The beautiful castle-like structure on top of the cca. 70 meters tall Castle hill that can be seen from the Pest side of the city as well is the Fisherman’s Bastion (Halászbástya in Hungarian). The Castle district is famous for having baroque and neo-classical houses, churches and public buildings. Getting up to the top of the hill is easy: one can do it either by foot, public transportation (bus number 16) or by the Castle Hill Funicular. The Castle district has been a UNESCO World Heritage site since 1987.
The Fisherman’s Bastion is a lookout terrace built in neo-Gothic and neo-Romanesque style, designed by a great Hungarian architect, Frigyes Schulek, who planned many buildings in Budapest. It was constructed between 1895 and 1902. 1896 was an important date in Hungary and there were a lot of buildings constructed in the city for the celebrations: we celebrated the 1000th anniversary of the land-taking of the Hungarian (Magyar) tribes in the Carpathian-basin. There were seven tribes that arrived from Asia, the Ural Mountains and settled down in the middle of Europe in 896. The seven towers of the Fisherman’s Bastion symbolise these seven tribes.
The Fisherman’s Bastion never had any defensive role, it serves as a nice background for the Matthias Church and from the balconies of the structure everyone can enjoy a beautiful view of the Pest side of the city, especially the Parliament. It was named after the fishermen who used to defend this part of the castle wall in the Middle Ages. Also, under the Bastion there used to be the town of the fishermen, if you walk around the area nowadays, you can still find many streets named after types of fishes or things in connection with fishing. The Bastion suffered many damages during the second World War, and since it was already one of the main attractions of Budapest, they prioritized the renovation of it. In front of the Bastion and next to the Matthias Church you can find the equestrian statue of Saint Stephen (Szent István), the first king of Hungary who ruled the country between 1000 or 1001 and 1038. On the other side of the church you can also see one of the two 5-star Hilton hotels of Budapest. The hotel was built on the site of a 13th century Dominican monastery courtyard, some parts of it can be still seen inside of the hotel.