Why Should You Visit Győr, Hungary?
Why then? It makes for a nice stop on your way from Budapest to Vienna, since it’s located halfway between them. It has one of the most beautiful Baroque historical towns in Hungary. It has pretty squares with benches, cafés and restaurants, and there’s history everywhere. Well, let’s see all that in detail.
A bit about history
Like many other Hungarian settlements, Győr has its roots back in the Roman times. The Romans named it Arrabona, and later Celtic tribes, Mongols and Turks occupied it. In 1743 it was given the title of “Free Royal Town”. Several religious orders settled here then, and they built schools, churches and hospitals – all in Baroque style. A good amount of those pretty Baroque buildings are well-preserved and nicely renovated today.
Strolling through Hungary’s most beautiful Baroque city center
Széchenyi Square is the main square dominated by a Baroque church – the Benedictine church and monastery – and enclosed by colorful Baroque mansions. Bécsi kapu tér on the other hand is one of the oldest squares of Győr – and surprise, surprise, it’s one of the most beautiful Baroque squares in Hungary.
Király Street (Király utca) is a lovely street that connects these two squares. Some other streets worth exploring nearby are Sarkantyú köz, Szabadsajtó utca, Kazinczy utca, Sarló köz and Kisfaludy utca.
And then there’s the old and famous church: the Basilica of Győr. It was founded around 1000 during the reign of St. Stephen, Hungary’s first king.
Architecture guide to Győr
Győr has amazing architectural treasures, and we put together a list of the most unique pieces. Hunt them down while exploring the city center :
- Altabak House: one of the oldest early Baroque homes in Győr (address: Bécsi kapu tér)
- Apátúr House: one of the most beautiful Baroque buildings; today it hosts a museum (address: Széchenyi tér 5)
- Vastuskós House: early Baroque building (address: Széchenyi tér 4)
- Esterházy Palace: this Baroque palace is home to the Town Museum of Arts today (address: Király utca 17)
- Former Black Eagle Inn: a typical Baroque building (address: Király utca 10)
- Fejérváry House: a beautiful late Renaissance house (address: Apáca utca 9)
- Rozália House: picturesque Baroque building with a mansard roof (address: Kazinczy Ferenc utca 21)
- Torkos Palace: early Baroque palace with a nice inner courtyard (address: Stelczer Lajos utca 8)
- Zichy Palace: another beautiful Baroque palace (address: Liszt Ferenc utca 20)
- Old Town Hall: Győr has an impressive Neo-Baroque town hall (address: Rákóczi utca 1)
When it’s time to relax…
And what if you are tired of walking around? Excellent thermal spas are a specialty of Hungary. Most of the bigger and smaller Hungarian cities offer thermal spas, and Győr has its own, too: Rába Quelle Thermal Bath and Spa. There you can even find a pool that has a bar in it – so how about relaxing with a cocktail in hand?
More tips & day trip ideas
Győr is 1 hour drive from Budapest and about 2 hours by train. The city center is nice and easily walkable; we didn’t even use public transport in the city.
How much time do you need for Győr? One day is most probably enough. But you can add more to have time to explore the region as there are some day trip options. Just 30 minutes away from Győr (by car) is the Pannonhalma Archabbey, one of the oldest historical monuments in Hungary, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a beloved wine region.
Lesser-known places nearby are the Bezerédj Palace in Ménfőcsanak (a cultural center today) or the wine cellars of the small village of Nyúl. It’s quite a scenic little street, and you can taste some of the wine if you like.
Now your turn… Which cities have amazed you with their architecture?
This post was updated in January 2021.