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Requiem For A Planetarium? – The Planetarium Of Budapest Is Going To Be Closed

By Robert Velkey // 2017.05.18.

The Planetárium offers entertaining shows about astronomy. The large, dome-shaped building is located in Népliget, a large park in Budapest. Presentations are both educational and entertaining, and several shows are designed especially for kids. The Night Sky, Earth – the Planet of Life, and The Hubble Universe are some of the many programs. Shows are usually held between 9:30 am and 4 pm and last about an hour. English-language shows are also available and they cost HUF 1,500 per person, according to the description of the Planetarium at tourism site

After the 18th of June, they will have to rewrite this text in the past tense, as the Planetarium is going to be closed. There is not enough money to run the institution, and a serious renovation would have been needed for the building as well. “The cost of the renovation would be a too expensive investment and cost billions of Hungarian forints,” said astronomer Henrik Lőrincz. “First of all they would have to rebuild the roof and the cupola, not to mention install technical upgrades for the Planetarium,” he added.


The fact is that, the organization that runs the Planetarium, called the Society for Dissemination of Scientific Knowledge (Hungarian: Tudományos Ismeretterjesztő Társaság), does not hav enough money to continue operating the Planetarium.

According to Hungarian news portal,  the building will close its doors on the 18th of June 2017.

 The Planetarium of Budapest was built to provide scientific education to the public. It was opened in 1977, and used to welcome a hundred thousand visitors per  year. The majority of guests came from kindergartens, schools, and families.


Today the 23meter-diameter cupola is in a terrible state, as are the walls and the projection room.

Although the first lecture was held in the Planetarium 40 years ago on the 17th of August, this  summer will not  see any anniversary celebrations being held. planetarium1

Hernik Lőrincz said that hopefully the government will save the building. A few weeks ago, ministers visited the Planetarium and the agreed on that the institute should have been saved. However, the decision about the long-time future of the building will not be made until autumn.