Budapest is a magical city full of history, culture, and art. You can spend your days wandering the city taking in some of the best sightseeing in Europe. After all that exploring and sightseeing, for sure you want to let loose and enjoy the evening.
Luckily, Budapest is one of Europe’s hottest cities for nightlife. From fancy cocktail bars, grungy ruin pubs, and exciting nightclubs it’s easy to see why Budapest nightlife is some of the most exciting in Europe!
If you’re stuck on where to start (or end!) your night in Budapest; check out this list for some of the best experiences Budapest nightlife has to offer.
Our Picks for the Best Budapest Nightlife Including Best Clubs, Pubs, and Ruin Bars in Budapest!
Best Bars in Budapest
If a relaxing beer or two (or three) is all you’re looking for, look no further than these fantastic bars. From grungy to funky, there’s something for everybody in this lively city.
Perhaps the newest bar on this list, Grease Monkey officially opened in 2019. With a tiny door squeezed in between two larger pubs, it’s almost easy to miss it. Once you see the door however, you’ll know you’re in the right place! Decorated in striking steam-punk style, Grease Monkey is a hidden gem in the city. Once you’re done exploring the amazing decoration inside, relax on an old cinema chair and chat to the super-friendly staff. Since it’s such a new bar, you can expect less crowds than the other spots on this list; so, enjoy the peace and the amazing atmosphere of one of the coolest bars in Budapest.
- Address: Lázár u. 7
- Open: Wednesday – Saturday 18.00-00.00
Located in Budapest’s 8th district, Aurora is more than just a bar. It also operates as a community center, with NGOs holding regular workshops and events focusing on marginalized groups. Pop down during the day to learn some new skills and meet politically minded locals. In the evening, try your jokes at some stand up comedy, rock out to some feminist punk, or enjoy any of the other eclectic events going on at this awesome bar!
- Address: Auróra utca 11.
- Open: Monday – Tuesday: 12.00-23.00, Wednesday – Thursday: 12:00-1:00, Friday: 12.00-4.00, Saturday: 16:00 – 4:00, Sunday: 16:00-23:00
If you want to escape from the crowds of tourist and have a more local experience, look no further than this funky little café bar right in the seventh district. Kisuzem is decorated with bizarre paintings of various clashing styles and attracts mostly hip Hungarians. In the afternoons, enjoy some quality coffee and (if you’re feeling adventurous) some “zombie toast” (pork brains on toast!). At night, the crowds of bohemian locals will sprawl onto the surrounding street corner. Hang out with some of the coolest folks in the city and enjoy a beer or whiskey from their extensive menu.
- Address: Kis Diófa Utca 2.
- Open: Sunday – Wednesday: 12:00-2:00, Thursday – Saturday: 12:00-3:00
Another favourite with locals, Fekete Kutya is located less than 100m away from Kisuzem. It is undoubtedly one of the best bars in Budapest for enjoying a beer with friends old and new. The grungy-yet-cosy interior is papered with stickers from various local bands and artists. With its great location in the seventh district, it’s also a great place for a warm-up drink before heading out to some of Budapest’s nightclubs.
- Address: Dob utca 31.
- Open: Sunday-Wednesday: 17:00 – 1:00, Thursday – Saturday: 17:00-2:00
Uri Muri has one of the best locations for two reasons. Firstly, it’s located right in the heart of the party district; secondly, it’s close to the University of Theatre and Arts, meaning it has a constant stream of cool film students to keep the atmosphere alive. The lower floor is home to some fantastic music concerts, whilst the upper floor (and the space outside) is filled with life. Endless funky vibes make this a great place to begin your experience of Budapest nightlife.
- Address: Wesselényi utca 19
- Open: Sunday – Wednesday: 16:00-2:00, Friday – Saturday: 16:00 – 4:00
Since its establishment in 2004, Vittula has become an iconic establishment favored by hipsters, rockers, and those looking for a cheap drink. With some of the lowest prices in the city, Vittula is a great place to start your night, continue your night, and end your night! Keeping in line with the drink prices, the interior has a very dive-bar feel; the walls are decorated primarily with graffiti. The music varies from night to night, and the small space certainly doesn’t stop people from dancing like nobody’s watching. If you want to experience the best bars in Budapest, Vittula is truly an unmissable spot.
- Address: Kertész utca 4
- Open: Monday – Tuesday: 18.00-2.00, Wednesday-Friday: 18:00-4:00, Saturday: 20:00-4:00
Best Ruin Bars in Budapest
If you’ve heard anything about Budapest, you’ve almost certainly heard about the ruin bars. Originally abandoned buildings that were taken over by artists, these bars have become an integral part of Budapest nightlife. Ruin Bars in Budapest are now so famous that some people travel to the city specifically to see them, and is it any wonder why? Filled with haphazard art installations, grungy paintings, lost pieces of furniture, and varied music; ruin bars always make for an exciting night out.
No list of ruin bars in Budapest could be complete without the legendary Szimpla Kert. This multi-room, multi-floor extravaganza is an adventure for anybody looking for an unforgettable bar experience. Around every corner you’ll be met with a new piece of art or excitement. During the week you’ll find different music events; from open mic to techno; and if you’re looking to make new friends, this bar is never empty. If you survive the hangover, be sure to check it out on Sunday morning, when it becomes a farmers’ market full of delicious food for you to try and buy.
- Address: Kazinczy utca 14.
- Open: Monday – Saturday: 12:00-4:00, Sunday: 9.00-4.00
The largest of the ruin bars, Instant/Fogas has become an endless party complex and is always full of excited tourists and locals alike. In here you will find many places to buy drinks, spots to buy pizza, multiple dance floors with different styles of music, and a whole lot of party goers. Walking between dance floors you’ll experience everything from Latin to metal to pop to RnB. There’s a dance floor for everybody in this must-visit ruin bar in Budapest.
- Address: Akácfa u. 49-51.
- Open: Every day: 16.00 – 6.00
If you want to truly live the ruin bar experience, Grandio is the place to be. Doubling as a party hostel, you can quite literally eat, sleep, and breathe Budapest Nightlife here. The huge beer garden is one of the most welcoming in the city; and the best part is it sells alcohol round the clock! If you’re hoping to find people to play drinking games with before heading to the clubs, Grandio is the ruin bar for you.
- Address: Nagy Diofa Utca 8
- Open: Always Open
Want to experience a ruin bar vibe, slam poetry, vegan pizza, and electronic music all in the same place? Anker’t is the place to go. Like many of the ruin bars in Budapest, Anker’t is an old residential building. The decoration is less busy than Szimpla; instead the bare brick walls set the atmosphere perfectly. It has one of the largest beer gardens in the city, so find a spot, grab a beer and soak up the amazing vibes of Anker’t.
- Address: Paulay u 33.
- Open: Sunday – Tuesday: 16:00-00.00, Wednesday – Thursday 16:00-1.00, Friday: 16:00-5:00, Saturday 16:00-3:00
Best Cocktail & Wine Bars in Budapest
If you’re looking for something a little more upscale than grungy pubs and ruin bars, Budapest has plenty of options for you. Take a break from the rowdy backpacker crowd and sample on some craft cocktails or local wines. Even with their sophisticated drinks menu, these bars keep the edgy vibe that’s synonymous with Budapest nightlife.
One of the best bars in Budapest for cocktails at a very reasonable price; this is an underground cocktail bar with a wonderful bohemian edge. Don’t frantically search for a menu here – the bartender will prepare you a cocktail based on your taste preferences. With the decadent décor and masterfully crafted drinks, you’ll feel as though you’re stepping into a New York bar – at a fraction of the cost!
- Address: Síp u. 24
- Open: Monday: 18:00 – midnight, Tuesday – Wednesday: 12:00 – midnight, Thursday – Friday: 12:00 – 02:00, Saturday: 18:00 – 02:00, Sunday: closed
Another bar with tailor made cocktails. Get yourself a twist on a classic taste or be truly adventurous with a bespoke molecular cocktail. This is the perfect spot for a birthday get together or a hot date – the whole bar screams trendy, with the décor, the drinks, and even the bartenders all coming together to produce an upscale trendy vibe. When you need some creative sophistication, this is the bar to head to.
- Address: Nagy Diófa utca 26.
- Open: Sunday – Wednesday: 18:00-1:00, Thursday: 18:00-2:00, Friday-Saturday: 18:00-4:00
With a name that refers to a local wine specialty, it’s no surprise that Kadarka is the best place to go for Hungarian wine. Despite its location in the Jewish quarter of the city, prices here are cheerfully low; and you will find the crowd is mainly locals. This is a great spot for a more Hungarian experience of Budapest nightlife. If you’re hoping for some music with your wine, be sure to check the event listings and see which bands are going to be playing!
- Address: Király utca 42
- Open: Monday-Sunday: 16:00-00:00
Want to mix sightseeing and alcohol? DiVino is the place for you. Situated right in front of St. Stephens Basilica, where better to sample some local wines? During the summer, find yourself a seat at the outside tables and enjoy the wonderful views of Budapest’s largest church – all while sipping on some amazing wine.
- Address: Szent István tér 3. (a Bazilika mellett)
- Open: Sunday – Wednesday: 16:00 – 00:00, Thursday – Saturday: 16:00 – 02:00
For those truly passionate about wine, head to Dropshop to sample some of the best wines from all over the world. From America to Australia, you’ll find something to your taste here. Dropshop is passionate about wine and will for sure be able to tell you all about what you’re drinking. If you’re feeling extra strong, why not try some of the local spirit – Palinka?
- Address: Balassi Bálint utca 27.
- Open: Tuesday – Saturday: 11:00 – 00:00, Sunday – Monday: 11:00 – 22:00
Best Clubs in Budapest
After you’ve warmed up with some beers, wines, or cocktails Budapest nightlife offers no shortage of places to dance! Whether you want to get down to some 00s classics with funky international students or lose yourself in dark electronic, here are some of the best nightclubs in Budapest.
In Budapest, you can usually find all your party needs over on the Pest side; with the Buda side reserved for historical sightseeing and a quieter experience of city life. The exception is the iconic Nemdebar. Come here to find a trendy alternative crowd and dance the night away to some of the best electronic music in Budapest. Like many alternative hangouts in Budapest, Nemdebar is a relatively small space; but don’t let that stop you front dancing the night away – it doesn’t stop anybody else!
- Address: Moszkva tér 5.
- Open: Monday-Wednesday: 12:00 – 01:00, Thursday- Friday 12:00 – 02:00, Saturday: 16:00 – 02:00, Sunday: 16:00 – 00:00
Right in the heart of Budapest’s party district is Aether. This new face in Budapest’s nightclub scene is truly underground; and you’ll be forgiven for missing it the first time as it’s situated underneath another bar that’s often blasting out latino/pop beats. Go down the stairs into Aether however and you’ll be greeted by some of the hardest, most face-melting techno available in Budapest.
With many of these techno parties being marketed to cool Erasmus students, prices for entry remain cheerfully cheap, so if you’re planning to visit Budapest nightclubs on a budget, Aether must surely be on your list.
- Address: Király13
- Open: Thursday – Saturday: 23:00 – 5:00
If you’ve ever tried to meet a friend in Budapest or been on one of the fantastic free walking tours; it’s likely that you’ve been to Deak square. Maybe you didn’t realize that in the center of this square lies one of Budapest’s top nightclubs. If you want a sneak-peak at the club’s interior, simply peer through the water in the square’s fountain – part of Akvarium is situated directly underneath! Come here to find amazing live music and DJ sets. This nightclub is multifunctional – make a visit during the day to experience some great workshops and art exhibits.
- Address: 12 Erzsébet tér
- Open: Sunday-Tuesday: 12:00-1:00, Wednesday-Saturday: 12:00-4:30
This is maybe the biggest nightclub in Budapest, and very popular with students. Expect a young, rowdy crowd and plenty of dancing. With five dance floors of different genres, bars, an outdoor space, and even table games and karaoke; this is a great place to spend a night. Surrounded by the Fullmoon hostel, there is never a dull moment at this labyrinthine student bar.
- Address: Szent István Körút 11.
- Open: Monday-Saturday: 17:00-5:00, Sunday: 19:00-5:00
Larm is part of the instant/fogas complex (although while the famous ruin bar is free, you will usually have to pay a cover charge to enter Larm). Before the arrival of Larm, Budapest was seriously lacking a space for underground electronic music. In 2013 however, that all changed; and Larm is the go-to Budapest nightclub for all your techno needs. Its drab interior is reminiscent of a Berlin club; with people coming for the music and the music alone. To truly lose yourself in an underground vibe, this is the place to go.
- Address: Akácfa utca 51.
- Open: Sunday – Wednesday: 22:00-4:00, Thursday: 22:00-5:00, Friday – Saturday: 23:00-6:00
Best Parties in Budapest
There are some parts of Budapest nightlife which don’t fit into any of these categories. You can’t have a party city with no special parties! When you’re looking for a truly special night on the town, check out some of these options.
Want to combine the best of Budapest nightlife and Budapest sightseeing in one? Look no further than the PartyBookers boat party. This two-hour river cruise includes a welcome drink, DJs spinning some great tunes, and an after party in a local nightclub. From the deck of the boat you can get a stunning nighttime view of the parliament building.
Check the PartyBookers website for more info!
If you’ve looked at some of our Budapest sightseeing articles, you’ll know that the city is full of historic thermal baths, the most famous of course being Szechenyi. During the day, you can bathe in the multiple pools, get a massage, and wonder at the beautiful architecture. At night, this historical marvel transforms into a pulsing party of pure decadence. There’s no cooler place to enjoy a margarita than in an ancient historic bath! Check the Sparty website for more info!
For the music fans among you, Budapest park is open all summer to provide unforgettable concerts. Officially the biggest open-air venue in Europe, Budapest park provides a stage for all kinds of music icons – whether it’s Evanescence, Iggy Pop, or world renown DJs; Budapest park will keep you rocking until the sun comes up! Check the Budapest Park website for more info!
Budapest has no shortage of famous bridges; any sightseeing guide will include the infamous chain bridge for example. The shortest bridge in the city is Liberty bridge, always full of traffic, pedestrians and cyclists; it’s the quickest journey between Buda and Pest. However in the summer, Liberty bridge transforms into something truly special. In the evening; all traffic across the bride is stopped and the bridge becomes one big party and art zone. Lounge in a hammock, have a picnic, dance to music, or view the work of some amazing local artists. This is the hippest place to hangout in summer!
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