Budapest lion bridge | Budapest Chain Bridge

Budapest Chain Bridge

Chain bridge is one of the iconic monuments in Budapest and one of many reasons to visit Budapest.

Out of 8 Budapest bridges connecting Buda and Pest, it is considered the face of Budapest.

Not only the architecture,but the history of Chain Bridge makes it a must thing to do in Budapest.

Since Széchenyi chain bridge was closed for sometime, anyone planning their visit to Hungary would be wondering, is the chain bridge in Budapest closed? Which is not the case.

Budapest lion bridge construction continued for a long time,starting in 2021 and finishing at the end of 2023. Chain bridge Budapest reopening was done in December 2022 for only pedestrians, while BKK public transport vehicles,bicycles and taxis can also cross Chain Bridge.

Names of Budapest Chain Bridge

Chain Bridge Budapest
Chain Bridge Budapest

The official Hungarian name of Chain Bridge in Budapest is Széchenyi Lánchíd.

For English speaking visitors, the name is pronounced as “Say Che ni Lan chid ”.

Szechenyi originates from the person who proposed the construction of the bridge. “Lánc” is “Chain” in English, while “Hid” is “Bridge”.

Some even identify Szechenyi Lanchid with the Budapest bridge with lions as it is the famous bridge in Budapest with lions.

As it is closer to the Budapest Jewish shoe memorial which is around 550 meter (1800 feet) on the pest side. Some call it the Budapest bridge with shoes.

Chain bridge is a suspension bridge in Budapest.

Chain Bridge Location

Chain bridge is located around the city center of Budapest.

You can walk from Deak ferenc square or Vorosmarty square to the pest end of the chain bridge in 10 to 13 minutes as its a distance of 600m (1800 feet).

From the Buda side, the other end of Chain bridge is closer to Clark Adam Square.

Chain Bridge History

Observing the challenges of the growing Budapest population to cross the Danube, Istvan Széchenyi was the one proposing the construction of a bridge connecting Buda and Pest.

The initial activities for bridge construction were started around 1839,with many participants in terms of technical and financial support. However, a Scottish engineer named Adam Clark was the main technical lead.

This is one of the reasons as the square next to Chain bridge on Buda side is named as Clark Adam square.

The bridge was officially opened to the public in 1849. Within the next 16 years, the tunnel next to Chain bridge was also constructed and made operational for traffic.

Chain bridge during 2nd world war

Chain bridge was destroyed in January 1945 during the 2nd world war.

The reconstruction for the chain bridge started in 1947 and was completed in 1949.

Since the reconstruction after the 2nd world war, the chain bridge has gone through minor visual improvements.

The recent repair and renovation work is one of the biggest in the last 50 years as chain bridge closure was between April 2021 and December 2023.

What is the Széchenyi chain bridge famous for?

Budapest Chain Bridge
Budapest Chain Bridge

Széchenyi chain bridge is famous for being the oldest and first stone made bridge connecting Buda and pest.Additionally, the lion statues erected at the abutments on both ends of the Bridge bring it a proud feeling.

However, the famous story associated with these lions is that they do not have tongues.

The legend says that it was a huge drama at the installation of statues when the public found out that lions are without tongues.

Can you walk over the Budapest lion bridge Budapest?

Yes, Lion bridge Budapest is very much pedestrian friendly.

There are pathways for pedestrians as well as cyclists to cross the Danube through the Chain bridge.

The pathways exist on both sides of the bridge and are around 10 feet wide.

Hence, allowing two way pedestrian traffic on both sides of the bridge.

Chain bridge Budapest closed 2024?

If you are traveling to Budapest in 2023, you would love to walk over the chain bridge. The next question you would have is whether Chain Bridge is closed?

Chain bridge was closed for maintenance in between June 2021 and December 2022.

In 2024, the chain bridge has been opened for pedestrians,BKK vehicles,cyclists and taxis.

However, keep in mind that since its a famous bridge in Budapest, even after opening in December 2022, it may get closed occasionally for movie shooting .

What river is the Budapest Chain Bridge built upon?

The Chain Bridge of Budapest is built across the Danube. Danube is also called Duna locally.

However, it is one of the biggest rivers crossing in Budapest.

How long does it take to walk across Chain bridge?

As the length of Chain bridge is around 360 meter which is around 900 feet.

The walk from one end to the other side of Chain Bridge Budapest takes approximately 10 mins.

Since many tourists take pictures here, you can easily spend half an hour or more crossing the bridge.

Can you drive across the Budapest Chain bridge?

After Budapest chain bridge renovation in December 2023, driving of private cars is still not allowed. However, you can drive across the chain bridge with a bicycle,BKK vehicle (Public transport) or through a taxi.

There is no tram crossing the chain bridge,however, Budapest public transport provides bus service that crosses the  chain bridge.

Is there a fee to walk across Chain Bridge?

Chain bridge is free to walk on. There are no fees for walking across  it.

Is there a fee to drive across Budapest Chain Bridge?

There are no fees or toll to cross the chain bridge. It is free for the public to cross either through personal or rented vehicles.

 What is Chain bridge distance to Budapest shoes?

Chain Bridge View at night from Buda Castle
Chain Bridge View at night from Buda Castle

If you are on the pest side of Budapest, you can reach Budapest Jewish Shoes memorial by walking from the Chain Bridge.

The distance is around 600m (around 2000 feet) and it will take 10 mins walk to reach the Shoes monument.

Is it safe to visit Chain bridge?

Budapest’s chain bridge is quite safe to walk.

There is a huge block between sidewalks on each side and the traffic,hence, no car can enter the walking area.

There are cyclists and scooters which are going fast, and require caution to avoid any collision.

Is Budapest Chain Bridge safe at night?

Budapest Chain bridge is safe for walking across the Danube at night.

You can walk here around sunset,in the midnight as well as during the sunrise without any security issues.

Budapest is famous for its ruin pubs,which provide a unique experience. If you are traveling with your friends,make sure to attend a Ruin pub crawl to visit the best ones.

Are there sitting arrangements on Chain Bridge?

There is no option for sitting on the sidewalks of Chain Bridge.

It is a bridge where the sidewalks have a flowing pedestrian traffic.You can only take pictures while walking but there is no place to rest on it.

If you want to sit for sometime on some bridge for sometime,you should visit liberty bridge Budapest.

Sunset and Sunrise experience at Chain Bridge

Chain bridge is a great place to enjoy the Budapest sunset and sunrise.

There is no seating arrangement,hence you may have to stand to watch sunset or sunrise for 15 to 20 mins.

In order to watch the Budapest sunset in summer, the good time slots are between 20 40 to 21 00, in June/July/August. Sunrise time in Budapest is between 0400 and 0430.

What are the attractions near Chain Bridge?

Varkert Bazar and Buda Castle near Chain bridge Budapest
Varkert Bazar and Buda Castle near Chain bridge Budapest

The main attractions on Buda Side closer to Chain bridge are Tunnel(Budai Váralagút),Buda Castle,Varkert Bazar, and Fisherman Bastian. On the Pest side, the Shoes Memorial,Budapest Parliament and Budapest city center are in a radius of 600 meter from the chain bridge.

Is Chain bridge Budapest Clean?

Chain bridge was well maintained and clean even before renovation and the same is expected after the repair activities are finished. You will not notice any kind of litter or smelly area around,despite a lot of tourists walking across the Budapest Bridges.

Can you put love locks on Chain Bridge?

The walls and chains of Chain bridge were not very love lock compatible,hence, you could see rare love locks put on to a certain point. It will be interesting to see if after renovation the new design will allow such a facility.

Is the Budapest Chain Bridge operational?

The Chain bridge is operational and open for any kind of cross traffic involving BKK vehicles,taxis and bicycles between Buda and Pest. Chain Bridge, also known as Széchenyi Lánchíd, has been reopened after renovation in December 2023.

How old is the Budapest chain bridge?

Chain bridge is considered to be the oldest bridge in Budapest. Before it, the only possibility to cross between buda and pest was through boats and ships.

Is it better to walk or drive across Chain Bridge?

Walking on Chain Bridge Budapest is definitely a better option for tourists visiting Budapest for the first time. Driving across Budapest Chain bridge is also a great experience,which can be done either through a taxi or a Bus operated by BKK Budapest bus lines.

Are there restaurants under Chain Bridge?

There is no area under the chain bridge for restaurants or any other activity.

If you want to have food closer to Chain bridge, the recommended closest area is to walk towards the Erzsebet bridge on the pest side and you will see many restaurants.