16 Sep Budapestjewishwalk in the cemetery of Salgótarjáni Street
Budapestjewishwalk in the cemetery of Salgótarjáni Street
There is an absolute hidden gem in my neighbourhood I wish to share a few things about here, and that is the Art Nouveau Jewish cemetery in Salgótarjáni Street, in the eighth district of Budapest. Whenever I guide my guests there, I always get totally positive feedback on how much it worth visiting the place. Yes, I cannot agree more. It has an atmosphere you do not usually expect in a cemetery: infinite peacefulness meets the joy of experiencing breathtaking architecture of massive and at the same time beautifully crafted family tombs of Jewish noble families and industrialists of the time, which is about fifty years from the founding of the cemetery in 1874. Quite a few of the tombs are the work of leading architects of the era: Sándor Fellner, Ignác Alpár, Emil Vidor and Béla Lajta. Lajta, whose work prefigured art deco, also designed the entrance from the street and the huge ceremonial hall from the very beginning of the 20th century.
Nowadays overgrown and neglected on one side, amazing and unique on the other. A strange combination, though. The place is pretty deserted but it’s safe: there is decent security and a responsible young caretaker who lets you in and ties up his dogs when you enter. This cemetery is so close to the city centre and the Jewish Quarter of the seventh district, which is the most visited Jewish heritage area of Budapest, that I highly recommend adding it to any Jewish walks. It adds a so different, off-path kind of experience to a tour (usually we are the only visitors), nobody should miss.
The photographs added to this post were taken by György Jókuti.