All posts in Budapest Christmas

Budapest Christmas: places, events, markets, festivals, etc.

One of the most widespread and long running charity events in Budapest is called the Budapest Santa Claus Factory (in Hungarian: Mikulasgyar, where Mikulas comes from the word Nikolaus).

Budapest Christmas Charity

Budapest Christmas Charity on Vorosmarty Sq: Mikulasgyar

There are many people who visit the gift spots of the Santa Claus Factory to donate gifts for poor children in Hungary and in Hungarian communities outside the border of Hungary. Besides giving gifts, you can also enjoy some nice concerts and Christmas shows.

In Budapest you can also find several factories set up. Please donate, or join the enthusiastic volunteers of the Mikulasgyar communities (many of them comes from abroad to help). It is also fun to visit the factories with your children who will like sending gifts. :)

How to donate: you can buy pre-packed Christmas gifts for children who live in poverty. The Christmas goodies include: sweets, mug, puzzle, pencil. You can also donate your unwanted items suitable for children (no need to wrap them up).

Santa Claus Factories in Budapest

Official website of Mikulasgyar here.

Programs of the Santa Claus Factory in Budapest

There are more venues, so please check the venue to be at the right place and the right time for the Christmas charity concerts. The genre of the songs ranges from pop, rock to folk music.

56-osok tere (Felvonulási tér)

2012th December 6 (Thursday)
11:30 to 12:00 Fairy Factory
19:00 to 19:30 Percussion Ensemble Talamo
20:00 to 20:30 Tamas Somlo concert
2012th December 7 (Friday)
Mario 19:00 to 19:30
· Anita 7:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
· Thomas Palcsó 20:00 to 20:30

2012th December 8 (Saturday)
10:00 to 11:00 Mono Mano Band and Santa Claus
11:00 to 11:30 ·  Maya Mano
11:30 to 12:30 Palanta Mission ·
13:00 to 13:30 · 501st Legion Garrison in Hungary
13:30 to 14:00 Gaspar Győző
15:00 to 15:30 ·  Wild Buffalo
16:00 to 16:30 Zoltan Mujahid
17:00 to 17:30 · Budapest Strings
18:30 to 19:00 · Sajtkukacz Orchestra
19:00 to 19:30 · Jennifer Szirota

2012th December 9 (Sunday)
Christmas concerts
09:30 to 10:00 a.m. Peter Mikola
11:00 to 11:30 Csepp Children’s Theatre
11:30 to 12:30 Palanta Mission
12:30 to 13:00 Kobold Band
13:00 to 13:30 · 501st Legion Garrison in Hungary
14:30 to 15:00 Mrs. Columbo
15:30 to 16:00 Eva Fabian ·
16:00 to 16:30 · Quantum Cowboys
17:00 to 17:30 Tibor Csordás ·
17:30 to 18:00 Arpad Zsolt Meszaros ·
18:00 to 18:30 · Vera Tóth
19:00 to 19:30 · Positive Band

2012th December 10 (Monday)
Leslie Szabo 19:00 to 19:30
Thick Thomas · 7:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.

2012th December 11 (Tuesday)

19:00 to 19:30 Four Fathers

2012th December 12 (Wednesday)
20:00 to 20:30 English Rose
20:30 to 20:40 · Little Victor

2012th December 13 (Thursday)
And More Jazz Choir 20:00 to 20:30
2012th December 14 (Friday)
19:00 to 19:30 Zsuzsa Komonyi
7:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Mary Notari ·
20:00 to 20:30 · L.L. Junior
2012th December 15 (Saturday)
9:00 to 9:30 chickweed
10:00 to 10:30 · Neverenough Zenegóc
11:00 to 11:30 Currants clown ·
12:00 to 12:30 · HandaBanda Orchestra
13:00 to 13:30 · 501st Legion Garrison in Hungary
14:00 to 14:30 · M.É.Z
15:00 to 15:30 · Catfish Veronika Valentine Diamond Duo
16:00 to 16:30 · Drumsters
16:30 to 17:00 Transcarpathian Ukrainian Folk Dance Group “Mrijá”
· Periodic Andrea 17:00 to 17:30

2012th December 16 (Sunday)
10:00 to 10:30 Palinta Society
10:30 to 11:00 · Apacuka
12:00 to 12:30 · Mollini Magician
13:00 to 13:30 · 501st Legion Garrison in Hungary
13:30 to 14:00 · Pflum Orsi
· Sing 14:00 to 14:30 FREE!
Kaden Heni students
· Buffalo Wild 15:00 to 15:30
17:00 to 17:30 Attila ·
18:00 to 18:30 Fairy Factory
19:00 to 19:30 · Retroleum Orchestra
20:00 to 20:30 · Mr. Joe

2012th December 17 (Monday)
19:00 to 19:30 ·Baby Gabi
20:00 to 20:30 Regina · Dukai

2012th December 18 (Tuesday)
19:00 to 21:00

2012th December 19 (Wednesday)
19:30 to 20:00 BuliOne Orchestra
20:00 to 20:30 · Bon-Bon

2012th December 20 (Thursday)
Sari Ethnic German Dance Group 19:00 to 19:30
20:00 to 20:30 · Carbovaris

2012th December 21 (Friday)
19:00 to 19:30 Erik
Dani Torres · 7:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
20:30 to 21:00 Zoltan Miller



Westend City Center

2012th December 6 (Thursday)
4:00 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. Drop Theatre
17:00 to 17:30 · 501st Legion Garrison in Hungary
18:30 to 19:00 Tamas Somlo ·

2012th December 11 (Tuesday)
4:00 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. Leslie Szabo
· 17:00 to 6:00 p.m. Seedlings Mission

2012th December 13 (Thursday)
Seedlings Mission 5:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.

2012th December 18 (Tuesday)
4:00 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. Drop Theatre 4
· 17:00 to 6:00 p.m. Seedlings Mission

2012th December 20 (Thursday)
5:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. Seedlings Mission
19:00 to 19:30 · L.L. Junior


Golgota Gospel Concerts in Budapest will surely make your Budapest Christmas break more festive if you love gospels. The huge choir of Golgota Gospel Korus, the Hungarian gospel choir, will give Christmas concerts in Budapest in December 2012 at various venues.

Golgota Gospel Christmas concerts

Golgota Gospel Christmas concerts – Gabor Sebestyen Photography

December 16, 2012 at 7 pm at the Golgota Church, address: 13 Erzsebet korut, Budapest (on the big ring road, where tram 4 and 6 run all day). Free to enter.

December 20, 2012 at 6:30 pm at the MOM Park shopping mall on the Buda side of Budapest

December 21, 2012 at 5:30 pm at the Westend Shopping Mall by Nyugati Train Station in Budapest

Christmas Market Budapest Obuda

The Advent Fair in Obuda (Old Buda) is a lesser known but beautiful Christmas Market in Budapest held during the Advent weekends, where you will find lots of locals but very few tourists. So if you prefer to visit off the beaten track, secret Budapest events, non-touristy places on your Budapest visit, head to Old Buda by the Arpad Bridge on the Buda side.

Advent in Obuda Budapest

Advent in Obuda Budapest

While most tourists and locals flock to the Christmas Market on Vorosmarty Square, or to the St Stephen’s Basilica Christmas Market, both in the heart of Budapest, many locals will head to the Christmas market in Old Buda (District III of Budapest) to avoid the crowds, tourists, and feel the Advent market atmosphere as if visiting the Fair in a small town.

Obuda Advent Market

Obuda Christmas market is from Nov 30 – Dec  23, 2018

The historical Fo Square in Obuda definitely has a small town feeling, and is well worth the detour to join the Christmas events and activities, especially if there is a superb concert given by one of the best Hungarian bands. There are special programs (concerts, puppet shows, etc.) at the 4 Advent weekends. The programs usually start after 1 pm and are until 6-7pm.

Free Skating Rink

An artificial skating rink awaits visitors at the Advent market in Obuda. You can use it free of charge. Skates can be rented at a very affordable price (approx. HUF 600 for adults and HUF 400 for children)

Crafts Fair

Browse and buy some handcrafts at the Obuda Christmas Market.

Opening Hours:

Monday – Thursday  2pm – approx. 9 pm
Friday – Sunday  10am – approx. 10 pm
Closed on Dec 24

If your time allows, do visit Obuda Christmas fair too, not only the fair on Vörösmarty square and the Christmas market by the St Istvan Basilica.

Pony at the Budapest Christmas Fair

Pony at the Budapest Christmas Fair

Old Buda (Óbuda in Hungarian) is the old part of Buda town (the hilly side of BUDApest), established by the Romans as a border town. Aquincum, the Roman ruins of Old Buda can still be seen, and its museum is worth a visit if you like history, antiquity and the Roman era. It takes approx, 20-30 min to get to the Xmas Fair in Obuda from the city center of Budapest. The Christmas Market will take place in the nice Main Square (Fő tér) of Obuda, which is a short ride from downtown Budapest.

When is the Advent Fair in Obuda, Budapest?

The market is open during the Advent period, with many events at the weekends (from Friday evening to Sunday evening). The Christmas market in Obuda usually starts late November, and features many nice folk, jazz, world music concerts, dozens of Xmas market stalls with nice hand crafted gifts, toys, jewelries, clothes, etc. and of course lots of yummy foods (traditional Hungarian snacks, blood pudding, live pudding, Christmas pastries, sweets, etc.).

Christmas Activities at the Advent Fair in Obuda, Budapest

Budapest Christmas market skating rink

Budapest Christmas market skating rink

Besides eating traditional Hungarian delicacies and sampling the local beverages (alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks, from mulled wines, palinka to cordial), or buying gifts what else can you do at the Christmas Fair in Óbuda? Children can pet animals in the small petting stable (e.g. the pony). All who like skating will enjoy the artificial rink at the Obuda Christmas Market.

Amd of course you can enjoy the Christmas Concerts in Obuda! Concerts for the big and the small, by the big and the small. And puppet theater performances, folk dance shows (yes, even in freezing winter time). Let’s see some of the bands and performers at the Óbuda Advent Market.

Christmas Concerts at the Xmas Fair in Obuda

Each weekend during the Advent period, from late November, to mid December, will bring some nice concerts. The Christmas concerts are varied in their genre: ragtime, world music, jazz or folk music are mostly on the menu.

Concerts can start at midday (12 pm), 3pm, 4pm, 5pm, 6pm, or 7pm. Usually on the hour, almost every hour – on Saturdays and Sundays. Some of the Hungarian bands that were playing at former Obuda Christmas markets in Budapest are Mistral, Veronika Harcsa Jazz Quartet, Hot Jazz Band, Budapest Ragtime Band, Kalaka, Balazs Szabo Band, Kerekes Folk Band, the fantastic Besh o droM, the wine singers of Vivat Bacchus, Cimbaliband, the Christmas Carols performed by Nagykovacsi Choir, the Xmas concert of the Bra­un­hax­ler Dal­kör, Martina Kiraly jazz concert, Budapest Show Choir, Tulipant Folk Band, Buda Folk Band, Gyorgy Ferenczi and the Rackajam (lively world music), etc. There are many children choirs singing Christmas songs around midday, like the Agi Kemeny Children Choir, the Kicsi Rigók (Little Blackbirds) Children Choir, etc.

What we especially like about the Christmas market in Old Buda district on the Fo Square is that locals are more intensively participating in the Advent market, by making Christmas cakes and bringing other home made foods to share. Share the peace and joy as well as our old traditions and future merriments.

The official website of Obuda Advent Market is here.

The annual Christmas events at the Museum of Ethnography can be a nice experience during the Advent in Budapest, Hungary.

Hungarian Christmas

Hungarian Christmas Bethlehem Play from the 1900s

2012 Programs of the Museum of Ethnography Xmas events:

14:00 to 18:00, Dec 15 2012

Prices: HUF 1400 for adults, HUF 700 for kids.
Waiting for Christmas craft workshop
Making Christmas tree and interior ornaments, crafting Christmas gifts

All children and parents are welcome to create a lovely festive paper lamp, a traditional Hungarian maize husk angel, some simple Christmas tree decorations inspired by old Christmas motifs in Hungary, make Christmas greeting cards on colored cardboard or on soft metal plates, or even try to make a paper nativity scene as well.

15:30, Dec 15 2012
Christmas Advent
Guided Tour (although the guided tour is in Hungarian, there are many parts, e.g. the film screenings, you can enjoy without speaking a word in Hungarian)

Why you and I celebrate Christmas? Was there always a Christmas tree in the homes of families or is it a relatively new tradition? What Christmas gifts were given to Hungarian children, had there been a Xmas gift at all?
The Hungarian winter solstice festivities associated with Christmas are rich in faiths, beliefs and rituals. Hungarian folk songs, and exhibits will help to recall the old rustic Christmas feelings.

17:00, Dec 15 2012
The Garden of Upward Sounds
Songs of the Day Moon Band (HolddalaNap Band), special Christmas Concert

“Up runs the soul’s desire, wing many tremble in the sky atrium. Day in the West and the East, in ancient times and now in this place, poems and songs were set to their home country to run.” These up running poems inspired the band for their Christmas concert. The music is only acoustic, world music and folk music pieces.

You can hear Flamenco Christmas carols, Egyptian Coptic Christian songs, carols from Moldavia, along with the fast-paced songs of the Moon Day Band to which you can even dance.
The band members are outstanding musicians, folk musicians like Lydia Draskóczy, the Zurgó Orchestra violinist, Arpad Keresztes Nagy playing on koboz (and old string instument), Robert Vidak guitarist, who is one of the gems amongst Hungarian Flamencos guitarists, and Csaba Bakos young master of the Balkan rhythms. Do enjoy the rhythmic dance music, the simplicity and power of Hungarian folk music, flamenco and Balkan inspirations.

Bakos, Csaba – percussion
Draskóczy Lydia – violin
Anna’s Goulash – for
Arpad Nagy of the Cross – vocals, lute, flute
Robert Vida – Guitar

About the band: Facebook / Moon Day songs, / Moon Day Song

Budapest Saturnalia festival is held at the Roman museum of Budapest called Aquincum. The Christmas Festival in Roman Style is an annual event much awaited by fans of the ancient Roman times, culture, lifestyle and history in Hungary.

Saturnalia Budapest

Saturnalia Budapest ( Photo)

Budapest Saturnalia 2012: The Roots of Christmas festivities in the Antiquity

Date of the event: December 04 – December 07, 2012, from 10 am to 4 pm
Theme of 2012: Saturnalia – The Roots of Christmas festivities in the Antiquity

Venue: the ancient style ‘Christmas’ is held at: Aquincum Museum, Exhibition Hall, District III  in Budapest, at 135 Szentendre Way
“The best of times!” according to Catullus, and indeed, Saturnalia was a really happy festival from Dec 17 to Dec 23 in ancient Rome, not the least for the slaves who could temporarily enjoy being the masters in the reversal of roles during Saturnalia.

Kids Workshop in Aquincum in December

Kids Workshop in Aquincum in December (photo source:

The merry festival of Saturnalia was dedicated to the Roman god of Saturn, i.e. the god of agriculture and joy in the ancient times. Saturnalia is considered to be the ancestor of the modern day Christmas festivals.
Saturnalia Budapest is organized by Aquincum Museum and the Circle of Friends.

Detailed program of Budapest Saturnalia 2012

  • Interactive guided tour of the permanent exhibition of Aquincum Museum, Budapest
  • “How was the ancient Saturnalia” – conversation about the antique roots of Christmas celebrations
  • crafting Antique Christmas gifts i.e. hand made Xmas gifts with Antique motifs
  • Saturnalia pools: a quiz about Saturnalia
  • Children programs and workshops

Entrance fee: HUF 700

For further information please contact the museum itself

Aquincum Museum, Budapest

Phone: 430-1081

Christmas Opening Hours at Budapest Aquincum 2012