With spring slowly upon us, more and more people are keen to escape the city and get out into nature. For those who like a beautiful view with their hike, here are our five favourite lookout towers within easy reach of town.
Árpád Lookout Tower
For a short hike, Árpád Lookout Tower on Látó Hill is a good choice, the route direct and straightforward by following the blue signs. Upon first appearance, it might be the ruins of a
medieval fortress, built of stones and wood. Despite the forested surroundings, it provides a beautiful view as you reach the top from the winding path, the bridges of the
Danube, Gellért Hill and Rózsadomb spread out below. If you want more than 30-40 minutes in nature then you can start a longer hike from here, to Lion's Rock or, following the yellow signs, to the
top of Újlaki Hill. Bus 65/65A from Kolosy tér in Óbuda to Fenyőgyöngye then a 15min walk.
Bölcső Hill Lookout Tower
The Bölcső Hill Lookout Tower between Szentendre and Pomáz is a must-visit if you love taking in sweeping views and hills close to the city. A path leads up here from the popular Lajos spring hiking spot. If you are planning a slightly longer trip with uphill and downhill trails, streams and rocks, it’s better to start your hike from the Anna Valley. From the 588-metre-high Bölcső Hill, a wonderful circular panorama unfolds, and you can see the Buda Hills, the top of Hármashatár Hill, Dobogókő, the Pilis peak, the Prédikálószék lookout spot and even the Mátra hills. HÉV train from Batthyány tér to Szentendre then bus to Szentendre, dömörkapui elágazás.
Guckler Tower on Hármashatár Hill
and its surroundings are one of the most popular hiking destinations in
Budapest. It doesn’t only have special routes and nature trails, but also countless viewpoints for hikers who want to get away from the city. One of
these is the octagonal Károly Guckler Lookout Tower made of pine sticks, named
after the former forester of the capital, who
started to replant trees on Hármashatár Hill. From this observation point you can
see the city below, Gellért Hill, the Danube, the Pilis hills, Cserhát peaks
and the Mátra hills in the distance. Bus 65/65A from Kolosy tér in Óbuda to its other terminus at Szépvölgyi dűlő.
Lake Naplás Lookout Tower
For many years, Lake Naplás and surroundings were only known
by the residents of District XVI and XVII, who usually went there to relax
amid the romantic greenery, the streams and the fields, looking out for turtles and other wildlife. In
recent years, the area has undergone serious rehabilitation, which includes the
22-metre-high lookout tower. Designed by Robert Gutowski Architects, this pine-wood landmark blends in with the landscape while rising above the trees, allowing a full
panoramic view. It also has a rest spot and a barbecue area alongside. HÉV train line 9 from Örs vezér tere to Cinkota – line 8 to Mátyásföld alsó is slightly further away but more frequent.
Rákosszentmihály Lookout Tower
Usually, the Buda
side has all the hills with wonderful panoramas and lookouts, as compared with Pest's flat terrain, but this doesn’t mean that there
are no lookout points in Pest, they are just different.
In suburban Rákosszentmihály, this lookout spot offers
a very surprising view, because the area by Sashalom utca, Homokdomb utca and Rákóczi út looks much closer to the flatness of the Great Plain than to the
rising ranges of the Buda hills. At least that’s what you think at first, but, as you read on the info board in front of the tower, it tells you that
it’s 147 metres high, so actually you’re closer to the height of the Castle Hill. From
the 22-metre-high lookout tower, you can see the
city, Parliament, St Stephen's Basilica and Castle Hill itself, but the hilly range of Buda is also beautifully visible. HÉV train line 8/9 from Örs vezér tere to Sashalom then bus 92/92A to Budapesti út.