Székesfehérvár, 60km southwest of Budapest, was the capital of Hungary in the Middle Ages. The town was founded in 972 by High Prince Géza, whose son Stephen made it his royal seat. The archeological site “Garden of Ruins” holds the excavated foundations of the cathedral where the coronations of 38 Hungarian kings took place. After the town fell to the Turks in 1543, the cathedral was plundered and then blown up. The later gothic St. Anna Chapel is the only medieval building in Székesfehérvár spared by the Turks, who used it as a mosque.
The city revived under the reign of Maria Theresa. During this time the Baroque town hall, Franciscan church and Bishop’s Palace were built.