Vizivaros Tourist Attractions
Viziváros, the "Water Town", occupies a narrow terrace between Castle Hill and the Danube. Right up until the Turkish period it was fortified. The Turks installed baths in that part of the town which was chiefly inhabited by fishermen, handworkers and merchants, and they turned the existing churches into mosques. A great deal of building went on in the Baroque period, and this was when St Anne's Church was built. Since the end of the last century the townscape has altered considerably as a result of the building of multi-storied blocks of flats.This district was often flooded in the past when the Danube overflowed its banks. The river was widened in an attempt to alleviate the problem, but unfortunately this in turn led to a sinking of the water-table. As a consequence some of the older buildings subsided and could only be preserved by means of expensive technology.
The Chain Bridge is a beautiful old bridge over the Danube, with supporting chains fixed to grand pillars. It was originally opened in 1849, severely damaged during WWII, fixed, and then fully restored in 1987.
St Anne's Church
The twin-towered St Anne's Church, (Szent Anna-templom) which was built between 1740 and 1758 to plans by Christoph and Michael Hamom and Matthäus Nepauer, is one of the most beautiful Baroque buildings in present-day Hungary. The magnificent High Altar, portraying St Anne with her daughter Mary in the Temple of Jerusalem, dates from 1773 and is by Carlo Bebo, who also designed the pulpit.The side altars contain fine sculptures by Anton Eberhard and splendid paintings by the Viennese artist Franz Wagenschön.
This square in front of St Anne's Church is named after Count Lajos Batthyány, and has always been the center of Víziváros and was once the market place. There are many notable buildings around the square. These include the former White Cross Inn (No. 4), dating from 1770, mainly Baroque with a Rococo front; Hickisch House (No. 3), built in 1795 in the Mid 18th C plait style, and a 19th C Franciscan monastery on the north side.
The König Baths (Király-fürdõ) have nothing to do with kings. They were the property in the 19th C of a family named König and are among the most interesting establishments of their kind in Budapest. The oldest part of the building is the Hamam (Turkish for bath) built in 1570 under Mustafa Pasüa. In the Baroque period the baths were considerably enlarged, and a wing and courtyard added in the 19th C.
The iron-foundry, built in the middle of the last century by Abraham Ganz is the core of the Ganz industrial complex (locomotives, wagons, cranes, etc.) which became famous far beyond the borders of Hungary. The old foundry has quite recently been established as a museum of industrial history.
St Florian's Chapel
This little church (Szent Flórián-kápolna) is by the architect M. Nepauer (1759/60). It is now used as a local church by members of the Greek Catholic faith. On the façade of St Florian's can be seen statues of St Nicholas, St Florian and St Blaise. There were at one time paintings and sculptures by F. Wagenschôn, J. Weber and others inside the church, but these are now in the Historical Museum on Castle Hill.Opposite St Florian's Church stands the Hungarian Foreign Ministry (Külügyminisztérium).
Around Corvin Square lie a number of notable 18th C buildings (Nos. 2, 3, 4 and 5). On the south side of the square stands the former Capuchin monastery with a church which still shows considerable Turkish influence in its architecture and ornamentation. On the north side is the former Buda Redoubt, now used for various cultural purposes.
Jószef Bem Square
On the banks of the Danube further to the northeast lies a square named after the Polish General Jószef Bem (1794-1850), who was a successful leader of the Honvéd troops in the Hungarian War of Liberation. On the plinth of the memorial can be seen works by the lyric poet Sándor Petófi who was Bem's Adjutant.
Former Café Friedl
The once famous café Friedl with origins going back to the 15th C, was rebuilt in the 18th C and in 1811 received its neat Mid 18th C plait style façade and corner oriel. The Biedermeier furnishings are well worth seeing.
St Elisabeth's Church
St Elisabeth's Church This Baroque church, erected in 1757 on the foundations of a Turkish building, originally belonged to the Franciscans. In 1785 it was transferred to the Order of Elisabeth, who ran a hospice here.