Military History Museum, Budapest
Before visiting this museum it is useful to read some pages on the history of Hungary otherwise the visit will limit itself to a look at weapons, uniforms, military equipments without being able to connect them with the events they represent.
The Museum of Military History has a large collection of weaponry and war memorabilia housed on two main floors. The museum has permanent collections starting with the wars against the Turks (16 - 17th century) covering the 1848 revolution and War of Independence against the Habsburg, both World Wars and the 1956 uprising, together with more modern displays showing machinery, guns and other military equipment used by the Hungarian army.
On the first floor exhibits on military history during the Austro-Hungarian Empire, including uniforms worn by the Hungarian Hussar regiment.
In 1914 as part of the Austrian empire Hungary was on the side of Germany and lost many territories in 1918. Under Miklos Horthy, Hungary made an alliance with Nazi Germany and fought WW2 on their side. There are large display cases featuring models and battle scenes from World War II.
Hungary was for the second time in the century in the camp of the losers and got dominated by the Soviet Union in 1948 under Rakosi and his Stalinist regime which led to the revolution of 1956.
The displays devoted to the tragic events of the 13 days uprising in October 1956 are the most poignant by far. Remarkable are the red, white and green Hungarian flags pierced in the centre. The revolutionaries cut the communist emblem which decorated the centre of the flag.
A complex and dramatic history!
I would advise this museum visit to the true amateurs.
Most notices are only in Hungarian, a few are in English. (May have changed somewhat these last years)
This long tip was written in French and separately in English at a time where VT limited the number of characters ==========
Avant de visiter ce musée il est utile de lire quelques pages sur l'histoire de la Hongrie sans quoi la visite se limitera à regarder avec plus ou moins d'intérêt des armes, uniformes, équipements militaires sans pouvoir les relier aux événements qu'ils représentent.
Les salles du musée sont consacrées aux armes en Hongrie du 9e au 17e siècle,les deux guerres mondiales, la révolution des 13 jours de 1956, l'aviation hongroise, les forteresses. .
Au travers des départements de ce musée on trouve un fil conducteur qui est celui de la lutte du peuple hongrois pour sa liberté, indépendance et intégrité territoriale.
On y voit la lutte du peuple Magyar contre la domination et occupation Turc Ottomane au 16e et 17e siècle, la lutte contre l'absolutisme autrichien des Habsbourg au 18e et 19e siècles, la guerre au sein de la coalition Allemagne -Autriche en 1914-18, le démembrement de l'empire austro-hongrois en 1918, l'instauration en 1919 d'une République Soviétique Hongroise, l'occupation par la Roumanie. En juin 1920 le traité de Trianon fixa les limites du royaume de Hongrie, sans roi, mais régenté par l'amiral Miklos Horthy.
La Hongrie avait perdu 71% de son territoire d'avant guerre. Pour récupérer ces territoires, Horthy en 1930 fit alliance avec l'Allemagne nazie. Après la guerre de 1940-45, la Hongrie se trouva pour la seconde fois en un siècle dans le camp des vaincus et passa sous domination Soviétique en 1948 sous Rakosi et son régime stalinien qui conduisit à la révolution de fin octobre 1956.
On remarquera les drapeaux rouge, blanc, vert de cette époque troués au centre. Les révolutionnaires découpaient l'emblème communiste qui ornait le centre du drapeau.
En 1989-1990 la Hongrie retrouva sa totale liberté.
Complexe et dramatique histoire qu'il vaut mieux connaître avant de visiter ce musée que je réserverais aux vrais amateurs.
Les indications sont en hongrois, quelques panneaux d'informations historiques sont en anglais.
Open: 1/10 - 31/03 10 -16 h
1/04 - 30/09 10 - 18 h
Closed on Monday
Price: 800 HUF; 6 - 26 yr 400 HUF; > 62yr 400 HUF
Taking photos: 600 HUF
This is at the very end of the old part of town on Lovas street. Called Orzagos Hadtorteneti. The whole museum is dedicated to the soldiers of Hungary, and while we were there, an exhibit showed the trials of war during their fight in mostly WWI. It was worth the tour to see the dedication to the countrymen who fought for the Hungarian right with might. They have a number of detail explanations of the trials and tough times the country has had to endure, but have a proud loyal group soldiering.
On the castle district you will find the museum of warfare in the northern part.
This is a very impressive building that was barracks and now you can see exhibitions about history of warfare and military.
To enter the museum you should pay 300 Forint.
Beeing a military history lover I cannot miss a museum of this kind wherever I go. This one revealed itself as a negative experience. First, you reach a square with the museum building and an entrance which after all is not the correct one. So, there is a guy at this entrance who probably will repeat a few words in hungarian and pointing the right way, which is still obscure after this encounter. Well, eventually we found the right entrance. There is a clear indication that visitors who wants to take pics will have to pay a fee, which is fair. However, as soon as you start taking pictures you will be stopped because of the flash. Now, how do you take a picture inside a museum, dark as usual? Perhaps with a tripod. I'm not sure if the lady guardians would say something about a visitor carrying a tripod around, specially because you will nbot be allowed to carry any hand volumes. So, you just paid €3 for thye right to take pictures but you are not allowed to actually take pictures. Bravo !!
Captions are mainly in hungarian whith just a few in english. The whole orientation of the exibits is a mess. No visitor will have a clear picture of the way to follow the logic of the exhibition. Workers there won't speak a word in english and their only job is to keep the eyes wide open and watch closely the visitors, which is not rare in other museums but is really annoying.
The exhibition itself is not bad, but it's not good neither. Average exhibits, awfull organization, visitor unfriendly.
This museum is located in the Buda part of town, rather close to the castle. The most interesting part deals with the Hungarian uprising against the Habsburg Emperors. Plenty of uniforms and weaponry. If you are interested in history and not short on time, worth a visit - if you only have three days or less, you might want to skip it.
On the north side of the Kapisztran square there is a nice building with two guns in front of the door: this is the Museum of the Military history. Inside it you can find many guns, swords, uniforms, flags and much more about war. Inside there is also the history of the fortress of Buda from the beginning until now. Outside the museum there are some guns which come from different country.
The Military History Museum is in the former army barracks dating from the 1830s. Look at the walls and you will find cannonballs embedded, in memory of the Hungarian army which liberated Buda Castle in 1849. You will find exhibits on the 1848 revolution and war for independence, the Hungarian Army from 1922 to 1944, and the 1956 revolution.
Located close to Fishermans Bastion, the military museum is an interesting place to spend an hour, full of memoriabilia and artifacts.