Rise and shine earlier than usual with the intention to visit both Dohany Street Synagogue and St. Stephen Basilica. Wanted to maximize my last day in Budapest though I had wandered around Szechenyi Chain Bridge till late the night before. As per my standard protocol, I took a long stroll from Bo18 Hotel Superior to Dohany Street, only to realize that the Great Synagogue (Nagy Zsinagoga) was closed due to Easter Day. Oh man, I would have visited it on my first day if not for the flight delay…next time around ya?
Left Dohany Street and continue the walk to St. Stephen Basilica (Szent istván Bazilika).
Saw some artists working on street arts at Erzsébet Square. The green space is a nice addition to such a central city area which I see locals hanging out around here.
Awe inspiring St. Stephen Basilica
Finally, the beautiful St. Stephen Basilica, and it looks impressive from any angle. It was originally designed in neo-classical style but ended up in neo-renaissance style upon completion, due to the change of architects.
The 96 thingy about St. Stephen Basilica is its height, exactly the same as Budapest Parliament Building at 96 meters, symbolizes the balance between religion and state. And because of that, no structure in Budapest is allowed to be built taller than the two. The admission is free but there’s a donation box by the entrance.
St. Stephen Basilica is named after the first King of Hungary, which he has a hand in it, literally. Apparently, the church has kept the mummified right hand of King Stephen. When you drop a 100 forint into the coin slot, the glass case will light up and showcase his extremity. I didn’t try that though…
I kept my money for the observation deck instead, which cost 500 forints and well worth it.
Stunning view from St. Stephen Basilica observation deck
Once you make it to the observation deck, it will reward you with a 360-degree view of Budapest. I totally dig that, seeing the city from above is one of my favourite things when travelling. So I spent quite a bit of time up here and walked around the deck several times to enjoy the beautiful panorama.
Settled my lunch at Ez Az Bisztró right across the church. Goulash soup is a must and when I see rice variety offered on the menu, I ordered it straight away LOL! The food here is great and so is the price, while the friendly staffs and free wifi rounded up a great experience for me.