The most popular day-trip destination from Budapest, by boat, bike, HÉV train, bus or car, Szentendre offers contemporary galleries, historic churches and waterfront strolls. Here are the best ten things to do once you arrive at the harbour or station.
Admire Belgrade Cathedral
Serbs, Greeks, Dalmatians and others fleeing the Turks from the late 1600s onwards settled in Szentendre, building beautiful Orthodox churches such as focal Belgrade Cathedral on Kigyó utca. Admission to see its glittering icons here and adjacent Church Art Museum is 700 HUF but visitors can get a sense of the past with a walk around the pretty surrounding greenery and old gravestones engraved in Cyrillic.
Chow down at TeddyBeer
Don’t be put off by the silly name – here you’ll find 100 types of beers, 22 on tap, tremendous hamburgers, barbecue specialities and occasional house parties, all an easy stagger from Szentendre’s main square. The house slow-cooked Oriental pork burger with cheddar cheese is a winner.
Péter Pál utca 2. More details here.
Dine at Mjam
This modern restaurant in the heart of Szentendre deals in quality ethnic cuisine, mainly but not exclusively from the Caribbean, such as seafood curries and classic Thai soups. Regular menu changes ensure variety.
Városház tér 2. More details here.
Head out to Skanzen
A concept created in Skanzen, Sweden in the 1890s, this kind of open-air museum portrays traditional ways of life in their appropriate surroundings. In this case, the village and farming communities of various Hungarian regions such as the Upper Tisza, Southern Transdanubia and the Bakony-Balaton Uplands, among others. If this sounds rather fusty, it’s not. Kids can work in a vintage grocery store, play Habsburg-era games and watch a puppet theatre. A narrow-gauge train links the various sites most days of the week. To reach this out-of-town attraction, take hourly bus 878 from Szentendre HÉV/bus station – allow 25min.
Open Mar-Nov. Sztaravodai út 75. More details here.
Indulge at Sweet Dreams Cukrászda
Opened in 2017, Sweet Dreams combines exciting cake design with great flavours combine in one funky spot. Desserts contain only natural ingredients, no stabilisers, the fruit content is fruity, and the selection changes constantly. Breakfasts are a work of art: note the banana-and-oatflake Greek yoghurt, layered with raspberries, honey and poppyseed.
Paprikabíró utca 19. More details here.
See the new show at Művészet Malom
Conceived by painters Dezső Korniss and Pál Deim, who decide to transform this former saw mill into a modern-day artists’ centre, this atmospheric communal space has been displaying contemporary art for nearly 20 years. From today, 29 March, a seasonal exhibition entitled Public Private Affairs showcases more than 200 works from 30 private collections, all garnered in the 1990s.
Bogdanyi utca 32. More details here.
Spend time at the Retro Design Centre
See how locals lived 40 years ago at this unique museum, large enough to house cars, motorbikes and a whole flat filled with the furniture and kitchen appliances of the day. The authentic advertising alone is worth the 1,500-forint admission. Located just outside the town centre, tucked in from the waterfront.
Rév utca 4. More details here.
Stroll the Danube waterfront
A short walk down from the town’s historic centre, the Danube waterfront is lined with year-round terrace restaurants and summer-only venues such as popular alfresco spot Kacsakő, where regulars and their families relax in deckchairs and occasional live music breaks out.
Take in the Ferenczy Museum Centre
Established in 1951, relocated to this prominent 18th-century mansion in 2013, the Ferenczy Museum expanded its exhibition space and its remit three years later. Today covering all kinds of painting, graphic art, sculpture and metalwork created by Szentendre artists, this should be your first port of call if you want a broader picture of how the art scene developed here. As well as permanent displays, such as the one about influential artists’ group The Eight, regular temporary exhibitions showcase key local figures, one recent example being early 20th-century painter Lajos Vajda.
Kossuth Lajos utca 5. More details here.
Visit the Czóbel Múzeum
This refurbished space is dedicated to Béla Czóbel, whose influential Post-Impressionist works of the early 1900s led him to being named an honorary citizen of Szentendre. As well as the permanent collection, temporary exhibitions also focus on different aspects of this prolific artist, such as the Expressionism showcased in Czóbel Reconsidered 3.0 running until 7 April, followed by Wanted, presenting his lost works.
Templom tér 1. More details here.