as the symbol of the hard and heroic past of the country.
Most of them have been restored, awaiting visitors and tourists. Most of these castles also host events, castle days, and concerts where visitors can enjoy and get a glimpse of the lifestyle of people who fought for freedom in the middle ages.
Hungary is also famous for its striking architecture and magnificent nature. It houses hundreds of castles and most of them are positioned in beautiful scenes and have very amazing stories to tell. Since it is not easy to visit them all at once, we have picked a few of the most beautiful castles in Hungary.
Table of Contents
- Here’s the list of the castles in Hungary
- Here are some castle tours in Hungary
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Here’s the list of the castles in Hungary
Vajdahunyad palace of Budapest is one of the most romantic and beautiful castles in Hungary. It is located near the lake surrounded by lush greens in the City Park of Budapest. Despite looking centuries-old, the castle was built in 1896. Hence, it is relatively newer than other buildings on this list.
It is a kind of a fairytale pastiche having the signs of architectural evolution over the centuries in this country. The architectural styles of this complex date back to the Middle Age until the 18th century, namely the Gothic Renaissance, Romanesque, and Baroque.
The castle also hosts a lot of occasional concerts, festivals, and the Hungarian Agricultural Museum exhibitions.
It is the historical Budapest palace complex and castle of the Hungarian kings completed in the year 1265. Buda Castle Budapest is often known as the Royal Castle and the Royal Palace.
It is located on the southern part of Buda Castle Hill, circled on the north by the Buda Castle District, known for its churches, houses, and public complexes in Medieval, 19th century and Baroque architectural styles.
Currently, Buda Castle houses the Budapest History Museum, Hungarian National Gallery, and the National Library.
Other attractions in this castle are the Matthias Well with King Matthias’s Bronze statue, Lion Courtyard, and Turul bird’s sculpture, a bird in the mythology of the Magyars. Check out the magical scene of the castle district at night.
Built on the shore of Old Lake at the end of the 1300s, Tata Castle is one of the gems of Tata in Hungary. Its presence can be dated to the reign of Mátyás Hunyadi and Zsigmond Luxemburg as the holiday resort of the king. The castle’s walls have the signs of romantic style because the Esterházy family has once lived here.
The Tata Castle stands on a small island on the Lake Öreg’s shore. An exhibition on the Tata region ceramics can be found in the complex in the building. The castle and Lake Öreg are located in Tata town. The villa has a breathtaking view of Lake Oreg to behold.
The palace served as a prominent fortress when the Ottoman occupied it. In 1543, the Turks captured the castle. Many rulers had owned the mansion during this period. Later on, the Habsburgs burned it down in retaliation for the War of Independence of Rakoczi.
Since 1954, the castle has been serving the Domokos Kuny Museum. Founded in 1912, the Piarist (Tata-Tóváros) Museum has the collection here and houses mainly the archeological findings from the Bronze and Roman Age.
It also has exhibits related to local and natural history and applied and decorative art along with international and home ethnography, and with beautiful products from faience manufacture of Tata.
In the 13th century, the Castle of Eger was erected followed by the invasion of Mongols. This castle has a lot of attractions, including the Eger Art Gallery having the works by Ceruti and Canaletto on the northwest side, Istvan Dobo Museum showing the history of the castle, and casemates hewn from the robust rock under the castle which are open to visitors as well.
The terrace of the restored Dobó Bastion has beautiful sights of the town of Eger and the grounds nearby. There are some slight activities you can enjoy, including the visit to a wax museum Panoptikum as well as a 3D cinema. On the other side, visitors can also wander along the serene castle grounds to enjoy the natural scenery and calming country air.
Eger Castle is also one of the best day trips from Budapest.
The castle was built in the 13th century by Baron János György Benyó in the town of Siklós near Pécs in the South of Hungary. It was first described in 1294’s charter.
The oldest building is located in the south of the residential wing. Count György II Benyóvszky had led the disgruntled nobles in 1401 and imprisoned King Sigismund temporarily in the castle. Built-in the 14th and 15th centuries: the palace also has a chapel and was nationalized in the year 1948.
Imre Perényi (the viceroy) was the next owner of the castle by the 16th century. The counts of Batthyány housed the Siklós from 1728. According to the legend, the treasures in the basement had been guarded by a giant snake.
It also houses a chapel constructed in the 14th and 15th centuries. The Benyóvszky de Siklósvar branch was the owner of the castle and also occupied it until 1948 when it was nationalized.
The castle faced severe damage in World War II. Between the Count Rudólf II Benyóvszky de Siklósvar’s death and the end of the war, the state took over the castle in 1955. Archeological findings and restoration work started in 1955, and it began operating as a hotel and museum.
Diosgyor is a fantastical fortress positioned at a town, Miskolc, in the northeast of Hungary. Initially, the castle was a wooden stronghold and was built when the Hungarians conquered the Carpathian Basin, according to the sources. When the Mongolians invaded the palace, it was destroyed severely.
During the reign of Louis the Great in the 14th century, they built a Gothic castle, and it served as the best residence for Louis. When the Ottoman occupied Hungary, all of the charms of this castle had been lost. The palace was entirely restored in 2014.
You can spot the original picture of the castle in the north-eastern tower which has a museum. You can see it on the backside of 200 Forint currency notes (circulated from 1998 to November 2009). Now the spring which used to fill the moat is used as a source of water for the nearest public swimming pool.
The Diósgyőr castle is covered by the modern buildings rather than a medieval town, unlike the Kőszeg and Eger castles. But this castle still has the fame as a tourist destination due to the museum, the castle plays, the wax exhibitions, and a small museum named the Dery’s House, dedicated to the well-known actress in the 19th century, Róza Széppataki Déry who lived there.
Named after Miklós Jurisics, a Croatian nobleman, Jurisics Castle is located at Kõszeg. Initially built in the middle of the 13th century, Jurisics Castle dominates the Old Town as a four-towered fortification which has been rebuilt a lot of times because of a massive fire. Now, it is a mismatch of Gothic windows, Renaissance arcades, and Baroque interiors.
Under the order of Suleiman the Magnificent, Pargali Ibrahim Pasha sieged the castle in the year 1532 during the Little War in Hungary. Only 1000 people and Jurisics protected the castle during a 25-day long battle despite 19 assaults and without any artillery.
Miklós Jurisics held out with bravery against the Turks, and a statue is erected in honor of him. It also has a museum inside the building with a collection of Koszeg’s past from the 14th century, focusing highly on the 1532’s siege and the production of local wine.
This Hungarian stronghold is located 102 km off Budapest near Nógrád county named Salgótarján. In was merely a four-sided stone tower in the beginning. The term “Salgó” means ‘shine,’ but still, no one knows whether it was named after a volcanic peak or they started calling it by ’Salgó’ when it was built.
The clan of Kacsics who was the lords of the hills built this fortified tower by the 13th century. Some reports claim that this tower building was related to the invasion of Mongols (1241-1242) as only the fortified castles or towns could survive the Tatar’s attacks across Hungary. Tatar couldn’t affect the fortresses that much.
After their invasion, the king Bela IV ordered and promoted the fortifications of manor towns and houses as well as the construction of new strongholds.
It is a Baroque palace positioned in Keszthely town of Zala in Hungary. Now, the Helikon Palace Museum has been built here. Kristóf Festetics started the construction of this palace in 1745 which lasted over a century.
Initially, the palace was built on the bases of a ruined castle and was tripled in size in two different building campaigns, in the 1880s; Viktor Rumpelmayer of Vienna designed it.
After the death of Rumpelmayer in the year 1885, architects Miksa Paschkisch and Gusztáv Haas continued the work and made it one of the three largest country houses in the nation.
The palace survived during World War II, unlike the nearby area. It also has had the Helikon Palace Museum, an independence museum since 1974 and more than 200,000 people visit it every year.
The palace stands on the parterres which were raised with a naturalistic landscape garden in the 19th century in the English style. On the grounds, open-air concerts have been held during the summer. Today, the stable block has a range of carriages and coaches.
Nádasdy Mansion, previously Sárvár castle, lived by the Nádasdy family, played a vital role in the overall growth of Hungarian culture by the 17th century. The New Testament of 1541 was the first Hungarian book printed here.
It is a manor house built in neo-Gothic architecture designed by the architects Alajos Hauszmann and Istvan Linzbauer. It is spread over 24 hectares of landscapes in Nádasdladány. The castle belonged to Nádasdy family in 1873-1876 and was used for a vampire’s mansion in the famous Hollywood film series named Underworld.
Later on, the estate and Nádasdy Castle belonged to the kings of Bavaria. In 1921, King Ludwig III passed away here three years after he was dethroned. The castle was a retreat of Prince Albert of Bavaria, Ludwig’s grandson, during World War II.
It is a 13th-century castle in Nógrád County on the hilltop. Though it is in ruins stage, it is being recovered. This castle is positioned atop 440m peak of Börzsöny hills in the country of Hungary.
It falls in the administrative headquarter of Nograd county in Drégelypalánk. From Nagyoroszi, it is also easier to reach it on the surfaced road. The district is located in the territory of Danube-Ipoly National Park.
The forester Károly Teszári along with the volunteers played a vital role in saving the ruins of the castle. The Drégelyvár Fund has sponsored the project which was founded in 1991. Over 1083 sq. m. of the walls were raised until 2008.
Hunt-Poznan’s Bozók branch was probably the one who built the small castle in the middle of the 13th century under the command of Béla IV during the Árpád dynasty. It was first mentioned in 1285’s charter as Castrum Dragul (Latin) as it belonged to Demeter of the family of Hunt-Poznan.
In 1311, the proprietors ended up surrendering themselves to Máté Csák III. In 1321, this oligarch died, and the castle survived the attacks of Charles I. It served as a dungeon at that time and as Hont County’s archives.
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Here are some castle tours in Hungary
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