HU2 - Mineralogy and speleology of the Szemlőhegy and Mátyáshegy Caves, Budapest

Leader: Szabolcs Leél-Őssy (Eötvös L. University, Budapest,

Practical information:

  • Duration: 1 day (9.30 AM till 7 PM including a lunch in a restaurant)
  • Mid-conference: 23.08.2010, 24.08.2010 and 26.08.2010, Budapest (HU)
  • Length: 25 km (bus travel within Budapest)
  • Min. number of participants: 5 each day
  • Max. number of participants: 30 each day
  • Field trip registration fee
    • Student/young scientist: EUR 10
    • Normal: EUR 20
  • Meals cost: included in the registration fee
  • Demands: The Szemlőhegy Cave is a show cave for tourists; therefore field trip participants can use normal street clothes. In the Mátyáshegy Cave (non-tourist cave) everybody gets a headlamp and overalls; wearing of strong, non-slippery shoes is advised. Most of the visited parts of the cave have easily passable horizontal passages but during the otherwise easy tour, participants have to lie down and to creep a few meters on the bottom of the cave a few times. Recommended to healthy, non-claustrophobic people younger than 60 years.
  • Means of transport: bus / van
  • Accommodation: None
Full technical details in PDF format
Photo: Way of Giants, Mátyáshegy Cave (HU)
Way of Giants, Mátyáshegy Cave (HU)

Scientific focus (keywords): speleology; cave visit; hydrothermal caves; mixing corrosion; hydrothermal mineralization; cave mineralogy

Photo: Peastone, Heart of the Earth section, Szemlőhegy Cave, Budapest (HU) The Buda Hills build up most of the western part of Budapest, on the left bank of the Danube. Under the urban area, an extensive cave system exists in the carbonate host rock of Triassic and Eocene age. Altogether seven large and sixty smaller caves have been discovered up to date. Some of them are open to the public; others can be visited by speleologists only. Total known length of the caves exceeds 40 km. All of these caves are related to the thermokarst phenomena known in the area and this specific origin of caves is well reflected by the morphological and mineralogical features. The trip will visit two caves. In the Szemlőhegy Cave and in the Mátyáshegy Cave large-scale solution forms (spherical niches) and hydrothermal minerals (barite, calcite, aragonite, gypsum) can be observed. The origin, mineralogy and speleological features of the caves will be presented on site.
Peastone, Heart of the Earth section, Szemlőhegy Cave, Budapest (HU)

Daily programme:

Budapest, Eötvös University: departure 9:30 AM - Szemlőhegy Cave: cave tour - lunch - Mátyáshegy Cave: cave tour - Budapest, Eötvös University: arrival ~7 PM

On-line registration >>

Map of the field trip with the key locations (or download Kml file for Google Earth):

View HU2 Mineralogy and speleology of the Szemlőhegy and Mátyáshegy Caves, Budapest in a larger map