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Budapest’s best ruin pubs

Budapest’s well-known ruin bars are an essential part of the nightlife scene, and a huge attraction for foreigners. If you’re ever visiting Budapest, these unique pubs are definitely worth a visit! That’s why we’ve picked 5 places you shouldn’t miss!

  • Szimpla Kert

Quirky ruin bars are Budapest’s most famous nightlife phenomenon. The trend of revamping former factories and car parks into (almost) fully functioning watering holes while allowing the character of the buildings to remain started with Szimpla Kert back in 2002. When it moved to its current home in the Jewish quarter in 2004, it became the epicentre of Budapest’s nightlife scene – a title it still deservedly holds today.

  • Ötkert

This central spot offers a slightly more polished clubbing experience than its edgier counterparts. Ötkert’s magic takes place in an impressive, restored 19th-century building. On most summer nights, Ötkert boasts five DJs playing a mix of commercial music, R&B and hip hop across two rooms. They also have a large terrace which is utterly perfect in July and August. If you’re here in winter, don’t worry – it comes equipped with outdoor heating for colder nights.

  • Grandio Jungle Bar

Grandio is a real gem in the centre of Budapest. Located in the courtyard of a typical, ordinary Budapest bourgeois house, the bar is full of huge trees, giving the place a jungle feel. The trees are special not only because they provide a pleasant shade and cool air for those who drink in the summer, but also because the former residents of the building, which was once a hostel, have decorated their branches with hundreds of shoes. And the mood lighting transforms the place into a fairy garden by night…if a fairy garden is a place where rock music plays and quality alcohol flows freely.

  • A Grund

It’s a wide choice of colourful and patterned walls, secluded corners, private rooms, sofas and toys, among large gardens. It’s a workplace as well as an entertainment space. What really sets it apart is the lights, music, barbecue and totally relaxed atmosphere. It is home to Budapest’s only entertainment strawberry tree, saved from being cut down by an irregular architectural solution.

  • Kisüzem

And last but not least, we present to you the Kisüzem. Located in Kis Diófa street, Kisüzem offers a classic café atmosphere from noon: two creative kitchens, unique coffee, daily press and of course the inevitable wifi. In the evening, the good company is a given, the better wines, the pálinka are available, the kitchen is also at its best even in the evening. And what is one of the best features of the place is the excellent selection of beers. In the evenings, the Kisüzem also serves as an exhibition space, with concerts in the evenings and a monthly changing selection.