The capital city of Hingary, Budapest is a wonderful travel destination with great food, entertaining nightlife and a rich history and culture. It also has some fantastic photography opportunities and even if you're only visiting for a couple of days, there are some great spots to go and get some quality images.
Below is a list of some great spots to take photos in Budapest along with their Google Maps pins.
This is without doubt my favourite location in Budapest for photography. Whether you're interested in landscape view, architecture, lifestyle, portrait.......this is a wonderful place to spend a sunrise of sunset.
Be aware that from mid-morning for the rest of the day, it becomes very busy and the "popular" spots will be crowded with tourists looking to get their own photos. I definitely recommend allowing for at least 1 sunrise at Fisherman's Bastion. Overlooking the Danube from the West or Buda side of Budapest, Fisherman's Bastion is a fort structure with a stunning facade, towers and backed by Matthius Church.
There are a number of great photography spots all around the location and depending on the light direction you can create some wonderful compositions.
Some of the archways create wonderful frames for the view over the Danube to the Pest side of the city.
You can access the towers, however you need to pay a small fee (approx USD3) and this can only be done after the offical opening time. Most other areas you are able to walk around.
There is a great spot on the North of Fishermans Bastion that overlooks the Danube and Parliament Building with a winding road in the foreground. It is great if you have someone to stand in the road to add a human element.
There is a starbucks cafe on the north-west side of Fisherman's Bastion and several other cafes within a very short walk. I strongly recommend Franziska which is a short walk back towards the Danube and has amazing breakfast and coffee!
One of the most significant buildings in Budapest and also one of the most photographed. Wonderful neo-classical design and ornate facade. From the street it is an impressive building, but there actually aren't a lot of great spots from which to photograph the building from. There is a street directly west of the Basilica heading towards the river that has a nice view, especially for street photography. There is also a nice statue there for a unique shot.
The inside of the Basilica is really beautiful, although can become quite busy also. It is possible to climb to the top of the tower and the staircase narthex top has a unique spiral view if you look down from above that makes a neat photo opportunity. From the top of the tower, you get a wonderful 360 degree view of Budapest. I really liked the view looking west to the river over the square below. It is a great spot for a time-lapse of the crowd below.
3. Pest Banks of The Danube:
Budapest i actually 2 cities that sit either side of the Danube River - Buda on the West and Pest on the East. Whilst Fishermans Bastion is on the Buda side of the river, I found the walk along the Pest bank to be more interesting for photography.
The Parliament building itself is a neat structure to photograph from different angles and there is a tram track to the south that curves around with the Parliament in the background.
The "Shoes on the Danube" memorial is a sad, but beautiful tribute to the many people who lost their lives at the spot during WWII. The brass cultures that were created as replicas of the shoes left behind on the banks are an eery reminder of what occurred.
The Atilla Jozsef statue is a nice spot for some composition photography, with the Parliament building in the background.
A wonderful view of Fishermans Bastion & Matthius Church from the Pest bank in around the Parliament and just to the North. There is easy access and no issue setting up a tripod. This spot is great for a nice sunset or the setting moon if the phases are right. Check photocells to see where the sun will set or moon will rise relative to the spire of Matthius Church.
This spot is a really iconic view of Budapest - directly opposite the Parliament Building from the west or Buda side of the Danube.
It is a great spot for sunrise with the golden hour colours behind the parliament and then the sun coming up over the building. If you get a great sunset in Budapest, this would be a perfect spot (or Fisherman's Bastion of course). The lights of the Parliament stay on overnight, so you can get a great blue hour shot if you reach there early enough in the morning. You will get a singular view in the evening with the lights on, but there is a lot more boat traffic on the river in the evening, making it more difficult to get a clean long exposure shot. Access is very easy and no issue setting up your tripod.
There is a large ledge between this spot and the road which can create some nice lifestyle compositions.
It isn't easy to find new or unique ways to photograph this location unless you get great weather conditions. But it is definitely one for the Budapest portfolio.
Unfortunately the Chain Bridge was being restored when I visited Budapest and was not accessible at all - it has a great view of the Danube and Pest side, as well as making a great photograph of the bridge itself. It is definitely worth checking on the restoration if you visit.
Instead I photographed from Margit Bridge at sunset and it had a nice view towards a front-lit Parliament building. The view of Fishermans Bastion is not as nice as the view from the Pest banks.
The bridge does vibrate a little with traffic and is quite busy. You will need a very tall tripod or to rest your tripod up on the concrete sides (consider taking a tether cord with you).
Another of the most frequented tourist spots in Budapest and this square becomes very busy during the day with people coming to visit the monuments and statues.
The square itself is quite nice for a wide angle shot or time-lapse of the busy crowd.
The main central statue of the Arch Angel Gabriel is also beautiful to capture in detail with a zoom lens. Standing at the West end of the square, the flight path for planes coming in to land at the airport has them passing directly behind this statue, so if you have patience and a long lens you can capture some compression shots.
A beautiful hotel on a busy intersection on the pest side of Budapest. i had seen some images taken of this location from an elevated spot that were amazing and after much searching they appear to have been taken from a drone as there is no possible balcony or rooftop to access that could get this view.
Instead, I decided to shoot from the street and use the intersection and car light trails as part of the composition.
Other people have also used the beautiful architecture as a background for lifestyle shots.
I always love visiting local markets in any city I visit - they are the best window into a destination culture & people. They are usually a fantastic street photography opportunity and the more authentic, the better the images.
The Central Market in Budapest is a nice walk around, but for me the most intersecting was the architecture - with the beautiful high ceiling and large windows. There are so many different places to take images, but I loved the simplicity of the view straight down the middle of the hall. This made for a wonderful time-lapse too with the people moving between stores.
A really beautiful castle on the Pest side of the city, close to Heroes Square. There is a spot to the right of the front of the castle where you can get a nice view of the building and the bridge. The water is pumped into the moat close to this spot and the movement can create a swirling effect of the leaves in long exposure shots which is really nice.
You can walk around and explore (there is a weekend market) and there are some other inserting compositions through the grounds.
This is a nice place to visit for a relaxing thermal bath and also popular for Instagrammers. I didn't take my mirrorless camera and just took images with iPhone which was enough. There are some wonderful neo-baroque architecture to the buildings and I love the yellow & blue colours with the water. You can walk upstairs of the buildings and around the outside balconies of the 2nd floor to get some nice photos. It gets quite busy within a couple of hours of opening, so you will inevitably have lots of people in your frame.
I feel its worth going to and taking photos on your mobile.
Metropolitan Ervin Szabo Library: There is one staircase at they library that has become popular for Instagrammers - really nice unique wooden spiral staircase. pin
Ruin Bars: Wonderful places to visit and great nightlife. Make for some unique lifestyle/Instagram photo opportunities. pin
Gellert Hill & Citadel: Has some nice views back over the Danube to Parliament building etc. Good broad view but not as interesting as views from Fisherman's Bastion or other locations. pin
Buda Castle: More of a historical building to visit as part of your trip to Budapest. I didn't find it as interesting as Fisherman's Bastion for photography. pin
Furnicular: Interesting way to get from the river up to Buda Castle and has views back over the river. pin
Chain Bridge: This bridge over the Danube was undergoing significant restoration when I visited. Check for updates on this situation. pin
Dohany Street Synagogue: Really interesting building to visit from a historical perspective and some beautiful interior architecture. pin
New York Cafe: When we went it was quite crowded and the food very overrated. It is an Instagram type location, but overall not too interesting for photography. pin
Im certain there are many other wonderful places to photograph in Budapest. Please leave a comment below with your favourite spots.
I flew direct to Budapest from Dubai on flydubai
I stayed in Buda at an AirBNB and in Pest at Hotel Moments Budapest.
Related articles: Budapest - Top 6 Places To Visit
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