54 years in the making

St. Stephen’s Basilica, Budapest is the largest church in Hungary. It’s named after the first King of Hungary, whose mummified right hand is kept in a glass case in the chapel. Not one for the squeamish perhaps.

The history of St. Stephen’s Basilica

The building of the basilica was troublesome to say the least. It began in 1851 and the first architect died midway through. The dome then collapsed in 1868, followed shortly afterwards by the death of the second architect. A third architect took over the job (rather nervously) and oversaw completion in 1905.

For some wonderful, panoramic views of Budapest why not walk up the 364 steps (or take the elevator) to the dome's observation deck? Or simply marvel at the beautiful interior, decorated by famous artists of the era.

Sit back and enjoy the ride

St. Stephen’s Basilica is on the route of our Budapest city bus tour. If you don't fancy jumping off at the church you can stay on board and find out more from our fun and informative commentary.

Other interesting facts about St. Stephen’s Basilica, Budapest

  • St. Stephen’s Basilica can hold up to 8,500 people
  • In architectural terms St. Stephen’s Basilica is actually a cathedral
  • It’s the same height as the Parliament building, symbolising the balance between church and state in Hungary
  • St. Stephen's Basilica is so sturdy that important documents and artworks were stored in it during World War II