The Open-Air Bath, located on the Margit island, in a nature conservation area, was opened as a beach on the bank of the Danube in 1919. With the construction of the large pool it was transformed in 1921 into an open-air bath.
Owing to its high popularity it had to be expanded, therefore an architectural project tender was launched in 1937, as a result of which the plans composed by István Janáky were accepted. The current installation was completed on the basis of these plans. Its pools are supplied by the thermal springs of the Margit Island. In the second half of the 1980s, a five-path chute was built. The open-air bath, also equipped with a wave-bath pool, allocated in a park area, is visited by many foreign guests, in addition to the Hungarian ones. There are sports grounds and playgrounds for children, offering excellent distraction facilities for all age groups. In 2002 the pools of the Open-Air Bath were modernised, they were equipped with water filtering and revolving devices. The swimming pool was shaped into three sections: swimming pool, fancy pool and beach pool. Of these, the fancy pool is expecting visitors with neck shower, effervescence generator and whirling corridor.
Margaret Island is a 2.5 km long, 500 metres wide island in the middle of the Danube in central Budapest, Hungary. The island is mostly covered by landscape parks, and is a popular recreational area. Its medieval ruins are reminders of its importance in the Middle Ages as a religious centre. The island spans the area between the Margaret Bridge (south) and the Árpád Bridge (north). Administratively Margaret Island used to belong to the 13th district until 2013. Now it is directly under the control of the city.
The island was called Insula leporum (Island of Rabbits) before being named Saint Margaret (1242–1270) in the 14th century. Margaret was the daughter of Béla IV of Hungary, and she lived in the Dominican convent on the island.
The Knights of St. John settled on the island in the 12th century. Among the present historical monuments of the island are the 13th century ruins of a Franciscan church and a Dominican church and convent, as well as a Premonstratensian church from the 12th century. Members of the Augustinian order also lived on the island.
The island was dominated by nunneries, churches and cloisters until the 16th century. During the Ottoman wars the monks and nuns fled and the buildings were destroyed. In the 18th century it was chosen to be the resort of palatines. It was declared a public garden in 1908. Since the 1980s, entry by cars has been limited; only a single bus line and taxis, alongside the service traffic of local stores and restaurants are allowed to enter. On the northern end of the island a car park houses the cars of hotel guests.
The island houses various sports establishments, like the Palatinus beach (the largest open-air swimming complex in Budapest), the Alfréd Hajós sports pool, a tennis stadium and an athletics centre. The island has a rubber-coated running track measuring 5.35 kilometers (3.33 miles), and is popular among both locals and tourists because of its superb quality and easy access.
Sights in the island include:
• the Centennial Memorial of 1973, commemorating the hundredth anniversary of the city's unification;
• a small Japanese Garden with a mildly thermal fish pond;
• a tiny zoo featuring a wide range of exotic waterfowl among other animals;
• the "Music Well" (Zenélő kút), a small pavilion, which was originally built for open-air concerts (it is close to Árpád bridge);
• the "Music Fountain" (Zenélő szökőkút), a fountain near which music is played and light shows are performed in summer (it is close to Margaret bridge). The water springs out according to music, so that the fountain seems to dance at the various classical themes reproduced. The last piece played is Con te partirò sung by Andrea Bocelli;