travelandhome logo

Esztergom: Hungary's Other Hidden Gem!

Known by alternative names Gran (German), Ostrihom (Slovak), it’s another gem on the river Danube! Esztergom sits in Komárom-Esztergom county, on the border with Slovakia.

Esztergom Hungary Limit Bridge Sturovo hungary travelandhome travelbuddies

What it’s known for

  • Happy times!! According to the 2018 Happiness Map, Komárom-Esztergom County is one of the happiest counties in Hungary.
  • Saint Stephen, the first king of Hungary, was born and also crowned in Esztergom.

Getting there

Esztergom is about an hour’s drive by car (via route 10) from Budapest. Thus a perfect staycation to explore.

Below you’ll find a Google Map link giving you transportation options via car or train.

Directions.

Check the weather before you go.

Esztergom St Stephen Baptism Hungary travelandhome travelbuddies

Things to do in Esztergom

Esztergom Cornice Bridge Basilica Cathedral Castle

1. Esztergom's Grand Basilica

The main attraction in Esztergom is definitely its grand basilica! It’s called the Esztergom Basilica, and it’s one of the largest churches in Europe. This place is seriously impressive.

The basilica is like a giant masterpiece of architecture, and it’s perched up on a hill overlooking the Danube River. You can’t miss it, and when you see it, you’ll be like, “Wow!” It’s not just big; it’s beautiful too, with all those intricate details and stunning interior.

Inside, you’ll find all kinds of artwork, including beautiful frescoes, statues, and a really old crypt. The views from the basilica are fantastic because you can see the river, Slovakia on the other side, and the rolling hills of Hungary. It’s like a postcard come to life!

Apart from the basilica, Esztergom also has some other cool stuff to check out. There’s the Christian Museum, which is in the castle, and it has all sorts of historical and religious artifacts. And if you like history, you can also explore the Esztergom Castle, which is right nearby.

When you visit Esztergom, the basilica is the star of the show, but there’s much more to discover when it comes to interesting places in this lovely Hungarian town.

Esztergom At Night Mountain Lights Castle Basilica
Statue Holy Trinity Esztergom

2. The Christian Museum

Apart from the basilica, Esztergom also has some other cool stuff to check out. There’s the Christian Museum, which is in the castle, and it has all sorts of historical and religious artifacts.

3. Esztergom Castle

And if you like history, you can also explore the Esztergom Castle, which is right nearby. 

4. St Stephen Square

Meander around the beautiful Saint Stephen Square that lies on the castle hill, next to the Basilica.

5. Széchenyi Square

This is the main square of the city that had been a market square featuring stone sculptures, a fountain, restaurants, and bars.

6. Statue of King Saint Stephen

The Statue of King Saint Stephen is surrounded by a mesmerizing view, day and night.  You can easily spot it in Széchenyi Square, as it’s a prominent and historically significant monument dedicated to Hungary’s first king, Saint Stephen.

7. Valeria Maria Bridge

Walk the Valeria Maria Bridge (constructed in 1895) that connects Esztergom with the Slovakian Párkány. You may as well stop for some refreshments at one of the adjacent restaurants or do souvenir shopping while the kids enjoy themselves on the playgrounds.

8. Lake Palatinus

Picnic at Lake Palatinus, between Dorog and Esztergom. Known as one of Hungary’s lakes with the clearest waters, Palatinus Tófürdő has a beach on the shallow part. Walking and biking are also very popular at this artificial lake, fostered only by groundwater. 

9. Aqua Island

Aquasziget (Aqua Island) is a large modern bath complex with 5 indoor and 5 outdoor (open from May to August) baths. It caters to the entire family. Namely, a wellness area with infra saunas, the health and beauty area, and the amusement area with water equipment, caves, and slides. A terrarium, an open-view kitchen, a small lake, and a pub kind of completes the setting. The best is to go have a look for yourself! It’s well worth a visit and relaxing here for a few hours.

10. Mala-spring tunnel

Another must-do is the Mala-forrásalagút (Mala-spring tunnel), a 470-meter-long 3-4 meters deep tunnel that runs underneath the city. It is open to visitors. Now a tourist attraction, it was originally constructed to channel the former lake’s water away.

  • From the middle of June until the end of August, you can see shows at the Esztergom Castle Theatre (next to the basilica), constructed in 1962.

Entertainment

From the middle of June until the end of August, you can see shows at the Esztergom Castle Theatre (next to the basilica), constructed in 1962.

Find a tour 

The ‘Travel and Home’ tour of choice is the Full Day Danube Bend tour. The tour includes sightseeing in both Szentendre and Esztergom.  Thus two for the price of one! I like that the tour is not rushed and slightly longer than the average day tour from Budapest.

Esztergom Danube River Autumn Mood
Autumn in Esztergom

Find Accommodation in Esztergom nearest to the town center

Our accommodation picks are conveniently located, i.e. less than 1 km from the town center.

Airport nearest to Esztergom

The bustling Budapest Ferenc Liszt International Airport (BUD) offers convenient access to both the excitement of the city and the charm of the countryside.

Suggested Read

If you're interested in embarking on a memorable adventure to Hungary, don't miss this! Unlock the secrets of Hungary and get essential tips and tricks for a memorable trip.

Click Here

In conclusion, Esztergom is a town that blends history, culture, and breathtaking architecture in a way that’s both awe-inspiring and educational. The Esztergom Basilica, with its grandeur and panoramic views, stands as the town’s crowning jewel, drawing visitors from near and far. But beyond the basilica, the rich history and the quaint charm of Esztergom, complete with its castle and museums, make it a destination that leaves a lasting impression. So, if you ever find yourself in Hungary, don’t forget to pay a visit to this remarkable town, where history comes alive amidst stunning landscapes and captivating stories.

Travel Tip(s)

Roll your clothes instead of folding them to save space in your luggage. This also helps prevent wrinkles and makes it easier to find specific items.

Use leak-proof sleeves for your toiletries to prevent spills in your luggage. Keep things tidy and hassle-free!

Explore our curated collection now for fantastic finds and exclusive deals!

Travel Tip(s)

Look for free cancellation options: Some hotels offer free cancellation up until a certain date. Booking accommodations with free cancellation can provide flexibility in case your plans change.

Check the map view: Booking.com has a map view feature that shows the location of hotels. This can help you identify accommodations in areas that are both desirable and affordable.

Travel Tip(s)

Szentendre, Visegrád, Esztergom, and Komárom add up to a car drive of around 2h40m, subject to traffic conditions. We recommend each destination as a day trip or hop on a river cruise and hop off as you wish.