Memento Park - also known as Szobor Park - is an open air park with monumental statues from the time of communist rule, located in the south-western outskirts of Budapest. Post-1989 and the fall of the "Iron Curtain", many statues were dismantled or used as scrap metal, as they were a reminder of the communist dictatorship, but a few were saved as historic monuments. The statues reflect the typical range of communist "heroic" art: sculptures of "wise" political leaders in thoughtful reflection or with dramatic gestures, war heroes and soldiers, liberated and empowered workers etc. etc., some dramatically oversized (see photo). Guided tours are on offer and worth taking. A worthwhile half-day-trip.
Statue Park is a very interesting place that allows visitors to get a glimpse of what life was like in communist Hungary. All of these statues were at one time in downtown Budapest, but in the early 90s, everyone decided to move them to a park in the suburbs. This park is very popular with tourists. You can view statues of Lenin, Karl Marx, and other various Hungarian statues. There was an extremely large Stalin statue, but it was damaged and now only his boots remain. At the gift shop you can buy communist memorabilia and listen to the music of the Red Army Choir. Taking photographs is a must. I recommend visiting Statue Park to history lovers and anyone else interested in Hungary's history.
When the Iron Curtain fell, and the Communists lost power, the Hungarians removed all the communist statues, plaques, reliefs and dumped them outside of town. Then they turned it into a tourist attraction: Memento Park. Everything communist is celebrated here, from farm workers, to Spanish revolutionaries, from Lenin to the fathers of Hungarian communism: Szamuely, Kun, and Landler.
It's a must for any fan of socialist realism, or just fascinated by what Budapest would have looked like under Communism. It's a bit expensive for what you get, though. Tickets are 1500 forints, and you can walk around very slowly in about 30 minutes. The park is also not in a nice part of Buda. Although the bus ride takes you through some of the most exclusive parts of Buda, the park itself is on the edge of town under looming electricity pylons and a concrete water tower.
It's open every day of the week from ten until sunset. You can take a direct bus from Deak Ter, but at 4,500 forints it is outrageously expensive. Public transport isn't that difficult, although you'll need to be looking out for the stop as the electronic information boards don't seem to work that far out of the city. Keep your eye out for a huge red brick gate behind some scruffy wooden barracks, with a concrete water tower in the background. See that and it's the next stop.
It's definitely worth the little extra effort required to visit Statue Park on the outskirts of the city. Seeing the statues helped me to begin to understand just a little of what life was like under the communist dictatorship. And getting there meant I saw parts of suburban Buda I would otherwise have ignored.
Statue Park is open every day from 10 till sunset, and there's a souvenir shop and toilets on-site. And a Trabant. :-)
You could follow the directions below. Or, even better in my opinion, take tram 19 or 49 to Etele ter, then the yellow bus (every 15 minutes) from the bus station nearby (buy your ticket first at the 'Volanbusz' building in the bus station). If you have a 'Buda card' it covers the tram but not the 'yellow bus' ticket.
If you have not been to communist countries before, in Memento Park you can see the huge monuments and statues wich stood on Budapest' streets and squares during communist period. There are the boots of Stalin demolished during the Hungarian Revolution of 1956 and there is a film-showing, Life of an agent, a training film for agents during communist times.
Lets go by direct bus, it takes 20 minutes from Deák tér, in the center of Budapest. But if you go by public transport you will see outskirts of Budapest. It is a bit outside the town but it worth, you will feel like behind Iron Curtai.
This park, outside the city center a bit, is a little dissapointing. It cost 1500 HUF for adults, 1000 HUF for students. There is nothing super special here, just a few statues in the soviet style and they are all places nicely. It doesnt compare to some of the others I have seen in Moscow and Lituania, but if you have time and really want to see it you can make a trip out there. There are only about 15 displays of statues, and actually I saw some cool looking soviet style statues in Budapest still standing. The cool thing we did happen to find next to the park was a special exhibit. We didnt have to pay anything and ended up finding an instructional movie on how to spy on people, something that would have been shown to a member of the KGB or something like that. It was way more interesting than the park itself, but I am not sure if it was a temporary exhibit or not. It is directly across from the entrance tot he park in a black building that says "Exhibit" on it.
The park houses 42 statues and friezes saved when the Soviet regime fell and now set out in an open-air museum. The exhibits range from a colossus of a muscled sailor striding forth, shirt wide open and red flag clutched in his fist and proudly flying, to a frieze of townspeople including family, little old lady and courting couple, to the usual stern Lenins and Marxes. Into the park, past statues of all shapes and sizes, artfully placed to show you how the USSR wanted to embrace all its people and how it wanted to be remembered. Apparently, when the walls fell throughout the former Soviet vassals states and the populace began to revile its former masters, vengeance was taken out in no small part on the statues which were quickly pulled down and smashed up. The mayor, presumably sensing a portion of history going down the drain, put a temporary stop to it and asked people to nominate local pieces which they would want to see preserved. The park opened in 1993 and is certainly one of the highlights of the visit; I only want to make a question: Why they didn’t build the Park, just outside the city. Open daily 10am.
I absolutely wanted to visit this park once I'd heard of it, and it responded to my expectations. When we went there the weather was grey and together with the statues this created the peculiar, grim atmosphere I expected. The place really leaves an impression on you and it makes you think, which was the purpose when they decided to set up the park, I guess.
The park houses about 20 or 30 statues from the communist era in Budapest, in their very typical style. Very impressive!
VT put the ways to get there under 'general area or directions', but we took a taxi together with another couple from our B&B, and this was a lot faster and cheaper than the shuttle bus from Deak ter or the other options. In total we paid 6000 forint for the (return) taxi, which was only 1500 forint per person. The entrance ticket cost 1000 forint.
Statue Park is home to many of the old communist era statues and monuments and is well worth a visit. There are some stunning examples here even if there is not too many of them.
I would recommend making your own way here rather than taking the organised bus as you can save about a half of the cost and it only takes about 30mins longer. To do this, head to Etele ter, which is the end of the line for tram No. 19 heading south. Go to the Volanbusz station which is behind the construction site there and get your return ticket from the office there - the buses usually depart from station 7 or 8 and go to Diosd-Erd. Look out the right hand window until you see a large pair of boots (Lenin's) and get off here - cross the road and this is statue park.
Szoboro or Statue Park is in reality not much of a park. It is a display of bronze statues from the days of the Communist occupation of Budapest. The statues have been removed from the city and put out here in the park as a reminder of the occupation of Hungary, and as an attraction for western tourists to have a glimpse of what it was like to live in Budapest after World War II. I was interested in seeing the statues out of curousity. I almost posted this tip in the tourist trap section of this page. In my opinion its very close to a tourist trap. It is heavily advertised in guide books. Its one of the main selections in the guide given to you when you purchase a Budapest Card. There are many fliers in hotels and at tourist information booths about Statue Park. And yet when I reached the park I found it to be not very exciting. The statues were just sitting in a field with tall grass growing around them. There were several groups of bored tourists walking on the unpathed pathway trying to look fascinated. With a little work and cleaning up the park could be make into something more interesting. There is a souvineer stand here where you can buy a guide to the statues in various languages. They also have funny tee shirts with various leaders from the Communist party on them. I did give in and act like a tourist when I purchased a tee shirt with the former Communist leaders pictured as characters from South Park.
Would I advise you to skip over Statue Park and do something else instead. No. It is definately something interesting to see and that you can not find anywhere else. But go with an open mind and keep your expectations lower than what the guide books would lead you to believe. Check out my travelogue on Szobor Park for a detailed story on how to find the park. Hint...do not follow the directions in the tourist guide books, or from the brochure. Its a lot more difficult to find then they lead you to believe.
First of all you have to know that this park is quite outside the city.
From Pest side take tram 49 to its final station, from there you should take a Volanbusz (yellow buses).
From Buda side trams 19, 47, and 49 to their final station or buses 7 or 107 (the red).
After the fall of communism all communistic statues were transferred to this park. It’s not a big exhibition and it shows, in my opinion, that Hungarians really want to forget their past! I recommend it only if you have seen all the other places in Budapest. Ticket costs 600HUF.
After the collapse of communism in 1989 various statues around Budapest were removed. Realising that history was being destroyed two young Hungarians decided to set up a museum dedicated to all these now politically incorrect statues. Setting it up on a piece of land on the outskirts of south west Budapest. It contains approximately 40-50 statues dedicated to various soviet themes.