Get Your Money’s Worth at the Money Museum in Budapest

The Gold Train

Budapest, the vibrant capital of Hungary, is home to numerous fascinating attractions that captivate visitors from around the world. Among these hidden gems is the Money Museum, a unique institution that offers a glimpse into the intriguing world of finance and its historical significance.

The Path of Money – A Permanent Exhibition

The Money Museum has organized its spaces around the five functions of money, providing visitors with an engaging and educational experience. The exhibition, which can be viewed for free, helps visitors understand their own involvement and the role of the central bank in the world of finance. Through interactive displays and historical artifacts, visitors can explore the various aspects of money, from its role as a measure of value to its function as a means of payment and circulation.

The exhibition begins in the Gold Mine, where visitors can learn about the heyday of precious metal mining in Hungary and the tools used to extract gold. As the journey continues, visitors encounter thought-provoking questions and examine the changing form of money throughout history. The exhibition also delves into the role of banks and financial intermediaries, showcasing the complex activities of the central bank.

The Golden Train

The golden train, titled “The Rumble,” is a breathtaking indoor sculpture created by artist Gábor Miklós Szőke. Measuring 13 meters in length and weighing 13 tons, the sculpture is made up of approximately seven thousand hand-welded, gold-painted stainless steel rods. The sculpture begins inside the museum and breaks through the walls of the building, emerging into Széll Kálmán Square.

The golden train sculpture alludes to a true story from the end of World War II. Employees of the Hungarian National Bank fled the occupying Soviet forces on a train loaded with the bank’s gold reserves, risking their lives to protect the country’s wealth. Thanks to their bravery and diplomatic efforts, the reserves, totaling more than 30 tons of gold, were returned to Hungary intact in 1946.

Architectural Significance

The Money Museum is housed in the Postal Palace, a building designed by renowned architect Gyula Sándy. The building’s architecture is a testament to its dual nature, seamlessly blending traditional and modern elements. The tower of the building evokes the bastion of a medieval castle, while Renaissance motifs adorn the façade, and Hungarian Art Nouveau influences can be seen in the render decoration.

Despite the challenges posed by World War II and the 1956 revolution, the Postal Palace has been carefully restored to its original splendor. The Hungarian National Bank purchased the building in 2016 and initiated a comprehensive renovation, focusing on preserving the architectural heritage while incorporating modern technologies. The result is a stunning two-faced, fairy-tale castle that combines the charm of the past with the amenities of the 21st century.

Nearby Attractions

The Money Museum offers more than just an educational experience; it also provides visitors with a range of amenities and nearby attractions to enjoy. The museum’s café, located in the beautifully restored lobby, is the perfect spot to relax and sip on a delicious coffee while immersing yourself in the authentic, turn-of-the-century atmosphere.

For those seeking substantial reading material, the PABooks Book Spot, also located in the lobby, offers a selection of professional, authentic, and up-to-date literature on modern economy topics. Visitors can also browse the Museum Shop for publications, museum gifts, and souvenirs specifically designed for young people.

One of the highlights of the Money Museum is the Panoramic Terrace, accessible via the stairs or lift in the unmistakable corner tower. From this vantage point, visitors can enjoy breathtaking views of the streets of Budapest, adding an extra dimension to the museum experience.

The museum is also within walking distance of other popular attractions, such as the Buda Castle and the St. Matthias Church.

Getting There

The Money Museum is conveniently located in the heart of Budapest, making it easily accessible for foreign tourists. Visitors can reach the museum by public transportation, with several bus and tram lines stopping nearby at Széll Kálmán Square.

The Money Museum in Budapest is a fascinating attraction that offers a unique perspective on the world of finance and its historical significance. With its engaging permanent exhibition, stunning architectural beauty, and convenient location, the museum is a must-visit destination for foreign tourists exploring Hungary’s capital. Whether you’re interested in learning about the path of money, admiring the blend of traditional and modern architecture, or simply enjoying the nearby amenities and attractions, the Money Museum promises an unforgettable experience in the heart of Budapest.

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The Gold Train

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