If your only planning to stay in Budapest for a couple of days – double it – you will be glad you did. This impressive city has so much to explore that getting bored is hard to imagine. The architecture is superb ; large, towering Austro – Hungarian buildings seem to go on for miles, whilst both the historic Buda and more modern Pest sides of the river have ample sights to see and enjoy. Bars, cafes and shops are all around Budapest, but the banks of the Danube never feel too far away for some downtime. If you throw in the fact that the capital is one of the best value cities in Europe, spending a little time here is a no brainer.
There are plenty of fast food type shops all over the capital selling pizza slices and kebabs – usually at good prices. For those seeking a proper meal, Turkish themed cafes and restaurants are a great value place to eat. At certain times of the day, a three course meal can be had for less than €5. One of the tastiest cafes is ‘Istanbul Torok Etterem’, located near the Oktogon.
Budapest has good transport links to Hungarian cities and other countries. Trains leave to the Balaton towns and Pecs, while international trains go to all bordering nations, mostly from Keleti station. Many rail journeys can be booked in advance online at Hungarian Railways . Buses depart to all surrounding countries too, as well as Greece. If your arriving from Western Europe, it is likely that Eurolines has a coach to Budapest. See the travel planner for more details on cheap travel in the Balkans.
• Visit Old Budapest – Although much of the accommodation is on the ‘Pest’ side of the city, make sure you cross the bridge into ‘Buda’. The Castle and Royal Palace are on this side, as is Fishermans Bastion with the Harry Potter style turrets.
• Use a Spa – Hungary and Budapest are probably most famous for the spa baths…. So it would be rude not to try one. Szechenyi Baths is in City Park on the Pest side of the city, and has indoor and outdoor pools.Prices start at around 12 Euros. If your using the metro, head to the Szechenyi Fordo stop.
• Visit Parapark – Club together with other travellers and see if you can escape! Parapark is basically a dark cellar in which you are locked…and you have to find a way to escape, using the clues at your disposal. It’s challenging, but enjoyable and strangely addictive. Luckily, there is a bar above it for some refreshments afterwards.
• Eat cheap – There are many Turkish and Hungarian cafes and takeaways dotted around the city, serving good food at good prices. They are one of the best value places to get a filling meal that will last you much of the day.
• Experience the city’s dark history – The holocaust museum tells the story of Budapest’s persecuted Jewish citizens during World War 2, while the shoes on the Danube monument provides a moving reminder of the many people killed here.
• Relax by the river – Margaret island is situated in the middle of the Danube river. This oasis of calm is a fantastic place to go for a walk or just chillout amongst the parkland and trees. It’s also a popular area to keep fit, with a running path the entire length of the island.
• Enjoy the nightlife – The ruin pubs of Budapest have sprung up in previously abandoned buildings..some in the jewish quarter. These retro style pubs incorporate older furniture and themes, and are now one of the main parts of the city nightlife.
HUNGARY DESTINATION GUIDES :
RECENT BALKAN BLOGS
It was the first unplanned country on our route. After some days in Ukraine, Romania seemed a good idea to continue our travels…
DN67C road, in Romania, mostly known as Transalpina, connects Sebes in the north to Novaci in the south. It is 146 km long, crosses the Carpathian…