- Type: Churches/Religious Sites, Sightseeing
- Time to Spend: 1 to 2 hours
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The large, Romanesque-style Matthias Church in Castle Hill has been around for centuries and, in many ways, its history corresponds to that of the Budapest itself. Built in the 13th century, Matthias was the city's first parish church. However, it was transformed into a mosque during the 1541 Turkish occupation, and remained an Islamic place of worship until the Turkish expulsion nearly 150 years later. Now tourists come to the church to admire its imposing architecture, take in its historical symbolism, and to spend some time studying its impressive artwork (much of which was repainted or restored after 1686, and again at the end of the 19th century).
Don't forget to check out the ecclesiastical art museum, also housed within the church. You can see the medieval crypt where 10th-century King Béla III and his wife Agnes are buried, as well replicas of royal jewels and other religious artifacts.
You can visit Matthias Church Monday through Friday, on Saturday mornings and on Sunday afternoons. Admission costs 1,000 HUF (about $4.60 USD) for adults and 700 HUF (about $3.20 USD) for students and seniors (children under age 6 are admitted for free).