Gellért Hill

The Hungarians call it a “mountain”, although, at 235 meters, it is nowhere near the geographical definition of one. Nonetheless, with its steep craggy sides, trees changing colors with the seasons, and architectural heritage, it forms an integral part of the Budapest landscape. On the Erzsébet bridge side and above the artificial waterfall stands the statue of its namesake Saint Gellért (Gerard). It was somewhere here that this monk, originally from Italy, died the death of a martyr in the 11th century. Saint Ivan’s cave is a famous legacy of the hill, which, after its expansion, now serves as the site for the Cave Church, a chapel of the Paulite monastic order. The Philosophers’ Garden is situated on the side of the hill nearest Castle Hill - a unique group of statues that commemorates the religions of the world. A richly diverse arboretum can be found there as well, a little farther from the Danube. The fortress located on the top of the hill was erected by the Habsburg rulers after the 1848-1849 revolution and the war for independence were crushed. The Liberty Statue which stands in front of the fortress is of a female figure holding up a palm leaf. This is perhaps the most popular spot from which to view the city, as thousands of tourists stream by every day. However, many locals also stroll up the hill for a bit of fresh air and quiet, or to rest on the lawns.

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