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St. Stephen's Day19-22 August, 2021

St. Stephen's DayBudapest



Dear Visitors,


Please be advised that the events and programmes announced on the website will be held depending on the severity of the prevailing pandemic situation. As such, the information in the article serves information purposes only. The organisers reserve the right to cancel or postpone such events and programmes. Make sure to visit the events’ official website for the latest news.

St. Stephen's Day

God bless you, Hungary!


This year's St. Stephen's Day celebrations are set to be the biggest ever.

This year, we will celebrate St Stephen's Day, the founding of the Hungarian state, in a grand three-and-a-half-day event set to take place in more than 20 locations. The celebrations will include state ceremonies, the St Stephen's Day parade, the hoisting of the national flag, the passing out ceremony of military officers, the Holy Mass, and of course, the fireworks display. There will also be free admission to visit the Holy Crown in the Parliament building. Furthermore, young and old can enjoy various festive activities, which can be followed on the St Stephen's Day website and via the dedicated mobile app. The St. Stephen's Day Bistros will offer various specially labelled, affordable foods and drinks.



The celebration of our statehood is an excellent opportunity to look back on the past one thousand years of history with all its periods, which led us to where we are today. Hungary, proud of her traditions and past, a strong and forward-looking country. In this spirit, the three-and-a-half-day series of events will kick off on 19 August at 16:00, with the start of the Street Music Festival, Food Truck Show, and the Szabadrét Festival. The Street Music Festival and Food Truck Show will bring the Veszprém Street Music Festival to Szabadság Square, with various music genres and food trucks serving the finest food to ensure a gastronomic experience. 48 artists will perform 151 concerts over the three days here, on seven stages and five street music venues. The Szabadrét Festival is a relaxed, picnic-style programme for young people on Erzsébet Square, with a line-up of Hungarian performers, mainly electronic music producers, DJs, and live, progressive cross genre acts like Zagar, Mius, Belau, Galactic Jackson, Deva or the Barabás Lőrincz Quartet.



The St. Stephen's Day state ceremony will take place on Kossuth Square, with the hoisting of the national flag and the passing-out parade of military officers on 20 August starting at 8:00. This will be followed by the air parade over the Danube from 9:00, a festive procession on Andrássy Avenue from 10:00, the ceremonial Holy Mass and the ensuing Procession of the Holy Right Hand in St. Stephen's Basilica from 17:00. The new "Fire and Lights" fireworks display starting at 21:00 will be the main performance of the evening. The show will last 34 minutes, during which we will enjoy a complex audio-visual experience. In addition to the state ceremonies, the Holy Crown will be open to the public free of charge in the Parliament from 9:00 to 12:00 on 20 August, and from 10:00 to 16:00 on 21 August.



Budapest will host a series of unprecedented festival events. A new feature this year will be the Heroes' Way, commemorating seven prominent figures of Hungarian history, with spectacular role-playing performances along the Tóth Árpád Promenade in the Buda Castle. The Kapisztrán Square will also host military displays and concerts by a military band. The country's largest folk art festival, the 35th Festival of Folk Arts, will be held free of charge for the first time, as part of the St Stephen's Day celebrations on the stretch between Kapisztrán Square and Szentháromság Square. The theme of this family festival, evoking the atmosphere of the fairs of the past will focus on crafts related to hunting and fishing.



Panorama Classical will premiere in the Garden of Philosophers on Gellért Hill, where the audience can enjoy classical music concerts in a picnic setting with a magnificent panorama. The programme on the Buda side will also offer the Retro Tabán, an exciting musical treat in the Tabán, a cult venue with a decades-old rock and pop concert tradition. The venue will feature Ladánybene27, TNT, Róbert Szikora and the R-Go, Back II Black, Tamás Hevesi, Emelet, Ádám Török and Mini, Mobilmánia, Beatrice, Gyula Deák Bill, the Hooligans and Skorpió.



One of the main events of St. Stephen's Day will be the trend-setting Parade on Andrássy Avenue, which will be presented in three blocks: Earth, the Homeland and the Nation. The programme will feature giant floats in the spirit of the theme along Andrássy Avenue, including legendary animals of the Hungarian founding myths, but also St Stephen and the Virgin Mary, as well as the tricolour flag symbolising the nation. In addition to the huge installations, there will also be a spectacular show with hundreds of performers, making this event worth a visit.



For more than ten years, the Street of Hungarian Flavours in Lánchíd Street has been an essential event of the St Stephen's Day celebrations, where those interested are always treated to culinary delights. A special feature of the event is that Hungary's Cake and Sugar-Free Cake of the Year are offered to the public for tasting for the first time. This is also the event where the winners of the St Stephen's Day traditional wheat flour and innovative bread competition are presented. Alkotmány Street will be lined with the Promenade of Cities exhibition, presenting the cultural treasures of our country, broadening our historical knowledge through a display of the cities in our country and in the territory of historical Hungary beyond the present borders. In the part of the street near the Parliament, visitors can admire the Golden Train, originally built in 1938, but later rebuilt, which travelled around the territory of historic Hungary carrying our national relic, the Holy Right Hand.



Staying in downtown Budapest, on 15 March Square, Hungarian sports icons will talk about their successes and failures at the SportHeroes venue. The aim of this commemoration is to ensure that our nation's most memorable sporting events set a real example for future generations and encourage them to lead exercise-conscious lifestyles. In the square in front of the Vigadó surrounding the iconic fountain, the Operetta Promenade stage will host a series of performances by artists from the Budapest Operetta Theatre. Iconic dishes of the country's best traditional Hungarian restaurants will be on offer at Vörösmarty Square, as part of the Csárda Festival. In addition to the exceptional gastronomic experience, the traditional festival will also feature dance performances and live music concerts on a stage set in the square. The world-famous Mandoki Soulmates band, featuring a line-up of iconic rock and jazz musicians, will return to the St. Stephen's Basilica on 21 August with an album release concert.



Over the weekend, tens of thousands of people are expected to attend the Road Movie Live concert series at Műegyetem Quay, where young and old can all find their favourites performing in the diverse line-up of artists. Blahalouisiana, Ivan & The Parazol, Road, Tankcsapda, Ferenc Demjén, Kelemen Kabátban, Margaret Island, Tamás Horváth, Halott Pénz and Ákos will all be performing among others. A Fashion & Design Festival will take place on the other side of the Danube, on the Nehru Embankment and in the Bálna, presenting the best of Hungarian designers and applied artists. The Bálna will also host exhibition stands with contemporary Hungarian fashion and design products, as well as workshops, lectures and round-table discussions. The Nehru Embankment next to the Bálna will host a Literary Book Stage, where contemporary performers will read literary works with musical accompaniment. The adjacent Pop-up Cinema screen will show classic and contemporary Hungarian films on the three nights of the event.



The St. Stephen's Day celebrations will offer something for the children and those young at heart in the exciting Children's Park, organised in the area between the Vajdahunyad Castle and the Kós Károly Promenade. Among other things, there will be prince and princess training programs, game installations, and the Pintyőke stage will feature some of István Csukás's most beloved fairy tale heroes.



Detailed information about the events of St. Stephen's Day is available on the website and on the dedicated St. Stephen's Day 2021 mobile app, where the organisers continuously provide information to help the public find their way around.



VIDEO – God bless you, Hungary! 2021