10 Things to Do in Budapest in April

During the month of April, the good weather calls to enjoy Easter, nature and culture in the Hungarian capital. Are you going to miss it?

Ana Caballero

Ana Caballero

12 min read

10 Things to Do in Budapest in April

Budapest | ©Keith Yahl

April is the month of spring par excellence and, although there are always plans to do in Budapest, the proposals to make during your trip are extended. The city seems to bloom at the same time as its cherry trees, one of the best spectacles of the city.

It is difficult to choose between all the activities, being able to combine more traditional events, such as the celebration of Easter or a visit to its museums, with other more modern and lively plans. Shall we start?

1. Visit the museums of Budapest at a reduced price during its Art Week

Budapest History Museum| ©attila greff
Budapest History Museum| ©attila greff

During the third week of April, approximately, takes place in Budapest its Art Week. Take advantage of this opportunity if you travel in those dates, because you can visit 50 cultural places, such as museums, at a lower price, because you can access all of them with the same ticket (from 17 € approximately).

Indeed, the best museums in Budapest lower the price of admission during the Art Week of the city. It is the perfect occasion to see them, although I warn you that like you many other people will want to do it, so buy tickets in advance and go in the hours of least crowded. In any case, here are some of my recommendations.

  • Museum of Fine Arts: The Szépmüvészeti Múzeum is one of the most visited. Its collection includes paintings by Picasso, Cézanne or El Greco. There are also several objects from Ancient Rome, Greece and especially Egyptian. In addition, it impresses with its neoclassical architecture.
  • Hungarian National Museum: In the Magyar Nemzeti Múzeum you can learn firsthand the history of Hungary since its birth until 1990. Although the building is beautiful on the outside, the most interesting thing is in its interior full of columns, marble sculptures and paintings on the walls and ceilings. However, its richness is in its collection.
  • Budapest History Museum: If you feel like learning about history, pay a visit to the Budapesti Történeti Múzeum located in the :::link|text=Buda Castle, which you can also visit with a guided tour|element=sc-157-2581:::. The tour is an experience in which you can see the subway ruins, recreations of traditional Hungarian houses and typical and everyday objects of their culture.
  • Pálinka Museum of Budapest: Located in the center of Budapest, this museum will immerse you in the tradition and history of the Hungarian fruit brandy. In addition, you will have the opportunity to taste this drink and learn the process of elaboration with a professional guide if you book a guided tour of the Pálinka Museum.

Book a guided tour to the Pálinka Museum

2. Relax in the spas of Budapest and take advantage of the good weather in April

Gellert Spa| ©Denis Barthel
Gellert Spa| ©Denis Barthel

If you have been in Budapest in winter you know that going to the spas is not always pleasant. Even if the water temperature stays warm in the pools, getting out of them and going for the towel leaves your body freezing. With the arrival of good weather and temperatures above 14º C, April is the perfect month to relax in one of the best spas in Budapest without being cold.

There is a reason why Budapest is, since 1934, the City of the Spas, and it has more than one hundred springs (artificial and natural) from which millions of liters of thermal waters flow every day. In short, a luxury that you can not miss during your trip. In addition, in April the outside temperature accompanies the water of the hot springs, which reaches 80ºC. There are many to choose from, but here I leave you my recommendations.

Széchenyi Spa

Book tickets for the Széchenyi Spa is a must. It is one of the largest in Europe, and it is not surprising considering that it has 15 pools. In addition, it is located in a neo-Gothic building that makes the visit even more incredible. In this space you can book a massage, play chess in the pool or simply relax in its thermal waters, always hot even when the cool of the night arrives in the city.

Beyond the dimensions of its facilities, the best thing about Széchenyi is its maintenance. Although it receives many visitors throughout the day, it is always clean. On the other hand, it is open almost all day long, from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. approximately, so you can make the most of your ticket. The value for money, approximately 37 € the day pass is unbeatable.

Other options are the Gellert Spa, one of the most famous and oldest in Budapest whose facilities are somewhat outdated and the entrance fee is 18 €; and the Rudas Spa, which the Ottomans built more than 450 years ago and is one of the most beautiful in the city, whose price is approximately 12 €, but since its inception has been a place open to men and, currently, women can only access on weekends.

Széchenyi Spa ticket reservation

3. Take a cruise on the Danube during the evenings in April

Buda Castle and a cruise| ©Dennis Jarvis
Buda Castle and a cruise| ©Dennis Jarvis

Booking a Danube cruise is always a good idea if you're in Budapest, but when the spring light arrives, the plan is even better. The good weather allows you to go out on deck to see in detail the buildings that are appearing before your eyes. If we add to this a guide to explain everything and a refreshment (or a glass of champagne), surely you have little doubt about whether to sign up for the plan or not.

The Danube has witnessed how Budapest has been growing and becoming the city it is today. During the itinerary, you will be able to see emblematic places such as the Parliament or the Matthias Church, as well as passing under famous bridges such as the Elizabeth, Margaret or Chain Bridges. You have several options available:

The panoramic views are incredible at any time of the day, but if you want to make the ride even more special, my advice is to book a night cruise on the Danube. Why? Because seeing the city lit up at night fall is magical. Also, if you don't mind paying more, you can also enjoy an area on board while you know Budapest from the waters of its river.

Book a cruise on the Danube

4. Take an excursion to the Godollo Palace to see its gardens in springtime

Palace and Gardens| ©Andrey Sulitskiy
Palace and Gardens| ©Andrey Sulitskiy

There's a place just thirty minutes from Budapest that you can't miss. Add to your list to book a guided visit to the Godollo Palace of Sisi, the second largest Baroque castle in the world, but it is especially famous for having been the residence of the Hungarian monarchy, including Sissi, the queen who aroused so much affection among her subjects. Beyond that, its spectacular gardens stand out, which in April, when the flowers are out, look even more beautiful.

Visiting the Gödöllo Palace is the best way to understand all that was the Hungarian Empire. Its main façade, with its walls, has been restored and is rich in history, as is its interior, which often houses temporary exhibitions. During the tour of its rooms you can understand how Sissi and her husband Franz Joseph lived, as well as learn some of the secrets of this Palace, which has often been compared to Versailles.

Before leaving, remember to reserve time to stroll through the 26 hectares of the park that surrounds it. Designed in the English style, it was declared a Nature Reserve in 1998. It is home to one of Sissi's favorite places for horseback riding: the Avenue of Almond Trees. Going as you are in April, you will be able to see their flowers and make this ride even more special.

Book a guided tour of the Gödöllo Palace of Sisi

5. Visit Szentendre in spring

Visiting Szentendre| ©Mariel D
Visiting Szentendre| ©Mariel D

Budapest is clearly a cosmopolitan city with a lot to offer, but if you want to escape the hustle and bustle, I recommend booking an excursion to Szentendre, just 20 minutes from the capital. It is a beautiful and picturesque town that you can reach by car or by boat.

Szentendre is a very international town, as during the Ottoman invasion in the 15th century it welcomed Greeks, Bosnians, Serbs... Today there are still businesses that serve food from these places, or even a Serbian church.

This village is one of the most beautiful in Hungary, which is perhaps why it was the destination of so many post-impressionist artists during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Its narrow and colorful streets, full of rococo style houses, are made to be walked in good spring weather. When you feel like taking a break, sit down for a drink on one of the terraces, which will be open in April.

Book an excursion to Szentendre

6. Inaugurate in April the best night parties in Budapest

At the Sparty| ©JJ Thompson
At the Sparty| ©JJ Thompson

April sees the start of the nightly pool parties. Every Saturday, the best electronic music, accompanied by a light and color show, sets the Sparty to the rhythm. This night party takes place at the Széchenyi Thermal Baths, which is filled with young people, electronic music and disco lights.

Along with booking a party tour of Budapest's ruin pubs, the Sparty is one of the many things to do at night in Budapest, which is why every year it attracts thousands of people. The party lasts about four hours and the atmosphere is spectacular, especially in the moments when the jugglers make their appearance. Fire, lights, DJs...

The original idea came from a group of friends who wanted to combine the tradition of Budapest with modern electronic music. Be careful, it is an event that, although it is held every week, has many followers, so I recommend buying tickets in advance if you do not want to miss this party.

Book a party tour of Budapest's ruin pubs

7. Commemorate the Memory of the Hungarian Victims of the Holocaust Memorial

Holocaust Memorial Center| ©Johan Bolhuis
Holocaust Memorial Center| ©Johan Bolhuis

During World War II more than half a million Hungarian Jews died. Every April 16 the city remembers them through solemn gatherings in schools and other public spaces. The main event usually takes place at the Holocaust Memorial Center in Budapest, where concerts are organized.

On April 16, 1944, ghettos began to be built in Hungary, from where Jews were later transferred to concentration camps. This fact is part of the history of the city, so I recommend you to get to know it a little more during the anniversary of this event. To do this, nothing like booking a guided tour of Budapest or, more specifically, a tour of the Jewish quarter of Budapest.

Book a guided tour of Budapest

8. Stroll among the cherry blossoms of Budapest

Cherry blossoms and Budapest in the background| ©Daniel Olah
Cherry blossoms and Budapest in the background| ©Daniel Olah

No, you don't have to go to Japan to see the spectacle of the cherry blossoms. Budapest in April is an equally wonderful destination to contemplate it, especially if you go to the Füvészkert Botanical Garden. In addition to the plants and flowers that remain all year round, during the cherry blossom season you can stroll among Japanese-inspired stalls, take an origami workshop or attend a calligraphy exhibition.

During this cherry blossom festival, you can see the delicate lilac hue of the blossoms, but there is much more.

In April, the Füvészkert Botanical Garden looks like something out of Japan. One of my favorite plans is to stroll around the different stalls, look at the incredible origami figures and then sit on the lawn for a picnic or have a nice green tea accompanied by typical Japanese pastries. If you want something more lively, you can always try your hand at being a samurai and learn to shoot the kyudo bow.

9. Experience the beginning of spring at Budapest Spring Festival

Spring Festival| ©Pedro Orrego
Spring Festival| ©Pedro Orrego

Is there anything better than welcoming spring? Yes, in Budapest. The most colorful season of the year arrives all over the world, that is clear, but in Budapest it is celebrated as an event because they organize the Spring Festival, in which art blooms at the same time as spring thanks to the exhibitions, events and activities that take place during the first days of April.

The artistic world is the main protagonist and there are several plans that you can do. In total, about 200 events spread over 60 stages. The shows appeal to everyone, ranging from ballet and opera to jazz and folklore. In addition, they are usually organized outdoors. The price depends on the specific show, but the average is that each one costs 13 € approximately; they can be purchased through their website once the full program is announced.

Although you can find a little bit of everything, my advice is to go to the more traditional shows, where Hungarian folklore is the main protagonist. Of course, listening to a good classical music concert is always a great plan, but since you are in the capital of Hungary, I recommend you to discover its culture and talents in spring.

10. Celebrate Easter according to Budapest's traditions

The Easter Fair| ©Albert Lugosi
The Easter Fair| ©Albert Lugosi

Easter in Budapest is a big event in the month of April, so you should take note of the plans to do. The best thing is that you can enjoy traditional events, such as Easter eggs, in a unique setting. In addition to participating in other events, such as the great market that is organized every year.

The Easter Fair

It is never a bad time to go to the Vörösmarty square, where a handicraft market is organized every April. In each hut you can discover the creations of local artists and, if you want, buy something to take a nice (and unique) souvenir of your trip to Budapest. If you feel like bringing out your creative side, you can sign up for a workshop and make a piece by yourself.

The most typical pieces of this market are undoubtedly the Easter eggs. Painting them is part of the Hungarian tradition, as they symbolize eternal life. Nowadays, different styles and colors are mixed, resulting in beautiful pieces.

Easter food

Both at the Easter market and in the restaurants of Budapest, you will notice that they serve many casseroles, as they are traditional at Easter time. Above all, it is typical to eat langos, a cake made from potato and with cheese, garlic and sour cream.

Undoubtedly the most delicious are the desserts, among which stand out the marzipans, gingerbread and Kürtőskalács, a baked and very sweet cake. To accompany so much food, nothing like a wine or a craft beer. If you don't want to miss anything and savor the best of traditional food, I recommend booking a gastronomic tour of Budapest.

Hollókő tradition

Just an hour away from Budapest is Hollókő, a village where a very traditional and unique Hungarian Easter event takes place. Men and boys here engage in throwing buckets of cold water on women and girls. This pagan rite was related to fertility, hence it was the male suitors who sprinkled water on young girls of marriageable age and having babies. Nowadays it does not have this meaning of courtship, but it has been kept as a celebration.

It is a somewhat chaotic celebration and you can end up wet, but it is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, so I recommend you to make an excursion from Budapest to witness it.


The weather in Budapest in April

Spring in Budapest| ©teofilo
Spring in Budapest| ©teofilo

There are numerous things to see and do in Budapest throughout the year, but you are right to go in April. Spring has not only arrived, it has settled in, so temperatures reach 18°C and, in contrast, rainfall forecasts fall just three days away. Generally, the minimum temperature is 11ºC, so take some warm clothes for the evenings, which is when it cools down.

The weather is a bit dry, but it's nice to be able to enjoy the outdoors, take a bike tour of Budapest and not feel like the day ends at 5 p.m., as it does in the winter months. By contrast, in April, there are more than thirteen hours of daylight a day.

Book a bike tour

Budapest's tourist flow in April

Touring Budapest| ©pfatterüberalles
Touring Budapest| ©pfatterüberalles

Although the high season in Budapest arrives in summer, April is a month with a lot of tourists. Why? You can tell that the good weather has arrived and, in addition, this month coincides with important dates, such as the Easter vacations, which attract many visitors.

What does this mean? That it is better to book your hotel and flights in advance, as well as tickets for museums or excursions you want to do. On the other hand, keep in mind that prices will be somewhat higher, but not to the extent that they reach during the summer months.

Do you have everything ready to travel to Budapest in April? I hope my tips will serve you as a guide and enjoy the most.

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