Festetics Castle – Helikon Castle Museum

The Festetics Palace in Keszthely houses a more than twenty-room exhibition presenting the lifestyle of the noble Festetics family, which is open all year round. Among the attractions is the unique library and beechwood staircase in the country.


How the Festetics Family Lived

The Noble Interior Exhibition, consisting of about twenty rooms, shows us with the help of original objects and period furnishings what kind of living conditions prevailed in the castle of the Festetics family. We can admire Hungary’s only surviving private library of the nobility and the unique beech staircase in the country. The museum welcomes visitors throughout the year with colorful programs and museum pedagogical activities.
An interesting factDo you want to know more about the past of Keszthely? Then the book KESZTHELYI TÖRTÉNETEK was written for you, get it in the Tourinform office on the walking street!

Presentation of Noble Life in the Past

Have you ever imagined what it was like to live in the world of nobility in the 18th and 19th centuries? Join us and dive into the fairy-tale world created by the Festetics family, let’s travel back in time together! The castle building has nearly a hundred rooms – more than twenty of them form part of the Noble Life Exhibition: salons, offices, mirror room, dining room, ballroom, library, chapel, and so on.

“Very nicely renovated building. The tour guide was very well prepared and extremely knowledgeable. It’s good to see that these wonderful values are being taken care of. If you can, visit this fairy-tale castle!”

Gyöngyi BorsLocal Tour Guide
Kedvencünk a Festetics kastély tölgyfalépcsőházaOur favoriteThe outstanding attraction of the castle is the oak staircase, where we can see a family portrait gallery unique to Hungary, depicting members of the Festetics family.

The period furnishing of the rooms is due to the fact that the individual objects have largely remained in their original form – thus we can admire what baroque and rococo style objects were favoured by Kristóf Festetics from the 1740s, or what neoclassical style furniture and decorations were owned by György Festetics. A significant part of the collection is still attributed to Tasziló II and his wife, Lady Mary Hamilton. At the exhibition we can also see two original Festetics dresses!

A helyiségek korhű berendezése annak köszönhető, hogy az egyes tárgyak nagymértékben eredeti formájukban maradtak fennAn interesting factAccording to the tradition, Lady Mary Hamilton, of Scottish and British noble descent, arrived to Keszthely with a train loaded with furniture. She brought portraits of her family members and then, together with her husband, enriched further their castle.

The Library of the Castle

The greatest value of the castle is its library, built between 1799 and 1801, the only surviving noble private library, one of the most beautiful library monuments in Hungary and Central Europe, with its original collection and furnishings. The library founded by Kristóf Festetics was multiplied by György Festetics, who opened it to the public. The library boasts many rare books, the oldest of which is János Thuróczy’s Chronika Hungarorum from 1488.

Programs at the Castle

The castle, besides being open all year round, hosts various events: classical music concerts, unconventional guided tours, gastronomic events, and nostalgic castle visits. Among the children, a popular program during Easter and the pre-Christmas period are museum story hours.

Tipp Festetics kastély északi szárnyának meglátogatásaHintDon't miss visiting the Northern Wing and the wonderful Venetian Mirror Room! Generally, the Northern Wing opens its doors for bigger events, such as post-Christmas festivities, which used to serve for welcoming and accommodating guests arriving at the castle.

Tickets and Other Services

The Helikon Castle Museum offers several discounted tickets (e.g. for large families) to its visitors. We can choose from different ticket combinations and also request personal and audio guide tours. The castle building is partially accessible and provides free toilets for people with disabilities.

Tipp Lady Hamilton Kávéház a Festetics kastélybanHintEntering the main entrance of the castle, we find the Lady Hamilton coffee house on the right, which welcomes us with delicious coffees, pastries, ice creams in summer and refreshing lemonades, cocktails.

We recommend the museum pedagogy service for schools and classes. For grades 5-12, the historical tour, and for grades 8-12, the “style hunting in the castle” activity.

Informations

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Availability

Open hours

  • Whole year
  • ClosedOpens tomorrow: 10:00
    • Wednesday (today) 10:00-17:00
    • Thursday 10:00-17:00
    • Friday 10:00-17:00
    • Saturday 10:00-17:00
    • Sunday 10:00-17:00
    • Monday closed
    • Tuesday 10:00-17:00

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