Budapest

Visiting Budapest In May – The Definitive Guide

The amalgamation of seemingly opposite yet interconnected towns Buda and Pest, Budapest is magical in its truest sense. Whether the abundance of water baths that date way back to the 16th century or the enriched history of the city, the unique Danube bend or the tongue-tangling Hungarian cuisines, the City of Baths is undoubtedly magnificently magical. Especially in May, when the spring sun washes the city and reflects on the clear Danube water, the city is a delight. Here is our special guide for Budapest in May and all its wonders.

What makes Budapest in May special?


Budapest in May

  • Time and money effectiveness - One of the perks of visiting Budapest in May, is that it is the off-season. For one you can experience almost all attractions without the hassle of long queues and reservations at popular restaurants could be easily made. In addition, hotel rooms and flights are slightly less expensive than the summer season.
  • The liveliness - Budapest is on a full celebration mode during May as various annual events such as Budapest 100, Rosalia - Rosé Festival and Budapest Beer Festival among others are organized. You can experience the history, culture, Hungarian cuisine, wine, and beer through these events
  • Beautiful Weather - May is often nice and sunny during the day and slightly cooler in the night, making for one of the best months to walk around. The increase in temperature across the month is offset by rains, which instead of hindering your plans, further enhances the beauty of Budapest.

Budapest Weather in May


While summer heat makes a prominent appearance in May, frequent rainfall allows you to enjoy a moderate temperature. The average daily temperature goes up to 16°C, the day time average high is of 21°C with an average drop to 11°C at night. Budapest in May experience over 12 hours of sunshine and about 70 mm of rainfall on an average.

barcelona in march - weather

Budapest in May : Things to do


1

Budapest Parliament

Budapest in May


Standing atop the banks of the Danube, the iconic Hungarian Parliament boast grandeur in both its exterior and interior. The largest and tallest building of Hungary offers you plenty of wonderments from Hungarian Coronation Regalia to gorgeous glass painting by Miksa Róth. This Neo-Gothic inspired structure is best explored with a guided tour.

May Timings
Daily: 8:00 AM – 4:00 PM, Closed on 1 May(Labour Day)

Location

Budapest, Kossuth Lajos tér 1-3, 1055
Hungary
Getting There ›

2

Gellért Spa

Budapest in May


The magnificent Art-Nouveau style Gellért Spa, located within the Hotel Gellért is amongst the most popular baths of the ‘Spa City,’ While the thermal spa, indoor pool and wave pool can be enjoyed throughout the year, the scenic outdoor pool of this 101-year-old spa, opens only between May - October.

May Timings
Daily: 6:00 AM – 8:00 PM

Location

Budapest, Kelenhegyi út 4, 1118
Hungary
Getting There ›

3

Explore the Ancient Capital of Buda

Budapest in May


The weather in Budapest in May is perfect for those exploratory walks in Buda, through notable historic landmarks such as Sandor Palace, Matthias Church, Margaret Bridge and the Fisherman’s Bastion among others. Opt for a guided tour of Buda, to understand the history illustrated by the ancient capital of Hungary.

May Timings
Guided Tours start daily at 10:00 AM and 2:30 PM

4

Explore the Touristy Pest

Budapest in May


Set predominantly on a flat bourgeois plain Pest hosts plenty must-see landmarks such as St. Stephen’s Basilica, Shoes on the Danube Bank, House of Hungarian Art Nouveau, and Liberty Square. Take advantage of May’s weather to dip your toes into Hungary’s more recent history with a guided tour of Pest.

May Timings
Guided Tours starts daily at 10:00 AM

5

Danube River Cruise

Budapest in May


A large part of Buda & Pest charm is attributed to the Danube, that dissects yet connects the two cities into one. Explore the magnificent beauty of both sides of Budapest through a Danube River Cruise, you can either opt for a sunny May morning cruise or a cozy night cruise.

Check out the top rated Danube river cruises.

May Timings
Timings vary according to the chosen cruise

Budapest Sightseeing Cruise - 75 Minutes
from
€13
Dinner Cruise on the Danube with Operetta & Folklo...
from
€52
Dinner Cruise on the Danube with Live Piano Battle...
from
€52
Danube River Cruise with Buffet Lunch
from
€40
Pizza & Beer Budapest Cruise
from
€27
Craft Beer Cruise
from
€26

6

Take a Day Trip to Gödöllő

Budapest in May


Queen Elizabeth, who was fondly addressed as Sisi, loved the Gödöllő Palace and upon your visit, you’ll know why. From the magnificent 18th century, Baroque and Zopf style palace to the flamboyant gardens adorned with blooming May flowers, every nook and corner makes for an amazing Day Trip to Sisi.

Want to check out more day trip options from Budapest? Head here.

May Timings
Tour starts at 10:00 AM on Thursdays and Saturdays

7

Visit the Danube Bend

Budapest in May


Before entering the city of Budapest, the Danube river takes a mysterious curve, dubbed as the Danube Bend. As scenic as it is puzzling, the Danube Bend passes villages of Esztergom, Visegrád, and Szentendre. The sunny weather of May allows you to explore this unique u-turn and the neighboring villages with ease.

May Timings
Tour starts at 9:00 AM on Thursdays and Saturdays

8

Go on a Hungarian Food Tour

Budapest in May


From Langos to Kolbász & Hurka, from Kürtőskalács to Túró Rudi, Hungarian food is a culinary treat. But where to have the authentic experience from? Well, a professional tour guide, who knows the city inside out exactly knows which places, so opt for a Budapest Food Tour to experience May’s fresh produce.

May Timings
Food Tour starts at 2 PM on Fridays

Location

Budapest, Báthory utca 21-25, 1054
Hungary
Getting There ›

9

Visit the Szentendre Artists Village

Budapest in May


Situated at the gate of Danube Bend, this quaint Baroque town is often referred to as the Artist’s Village. Home for more than ten galleries and museums, dedicated to Hungarian arts, Szentendre Village is especially beautiful during May, thanks to the blooming flowers of the spring season and moderate weather

Want to check out more day trip options from Budapest? Head here.

May Timings
Organized day tours starts at 10:00 AM on Wednesdays, Fridays, and Sundays

Location

Szentendre 2000
Hungary
Getting There ›

10

Segway around Budapest

Budapest in May


The cobbled-stone streets of Budapest and its Roman style architecture offer unending beauty. So why restrict yourself to long walks, when you can enjoy May’s sunny weather and some of Budapest's most notable attractions including Vörösmarty Square, Andrássy Avenue, and St. Stephen’s Basilica, via a segway tour around the town.

May Timings
Tours start daily at 10:00 AM, 2:00 PM and 4:00 PM

Location

Budapest, Andrássy út 22, 1061
Hungary
Getting There ›

Budapest in May : Events to Look Out For


Budapest in May events

Gourmet Festival Budapest

16 May - 19 May 2019
Hungary’s top restaurants, confectioners, beer crafters, cheese-makers and wineries come together for a gastronomic festival at the Millenaris Park. Nothing less than a culinary heaven, the Gourmet Festival brings best of local cheeses, jams, honey, wines, craft beers and other Hungarian delicacies under one roof or an open-air event in Budapest. Learn More

Budapest in May events

Budapest Folk Fest

22 May - 25 May 2019
Local and International artists come together to celebrate each other’s roots, in an attempt to introduce audiences to the authentic folk music and traditions of various cultures. Filled with folk music, gypsy songs and dances, the Budapest Folk Fest is a must attend for all music and folk culture lovers. Learn More

Budapest in May events

Antique and Modern Art Street Afternoon

May 5 2019
Falk Art Forum or the Antique and Modern Art Street Afternoon is a festival that is held semi-annually, during spring and fall on Falk Miksa Street. The antique row of Budapest lits up with festivities as more than 50 local galleries organize special exhibitions along with stage performances, live music and kids programs. Learn More

Budapest in May events

Szekley Festival in Budapest

10 May - May 12, 2019
Situated in the heart of Transylvania, the Székelyföld or Szeklerland is known for its rich cultural heritage. The Szekley Festival is a gastro-cultural fair that celebrates the values, culture, arts and crafts, music, dance, culinary delights such as kürtőskalács (chimney cake), cheese and sausages, local beer and wines of Szeklerland. Learn More

Budapest in May events

Kepregeny Fesztival

9 May - 12 May, 2019
The Kepregeny Fesztival i.e. the International Comic Book Festival will be celebrating some major milestones of the comic book ecosystem this year, namely, Asterix’s 60th birthday, Batman’s 80th birthday and Tintin’s 90th birthday. A mecca for comic book fans it features workshops, children's programs, movies and giant board game. Learn More

Budapest in May events

Budapest 100

4 May - 5 May 2019
Organized by the Open Society Archives and the Hungarian Contemporary Architecture Centre, the Budapest 100 was initiated in 2011, to celebrate the 100-year-old buildings in Budapest. Now it has grown into an annual festival that celebrates the architectural wonders of the city, from houses to commercial buildings, from attics to basement. Learn More

Budapest in May events

Rosalia - Rosé Festival

May 31- 2 June, 2019
Dedicated to rosé wines, sparkling wines and champagnes, the Rosalia Festival is held at Budapest's Gesztenyéskert (city park). Visitors get to taste a variety of wines in a crystal souvenir glass, enjoy live Jazz concerts and breathe in the spring air and witness the blooming roses before the summer arises. Learn More

Budapest in May events

Belgian Beer Festival

May 13 - May 15, 2019
Held annually in mid-May, the Belgian Beer Festival features over 200 different types of Belgian beer from over 43 breweries. Currently, in its 7th year, the fest will be organized at Bálna and some of the best underground bands and DJs of the region will be performing at the event. Learn More

Budapest in May : 3-day Itinerary


If you're visiting Budapest in May and are looking for an itinerary that you can simply adapt, here's our handcrafted 3 day itinerary. You can also take a look at our 2 day and 1 day itineraries to visiting Budapest.

Day 1

3 days in Budapest
3 days in Budapest
3 days in Budapest

• Széchenyi Thermal Bath
• Budapest Parliament
• Budapest Food Tour
• Danube River Cruise

Day 2

3 days in Budapest
3 days in Budapest
3 days in Budapest

• Danube Bend Tour

Day 3

3 days in Budapest
3 days in Budapest
3 days in Budapest

• Walking Tour of Pest
• Walking Tour of Buda
• Margaret Island

Budapest Essentials


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LanguageHungarian

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Time zoneGMT+2

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Country Code+36

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Socket Type C & F

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CurrencyHungarian Forints (HUF)

Budapest Weather in May

As the month of proceeds, the temperature starts rising in Budapest; the high temperature increases from 19°C in the beginning of May to 23°C at the end, while the low temperature varies from 8°C - 12°C. Being on the wettest months of the year, May observes over 70 mm of rainfall spread across 14 days.

Where to Stay in Budapest in May

Being one of the most visited cities of Europe Budapest offers a variety of accommodation option. The best part is that the city is relatively inexpensive and depending upon your budget you can opt for a uber-luxurious stay or a budgeted hostel. Here are some options that you can opt for:

  • Luxury – Kempinski Hotel Corvinus, The Ritz-Carlton Budapest, Four Seasons Hotel Gresham Palace, Intercontinental Budapest
  • Mid-Range - Baltazar Budapest, Boutique Hotel Victoria, Hotel Palazzo Zichy, Hilton Budapest, Prestige Hotel Budapest
  • Budget - Maison Bistro & Hotel, Hotel Rum, The Hive Party Hostel, Hostel One Basilica, Fifteen Boutique Rooms.

What to Pack for Budapest in May

May offers you perfect sight seeing weather not too hot, nor too cold, so pack accordingly. Ensure that you include an umbrella and a lightweight windcheater for the rainy days and a good SPF sunscreen and sunglasses for the sunny days. The windcheater would double up as jacket for those chilly evening. Opt for medium - lightweight clothes and a comfortable pair of shoes/sandals. Note that Budapest has a lively night culture, so carry evening clothes and accessories accordingly.

Getting Around in Budapest in May

Budapest is an easy city to maneuver through, mostly thanks to its public transport system. Invest in a Budapest City Pass that will allow you use public transportation for free. The Metro, with its four lines – M1, M2, M3 and M4, almost covers the entire city. The tram routes 2,4,6 cover all the notable, must-visit spot.

In addition, with more than 200 bus routes, buses in Budapest is not just readily available, but is a faster and cheaper way to commute within the city. Do note that most of the Budapest Public Transport system shuts down by 11 PM, you will have to rely on cabs after that.

Budapest in May - Must Try Delicacies


While visiting Budapest in May, here are a few seasonal delicacies you must try!

Budapest in May
Gulyás (Goulash)

A classic spicy rich stew, so famous that it is often referred to as Hungary's national dish. Goulash is a meat stew and cooked with onions, paprika, tomatoes and pepper. Traditionally cooked on iron cauldrons over wood fires and served alongside a fresh white bread and chopped hot paprika.
Where to eat: Budapest Bisztró, Gettó Gulyás, Bestia

Budapest in May
Lángos

Available all year round, Lángos is a classic comfort food that is delicious, savory and affordable. A doughy flatbread is deep fried and served warm with a variety of toppings such as sour cream, mashed potatoes, grated cheese, garlic butter. A perfect Lángos is crisp on the outside and soft and plump in the middle.
Where to eat: Retro Bufe, Lángos Papa, Drum Cafe

Budapest in May
Kürtőskalács

Long strips of sugary dough are wrapped around cone-shaped spits, that are then brushed with butter and roasted over charcoal. When removed from the spits, it released steam like a chimney, which leads to its another name, Chimney cake. The sugary crispy coating is then slathered with cinnamon, ground walnuts and caramel.
Where to eat: Molnár’s Kürtőskalács Kávézó, Street Cakes, Hoppácska

Budapest in May
Töltött Káposzta (Stuffed cabbage)

A very popular dish across Central Eastern European as well as parts of Asia. A traditional Hungarian Töltött Káposzta features cooked cabbage leaves stuffed with pork mince and beef, rice, tomatoes, sauerkraut and obviously paprika. A typical dish around spring and winter times, popular at home and at high-end restaurants as well.
Where to eat: Csarnok Vendéglő, Százéves Restaurant

Budapest in May
Meggyleves

A chilled sweet soup made from sour cherries, sour cream, and sugar, Meggyleves is the most common version of Gyümölcsleves. Typically served as a chilled starter or a light summer dish, its fresh, tart, creamy and definitely delicious and best made in spring and summer as you get fresh cherries.
Where to eat: Kispiac Bisztro, Kerek Vendeglo

Tips for Visiting Budapest in May


  • Validate your ticket - Just buying a ticket for any of the public transport system in Budapest is not enough, you will have to validate your ticket at the boarding place. An unvalidated ticket is considered no ticket and can be fined anything between HUF 6000 to HUF 10,000.
  • May Fests - Budapest observes a plethora of events related to food, wine, music and culture, organised throughout the month of May. Before deciding upon your vacation plans, do check the events happening that week and plan your itineraries accordingly.
  • Be spontaneous - Be open and spontaneous about your evening entertainment, explore alfresco restaurants, open-air bars, street food markets and illustrious coffee houses among other things.
  • Visit multiple Baths/spas - Being the shoulder season, you can find great deals on multiple baths across the city. Since there is nothing like too much of rejuvenating time, ensure that you indulge in some relaxing down time at multiple spots, depending upon your budget.
  • Explore, Explore and Explore - Along with their neighbouring cities, Buda and Pest are a unique experience that words couldn’t do justice to. Depending upon your choice, ensure that you take advantage of May to either explore the area through walking tours, bus tours or a boat ride on the Danube.

More Budapest Guides


Looking for more things to do in Budapest? Here are a few guides that will help you plan your Budapest vacation better.

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