Let’s unleash our imagination and try something different other than the usual programs. Unusual and weird things you can do in Budapest.
As we keep ticking the destinations and sights on a trip, we often get the feeling that we haven’t really seen anything.
If it is France, then there is the Eiffel Tower. If it is Budapest, then there is the Parliament. Even if we had seen these already, we might not have really known the city and the people.
Explore what to see in this beautiful city! More than 100 tourist sights in Budapest
Fortunately, we have a lot of opportunities to do things, try things that aren’t usual, yet bring us closer to knowing Budapest.
This way, we can have unusual experiences that we are sure we will always remember and not just pop in when accidentally come up from our phone’s memory.
If we fancy unusual or weird things out of the ordinary, we might want to try the following.
Table of Contents
The best unusual and weird things to do in Budapest
1. By speedboat on the Danube
There are only a few cooler and more unusual things where we can admire the city than from the deck of a speedboat or boat, driving through the waves of the Danube.
In Budapest, it is also possible to rent a speedboat and a cruise ship, in which a trained captain will help us. This luxury experience is made truly unforgettable by the beautiful landscape and the proximity of the Danube.
It is a completely different experience to admire the Parliament or to travel around Margaret Island while driving fast on the Danube.
Of course, this program is not only for the adventurers and speed lovers. For example, it is possible to rent a private speedboat too, which can be a truly romantic experience.
The program is easy to customize, so you really visit, the way you want and when you want it. There is no set program, and the circumstances are all for your convenience. Needless to say, at sunset, what a sight unfolding in front of us while rocking on the water of the Danube. After that, you will definitely have loads of stories to tell your friends at home.
2. A visit to an atomic bunker
There are many great and exciting museums in Budapest, yet there is one that is not quite common and that is why it stands out from the rest.
Like the Rock Hospital Atombunker Museum (link) in Budapest. That’s right, it’s an atomic bunker. The whole Gellért Hill is full of secret caves and bunkers, which are still fiercely guarded.
Rock Hospital offers an insight into an era like none of its few companions. Really professional and interactive guided tours await us, where it is not only permitted but also strongly recommended to touch things.
The journey begins there, – as it is a few degrees cooler underground – everyone is enriched with a coat from that period.
During the trip, we can see the not-so-simple and everyday history of the hospital. During World War II, it was an air hospital and also functioned as a Virus Vaccine Production Institute, and in 1956 it was even a Revolutionary Hospital.
If you’re curious about beliefs, exciting stories, and how atomically safe this bunker is, don’t miss it by any means.
3. Hungaroring – In the footsteps of F1 pilots
Choose this if you want something really unusual! Are you a Formula 1 fan too? No? It doesn’t really matter if you go to Mogyoród and visit the Hungaroring course, you will immediately become a fan.
This track, which is not far from Budapest, gives home to the Hungarian stage of the F1 races, and for the rest of the year to various programs and go-karting also.
Here, lovers of driving can have fun. There is an opportunity for drive experience, where there are no speed limits, you can go crazy and get everything out of a sports car. While driving, of course, a trained instructor sits next to you to make the experience even safer.
These sports cars can only be tested at pre-booked times, so beware of this if you plan to do it. And if you want to go for a few laps on one of the largest go-kart tracks in the country, this is also possible here.
Not only is there the thrill of being close to the F1 track, but also we managed to create a really tricky track here.
This outdoor go-kart track is really exciting and vibrant, which can be a challenge even for an experienced go-kart driver. The track itself is 513 meters long, surrounded by a rubber wall and even a timing system has been built in, to make the race even more exciting.
Those who don’t want to try driving can safely retreat to the parasol-protected and comfortable rest areas from where they can watch the rest driving go-karts. It can be a really unusual experience for the whole family.
4. Themed escape rooms
The so-called escape rooms are becoming increasingly popular in many parts of the world. These can be exciting puzzles, great team forges, and real brain teasers. Budapest is not modest in escape rooms, as the whole thing started from here. It was invented by Hungarians.
The essence of escape rooms is to get closer to getting out of the room by solving puzzles and quizzes, as quickly as possible.
These include specifically scary, horror-themed puzzles, but there are some detective ones and there are lighter ones also. As an example, there is the Sweet Escape (link), which can be a good experience for children and adults also.
For those who don’t like the slightly bloodier, heart-pounding things, it’s definitely recommended for them to come here. There is also a cowboy room, a gingerbread room, as they are intended for both adults and children. It isn’t a problem if you do not speak Hungarian, as it is possible to meet the challenges in several different languages.
5. One of the weirdest things you can do in Budapest is a walk in the cemetery
I know, at first it may seem like a weird thing to walk in a cemetery, even though it has its own vibe, especially if we don’t visit any cemetery, but the Fiume Tomb Garden (1086 Budapest, Fiumei út 16-18.), where several famous Hungarians rest in peace.
There are also specific tomb garden walks where you can explore the tombs and the stories they hide as part of themed tours.
In the most special green area of Budapest, we can discover numerous special monuments: for example, during the Hidden Roads tour (Rejtett utakon), these often forgotten and exciting stories are brought to life. This tour can be done, for example, by bicycle, which is practical only in terms of the size of the area, not to mention the experience.
Even if we disregard the interesting and often mystical stories, it is worth visiting this tomb garden, not least because of the monumental sculptures and mausoleums.
Here, we can meet the graves of famous Hungarian prime ministers, writers and poets, but even gypsy primates. In addition, of course, you can also see the resting places of the forgotten heroes, the soldiers, whose often very exciting stories are outlined in front of the visitors.
Night of Museums is usually held in the summer, when all museums and visitor centers extend their opening hours and can be visited cheaper or for free. It is also worth visiting the Fiumei Tomb Garden at this time, as more programs are opened for us this time, although you need to prepare for a larger crowd.
6. Bet on the fastest horse- Enhanced atmosphere in Kincsem Park
A really unusual thing you can do in Budapest! Ever since the world exists, people love competitions and also love to bet on their outcomes. If you also like the heightened atmosphere of the racecourses, you must visit the only racecourse in Hungary, the Kincsem Park. (1101 Budapest, Albertirsai út 2-4.)
This park is located on a nearly 100-acre green island in the heart of the city and has been giving home to racehorses since 1925. And here everything is given to make you feel good.
There is a grandstand with a capacity of 3,500 seats and a reception area for 100 people, but even a panoramic restaurant which can accommodate 250 people.
English Thoroughbreds compete on three tracks every Sunday, from spring to autumn. A 2,000-meter elliptical turf track for flat and dam races, a 1,200-meter long straight track, and a 1,900-meter elliptical synthetic track are available for the races also.
In addition to galloping and trotting races, we can also get excited about greyhound races. Even if we don’t want to bet on it, it’s still worth coming out here because of the atmosphere, one thing for sure we can’t experience it anywhere else.
At the end of the year, for example, a Trotting New Year’s Eve event is especially exciting, which is almost a tradition among the locals of Budapest on New Year’s Eve.
7. Going to Casino
And if it is betting and gambling, then, of course, a little casino tour in Budapest is a must-do. The best casinos in the capital are the Las Vegas casinos: such as the Corvin Promenade or the Sofitel in Budapest.
By the way, the history of casinos in Hungary dates back to civilization, and they were built for the benefit of visitors from the West. The perception and status of casinos then changed constantly. There were times when they were closed and there were times when they were opened, but they could never be completely closed for good.
These gamble caves convey an amazing atmosphere that needs to be experienced. The first facility of Las Vegas Casino was the Sofitel Budapest, followed by four more. The casinos have a variety of live player tables and electronic roulette tables. We still find casinos in many parts of the city, so we don’t have to worry about not finding the one we like best.
8. Cruising on the Danube
We have already tried speed boats on the Danube, but there are still many unusual sightseeing opportunities on this wonderful river.
The city is beautiful in every way, but especially in the evening and at night when the lights come on. This is what the Danube Legend ship (link) provides it with sound and light show.
During the one-hour sightseeing tour, we can enjoy the guided tour with movies in several languages while drinking delicious drinks. As we sip these quality juices and listen to the exciting information about the city, we can enjoy the beautifully lit bridges, the Parliament and the hustle and bustle of the city that is typical at such times.
We shouldn’t be disappointed during the day, neither in Budapest nor on the cruise. We can have such an unusual experience here as only in a few places in Europe: an amphibian sightseeing program (link).
At last, we don’t have to choose to see the city by bus or boat, since here we get 2 in 1, both come true. This slightly strange looking vehicle is a bus at the same time, but it can also be transformed into a ship.
It may seem bizarre at first as a bus drives into the Danube, but believe me, it is an amazing experience. Here, truly, it can indeed be said that there are no obstacles.
With the help of the River ride, you don’t have to waste your time in the traffic jam, as we can even continue sightseeing on the Danube, and then we will find ourselves on land again on the quay.
And for those who really like comfort, who want to enjoy good wines, food, and the view at the same time, they have a boat tour available with many wine tastings and dinners.
In addition to such wonderful sights, the delicious wine or food we consume is even more enjoyable, especially if there is even live music. I can’t imagine more perfect programs in Budapest.
9. Budapest from the skies
We have been on the Danube and admired the city from there, but what if we could also look at the Hungarian capital from a bird’s eye view? We have many options for this as well. If you are not afraid of flight and altitude, you can also explore the city within the framework of an unusual flight tour.
This tour (link) covers a 50-kilometer section, which touches the city center of Budapest, the Danube line, and Buda Castle. During the tour we also pass over the beautiful János Hill, Hármashatár Hill, and Lupa Island.
If you are looking for even more excitement, you can even take a helicopter tour to admire one of the most beautiful capitals in Europe.
During the 20-minute helicopter tour, we can see the main sights of the city, from a perspective that is not given to many. An even more unforgettable experience can be a night tour when you can circle around the illuminated city.
These tours provide an experience that we will surely never forget, and we can see the city from a completely different perspective. Anyone who can afford it and is not afraid of altitude and flying and wants to try what such a tour flight or ride on a helicopter is like, can do it here.
10. Sightseeing walks in Budapest
What could be more pleasant than to walk around Budapest within the framework of a walk? Of course, spontaneous, street-wandering, hand in hand wandering walks also have their own atmosphere, but sometimes it’s better to entrust this to professionals.
Initiating the Greetings from Budapest (link) is exciting for this reason because on the one hand there are guided tours, and on the other hand, you can get to places you may never get to on your own.
You don’t have to keep searching in Google and Wikipedia for a good story, as tour guides tell you from an authentic source about each station. The walks are organized thematically anyway, there are times when we can explore the world of the 20s and 30s, or the tours are organized specifically around love, but there are many other possibilities waiting for us.
We can get an insight into places and buildings that we certainly would not have gotten to ourselves, and the history will finally be really enjoyable. You can apply for the tours online and of course there are English and German tour guides available.
11. VR tours in Budapest
And if it’s no longer ordinary tours, then I have to mention the VR, virtual reality walks. The tour is made even more exciting by VR goggles, which reveal the history of Buda Castle in front of our eyes.
The tour starts at the foot of Castle Hill and lasts all the way to the peak which offers a breathtaking panorama. Meanwhile, we can follow historical events that greatly influence the fate of the city, literally history is changing in front of our eyes.
From the Middle Ages, through the Turkish siege, through the bombings of World War II, we can follow the events until the 1956 revolution.
We have audio guides in 8 different languages, so you definitely have no trouble understanding what you have heard. And that makes it easier for you if you buy your tickets online in advance, as you don’t have to wait in the queue.
12. By segway in Budapest
Get on a segway and not only will you be less tired after a long hike, but it will also be much more fun to get to know the streets of Budapest this way.
Segway group tours offer many opportunities (link). You can choose from several tours: we can have a tour around Margaret Island, the Jewish Quarter, the Buda Castle, but we can even enter for a romantic sunset tour.
There are many routes to choose from to explore the many exciting points of Budapest together on two wheels. So we can go up to the Citadel, or we can wander in the city center. It’s okay if you’ve never tried a segway before, this could be a wonderful time to do so. It’s a self-balancing tool that’s far less dangerous than it first seems.
Laser gyroscopes detect when you want to lean forward and can still stay upright. The system has been put together in a very complex way and they put a lot of effort into putting security first when they were made.
So, we do not need to worry, if we follow the rules and pay attention, there is nothing more dangerous about this device than, say, a bike. So, if you’re looking for an unusual, sporty sightseeing tour, the segway can be a super choice.
13. If it is wine, then Budapest
Hungary is especially rich in wine-producing regions, so there is no question that we have many opportunities for wine tastings and cellar visits in the capital, not even of any kind.
Few people know it, but there is even a separate “Wine Quarter” in the capital, and this honorary title is held by Budafok.
We can meet such big names here as Törley champagne, Várszegi winery, or Katona Wine House.
The wonderful wineries here are not only wineries, but also restaurants and even exhibition halls. We don’t have to worry about getting there either: from April of each year, separate minibuses leave from Városház Square and stop only at the wineries and sights.
The area has an impressive past of wine and grape growing, dating back to Roman times. During the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy, Budafok was one of the largest wine trade centers.
Around this time, a nearly 100-kilometer cellar system developed here, so it is not surprising that the culture of wine and wine production has survived to this day. If we visit here during the season, we must be prepared that we will not be bored for a minute.
Lots of concerts, shows and wine tasting are waiting for us here. Within the framework of the Cellar Walk (link), we can also see many wineries and champagne manufactories, and of course we can taste them, but there are also many musical entertainments waiting for the visitors.
14. Red Hedgehog House (Vörös Sün Ház)
If you like the most, then when visiting Budapest, the oldest building in use today is a must-see. (1014 Budapest, Táncsics Mihály utca 2.) The Red Hedgehog House was named after the inn that it used to be.
The building itself has been around since 1260 and was merged from several Gothic, medieval dwellings in the 18th century. It had many interesting inhabitants and owners.
One of these is palatine Miklós Konth, but the last Turkish governor of Buda, for example, also died in front of the building. In this case, the saying is all the more true; “If these walls could talk,” it has functioned as a theater, almost as a dance hall, and then as an inn.
In the 20th century, there was a cabaret and even a public house in the building. And nowadays, if you visit the castle district, be sure to keep in mind this unusual sight as well.
15. Pancs – The real gastro market
Do you like natural, additive-free food? Have you always wondered what a real Hungarian market is like with primary producers? You are in the best place! The Pancs Gastroplacc changed from a ruins bar to a community market, creating a medium that is nowhere to be found.
In the minds of many, the market is where the old ladies rush early in the morning, where they also buy all kinds of goods from old ladies. In comparison, Pancs is a completely revolutionary idea that brings together quality and natural ingredients, and even several generations.
Here you can definitely meet the products of real Hungarian primary producers every Sunday. Homemade eggs, milk, cheese, as well as seasonal vegetables and fruits are also available.
If you really want to taste Hungarian, delicious and organic flavors, or just get yourself in a good little marketing for the sake of the atmosphere: go to the Pancs Gastroplacc. (1094 Budapest, Tűzoltó u. 22.)
16. True rarity: Lebanese cedar
You wouldn’t even think about what unusual treasures this city has to offer. One such exciting attraction is the Lebanese cedar on Kondor Street. (1025 Budapest, Kondor út 5.)
This protected tree is located in the II. district of Hűvösvölgy. This wood methuselah is also a rarity because it is not native to Hungary: it lives specifically north of Lebanon, all the way to the Taurus Mountains in Turkey.
This type of wood is very sensitive, so it could only live in quite a few places. There are still several Lebanese cedars in Hungary, and this is the third specimen on Kondor Street, both in terms of size and age.
What does this mean in numbers? We can only guess, but based on its crown size, it is estimated to be about 130 years old, with a height of 15 meters and a trunk size of 3.6 meters.
According to rumors, this tree belonged to the villa garden of the Hungarian diva, Sári Fedák, but according to others, her villa was further away.
In any case, it is worth visiting these hidden beauties, as we don’t stumble upon such a Methuselah many times. Plus, it’s a great experience to get away from the sightseeing a bit and surround ourselves with a little green.
17. Trip to the Apáthy rock
View from the Citadel, from Gellért Hill… these are all well-known and of course wonderful tourist destinations. But what about those hidden little places that are less known but still promise a breathtaking sight?
As an example, there is the Apáthy Rock (1025 Budapest, Nagybányai út 62.), which can be easily reached by bus 11 from Batthyány Square.
Following the tourist route, we come to the rocky area through a wonderful oak forest, from where we have an amazing view: from here we can see János Hill, Tündér Rock, Kis- and Nagy Hárs Hill, Lipótmező and Hűvösvölgy.
What you should know about the rock is that it is a protruding formation of the main block of the Látó Hill, which is 376 meters high. It is a massive dolomite trunk, which is 242 meters high.
The name Apáthy comes from the former owner of the area, whose restaurant and majority were also here. The rock and its surroundings are a nature reserve, and in fact, many protected animals live here: including seven species of futrinka, but we can also find shells here too.
If you are walking here and gushing up at the sight of the wonderful panorama, it is definitely worth exploring the surface of the cliff. For there are traces of drill shells in it, all of which suggest that this area was once under the sea.
If we still feel like hiking, we can walk back through a seven-station study trail.
18. Budapest apartments, villas
As we research the more beautiful sights, we tend to forget the beauties that lie before our eyes.
Such are the old apartments in Pest, the wonderful villas in Buda, which can be up to 200 years old or more. Wherever we go in the city, we can stumble upon several such unique and eye-catching buildings.
Around May, the Budapest100 (link) program is held every year, when we can get into buildings that we would never be able to get otherwise. It is always built around different themes, there is that it is specifically divided into areas, there is that it is erected, but there is always the focus on the building and its history.
With the help of a small map, we can discover the hidden little treasures of different parts of the city ourselves. These open houses are, of course, inhabited to this day, so it is even more special to walk through them, while the lovely residents often prepare food and shows.
There may be a pie and a refreshment waiting for you in one place, but many times not only the volunteers but also the residents themselves can tell the story of the house. There are few buildings in Budapest that wouldn’t have a separate story, as they went through wars and revolutions and were giving home to a famous poet and writer.
We can also go out to the top of some houses at this time, where we will be greeted by an amazing sight, especially if we consider that there are people who can admire it every single day.
Best of all, as we search for these houses, apartments and villas, we can get to know the true face of the city.
We can explore streets, neighborhoods which we can’t see on the pages of tourist books, and meet the people who live here, from whom this city lives and throbs. With whom is Budapest as it is. Wonderful.
19. Sights in Budapest that not everyone knows that they are sights
There are many sights in Budapest, and there are quite a few of them that even the locals may not know much about, but their stories are exciting. The first such example, which is worth visiting, is the medieval city walls of Pest.
As the city center grew, the former medieval city wall was demolished or built in. However, some fragments of the wall can still be found today, for example, in the garden of apartments, which are marked with plaques.
Such remains can be found on Kiskörút on the Danube line, in the vicinity of Kálvin Square, Deák Square and Vörösmarty Square. Moreover, in the vicinity of Bástya Street, near the parking lot and the playground, we can see a large part of the wall, which is certainly such a remnant.
In the 5th district, at 13 / b Király Pál street, we can also admire engravings and reliefs.
At the beginning of Kecskeméti Street, and at the subway of Kálvin Square, we can admire the remaining parts of the old Kecskemét Gate, built into a modern building.
The medieval castle gate of Budapest was discovered during the construction of the subway. The Kecskemét Gate is one of the three exits of the old Old Town Wall. The other two were the Váci Gate and the Hatvani Gate.
Continuing to wander around the city, the other must-see hidden little treasure is the Ponty Street Stairs. (1011 Budapest, Ponty utca.)
In the 1st district, in the City of the water, we can find many small alleys and staircases anyway, which gives the city a completely Mediterranean atmosphere, but this stands out among them.
In traces, the stairs are surrounded by ornate wrought iron, and the view is indescribable. You can also admire benches and a red marble well in the cobbled area of Ponty Street.
The other such outstanding little “island” is Gül Baba Street, on the steep grip of which the city unfolds in front of us. It is a fingertip away from the hustle and bustle of Margaret Boulevard, yet it is like a separate world.
The narrow, cobbled street, the irregular, small and diverse houses: as if we had just strayed into some Italian village, with all its Hungarian features. There will be no tourists here, so there is time to stop, rest, and just admire the surroundings.
From here, you can reach the tomb of the already renovated Gül Baba turban and Rosegarden, which is a real Muslim pilgrimage site in the heart of Buda. According to mouth to mouth tradition, the area was named Rózsadomb after Gül Baba, more precisely after the rose he attached to his turban.
It is worth coming here in the spring or summer, when the beautiful rose bushes are in bloom. The turbe is surrounded by a beautiful promenade with loungers and an oriental atmosphere, not to mention the wonderful panorama.
20. Craft beer tour in Budapest
There is a growing hype about having a beer, especially craft beers in Europe and, of course, in Budapest.
More and more craft pubs of this kind are opening up day by day, and even a separate industry has been built for it. If you are not satisfied with visiting these, I can offer a number of unusual and very beery programs.
The Thermal Beer Spa of the Széchenyi Bath was launched on a Czech model. Although it isn’t possible to bathe in beer here, only in water mixed with malt and hops, we can still sip a cold beer. (link)
Of course, it is not plain water in which we can sit, but 36-degree thermal water, which consists of the aforementioned beer ingredients. While we can feel good with the help of beer (also), which we can tap ourselves without having to stand up, it even has a beneficial effect on the skin.
The beer bath has six wooden tubs, so a maximum of 12 people can drop by at the same time. A pleasant, herbal bath with an infinite amount of beer tap and small snacks is the best stress reliever.
If, on the other hand, you want to get a taste of a real Budapest night, all of this is accompanied by beer lovers, with the best craft beers, head to the Budapest Craft Beer Tour (link). During the three-hour tour, which can be done in smaller groups, you can discover 3 different bars and craft pubs, where you can then taste 6 different beers.
The tastings are all tailored to your tastes and preferences, of course, nothing is mandatory. You will come across not only a number of exciting flavors but also the makers of those who can tell you a lot about beers.
During the tastings, we can learn a lot about the methodology of this, the types of beer, the brewing processes, while we can also ask questions at any time. This is a great opportunity, not only for beer lovers but also for those who want to get deeper into it.
Budapest is one of the most diverse cities in Europe, with a thousand faces. In addition to the obligatory sights and programs, there are many, many unusual or weird opportunities for tourists.
Let it be on the water of the Danube, in the mountains of Buda, or even in the air: there is always something to do here. Let’s unleash our imagination and try something other than the usual programs so far.
This way, we can get much closer to the city, the people who live here, and have experiences like nowhere else.