Astag party in Budapesthas everything for big groups: outdoor bars, boat bars, cocktail bars and, of course, its famous ruin bars, making it the perfect place for a bar crawl. As the name suggests, these ruin bars were set up in old abandoned buildings before being turned into cool underground venues and now they’re the heart of the city’s nightlife.
The huge number of bars in Budapest can make deciding where to go pretty tricky. But never fear, we’ve selected the best bars that the city has to offer - so you can quit searching and spend more time drinking.
Renowned as ‘the original ruin bar’, Szimpla Kert is a landmark destination for a drink and a notable favourite on Budapest’s bar scene. Once an abandoned factory, the building was transformed and filled with second-hand furniture, makeshift bars and bric-a-brac hanging from the walls and ceilings. Head here to explore the maze of wacky rooms, relax in the open air courtyard or drink one of their own brand beers for about a quid.
Fogas Haz or ‘House of Teeth’ was named after the century-old dentist’s sign found during its renovation. Today, it's a lively ruin pub, filled with hip cocktail bars and multiple rooms where you can relax, drink on the cheap and play ping pong. Its well-known for its enormous open air courtyard, which is buzzing all year round thanks to the impressive retractable roof. Plus, in the evening the courtyard turns into a busy dance floor, it’s the place to party, so stay late and dance till dawn.
Taking over an entire apartment building, Instant is the biggest ruin bar in the city with a colourful labyrinth of over 20 rooms. With a club-like atmosphere, 8 bars, 4 dance floors and a restaurant, there’s a good chance you’ll get lost at some point. Expect somewhat bizarre decor and weird and wonderful installations.
Blind Mice Exchange Pub
The highlight of this fun bar is their ‘stock exchange’ drinks prices. It all comes down to demand and supply, so if a drink is ordered a lot the price goes up and the less popular drinks will get cheaper and cheaper. With the prices always changing, you’ll have to keep an eye on the screens to drink for the lowest price. You might get a hangover the next morning if you mix too many cheap drinks - but it’s worth it for the bargain.
Housed in a reconstructed Ukrainian ship, docked on the scenic River Danube, this large bar is pretty unique. Spread over three floors, the venue has an open air roof terrace offering panoramic views of the city and a club in the basement. It’s also one of the best spots for watching live music and hosts multiple gigs and concerts each week. Plus, there's a restaurant onboard in case you and your mates get peckish.
This awesome venue is set on the roof of a former communist-era department store. It's a fair climb up the six flights of stairs to get there, but the bars incredible atmosphere and spectacular views will be well worth the effort. The open air roof terrace is only open during the summer months, but the equally cool Corvin club on the floor below is open all year round.
This large garden bar is perfect for big groups, set in a former parking lot there's plenty of indoor and outdoor seating. The venue is located in the famous Jewish quChilliarter, but it's less quirky than other ruin bars and has more of a British pub atmosphere. With events on nearly every night of the week, you’ll find plenty of live music or quiz nights to enjoy here. It’s a great place for a really good pint.
Head to Élesztő (or Yeast) for an ever-changing selection of draught Hungarian craft beers, on 21 different taps. Formerly a glassworks, the industrial style venue is a modern twist on the city’s famous ruin bars. Not only will you be spoilt for choice with pint options, but you can also enjoy some Hungarian wines at the wine bar and some delicious street food. Make sure you bring cash - it's a trendy place so naturally they don’t take card.
If you book astag weekend in Budapestyou'll not be disappointed, and if these aren't enough for you to create a night out with, there's plenty more to choose from whilst wondering about.