Budapest is the capital city of Hungary. As the largest city of Hungary, it serves as the country's principal political, cultural, commercial, industrial, and transportation center and is considered an important hub in Central Europe. In 2008, Budapest had 1,702,297 inhabitants with an official agglomeration of 2,451,418, down from a mid-1980s peak of 2.1 million. The city covers an area of 525 square kilometres (202.7 sq mi) within the city limits. Budapest became a single city occupying both banks of the river Danube with the unification on 17 November 1873, of right-bank (west) Buda and Óbuda (Old Buda) together with Pest on the left (east) bank.
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