St. Stephen's Basilica or the Basilica of St Stephen (St. Stephen's Basilica, Hungarian name - Szent István-bazilika) is a Roman Catholic Basilica (Church), is the most important Church building in Hungary, which is one of the most beautiful, spiritual and important tourist attractions of the country.
The reason for such a tenderly-an enthusiastic attitude to the Basilica is on the one hand, respect for the historical past with the Holy king, the founder of the country (the Hungarian Stefan I - the first king of Hungary, 975-1038 approx. years), in whose honor was named the Basilica, and, on the other hand, the monumental and artistic value of the structure.
The construction of the Basilica has a multi-stage process and lasted, on average, 54-60 years.
In 1845 the project was created a Basilica. In 1846, began excavations under construction. In 1851, after the war for independence, the work continued. January 22, 1868 at 15:10 hours the drum of the dome collapsed because of an error in the design. In 1875, after the building demolition, construction resumed on the basis of the changed plans. In 1890, completed a full design of the building. In 1905, was completed the interior decoration.
November 9, 1905, the consecration of the temple. 8 Dec 1906 solemnly made the placement of the final stone in the presence of the ruler Franz Joseph I. In 1931, the Church acquired the title of "Basilica Minor" by Pope Pius XI.
Currently, St. Stephen's Basilica is the third largest Church building in present-day Hungary. Also, as the building of the Hungarian Parliament, situated nearby, is one of the two tallest buildings in Budapest, rising like a spire to a domed tower of the Parliament building, at 96 meters (315 feet), which symbolizes the balancing of worldly and spiritual thinking.
On top of that current regulations prohibit the construction of any building higher in Budapest than 96 metres (315 ft).
The Basilica is built in the neoclassical architectural style. In terms of an equilateral cross (Greek cross plan of the base). Has a width of 55 meters (180 feet) and length of 87.4 metres (287 ft).
The main facade of the Basilica overlooks the homonymous square, St Stephen (Szent István tér 1), where concerts, festivals and other public events.
The Basilica has two side of a high tower-belfry. In the South tower houses the largest bell of Hungary, weighing over 9 tons.
The Central part of the Basilica is the large dome.
The rear facade of the Basilica faces the street Bajcsy-Zsilinszky út and looks impressive and at the same time very elegant.
The interior of the Basilica is richly visual arts. In the lobby of the main entrance is a relief of St Stephen. The walls and pillars of the temple decorated with marble of various breeds. The interior is decorated with mosaics, made by the best Hungarian craftsmen. The dome of the Shrine contains the image of the Lord God, depicts Christ, prophets, and evangelists.
Department of the Basilica is the work of józsef Kauser, and a Church organ factory of pécs and józsef Angster of recognized in that era.
Entrance to the Basilica is free (free).
For a fee of 1000 HUF you can visit the dome of the Basilica.
Access to the dome is possible by Elevator or on foot, the spiral staircase, breaking the 364 steps. During the climb you can visit the interior. Here are the toilets.
On the dome there is a circular open area, giving a 360° view of Budapest.
The bell tower of St. Stephen's Basilica, view from the dome site
The website of St. Stephen's Basilica in Budapest: bazilika.biz.