The Dalai Lama addressed a crowd of thousands in the Hungarian capital on Saturday, the first of two days of Buddhist teaching in a sports arena.
After his public appearance, the exiled Tibetan spiritual leader travelled to Budapest's town hall, where Mayor Gabor Demszky named him an honorary citizen of the city.
All of 22,400 tickets to hear the 14th Dalai Lama, who was born Tenzin Gyatso in 1935, were sold out well in advance of his arrival on Friday evening, organisers said.
Some 90 per cent were purchased by non-Buddhists, evidently keen to see and hear the Nobel Prize-winning religious leader in person.
The Dalai Lama plans to complete his three-day visit to Budapest - his last scheduled trip to Europe this year - with a visit to the Hungarian parliament building on Monday.
He will meet senior Hungarian politicians, including Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, and give a speech.