Gellért Hill is a 235-metre-high hill overlooking the Danube and a part of the 1st and 11th Districts. It was named after Saint Gerard who was thrown to death from the hill. Since 1987, the area has been listed as a world heritage site as part of “the Banks of the Danube”.
It has been called Szent Gellért hegye (the hill of St Gerard) from the 15th century onwards, referring to the legend about the death of St Gerard. The saintly bishop was killed by the pagans during the great pagan rebellion in 1046. He was put in a barrel and rolled down into the deep from the top of the hill.
A large part of the hill consists of parkland. Bats and hedgehogs are commonly observed on summer nights.
In the 18th century the hillsides of Gellért Hill were covered with vineyards and a small Calvary was built on the top of the hill in 1715 on the initiative of the Jesuit Order. The last photo of the building was made around 1943 and the Calvary was demolished about seven years later.
The Tabán district at the foot of the hill was an important centre of winemaking in Buda. According to a 1789 land register, vineyards covered 128 hectares on the hill (only 7.62 hectares were used as pastures).
On Easter Mondays a procession climbed the steep road leading to the Calvary to celebrate the Resurrection of Christ. Many tents and vendors were erected on the nearby meadow. The emmausjárás (Emmaus-walk) or tojásbúcsú (egg feast) were some of the most popular Catholic holidays of the year during the 18th and 19th century.