Pretty as the snow may be against the backdrop of Budapest’s iconic architecture, summer isn’t just a welcome arrival here – it’s the unofficial start of party season. As the city slips out of spring and into summer, expect a steady stream of festivities to take over the Hungarian capital. From tipples at the Buda Castle Beer Festival to music at the Sziget Festival, culture at the Danube Carnival to thrills at the Hungarian Grand Prix, these top festivals in Budapest are the best way to profit from the rays and the good vibrations.
What better way to begin the season of summer festivals in Budapest than with a celebration of Hungarian culture? Returning for its 20th year, the Danube Carnival will be held across open-air theatres, public squares, and other venues, and is set to comprise a music gala, carnival gala, a dance caravan and an international folk dance competition.
Held on Szabadság Square, this beer festival is all about appreciating a pint of the good stuff. Sample the best beers made in Hungary and from all over the world.
5th – 10th June 2019
There’s nothing like the sweet strains of live music to accompany those fresh, summer breezes. If basking in the sunshine listening to classical tunes (or jazz…or electronic…the list goes on…) sounds like your thing, now’s the time to book your ticket to the Budapest Summer Festival. Held across three different open-air venues, it’ll be on for most of the summer season.
In summer the days are longer, which is ideal if you’re planning on enjoying some Wagner – these are marathon performances, after all. Held at the Palace of Arts, Wagner in Budapest will feature the complete Ring Cycle, as well as the composer’s lesser-known work, The Flying Dutchman.
Four days of music, culture, good food and fun, this is a festival not to be missed. Locals and tourists come together to appreciate music in Hungary.
2nd – 5th June 2019
It isn’t summer in Budapest without daredevil pilots hurtling through the air above the Danube, as we always say. Luckily the popular Red Bull Air Race World Series will return to the city this year. Historically one of the most popular festivals in Budapest, the crowds are sure to flock to the riverbanks.
13th – 14th July 2019
If you’re the type who finds nothing as heart-stoppingly thrilling as the sound of dozens of engines gunning in unison, then there’s nowhere better to be than Budapest this August when the Hungarian Grand Prix comes to town. One of the highlight races in the annual F1 calendar, it’ll give locals the chance to see racing world greats compete live.
2nd – 4th August 2019
The proliferation of summer festivals in Budapest means there’s live music on tap all season long. One of the top draws for audiophiles, both local and visiting, is the Sziget Festival, which can rightly be considered Europe’s answer to Coachella thanks to its top-billed acts, upbeat crowds, artistic side programming and relentlessly bohemian vibe.