A fairytale city called Budapest
I had already heard that Budapest was a very beautiful city and, together with Prague, was an amazing destination. What I didn’t expected was to get so positively impressed. Budapest is clean, with large sidewalks, large streets, is well cared and the architecture is impressive. Anywhere you walk, you get amazed. The main bridges are all made with heavy metals and the illumination make them look incredible at night. The walls from the castle are clean and all the details make your tour breathtaking. If you are going to Budapest, make sure that your powerbanks and cameras are well charged, because you will want to make pictures. Budapest brings you to something that I could almost describe as a fairytale. The city got to my list of “Romantic places to go”.
The city is the sixth biggest of the European Union and it’s crossed by the Danube River. Before it became Budapest, the area was originally three different kingdoms, Buda and Óbuda – located on the West Danube -, and Pest on the east side of the river. The city has many of its touristic sights as part of the World Heritage and it is very famous because of its geothermal springs. Budapest has around 80 natural hot baths, including several caves and exploring them can make your tour pretty adventurous!
A big city, romantic and adventurous. If this is not enough to convince you to visit Budapest, then you should also learn that the city is the house of the second largest Synagogue and the Hungarian Parliament is the third largest in the world. For you to have an idea, the building has 20 km just of staircase. Pretty impressive! You can have a perfect view of it while making a boat tour.
How many days?
Well, it depends pretty much on what you want to do and how the weather behaves. To sightseeing, visiting the castle, looking the Parliament building from the outside and walking around Pest side including some guided tours, around 3 days is pretty enough. If you want to adventure yourself in the caves, go to the thermal baths and more, then save around 5 days. Be sure to enjoy the city during the day and night. The lights give it a very special and unique look.
If you want to enjoy some of the geothermal springs from the city, be sure that you will be an entire day at the place. It is a quite expensive activity to spend just one or two hours. Besides, it is something very special and you must give you some more time to relax and enjoy.
The good news is that the city has very low prices, so spending up to a week won’t make your holiday too expensive. It is even ok if you don’t have the place to cook your meals, because eating outside is not that pricy. Of course that if you are trying to save some money, cooking is always the best option, but in Budapest you can save even if you don’t.
Although, for breakfasts, we highly advise you to not do it at Pest, but at Buda. Or you can search for a Bakery around your hotel area, because the breakfast can become the most expensive meal if you pick a cafeteria. If you are a “sweet” person, you can have the best cake in the world for breakfast every single day during your visit. It is super cheap and really tasty!
If your budget for the city is high and you are open for more expensive restaurant, the city has always plenty of them for you. Budapest fits to all kind of traveller!
What to do?
Budapest has several touristic places to visit on both sides. Besides the thermal baths and the caves, we highly recommend you to walk around Pest central area, enjoy the local shops and try out some Goulash Soup if it’s a bit chill weather. If you are visiting the city during the Summer time, you will find also a lot of entertainment at the Margaret Island, that sits in the Danube river, a bit after the Parliament building. For the winter time, the Island is just used by the locals to go jogging or enjoying some quiet place.
Most of the activities are at the Pest side, like: the Synagogue, the Opera House, the Parliament, Heroes Square, most of the Churches, the Concert Haus, the Concert Haus, Museums and the Great Market, a place that is a must go if you want to know more about the local products and try out some samples of it. On the Buda side, you will be amazed by the Buda Castle District and the Citadel. Both sides are pretty big and it is a lot of walking. So, make sure to use a sun blocker and very comfortable shoes. If you want to know about alternative ways of touristing in Budapest, check out this other post, where we even give some tips in case it rains.
Well, Budapest is a big city and has many things to do, so don’t rush your visit to it. Extra tip? Leave the spa day on the geothermal springs for the last day, so you can rest your body and feet before continue your journey.
Date of our visit to Budapest: 11 – 14.11.2016