On top of the world
by Lucas Aresin
The city's diverse architecture and landscape can also be enjoyed from above with a drink in your hand or as a gorgeous backdrop during brunch. Which one will you choose?
If you're looking for a view, look no further! Every single degree of those eponymous 360 is worth its own picture. 360 Bar is the highest rooftop terrace of the city, and its central location gives you an absolutely stunning view of Buda Castle, the Citadel, and the Basilica, while the rest of the city's rooftops open up in front of you like a vast urban ocean. Once your eyes have stilled their appetite, take a seat at one of the tables or on one of the beanies, and enjoy a cocktail, a pálinka, or a beer. If you want to feel like a part of the high society, let your night come full circle up here.
Brklyn (Rooftop bar is closed, the club is open)
If a plane ticket straight to New York is too expensive, Brklyn can be a good alternative. BRKLYN is a club on multiple stories, with a rooftop terrace on top. It's not the biggest of our rooftop bar examples, but it certainly is one of the coziest. Its modern look'n'feel lends itself to Budapest's hip artsy scene, and for the hungry traveler it offers a hearty collection of barbequed goodness and sandwiches. If you want to chill out to good food and music after a long day in the city, or if you're into modern art, this is your haven.
Gozsdu Sky Bar (CLOSED)
Gozsdu Sky Bar has two roofs for the price of one. While this is a rooftop bar, it's also covered with a glass igloo to protect the party from every kind of weather. As a treat on top, this venue is open every day of the week, just waiting to become your new Monday afternoon destination. Regardless of if you're just out for a coffee and dinner in a unique location or looking for an all-out-party, Gozsdu delivers a highly varied program. At the end of the week, you'll have your typical party night with electronic dance music and live performers, but the days before bring you everything from readings to concerts, or even fashion shows.
Liebling is a beautiful little establishment in the party district, and we would consider this your personal hide-out. If the vibrant party-nightlife becomes overwhelming, simply climb up the little spiral staircase and cozy up! In the warm nights, the rooftop terrace atop an equally cozy indoor bar is open and offers a wide selection of wine and food. This place truly feels like you've been invited to a friends' balcony. If you're interested in a wine tasting among historical, rustic buildings of downtown Budapest, visit Liebling!
Leo Rooftop Budapest
The newest addition to the rooftop bars of Budapest sits on top of Hotel Clark on the Buda side. The lions of the Chain bridge inspired the bar to be named Leo. Roarrrrr!
It doesn't matter where you are sitting, from here you can marvel at the Chain bridge, Basilica, Parliament and the Castle, too. Should you get hungry in the jungle-themed bar, have no fear: you can have lunch and dinner here, they open at noon and close at midnight. You'll find the entrance at Fő utca and best views on top.
Rudas Rooftop Jacuzzi
After you've thoroughly bathed yourself in city life, treat yourself to true relaxation. Rudas historical thermal bath, which was established in the 16th century, offers pools and a sauna, but let's be honest, you're here for the large, open-air rooftop Jacuzzi. Boil the stress away in 36°C water while enjoying an unparalleled panorama of the river Danube. Afterwards, try out the Turkish-Hungarian fusion cuisine offered downstairs. If you want to hang out on a rooftop, but you prefer a relaxing bath over buzzing nightlife, do things a little differently and submerge yourself in this beautiful view of the city's riverside.
Intermezzo Roof Terrace
So you want to feel like a president yourself? Do you want to watch over the city from high above? Try Hotel President. Yes, we could write paragraphs upon paragraphs about this elegant hotel in the middle of the city but in truth, we're just here for the roof. On the terrace, you enjoy a stunning vista of the hills surrounding Budapest, as well as the rooftops of the capital itself, including of course the majestic Parliament dome. If the view itself is not enough to still your appetite, taste the actual food, which is highly recommended. From burgers to fish to baked delights to cold drinks – you won't be disappointed.
High Note Sky Bar
Ending the night on a high note is also possible in the High Note Sky Bar at the Aria Hotel Budapest. And before you come at us for this terribly obvious pun, instead lose yourself in the beautifully landscaped rooftop and its plants, colorful sun chairs, and sofas, and order one of the impressively vibrant looking cocktails.
The SkyBar is of rectangular shape and surrounds the interior of the hotel itself. If you stand at the outer edge, you're in for a magnificent view of the close St. Stephen's Basilica. If you stand on the inner edge, you can look down on the glass roof of the interior ground floor. But that's just to kill the time, if you're up here, you want to try the food and sunbathe a little before the beautiful sundown bathes this particular rooftop bar in warm, romantic light.
You'll find this rooftop bar situated downtown - close to the sights but still away from the hustle and bustle of the city - on top of boutique hotel Toprum. The Great Market hall is just a stone's throw away, the shopping street as well. Liberty bridge is within walking distance, bars by the river, too. Egyetem square boasts many great restaurants, nearby Károlyi garden feels like an oasis in Pest.. but if you'd like to check the amazing panorama regardless from the weather, book a table by the window and give in to the laid-back atmosphere. It's open from 12pm-11pm Wed-Sun during the summer for sure but check out their facebook page to see more photos and details. If you're into brunch, come between noon and 5pm. Live music makes for a chill afternoon between 1-3pm.
Rooftop Terrace on Fisherman's Bastion
Skyscrapers and tall hotel roofs are great – don't get us wrong here, but there's a special something we feel like it needs to be included on this list. The Fisherman's Bastion is located on castle hill, and the view you'll enjoy from here is unlike any establishment downtown can give you. Yes, it's on the Buda side, but seeing the Danube curving through the city panorama that stretches from horizon to horizon is more than worth it. The affordable menu offers a neat, but broad selection that covers food from Hungarian goulash soup over Caesar salad and burgers, to cherry pie with ice cream. The drinks menu is large and similarly broad. You have to be quite creative to come up with a drink they don't serve. Due to its fantastic location, the Fisherman's bastion is sought after quite a lot, so be sure to book in advance!
Roof Garden & Pool
Sometimes even great food and sundown isn't enough. Don't feel guilty – it's natural! So if you want to dive deeper into the world of relaxation, try the roof garden of the Continental Hotel Budapest. Located in the middle of Pest, you'll find a pool with clear, cold water, as well as Saunas, a Jacuzzi, and a gym hidden away above the busy streets of the city. Up here, you can sit back in your designer-sun-chair and let the sun work on your tan. You will get your own towel, as well as shower gel and shampoo upon request (just ask the helpful ladies and gents at the reception). And on top of that, you'll, of course, get a great panoramic view, which comes with every rooftop bar and restaurant. So if you're on the lookout for a true, little oasis, Continental Hotel Budapest is your place to be. Only be aware that this rooftop is for small groups. There is not too much space, and you might have to wait.
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