The time has come to bid farewell to the twenty-tens and welcome the arrival of the new year and decade. To celebrate this milestone, Budapest will be brimming with fantastic events, activities and things to do. From live music, techno raves, traditional food, drink and much more. With the help of our local insiders, in this guide, we’ve compiled a list of the very best things to do in Budapest over New Year’s.
Where to Dine
A wise person once said, “You don’t have to get hammered to celebrate the arrival of the New Year.” Who that person was, we don’t know, but if you agree with this philosophy then you’ll have no shortage of things to do in Budapest, especially if you’re a foodie. As some of the Budapest’s best eateries will hosting New Years themed wining and dining extravaganza’s. So if a bit of grub, delightful drinks, good company and entertainment sounds up you’re street, then look no further than the top picks of our Budapest locals below.
BESTIA NYE Special
Set in the shadow of St Stephens Basilica, Bestia is a favourite spot where locals head to wine and dine. On new years eve, “The Beast” will play host to a food-filled fiesta, giving you a chance to eat your way into 2020. On arrival, you’ll get a glass of prosecco closely followed up with some mouth-watering munch from their eclectic menu. Once the clock hits 12, the team will be serving the traditional Hungarian New Years dish of Sausage and Lentils. Hurry up and book now as a reservation is required.
NYE at the Top & Hangover Brunch
The team behind Toprum will be laying on a cracking couple of event’s to help you enter the new year on top. Kicking things off will be the NYE at the top party, where you’ll be able to enjoy a delicious selection of bites and sips from a special taster menu created for this celebration. The following day there will be the Hangover brunch, where you can rest and recoup with some lovely grub from the brunch menu, or keep the party going. Both events will have live music, which when combined with the Food, drink, company and panoramic view create the perfect ambience for a good time.
Tigris NYE Special
If you’re a fan of fine-dining, then the Tigris New Year’s party will most definately satisfy your salivary glands. On offer will be a smorgasbord of fine food and sips, from the local and traditional Hungarian to Haute, with an international twist. There will also be with a superb tasting selection of fine alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks to help send the food on its way. If that wasn’t enough, you’ll also be able to enjoy some live music to keep you entertained. It’s quite a pricey dinner, but go on, treat yourself to something special.
Byblos – Live Music & Belly Dancing Bonanza
If you’re looking something totally unique, then get your butt down to Byblos food for a fun-filled new years eve party. There will be a special menu packed with a plethora of mouth-watering middle eastern delicacies, from the savoury to the sweet. That’s not all, as there will be live music and an epic belly dance show to end the year. So head down and if you’re feeling brave, show the belly dancer how it’s done.
HILDA will host an epic New Year’s Eve party, for which Chef Matyas Igaz and his team have prepared six-course menu made up of a selection of fine dishes that will make your mouth water and belly happy. The six-course menu will set you back 30,000Ft, with wine pairing options available for an extra 19,000 FT. Sounds pricey, but well worth it if you look at the quality of food and drink on offer.
Mom Leroy: Újévi Morzsaparti
Photo: Mom Leroy Bistro
Enter the new decade with a delightful dinner at the iconic Mom Leroy Bistro. If you’re craving a traditional culinary experience, then be sure to try the warm lentil soup and duck breast with a walnut pancake desert. Or if you fancy taking the tastebuds on a trip to the far east, then be sure to try the Thai veg chilli rice noodles with shrimp. With a selection of tasty tipple to wash it all down.
Lucky Lentil Party
Lentil soup is a real traditional treat at this time of the year, with so many places where you can sample some of it. However, few places do it quite like Kiosk. To start the decade, they will be serving up plate loads of the good stuff to warm you’re heart and soul. With plenty of bubbles in the cellar if you want to continue celebrating from the night before, or want to get the party started.
Enter 2020 with a gastronomical adventure at Púder Bárszínház, one of Budapest’s most loved traditional ruin bars. The team have carefully crafted two menu’s, both filled with nothing but good, homely Hungarian fare. From pumpkin soup, mushroom ragout, grilled chicken breast stuffed with pear and much more. To wash it down you can choose from their rich local wine, spirits and beer selection.
Babel Budapest NYE
Chef Istvan Veres has crafted a special new years eve party menu that will no disappoint. Think dishes like lamb neck, octopus, chicken liver parfait and homemade sorbet. This is just a teaser, there will also be plenty more dishes on offer. If you do happen to be a wine fan, you’ll be pleased to know that pairing options are available. Selected with the help of their own knowledgable head sommelier. Once you’re all wined and dined, you’ll also be treated to an epic new years eve party ar Kiosk.
Boom Boom Boom
Bela is an eatery that is already renowned for great gastronomy, with locals heading here on the regular. Keeping up with this reputation, the team behind Bela will be hosting an epic culinary experience to help see you into the new year. With a plethora of dishes and drinks on offer for you to enjoy. So good that your stomach will be singing for joy and you’re heart beating with a boom boom boom.
Where to Party
If you’re seeking some fun things to in Budapest that involve copious amounts of alcohol, loud tunes and plenty of dancing, then you won’t be disappointed. As the city has become a mecca for madness, with thousands of nighttime owls heading here to have a good old knees-up at its late-night bars and clubs. However, for the new year’s celebrations, things are turned up a notch. Here are our top picks where you should head to let your hair down and welcome the new year with a bang.
Hintaló X AzAz – Sounds of the East
Hintaló Iszoda is a cosy bar hidden in the heart of the 8th District, where locals go to guzzle craft beer and traditional beverages like Palinka. However, on new years eve, this drinking den will be transformed into a party palace, with the AzAz at the helm bringing the superb electric sounds of the East.
DFFRNTLY X WNDRLST
If you want to enter 2020 to the sublime sounds of techno, then look no further than the DFFRNTroom’s new years eve rave. This party will see some of the best record-breaking riders take over the decks to get you grooving till the early morn. The line-up includes Son-Tec, Detective Kelly, Belloca, Kitti Kay, Julian Marcell, WNDRLST and much more. The drinks will be flowing and techno blasting. What more could you ask for?
CityMatiné: NYE After
CityMatiné are the pioneers behind daytime party scene, renowned for hosting an epic series of events throughout the year. However, the CityMatiné: NYE After is one of the most anticipated on their raving calendar. Once again Ötkert will be the venue for this ultimate new years day party, with a selection of talented artists injecting good tunes to create good times. A ticket to the event will also give you access to two more venues, The Secret Room and The Yard.
Normafa at ELTE
If you fancy some drum’n’bass on the Danube, then this is rave should be on top of your Budapest party bucket list. For one night only, top names in this genre will take over the newly completed ELTE University building for what promises to be an electric night of beats, boogying and booze. There will be three stages, each one dedicated to a different style of music, from techno, GOA Trance and D’n’B. So get your raving shoes and be prepared to skank your way into 2020.
Akvárium NYE – Galactic Edition
Don’t let the name fool you, at this aquarium, you won’t find any fish swimming, but party animals cutting shapes on the dance floor all year round. Never is this truer than new years eve, which will see the venue transformed for a party that promises to be out of this world. To end the decade, this years party will be themed around intergalactic space travel. There will be three rooms each with a different space theme and eclectic sounds scratched by talented musicians to match.
360 Bar Igloo Garden
If you’ve ever wondered what it would be like to get your groove on in an igloo, then wonder no more. You can experience this in the flesh at the epic 360 Bar Igloo Garden new years party. Grab your friends and get an exclusive igloo and let the skilled bartenders delight you with their crazy concoctions. With some tasty tunes provided by Ramin Sayyah, StereoStrip, Teomo and Mandmil. Great drinks and music, all to a backdrop of one the best panoramic views above Budapest.
Persephone x Majorca NYE
Make sure you have an afternoon nap and get prepared to dance all night long, as Persephone x Majorka new year’s eve part hits town. The entry is free, drink selection eclectic and the music electric, as Alexander and Klayman will scratch the decks till the dawn.
Other Things to do in Budapest over New Year’s
If you want to avoid the busy touristy bars and crowded restaurants, then head to the uber chilled PRLMNT Bar. This spot offers a wide array of alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks and the best shisha in Budapest. All in a cosy and friendly environment that will make you feel right at home.
Where: PRLMNT Bar | Opening Hours: Mon-Sun: 11AM – 11:55PM
Winter here is a bundle of fun, with a superb selection of alternative activities and things to in Budapest. Ice skating is a shining example, extremely popular amongst locals and tourists alike. Sound like your kind of thing, then you’ll have no end of options where you can give it a try. Perfect if you’re not in the mood to eat, drink or party. However, if you are seeking something a bit different to celebrate the arrival of the new year then get your skates on and hit the ice baby. To see where you can skate away, check out our guide to the best outdoor ice-skating rinks in Budapest.
Downtown Market Hall NYE
Downtown Market Hall on Hold Street is one place that is always buzzing with life. On new years eve, the vendors of this venue will be waiting for you to join them on an epic gastronomical celebration to enter the new decade. On offer will be a selection of mouth-watering culinary creations. From juicy burgers, traditional Hungarian treats and more. All topped off with live music from Miss Bee and Ricky, adding an extra layer of awesomeness to the experience.
Christmas may be over, but if you’re still feeling in the festive spirit then head down to one the city’s many Christmas markets. Here you’ll be able to enjoy traditional street bites, mulled wine, palinka and a host of other treats. There will also be vendors selling all kinds of handcrafted goods. To find out where to go, be sure to check out our guide to the best Christmas markets in Budapest.
If you were still stuck with ideas on what to do or still didn’t make any plans, hopefully, this article will inspire you to get out and have some fun. Oh, and if you’re looking for other things to do in Budapest and places to see, be sure to download the Like Locals app for free. Available on both iOS and Android devices. Most importantly, everyone at Like Locals would like to wish you a happy and prosperous new year.