A Budapest nightlife guide for those who don’t know what to do after dusk. Ideas for wild party-goers and more relaxed travelers.
This comprehensive article helps you find out more about things to do in Budapest at night
At the end of the article, you will have a clear idea about what is worth visiting to have fun. I will introduce you to the best nightclubs in Budapest for the year 2020.
Of course, nightlife is not only about partying in nightclubs. I have something for those of you who are looking for something less buzzing. You can pick from the best programs so that Budapest nightlife would never be boring.
If you are a lad at night, be one during the day too
As the Hungarian saying goes: “If you are a lad at night, be one during the day too.”
It is not a neoconservative admonition expressing disgust at a gender reassignment surgery that occurred at one of those nights. Rather, it is a reminder that if someone spent the night carelessly, they should not use it as an excuse the next day.
In Budapest, partying traditionally means staying out. Yet, the capital offers much more than that so don’t let the night slip away. Being a metropolis, Budapest has thousands of activities in the dark, so we can make the most out of the 24 hours.
It’s time to get to know Budapest nightlife!
Table of Contents
An important prerequisite of nightlife is good public transport
It is not uncommon in a metropolis that there is no need to worry about how you would get to the scene of your doom or salvation and back to your accommodation after nightfall. Budapest nights are full of yellow taxis, but the so efficient daytime public transport does not rest completely at night either.
Which taxi to sit in – Tips so you don’t get fooled
For instance, tram 6, shining brightly in the same color as the taxis, runs all day connecting the more significant venues of nightlife.
Luckily, the yellow electric giant caterpillar does not have to carry its noisy load alone; there are exactly 41 night buses providing help and companionship. Most of them run across both sides of the Danube, making even the very special party venues accessible.
Night lines are marked with white characters on a black background. Their routes were designed in a way that the most important junctions of the city – Astoria, Deák Ferenc Square, Móricz Zsigmond Square, Blaha Lujza Square, Örs vezér Square, Széll Kálmán Square – would intersect.
Metro lines run at extended hours until 00:30 am on Friday and Saturday nights.
All the important information on the Budapest metro. Line network, timetables, tickets, attractions near the stops.
A useful addition to night lines are security personnel who – like good shepherds – try to tend the flock from harming themselves and/or the vehicles. So, the tools are given, only the goals are to be set.
What to do in Budapest at night
And what not to do. This would be a shorter list. In fact, only our imagination can limit our possibilities. With or without intent, everyone will find what they are looking for if they decide to fling into the mysterious darkness.
In addition to more traditional music-dance entertainment or culinary explorations, night sightseeing tours, bathing, cruising, pub sports, karaoke, police detention rooms 😀 , and countless other activities await those delaying sleep.
Is it worth staying awake after seeing so many attractions in the capital during the day? If you want to see both faces of Budapest or are interested in the vibe of the city, the other side of the indigenous population, that is, you want to see the full menu, you need to give up on relaxation for a while.
Will it pay off? Well, let’s see what nightlife has to offer in Budapest!
Nightlife citadels – The best nightclubs in Budapest
The fundamental building blocks of nights in the capital are the diverse, large and less huge clubs. There are many differences from the music line-up, the atmosphere, and the general public, but they also have one thing in common: they are great fun.
Everyone can find something that fits their taste and wallet, and if you are adventurous enough, there are more than enough possibilities for partying out of your comfort zone. The club life of the capital has seen some serious development over the years, which can mostly be experienced in the local giants.
Morrison’s 2 stands out of the big clubs of the city. The perfect hybrid of ruin bars and clubs does not shy away when it comes to partying.
We can lose our inhibitions at the seven dance floors for different music genres. If we still can’t pick one, the covered, water-proof patio that is heated in winter is the perfect place for thinking.
The selection of drinks reflects the size of the place with thousands of different drinks to choose from. A lot of them can be tasted during the early-hour discounts.
In addition to the thematic parties, Morrison’s 2 is the venue of “sheer” fun every day of the week, so that you won’t have to plan ahead.
1055 Budapest, Szent István körút. 11.
Interested in Budapest ruin bars? You can find out which one to pick and why from my article.
Besides Morrison’s 2, new stories are also written during nights in the capital. One of them is Story Budapest.
Being a “fresh meat” of Budapest, it is among the top shelf-offers. Fancy parties in an exclusive ambience where celebrity audiences are wearing out the dance floor of the R&B- and hip hop-oriented place at weekends.
It is an ideal place for those who would like to have a look behind the scenes of Budapest’s high life while partying.
1075 Budapest, Kazinczy u. 21.
Lock the club
Lock the club is also part of this exclusive coordinate system. The basic atmosphere is provided by electronic genres like house, tech house, but R&B is also part of the menu. Of course, there is some deviation from these, but don’t expect any death metal concerts.
The guiding principle when designing the interior was to attract the sophisticated outside. The design and furniture all follow the well-established blueprint of well-known clubs abroad.
The range of beverages does not aim for the widespread distribution of house wine either. There are specialty cocktails, champagne and shots on the drink menu reflecting the needs of the clientele and the interior.
1027 Budapest, Tölgyfa utca 1-3
Closed due to refurbishing. Opening in the end of August.
This speaking name refers to a nightclub that is highly esteemed by Hungarian and domestic guests with a real club life inside a ruin bar exterior.
There are 3 dance floors to be ruined every night from Thursday to Saturday with hip hop, minimal house, and domestic electronic DJs providing the beat.
The main dance floor offers cultural conditions for rubbing together in winter and summer. What is more, community fun is put under the open sky in the summer.
1051 Budapest, Zrínyi utca 4.
Symbol is a similar fixed star on the Buda side of the Budapest night sky. Actually, this is not just a “simple” club.
There are events in 7 halls on 3 floors, so it is more like an event center where you can also have fun. A sophisticated selection of food, drinks, and music awaits the equally refined public.
Live music nights, domestic and electronic musicians’ performances and concerts have been tempting the knowledgeable audience to dance for almost a decade.
1036 Budapest, Bécsi út 56.
The night club is open during events. For more info please check their website.
When the sun goes down, the temperature falls with it, but there is a place in Budapest, where the air is hotter than in the late metallurgy in Ózd.
4Play Lounge is the best gentlemen’s club – or colloquially a strip club – in the capital, where the mood is on fire every night. Contradicting its name, the gates are not solely open to gentlemen; women are also welcome.
There are almost 40 dancers showing off their gifts and skills during sophisticated performances in a stylish environment at the largest – and the most cultivated naked parade of the city. In addition to the different stages, the more introverted ones can enjoy the show in VIP rooms.
The drinks are all high-quality and definitely help boost the mood. There is something outstanding for those of you not only visiting to enjoy the artistic side of the place, namely, you can use the club’s own taxi service free of charge.
And we don’t need to worry about this place being specialized in fleecing money out of tourists either. The club pays great attention to the safety of both guests and dancers and informs everyone about all costs transparently.
1066 Budapest, Lovag utca 5.
Size doesn’t matter – Recommended smaller nightclubs in Budapest
Club life in the capital does not only exist in huge, multi-story, multi-room complexes. You won’t feel claustrophobic in smaller-size facilities either, and an extra: no one will feel completely lost in the crowd of several floors.
One of the most renowned representatives of this genre is BRKLYN – the first crossover of a restaurant-bar-club in Budapest.
In practice, it means that from Tuesday to Sunday from 2:00 pm until 11:00 pm the restaurant awaits guests with fine street food, and then turns into a place where we can burn the consumed calories until dawn.
The music menu ranges from the retro of the 90s and 2000s, to hip hop /R&B and club music. There are also special concerts occasionally.
1075 Budapest, Kazinczy utca 48.
Not far from BRKLYN there is another popular club: CAT. The extravagant and unsurprisingly, quite cat-oriented design is responsible for fun electronic nights with the professional sound system contributing even more to it.
In addition to the spacious dance floor, there are also VIP rooms awaiting guests. The drink menu attracts everyone with some wild cocktails keeping the mood on top.
1075 Budapest, Madách Imre út 13.
We can see a completely different world when entering Ambient Bar through its midnight black front.
The bar/club is focused on music and dancing is not an integral part of the night, but occasionally, the furniture is moved away and feet start moving.
The dominant genres include house, jazz, trip-hop or acid, and the DJ sets with instrumental impros are not rare either. The atmosphere is very much boosted by the special motifs of the interior.
The selection of drinks covers both more commercial and special needs. There are both in-store and manufacturer beers and cocktails. It is definitely a fresh spot in the mainstream lot.
1053 Budapest, Múzeum körút 41.
Lärm, located in the heart of Budapest, is also a representative of electronic music. This speaking name means a racket in Hungarian. And it’s not an exaggeration!
We can enjoy the beats coming from the different segments of the genre with no decibel-limit. Both Hungarian and foreign DJs make music among the black walls.
The place creates a very special atmosphere for hardcore music lovers who can surrender themselves to the rhythm on the dance floor.
1073 Budapest, Akácfa u. 51.
Edison Bar & Ink
The one thing that seems to be a terribly bad idea is the unnecessary proximity of alcohol and tattoo needles. Yet, Edison Bar & Ink is exactly this: loads of craft beer, some spirits, and a tattoo parlor.
At least, there is something to suppress the pain. By the way, there is live music on six out of seven days for having fun, so we can make a hasty decision about our skin at this unique venue. For those of you who don’t tend to regret their actions, it’s a must!
1066 Budapest, Jókai utca 23
Every day: 12 noon-10PM (Temporary closure due to COVID-19)
Toldi Klub is a bit less dangerous, yet not less entertaining. The club is located in the lobby of the 80-year-old Toldi Cinema which functions as a cinema café during the day.
Toldi club comes to life after the credits of the last film, so after a tear-jerking drama, salvation is only a few steps away. The profile of the club includes both electronic music genres and live music concerts.
Professional sound systems make sure that we enjoy the melodies to the fullest. A cinema-date turned into a party is the perfect logistical occasion in cold weather as we don’t need to worry about the cooling of the mood.
1054 Budapest, Bajcsy-Zsilinszky út 36–38.
If it is nightlife, billiards and bowling should also be part of the program
Apart from dancing, Budapest offers a multitude of other night-time activities. Those who wish to use the alcohol they consume to fuel their competitive self can occupy themselves on both sides of the Danube at night as well.
Noiret of long tradition is the place where we can try our luck in three different bar sports in one go, all under professional conditions.
We can hit the balls on professional billiard tables or play at professional foosball tables. Darts can be played using similar quality equipment, placed according to international rules.
And we can also buy sports equipment in the small shop in the salon. Of course, there is no need to get dehydrated doing all this – hydration is essential when doing sports – as there are more than a hundred cocktails to choose from. But draught beers are also included in the menu.
Noiret of almost thirty-year history provides the perfect opportunity for an active night spent in a good mood.
1066 Budapest, Dessewffy utca 8-10.
The Mecca of green velvet lovers can be found on Pest – Gold Billiards is the largest salon in the country. We can play with the balls of different sports, e.g. pool, snooker, carom, pyramid, and rex on 42 tables on 2000 square meters.
A billiards course can also be attended if interested. In case we feel pain in our waist from precision hitting, there is also a darts and pinball room. But having a meaningful break sipping a cocktail, or watching different matches with our friends in the cozy bar is also an option.
1191 Budapest, Kispesti Skála Áruház, Kossuth tér 4-5, 2nd floor
Every day: 8AM-2AM
Strike Bowling Club
Let’s go to the Buda side, but changing to another sport, lovers of bigger balls will find their calculation, too.
Strike Bowling Club is one of the highest quality bowling venues. We can trigger the spirit of the Great Lebowski on 8 automatic alleys, all of which comply with international standards. And we can fill our energy storage or lighten the mood with some alcoholic beverages at the restaurant of the club.
Buda and Pest. Which side you should pick and why? Read my article on this topic.
1117 Budapest, Budafoki út 111-113.
Monday-Thursday: 2PM-12 midnight
Satuday: 12 noon-1AM
Sunday: 12 noon-11PM
Sugár Bowling & Pub
The bowling center of the Pest side – Sugár Bowling & Pub – is located in the Sugár shopping center. We can pleasantly surprise our friends on ten fully automatic alleys, thus helping them to release the pain of losing in the pub.
Booking in advance is also standard here, as it is mostly a full-house venue.
1148 Budapest, Örs vezér tere 24.
Friday: 5PM-12 midnight
Saturday: 1PM-12 midnight
Blind Luck – Casinos for the determined ones
Las Vegas Casino
If we are looking for excitement without making a move and are also loaded, why not try our luck in one of the exclusive units of the Las Vegas casino network.
This is the only network in Budapest providing the opportunity for us to date Lady Fortuna. Luckily, the absence of competition does not have a negative impact on the standard.
In addition to live casino tables, bets can also be made at electronic roulette tables or there is a chance of winning the actual jackpot at one of the slot machines in a refined environment.
We can also turn the pages of the Devil’s Bible with hope while playing poker and blackjack. Entry is not restricted to tuxedo/evening dress, but do avoid flip-flops and fishing pants.
1051 Budapest, Széchenyi István tér 2. – Sofitel Budapest
Every day: Non-stop
Duna Poker Center
In addition to casinos, dimly lit gambling dens await night people to spend some time and money there. The Duna Poker Center is available for gamblers with the atmosphere of professional rooms.
Thanks to the pro staff and a management team with extensive international experience, we can only focus exclusively on the game and try our luck at competitions every day with high-quality technical equipment, refined furniture and an outstanding bar making the feeling complete.
1138 Budapest, Váci út 178.-Duna Plaza first floor
Every day: Non-stop
Get your feet wet – Sparty at Széchenyi Baths
There is a special charm to being able to get into a place at night that is usually open during the day.
It is a bit like the location that is showing its more intimate side to us. Speaking of intimacy, if we have the opportunity to do all this underdressed without the police taking us in for indecent exposure we will definitely be richer with a lasting experience.
Széchenyi Baths – the largest spa in the country – took this concept to a new level by organizing Sparty every Saturday (10:30PM-3AM) from February to December. The easy-to-decode compound word is derived from the words spa and party and is the buzzword of a special party opportunity.
The spa in itself provides the amazing setting for a swimsuit dress code party, but it does not stop here: an incredible laser show and light painting make the atmosphere completely unique.
We can enjoy the electrical music of DJs immersing in the hot thermal water. Everybody here shows (almost) everything, so lose your inhibitions and enjoy the inimitable atmosphere.
You can book party tickets here.
Budapest cocktail bars – If you are into a less vibrant nightlife
Sometimes it’s enough from partying, or you just want a calm night. That is when those cocktail bars come in handy where we can have a nice time sipping drinks with our friends.
One of the most prominent of these is the Black Swan in Pest. Elegance, sophistication, and professionalism – these are probably the most appropriate words summarizing the place.
When we enter the place, we are immediately overwhelmed by the pleasant atmosphere of the bar and feel like tasting. The mysterious twilight descending on our shoulders in a friendly way has an immediate calming effect, helping us forget about the tiring external world.
And the amazing artistic drinks created by professional bartenders make up the perfect experience. There are few – or perhaps no – beverages that will not be mixed for us here. And we can also enjoy the sophisticated bar-food along with them.(Popcorn with shrimps?! But yes!)
In addition to the regular guest DJs, Black Swan is often visited by the celebrated stars of the bartender world who further twist the already special repertoire.
1072 Budapest, Klauzál u. 32.
Monday-Tuesday: 6PM-12 midnight
Budapest is the city of opportunities, and this is also true for the night. Have you ever wondered how much Alice had to stuff into herself to get down into that rabbit hole? Well, let’s follow her without assistance if we visit Rabbit Hole.
Opened in a basement, this place of cozy and homely atmosphere is proud of its refined taste. It is the perfect hideaway for relaxation- a unique drink-seeking soul.
In addition to well-known cocktails, bartenders mix their own recipes – some of them quite tough. Sipping our drinks surrounded by the creative décor and unique atmosphere of the place is amazing, and occasionally, guests may have the chance to find out more about the secrets of cocktail making.
1062 Budapest, Eötvös u. 17-19.
Tuesday-Sunday: 4PM-12 midnight
Hotsy Totsy Budapest
Hotsy Totsy Budapest has chosen a very unique way of connecting services. Not only do we get served special cocktails reminiscent of the 20s and 30s of America, but we also enter a classic hairdresser’s after fighting our way through the bar section of blues music.
Because of the arrangement, the first things people bump into are the beverages, yet, it might not be a bad idea to start the adventures at the back of the place.
The thing in common between the two parts is the professionalism meeting even the highest expectations. Both alcohol and ideas reflect creativity and professionalism in this club. In addition to the more traditional cocktails and hair styles, unique wishes are also granted.
The list of celebrity hairdressers and hairdressing salons in Budapest.
And if you have difficulty making a decision, expert advice is on the way. Bets that seemed like a good idea under the influence of alcohol can be collected right there.
1075 Budapest, Síp u. 24.
Wednesday-Sunday: 6PM-12 midnight
What to do at night in Budapest – more ideas for visitors seeking something special
Bird’s eye view
Perspective matters a lot: this way we get to know more sides of the place we are visiting. This is also true in the case of Budapest. The capital at night is not solely the tangled network of nightclubs and bars. It is also a living, breathing host with all of us its cells.
Night bus tour
The night bus tour setting off from the bus stop of St. Stephen’s Basilica offers a magnificent opportunity to find out more about this host.
During the tour of the vascular network of big roads and small streets, visitors can take a closer look at Budapest nightlife and get a more comprehensive picture of what this city is like after the sun goes down.
1051 Budapest, Szent István tér 1.
Tours begin from stop Basilica at 18:00.
Danube sightseeing boat
Budapest divided by the Danube forces the visitor to pick a favorite side. This pressure can be overcome by hopping on a Danube sightseeing boat and enjoying the spectacle of the city by dinner at night.
The cruises that are available all-year-round provide a unique view of the metropolis at night.
1011 Budapest, Batthyány tér, Pier 1.
But if we are looking for an elevated experience, Budapest Eye – one of the largest Ferris wheels in Europe – is a must.
This giant set up in the heart of the city provides a dazzling panorama of the city in lights through the large windows of its cabins. This is nowhere else to be seen, so hop on!
1051 Budapest, Erzsébet Square
Every day from 10AM
The most beautiful panorama or anything you can imagine? Well, there is no obstacle to this in Budapest. Missing the scenic view of the city from postcards and blogs would be a huge mistake.
The Citadel located on top of Gellért Hill is the perfect place for a bit of romance and for enjoying the view of the whole capital.
The scenery is fantastic during the day, but the illuminated bridges at night and the Buda Castle are just unforgettable.
Bridges of Budapest: The history is still haunting today
1118 Budapest, Szirtes út.
Call of the wild – Budakeszi Wildlife Park
The already classic horror film, Blair Witch Project, has probably discouraged millions of people from hiking in the woods at night.
I cannot guarantee that there are no demons in the Budakeszi Wildlife Park, located just 20 minutes from the downtown, but you can look into the issue in great safety during guided night tours.
Many residents of the wildlife park – just like many city dwellers – start their day at night. During the three-hour tour, you cannot only observe these night owls but also can find out almost everything about them thanks to the trained tour guides.
Budakeszi Vadaspark, 2092 Budakeszi
You must register for the guided night tour at this email address: [email protected]
Night at the museum
Budapest nights also offer something for those thirsty for culture.
The Museum Plus program
The Museum of Fine Arts extends its opening hours nine times a year, contributing to the cultural experience with this unique atmosphere as part of The Museum Plus program.
The series of programs that have been organized for more than ten years awaits visitors with new themes, but the similar structure on a monthly basis.
These include guided tours, workshops, tours with guest performers, concerts, dance performances, literary performances, tasty dishes, and special wines helping the discovery of collections.
1146 Budapest, Dózsa György út 41.
Museum Plus programs in 2020
- September 10. – Raffaello
- October 8. – Tiziano
- November 12. – Bronzino
- December 10. – El Greco
The Night of Museums
One night of Budapest summers is full of buzzing every year with crowds of people setting off, but not to their usual destinations.
At the Night of Museums, participating institutions await visitors with extended opening hours, discount tickets and loads of programs. Attendance is possible with a single-design armband in Budapest.
There are museum buses specially organized for this night running between the museums and can be used free of charge. We can get admission to dozens of museums in the capital with the armband.
Read my article about the best museums in Budapest.
These include the exhibitions of the Hungarian National Gallery, the Hungarian National Museum and the Palace of Wonders. It would be a pity to miss such a deal!
Date of the event
June 27, 2020
Nightlife in Budapest – Conclusion
As can be seen, there are numerous opportunities for a fun night in Budapest. Everyone will find something to their taste in the wide variety the city has to offer at night – a nightclub, strip club, casino, billiard parlor, sightseeing tour or a good night’s bathing.
Every city has two faces. These can either be seen during the day or in night lights. We do not have to give up on any sights or experiences only because it is getting dark. Quite to the contrary! The magic of the night puts a spell on wanderers, creating a special community of common destiny.
Taking on this common destiny is essential if we want to say that we have really been to Budapest. Darkness helps people get rid of the burdens of the day, liberating their careless self.
This then radiates the night like an elusive source of energy that everyone adds to and everyone draws from. It is not enough to see the night; one must also experience it. And if for some reason we can’t do it on our own, we can always count on Budapest, its residents and its visitors.