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Sightseeing in Esztergom - what to see. Complete travel guide

An adventure to Esztergom, the cradle of modern Hungary, promises to be unforgettable because all buildings and historical monuments tell much interesting about the old and rich history of this region. Esztergom is situated not far from the border with Slovakia and 46 kilometers away from Budapest. The city lies on the right bank of the River Danube, exactly in the area where the river bends. Nowadays, Esztergom is widely referred to as the “Hungarian Vatican” because the biggest church in the country is open here.
The history of Esztergom is rich in events and various interesting facts. The Celts were the first settlers in the area. Later, Romans replaced them. The settlement got its first name – Salvio Mansio – during the reign of the Roman Empire. During the Migration Period, the Avar and German tribes liked the territory of modern Esztergom, and so they decided to settle here. They called their new home Stregom. The settlement became the main fortress in the region. At the end of the 9th century, Hungarians claimed the territory. After this event, the region started developing rapidly, turning into one of the major centers in the country.
In 976, an important event for the country took place in Esztergom. The future king, Saint Stephen of Hungary, was born in the settlement. He was crowned at the beginning of the 11th century. The new ruler ordered to make ten bishoprics in the country, and the archbishop of Esztergom was the head of them all. Starting from the 13th century, the city suffered from a period of decline that lasted until the 17th century. Numerous invasions of Turks and Mongols almost completely destroyed the city, so only some buildings survived after their attacks. Esztergom started rising from ashes only in the 18th century. The city’s infrastructure began to redevelop. In the 19th century, the city once again became the residence of the archbishop. Copyright www.orangesmile.com
The city is home to the main church in the country – the Basilica of Esztergom. Dedicated to St. Adalbert, the gorgeous church was built in 1856. However, the basilica was completely finished only in 1869. The building is quite large: the length of the basilica is roughly one hundred and twenty meters, and its width is almost fifty meters. The height of the basilica is one hundred meters. As the large church is built on a hill above the Danube River, it looks even more impressive and grandiose.
The building has a cross shape with features typical for neoclassicism. The main, façade side of the basilica is decorated with a massive Corinthian portico and eight big columns. If you step inside, you will notice various frescos, mosaics, numerous marble columns, and giant statues. All these beautiful elements are located in an area of more than 50,000 square meters. Don’t forget to get to the observation deck on the cupola of the basilica. This deck has a truly marvelous panoramic view of the surroundings, the bending part of the Danube River, the nearby Pilis Mountains, and picturesque neighborhoods.
Do you enjoy exploring beautiful palaces? In Esztergom, tourists can visit a true architectural gem, a royal castle that once was a residence of the Arpad dynasty. The gorgeous castle dates back to the 10th century. Its design is a wonderful example of Romanesque architecture. Besides the unique beauty, the castle turned out to be very durable and strong. It has managed to survive the Mongol invasion that took place in the 13th century. Even when Czech King Wenceslaus III captured Esztergom, the castle survived the attack without any major damages.
Sadly, the gorgeous building couldn’t sustain the attack of the Turkish army. The alien forces destroyed the castle, plundered Esztergom, and damaged many of its buildings. Only in the 18th century, when Hungarians reclaimed the territory, Esztergom became a free city. This is the period when massive restorative works started in Esztergom. The beautiful royal castle has also risen from ashes. Restoration works ended only at the beginning of the 20th century. Nowadays, a museum is open in the castle. Its exhibition tells more about the rich history of the city and the building.
Szechenyi Square is one of the major landmarks in Esztergom. There are many historic buildings that are worth seeing around the square. All the buildings are old and are great examples of the Baroque and Rococo architectural styles. That being said, the gorgeous fountain in the middle of the square is its biggest attraction. It is so pleasant to sit near the fountain on a hot day and throw a coin into it when leaving.
The easiest way to get to Esztergom is to reach Budapest first. The distance from the capital of Hungary is only thirty-eight kilometers. There are many daily buses that connect Budapest to Esztergom. If you want to, you can get to Esztergom by train. The road will be one and a half hours in this case.

City tours, excursions and tickets in Esztergom and surroundings

Reference information
Map of all castles
Survived castles around Esztergom
♥   Castle 'Esztergom Castle' , 0 km from the center. On the map   Photo
♥   Castle 'Visegrád Castle' , 17.2 km from the center. On the map   Photo
♥   Castle 'Drégely Castle' , 33.5 km from the center. On the map   Photo
♥   Castle 'Tata Castle' , 35.3 km from the center. On the map   Photo
♥   Castle 'Buda Castle Budapest' , 39.3 km from the center. On the map   Photo
Map of all parks
National and city parks around Esztergom
♥   National Park 'Kiskunsági' , 111.1 km from the center. On the map   Photo
Map of all art museums
Art galleries in Esztergom and around
♥   Art museum 'Hungarian National Gallery' Budapest, 39.4 km from the center. On the map   Photo

Sights around Esztergom from our guide 'Extreme places on Earth'

Gellert Gyogyfurdo

From the series “Most Extraordinary Thermaes, Baths and Saunas in the World”
There is also a chic outdoor swimming pool with very beautiful cascades, artificial waterfalls and stone terraces. Gellert Bath will be an excellent way to get not only physical, but also aesthetic pleasure. Economical travellers should take into account that visiting bathhouses is paid. Those who want to minimize material costs, should take a towel, a special cap and shoes. All the above accessories can be taken in the bath for an additional fee. … Read further
Car rental on OrangeSmile.com Rentals in Esztergom

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Sightseeing in regions nearby Esztergom

All about Esztergom, Hungary - sightseeings, attractions, touristic spots, architecture, history, culture and cuisine. Prepare your trip together with OrangeSmile.com - find out the 'must see' things in Esztergom, which places to visit, which excursions to take, where the breathtaking views are waiting for you. Planning your trip with this travel guide will help your to get the most out of Esztergom in few days.
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