Szentendre: The Perfect Little Day Trip from Budapest

This blog contains affiliate links and is a member of the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program. If you make a purchase using one of these links, I may earn a small commission at no extra cost to you. This helps keep this content free.

If you’re visiting Budapest, then a day trip to Szentendre should be on your itinerary and here’s why!

Szentendre is a cute little town that sits on the banks of the Danube Bend, and it’s also one of the easiest day trips you can plan from Budapest, Hungary.

Having already spent a few days sightseeing around the capital, we decided we wanted to plan a day escape somewhere quiet but not too far away, and Szentendre fit the bill.

Being the foodies that we are, we skipped out on the attractions and instead came prepared with a list of restaurants, food stands, wine cellars, and a marzipan museum we wanted to visit. This turned out to be a fun way to explore the town while getting better acquainted with Hungarian cuisine.

For anyone else who loves their food more than their museums, here’s a look at how we spent our day trip in Szentendre. I hope it’ll give you some ideas for your day trip from Budapest!

A Day Trip to Szentendre: The Perfect Escape from Budapest! Visiting the charming town of Szentendre on a day trip

This Budapest to Szentendre bike & boat tour is a unique way to get to your destination and it offers ample time for exploring the town on foot.

Spring flowers on our visit to Szentendre
Szentendre day trip from Budapest

Things to do on a Day Trip to Szentendre

Wandering the town on foot

Szentendre is the perfect little town to wander on foot with winding cobbled streets, white-trimmed buildings painted in cheerful pastel shades, and flower boxes overflowing with blooms.

It also has quite a few churches, art galleries, and souvenir shops for its size, which means you could spend hours walking around and we did exactly that!

Should you start to crave a little something sweet, you’ll be glad to know that the town is full of gelato shops. Levendula is a really popular one right on the main square and they have artisanal ice creams that come in unique flavours like lavender-lemon and strawberry-balsamic vinegar.

The main square in Szentendre, Hungary
Cobbled streets and pastel colours in Szentendre
Visiting Szentendre and exploring on foot in one day

Looking for the lángos shop

Lángos is a popular Hungarian street food snack best described as a deep-fried flatbread. It’s made using flour, yeast, salt and water, and it can be served with either sweet or savoury toppings.

There’s a little shop in Szentendre called Álom Lángos that specializes in this snack; in fact, I read that it’s considered one of the best in the whole country, so we had to track it down.

We made our way to the Main Square (Fő tér) and looked for a narrow little alley staircase that discretely broke away from the crowds.

Halfway up, we spotted the little stand serving lángos with a myriad of toppings.

We ordered the classic lángos with cheese and sour cream, and we also got some cinnamon pancakes after we saw those on the menu. I can’t say I was a huge fan of the fried bread, but I’m glad I tried it seeing as it’s a Hungarian specialty.

Lángos, a popular street food snack in Hungary.
Pancakes with cinnamon in Szentendre

Visit Szent János Church

After enjoying our snacks, we continued up the alley and found that it led to Szent János, also known as Saint John the Baptist’s Parish Church.

This church sits on a cobbled hill, which happens to offer great views of the city. The interior is also worth a visit as it has bright frescoes that were painted by the Society of Painters of Szentendre.

Enjoying views of Szentendre from the church on the hill
Visiting Saint János in Szentendre
Views of Szentendre

Touring the National Wine Museum

Having had a taste of Hungarian wine in Budapest, we decided to hit up the National Wine Museum in Szentendre.

The National Wine Museum looks at the development of Hungarian wine, and they have information boards that showcase the various wine-producing regions with plenty of old bottles and barrels thrown in. We were the only ones there when we visited, so we had fun just wandering around and taking pictures.

The museum is located in the cellar of the Labirintus Restaurant. Admission to the museum is free of charge, but you can pay to do a wine tasting.

Since it was around lunchtime, we decided to skip the wine tasting in the cellar and have lunch in their restaurant instead. Here we enjoyed a hearty Hungarian meal with some of their red house wine.

If you want to try Hungary’s most popular wine, that would be Egri Bikavér. This is a red wine blend produced in Eger and the name translates to Bull’s Blood.

Visiting the National Wine Museum in Szentendre
Touring the wine cellar under the Labirintus Restaurant in Szentendre.

Enjoying a big bowl of goulash

“Goulash again?” you ask.

Yes, again! It’s delicious, it goes great with a glass of red wine, plus it’s one of the must-try dishes in Hungary.

Hungarian goulash has a few variations, but the classic recipe is more like a soup than a stew. Ingredients include diced beef, onions, carrots, bell peppers, tomatoes, potatoes, and of course, lots of paprika!

It’s quite hearty and filling – the ideal meal to have on a cold winter’s day – but that didn’t stop me from ordering a big bowl in the middle of summer.

We ate at the Labirintus Restaurant mentioned above and we were very happy with our food. Service was quick, portions were large, and the food was oh-so tasty!

Enjoying Hungarian food at Labirintus Restaurant
A bowl of goulash served in a metal bowl at Labirintus Restaurant

Visiting the Marzipan Museum

Another place we couldn’t miss was the Marzipan Museum. In case you’ve never tried it before, marzipan is a sweet made from sugar and ground almonds.

I don’t love the taste of marzipan, but it does bring back childhood memories. When I lived in Argentina, I remember that my mom’s cousin would visit us from Germany, and he would always bring the cutest assortment of marzipan animals. Picture little pigs, bears, and sheep all moulded out of sugar and almond paste. I never wanted to eat them, but I always looked forward to seeing what animals we would get on his next visit.

Visiting the Marzipan Museum was pretty cool because they have these elaborate life-sized creations made entirely out of marzipan. After paying our admission fee we went up to the second floor, where they had Michael Jackson and Princess Diana marzipan sculptures – it looked like something out of Madame Tussauds. They also had a replica of the Hungarian Parliament Building, as well as portraits of King Stephen and numerous Austro-Hungarian rulers.

After touring the museum we went back downstairs to their cafe, where we indulged in some cakes, and then we bought a bit of marzipan for Sam to try. Spoiler alert: he didn’t love it either! I guess it’s a bit of an acquired taste.

Lounging on the Danube Bend

After wandering and eating our way through town, we needed a little break so we decided to go for a walk along the Danube Bend (a curve that breaks away from the main Danube River) in search of shade.

We somehow chanced upon a beach a couple hundred meters from the main dock and we spent a nice chunk of the afternoon there (it reminded me a bit of summer on the banks of the Vistula River in Warsaw, Poland).

There were a few pop-up stands where you could buy food and drinks, so we ordered ourselves some lemonades, grabbed a couple of beach chairs, and then unintentionally had a mid-afternoon siesta.

It was the perfect way to end our day trip to Szentendre.

How to get to Szentendre

By train:

On the way from Budapest to Szentendre, we took the HEV train from Batthyány tér, which is on the red metro line. The suburban railway runs quite frequently (every 10 minutes during peak times) and it took us around 40 minutes to reach Szentendre. Note that the Budapest metro tickets are not valid on this line – we made that mistake so we then had to pay the right fee on board.

By boat:

On the way back, we decided to take the boat back to Budapest. This is a great option if you’re visiting during the summer months, or if you’re visiting on a weekend during the shoulder season (you can view their schedule here). We opted for the 5:00 p.m. departure and it took us 1 hour to leisurely cruise back to Budapest. It was a beautiful journey that went past riverside beaches and summer cottages. As a tip, if you’re short on time, take the boat in the afternoon since it takes twice as long to travel upstream to Szentendre in the morning.

Staying the night in Szentendre

Even though Szentendre is a popular day trip, you can also find accommodations should you wish to turn your visit into a weekend escape.

The town has a selection of guesthouses and hotels to meet all budgets, but even the higher-end properties are quite affordable including Bükkös Hotel & Spa and Hotel Matthias Rex.

The Danube Bend is also lined with cute little summer cottages, so if you’re craving a few days of lounging by the river that’s certainly an option.

That’s a wrap for our day trip to Szentendre from Budapest! Totally worth it in our opinion and now we’ve shared everything you need to know to go on your own adventure.

Join the Conversation


  1. says: Angela

    I haven’t been much of a city traveler but living in London and exploring Europe is making me one. I like how you searched out a particular food truck. I try to find food that is where the locals eat. I am not much of a wine person and prefer beer. But I’d make an exception for Hungary.

  2. says: Dave | Jones Around The World

    I love Budapest, and am planning on visiting again soon. WIll definitely keep this in mind if I decide to take a day trip. Beautiful photos!

  3. says: Tamara

    Well, I am Hungarian and as going over the weekend to Szentendre, looked up again what else to do and found your site. You did pretty good justice to the town and our culture.
    Nice video!

  4. says: Sai Giridhar

    Thanks for a nice update on the town… We are visiting today and will take advantage of your advice 😘

  5. says: jean

    We will be going to Budapest next week with a tour group, however will have a free day. Do you recommend this Szentender or is there another small town near by.

    1. says: Audrey Bergner

      Hi Jean, Szentendre is the easiest day trip from Budapest and it’s a great little town to wander on foot. Other day trips to consider include Esztergom, Visegrád and Gödöllő.

  6. says: Gill

    Hi, I have just come back from Budapest and used your blog for a day trip out to Szentendre, taken from trip advisor. We followed your guide and even found the Langos stand, delicious. Thank you

  7. says: Kunal

    Hi Audrey, Visiting Budapest in March for 4 days and keeping a day aside for day trip. Is it possible to see Szentendre and Visegrad in a day?Appreciate any help, thanks! Also very informative blog 🙂

    1. says: Audrey Bergner

      Hi Kunal, there are tours that take you to Esztergom, Visegrad, and Szentendre in one day. It would be a very busy day, but your transportation would be sorted so you wouldn’t have to worry about navigating public transport. Personally, I felt there was enough in Szentendre to spend a full (albeit leisurely) day in town, but it’s all personal preference.

Leave a comment
Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *