I'd never heard of Budapest's Ruin Bars until my first trip there in 2018. It still baffles me how something so cool seems to remain almost like a secret for most people until they arrive in Budapest.
I'd just gotten off a long bus ride into Budapest, stumbled into my hostel, and was scrolling through some Couchsurfing meet-ups in the city. A decent size group of travelers was meeting at a place called Szimpla - it wasn't too far away so I slipped on a shirt, downed the rest of my beer, and headed there with zero expectations.
This was my introduction to Budapest's Ruin Bars and from that night until now, I have been in love with them.
What are Ruin Bars?
Ruin bars, also known as ruin pubs, are old, decrepit buildings that have been transformed into vibrant, quirky, and eclectic nightlife spots. In fact, they are straight-up bizarre... in the best kind of way. They often feature mismatched furniture, art installations, graffiti, and even interactive games. By day many Ruin Bars are cafes, which turn into bars/clubs at night. Each has its own vibe, so it all depends on your personal preference. One thing is for certain - ruin bars are one of the coolest things to do in Budapest.
Let's take a look at Budapest's best Ruin Bars and where to find them.
10 Best Ruin Bars in Budapest, Hungary
1. Szimpla Kert
Budapest’s Szimpla Kert is often referred to as the mother of all ruin bars. Located in the heart of the city, it was the first of its kind and paved the way for an influx of Ruin Bars in the city. What started out as a single-room pub, has now become one of Budapest’s most iconic attractions. The venue also hosts live music, film screenings and other cultural events, making it the perfect place to visit if you’re looking for a truly unique experience in Budapest.
Where Szimpla is located:
Szimpla Kert is located in the Jewish Quarter of Budapest, just off Kazinczy Street. This lively bar offers an experience like no other, with its unique and eclectic mix of music, art and culture. From the moment you step inside, you will be taken aback by the sheer number of knick-knacks and decor that adorns the walls and ceilings. There are plenty of outdoor areas too, where guests can relax and soak up the atmosphere while sipping on their favorite drinks.
Anker’t is one of the most well-known Ruin Bars in Budapest, Hungary. Located in the heart of the city, this unique bar is known for its eclectic interior and large outdoor area, which provides plenty of seating for customers to enjoy a beer or cocktail in the sunshine. This funky venue also offers a wide range of live music and entertainment on certain nights.
Where is Anker't Located:
Anker't is located in the heart of Budapest at Akacfa Utca 47. It is easily accessible by public transportation, making it easy to get there from any part of the city. It is just a few blocks away from many popular attractions, such as the Hungarian National Museum and the Great Synagogue of Budapest. With its convenient location and vibrant atmosphere, Anker't is an ideal spot to spend a night out.
3. Instant-Fogas Ház
Instant-Fogas Ház is a stunning Budapest ruin bar. The ruin bar was built in the mid-1800s and has been around for over 150 years! It was formerly an old printing house, which adds to its vintage charm. The unique layout of Instant-Fogas Ház makes it one of the most popular ruin bars in the city. The interior is covered in eclectic art and rustic furniture, creating a fun and lively atmosphere that all guests can enjoy. The bar also has several different areas, such as a courtyard, a terrace, and a garden. There is also a stage where DJs play music and guests can dance the night away.
Where Instant-Fogas Ház is located:
Instant-Fogas Ház is located in District VII of the city and can be found close to the Gozsdu Udvar in a very lively and bustling area.
4. Blue Bird
Blue Bird is a classic Budapest Ruin Bar with a unique atmosphere that draws people in from all over the world. The building is adorned with vintage furniture and colorful art pieces, giving it a warm and inviting feel. There are two separate spaces, one indoors and one outdoors. The outdoor area has a lush garden with plenty of seating, while the inside has several bars and lounges.
Where Blue Bird is located:
Blue Bird is located at Kazinczy utca 17, in the heart of Budapest’s famous District VII. It’s just steps away from other popular ruin pubs, like Szimpla Kert and Anker't. The location makes it easy to explore the nightlife of Budapest and find all the best Ruin Bars in the city.
Grandio is one of Budapest's most popular ruin bars. Located in the heart of the Jewish Quarter, this bar is a great place to visit for those looking for a unique and unforgettable experience. This popular establishment stands out from other ruin bars with its mix of modern and vintage décor, offering an eclectic atmosphere. Grandio features two outdoor terraces, as well as two indoor spaces, each with its own distinct vibe.
Where Grandio is located:
Grandio is located in the heart of Budapest’s historic Jewish Quarter. It is conveniently located near some of the city’s most popular tourist attractions, such as the Parliament Building and the Chain Bridge. The bar is also just a few minutes away from the city’s main shopping district. The closest metro station is Deák Ferenc tér.
6. Dürer Kert
Dürer Kert is located on the fifth floor of an old apartment building, giving it a unique atmosphere that sets it apart from other bars in the city. The bar has been around since 2022 and offers a wide variety of drinks, from local Hungarian wines to craft beers, as well as a selection of Hungarian snacks. The atmosphere is generally relaxed, and there is plenty of space for people to mingle. The interior is decorated with old furniture and art pieces, creating a whimsical Ruin Bar atmosphere.
Where is Dürer Kert Located:
Dürer Kert is located at Akácfa utca 30, Budapest VII district, Hungary. It is located just off the main road of Budapest, making it easy to access. The area has plenty of parking spaces, making it easy to reach by car or public transport.
7. Mazel Tov
Located in the heart of Budapest’s Jewish Quarter, Mazel Tov is a unique ruin bar with a contemporary design. The bar is known for its eclectic décor and vibrant atmosphere, which features live music, art displays, and a variety of signature cocktails. Mazel Tov is one of the most popular ruin bars in Budapest and it's easy to see why.
Where is Mazel Tov located:
Mazel Tov is located at Dob utca 29, 1074 Budapest, Hungary. This Ruin Bar can be easily accessed via public transport from various parts of the city. It's also within walking distance from some of Budapest’s main attractions, including the Great Synagogue and Hungarian National Museum.
8. Csendes Vintage Bar & Café
Csendes Vintage Bar & Café is a charming and rustic Ruin Bar with a more relaxed vibe than Budfapest's other ruin bars. Csendes is filled with vintage furniture, chandeliers, and artwork, giving it a romantic and cozy feel. The atmosphere is great for socializing and meeting new people, making it a great place to spend an evening with friends. The bar serves a variety of classic cocktails and local beer, as well as homemade pastries and snacks.
Where is Csendes located:
Csendes Vintage Bar & Café is located in the Jewish Quarter of Budapest, near the Dohány Street Synagogue and the famous ruin bar, Szimpla Kert. The bar is easily accessible via public transportation, and there is ample street parking nearby.
UdvarRom is one of Budapest’s most beloved and unique ruin bars. Located in the city center, it offers a unique atmosphere with its exposed brick walls, dark wooden furniture, and cozy lighting. Its menu includes traditional Hungarian dishes, along with international flavors from around the world. It also features a wide selection of beers and cocktails, making it a great spot for drinks.
Where is UdvarRom located:
UdvarRom is located in District VII in central Budapest, near the intersection of Király utca and Dohány utca. It is only a few minutes away from other popular attractions, such as Andrássy Avenue and St. Stephen's Basilica. The bar is easy to spot due to its bright yellow sign and distinctive décor.
10. Szatyor Bar
Szatyor Bar is one of the most popular Ruin Bars in Budapest. Situated in the heart of the city, this cozy spot serves up all the classic Hungarian dishes and drinks, while also offering some more unique options. The atmosphere of the bar is warm and welcoming, making it a great spot to enjoy an evening with friends. The bar also offers regular live music performances, making it even more lively and fun.
Where is Szatyor Bar Located:
Szatyor Bar is located at Akácfa utca 1-3, in the seventh district of Budapest. It's close to other popular nightlife spots like Grandio and Anker't, making it easy to find and easily accessible from many other parts of the city.