Budapest is the capital and largest city of Hungary. With more than 1.7 million inhabitants (as of 2013), Budapest is the ninth-largest city in the European Union. The Unified City of Budapest was founded in 1873 by the consolidation of the previously independent towns of Buda, Obuda, and Pest. The name Budapest itself did not appear before, usual in the language was Pest-Buda.
The remarkable buildings of the city stand on the banks of the Danube. On the western, Buda side rises the rocky Gellért mountain with the statue of liberty and the citadel. To the north of the Gellért mountain lies the Burgberg with the former royal castle, the castle palace. In the northern part of the Burgberg rises the Matthiaskirche and, to the Danube upstream, the Fischerbastei. The Buda Castle District and the Donaupanorama have been on the list of UNESCO World Cultural Heritage since 1987.
The Parliament building, the Academy of Sciences, a series of large hotels on the so-called Donaukorso, the Pester Redoute (a ball court), the Budapest Corvinus University of Economics, and the National Theater, as well as the Kunstpalast further south, are located on the eastern side of the Danube.
The Danube is the main attraction of Budapest and is spanned by nine city-shaping bridges in the urban area. The most important, because of the oldest and at the same time landmarks of the city, is the Kettenbrücke.