Budapest Holiday Season Schedules

Plan your trip to Budapest and find out what’s open and closed over Christmas and New Year’s Eve. We have collected the most important opening times around this Christmas holiday season for you.

Free walking tours around Christmas and the New Year:

  • 24th of December no afternoon and evening tours, last tour is the 10:30 am general Budapest tour
  • 25th no tours at all
  • 26-27-28-29-30th all free tours run
  • 31st morning tours, 2:30 pm Budapest tour run, last tour is the 3:30 pm Jewish quarter and the Communism free tours, evening tours do not run
  • 1st of January 2020 no tours at all
  • 2-3-4-5th of January all tours run

From the 6th of January until the 29th of March 2020 we DO NOT have:

  • the 10 am Avenue and Heroes’ square tour
  • the 3:30 pm Jewish quarter and the Communism free tours
  • the 6:30 pm Evening walking tour 
  • and the 8:30 pm ruin pub tour

We restart these tours on the 30th or March 2020. We run all our other free tours that are on our website and Facebook page.

Holiday Schedules of Budapest attractions and Walking Tours by date

December 24th Tuesday

SHOPS:
Shops are closing around noon. Christmas Market on Vörösmarty square 10 am – 2pm (handicraft shops),
10 am – 3 pm (food stalls)
Some seven-eleven shops will be open all night long. 

MUSEUMS: CLOSED

PARLIAMENT: CLOSED

BATHSSzechenyi, Gellert, Lukacs, Rudas baths are open 6am-2pm.  Kiraly bath is open from 9am-2pm.

FREE TOURS

10.00am Jewish Quarter Walk
10.00am Communism Walking Tour
10.00am Avenue and Heroes’ Square
10.00am Urban Street Art
10.30am General Sightseeing Walk
10.30am Tours Gratis en Espanol
No afternoon tours are running.

Zoo: 9am-12pm ( noon)

Erkel Theatre: 11am Nutcracker

Opera House: CLOSED

CHURCHESChurches are open all day long. Main service is at midnight.

Dohany street Grand Synagogue: CLOSED

PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION

Metro, buses, trams will operate as it was Sunday, till 4pm, then night buses will run.  No Christmas tram for today.

CHRISTMAS HABITSDec.24th is a private, family holiday in Hungary, we don’t go to parties. Kids are kept busy outside home, while parents or grandparents are decorating Christmas trees on the holy night. Christmas tree is bought by angels, gifts are bought by baby Jesus. Children enter the room only when tiny bells ring and they sing Christmas songs, then open their gifts.

CHRISTMAS MENUThe menu for lunch is something really light. One of the most typical is poppy seed bread pudding. We usually eat fish with mashed potatoes and beigli at Christmas night (This is a rolled up crust with lots of poppy seed or walnut filling.

GOOD TO KNOWStreets are getting very quiet from early afternoon on.

December 25th, Wednesday

SHOPSShops are closed.  Christmas Market on Vörösmarty square 12 pm – 6 pm (handicraft shops), 10 am – 6 pm (food stalls). Shopping Malls are open for movies only. Shops in the malls are closed. Some seven-eleven shops will be open all day long. 

MUSEUMS: CLOSED

PARLIAMENT: CLOSED

FREE TOURSNo tours today.

BATHS:

  • Szechenyi Thermal Bath: 10:00am-10:00pm
  • Gellert: 10:00-8:00pm
  • Lukacs: 10:00am-10:00pm
  • Kiraly: 10:00am-9.00pm
  • Rudas: 10:00am-6:00pm

Zoo: 9am-3pm 

Erkel Theater: 11am- Nutcracker. 7pm- Messsiah

Opera: Closed

CHURCHESChurches are open all day long. Main service is at 10am or 11am.

Dohany street Grand Synagoue: CLOSED

PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION: Metro,buses and trams will operate according to their Sunday schedule.

CHRISTMAS HABITS: Family members often travelling to another city or village to visit each other or spending this day at home with playing games, watching TV.

CHRISTMAS MENUFish soup (carp or catfish) with noodles and stuffed cabbage (sour cabbage) with minced pork. Beigli for dessert is essential 

GOOD TO KNOWStreets are still quiet. Bars operate from afternoon. Fast food restaurants are closed. Jegbüfé café at Ferenciek tere with delicious strudels is OPEN 

December 26th Thursday

SHOPSShops are closed. Christmas Market on Vörösmarty square 12 pm – 6 pm (handicraft shops), 10 am – 6 pm (food stalls). Shopping Malls are open for movies. Shops in the malls are closed. Some seven-eleven shops are open. 

MUSEUMS:

  • National Museum: CLOSED
  • House of Terror: CLOSED 
  • Museum of Fine Arts: OPEN
  • National Gallery: 10am-6pm
  • Rock Hospital Museum: 10am-6pm

PARLIAMENT: CLOSED

FREE TOURSAll tours go as normal.

BATHS:

  • Szechenyi Thermal Bath: 10:00am-10:00pm
  • Gellert: 6:00-8:00pm
  • Lukacs: 6:00am-10:00pm
  • Kiraly: 9:00am-9.00pm
  • Rudas: 6:00am-10:00pm

Zoo: 9am-3pm

Erkel Theater: 11am; 6pm- Nutcracker

CHURCHESChurches are open all day long.

Dohany street Grand Synagogue: 10am-6pm

PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION: Metro, buses and trams will operate as it was Sunday 

CHRISTMAS HABITSFamily members often travelling to another city or village to visit each other or spending this day at home with playing games, watching TV.

CHRISTMAS MENUFish soup (carp or catfish) with noodles and stuffed cabbage (sour cabbage) with minced pork. Beigli for dessert is essential 

GOOD TO KNOWStreets are busier than during the previous two days.

Dec.27th-30th

Most shops, bars, restaurants, theatres, sightseeing tours and tourist attractions operate as normal. House of Terror is OPEN. National Museum is closed on Dec.30th. Museum of Fine Arts  is open on Dec.26th-30th   

Dohany street Grand Synagogue: Dec.27th 10am-2.00pm , Dec.28th Closed, Dec.29th10.00-6.00pm, Dec.30th 10.00-8.00pm, 

All baths are open.

PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION: Metro, buses and trams will operate as it was school holidays (intervals of 10-20 min)

December 31st  Tuesday

SHOPSShops are open. Shopping Malls are open 10am-2pm. Shops in the malls are partly closed. Some seven-eleven shops will be open all day and all night long. 

MUSEUMS

  • National Museum: CLOSED
  • House of Terror: 10.00-3.00pm OPEN
  • Museum of Fine Arts: OPEN 10am-4pm ( Cashier is closing at 3.00pm)
  • National Gallery: OPEN 10am-4pm.
  • Rock Hospital Museum: CLOSED

PARLIAMENT: 8am-2pm

FREE TOURSAll free tours run are running as scheduled, except: Evening Walk and Pub tour

BATHSSzechenyi, Gellert, Rudas Lukacs baths are open 6am-6:00pm.  Kiraly bath is open from 9am-6pm

Zoo: 9am-12pm (noon)

Erkel Theater : 4.00pm The Bat ( JStrauss),   8.30pm- The Bat (J.Strauss) 

CHURCHESChurches are open all day long. Main service varies from church to church.

Dohany street Grand Synagogue: OPEN: 10am-8pm

PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION: All night buses are operating. Cogwheel railway is operating too! No Christmas tram today!

NEW YEAR’S EVE HABITSStreets are full with people before midnight. Street stalls on the streets of Budapest sell champagne, masks and noisy paper trumpets. Seniors are mainly watching TV or going to parties. We say “BUEK” (it means happy new year) at midnight and most of us sings the national anthem and greet each other.

NEW YEAR’S EVE MENUHaving lentil or bean dishes on New Year’s Eve makes you wealthy. Pork is considered a symbol of progress and prosperity so Hungarians eat mainly roast pork Avoid fish as it will swim away with your fortune. 

GOOD TO KNOWStreets are busy all day long. Peak time is 8pm-midnight. Concerts and theatres have early evening performances and shows. Restaurants, bars, clubs have extended opening hours and many have live bands playing. There are lots of parties for New Year’s Eve, so you definitely won’t be bored! There are plenty of programs to entertain you from free street parties to upscale balls and crazy clubs with local DJ’s. Tickets varies from 2000-4900 HUF. The biggest public event of the year is “Ügetőszilveszter” (don’t even try to pronounce) at Kincsem Park. A place to go for both trotting and flat racing. Avastly popular extraordinary trotting meeting that attracts all ages on the afternoon of New Year’s Eve. 

FREE STREET PARTIES:

“VÖRÖSMARTY TER” – live bands from different countries will perform.
“NYUGATI TER” (M3 metro line, tram 6, 4)- Hungarian pop-rock bands will entertain you there.
“OKTOGON TER” (M1 metro line, tram 6.4) all night disco with Hungarian DJ-s.

Hint: Bring warm clothes! Buy champagne in the shops before arrival. (3€)

January 1st Wednesday

SHOPSShops are closed. Shopping Malls are closed. Some seven-eleven shops will be open all day and all night long. 

MUSEUMS:

  • National Museum: CLOSED
  • House of Terror: CLOSED
  • Museum of Fine Arts: OPEN 12pm-6pm
  • National Gallery:12pm-6pm
  • Rock Hospital Museum: CLOSED

PARLIAMENT: CLOSED

FREE TOURSNo tours are running today.

BATHSAll baths are open from 10am until their regular opening hours.

Zoo: 9am-3pm

Erkel Theater: New Year Concert

CHURCHESChurches are open all day long. Main service varies from church to church.

Dohany street Grand Synagogue: OPEN: 10am-8.00pm

PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION: Metro,buses and trams will operate according to their Sunday schedule.

HABITS FOR TODAYNot much is happening usually today! We mainly sleep or go to the baths.

MENU FOR TODAYCabbage soup or hangover soup in the New Year morning. Roasted pig and cabbage is meant to bring good luck.

GOOD TO KNOWStreets are quiet.  Restaurants, bars, clubs have varied opening hours. 

2nd of January 

Most of the things and places are back to normal schedule, but the National Gallery and the Museum of fine arts are closed.

Weather

Since Budapest has a continental climate, the only advice we can give is expect low temperatures, dress for the weather! It starts to get dark at about 4.15pm.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to Everyone! In Hungarian: Boldog Karácsonyt és Új Évet! 😊