AVTOR: ANITA RÁDONYI
The Hungarian capital has something to offer to everyone. With its breathtaking and eclectic architecture, vivid cultural life, relaxing thermal baths, unforgettable gastronomy and of course, it’s youthful and unique nightlife, Budapest is one of the most exciting tourist destinations in Europe.
Due to the global health crisis that we’re experiencing this year, our lives and travel opportunities have changed in unimaginable ways. We are aware that people might not be able to travel to other countries this year, so I am inviting you to explore this delightful city with me in a bit different way. Let me be your guide and if I do this properly, you just might find yourself lost in the streets of Budapest once it’s safe to get back on the road.
Discover Budapest via this beautiful time lapse video!
The history of Budapest is long and eventful, the first settlements in the area date back to Celtic times, which later transformed into the Roman city of Aquincum. Hungarian tribes arrived in the late 9th century and settled in the area divided by the river Danube. In the 16th century after the battle of Mohács the country was ruled by the Ottoman Empire for 150 years leaving behind plenty of architectural and historical landmarks. The two cities, Buda and Pest got united in 1873 and since then it’s grown to be home for about 2 million people.
The most famous landmarks
If you are on a tight schedule, try to start your day early in the historical Castle District from where you’ll experience the most astonishing view of the city. Kick off your walk at the fairytale-like Fisherman’s Bastion, then have a peek into the beautiful Matthias Church. After visiting the Castle, take the funicular down the Castle Hill and stroll through one of the most famous landmarks of Budapest, the Chain Bridge with it’s well-known guarding lions. You’ll find yourself right next to the Hungarian Parliament, which is one of the most incredible buildings in Europe with its limestone walls, imposing statues and its sheer size. After a quick walk, you can reach St. Steven Basilica, named after the first king of Hungary.
Take a break and relax at the historic Széchenyi Bath
If you are still feeling energetic, I’d definitely recommend walking along Andrassy avenue and grasp the true vibes of the city on this pulsing route. However, if you want to squeeze in more attractions to your day, you can hop on the first metro line of continental Europe and in about 5 minutes you’ll find yourself at Hero’s Square where you’ll be able to take pictures with the statues of Hungary’s most famous kings. Here you can visit various interesting spots (Museum of Fine Arts, Palace of Art, City Park, Vajdahunyad Castle, Budapest Zoo) or just take a break and relax at the Széchenyi Thermal Bath, which is one of the oldest spa complexes in the region. Believe me, this is one of the most iconic Budapest experiences and a memory you’ll never forget.
Paradise for foodies and party-goers
Budapest, being a multicultural city offers a wide range of food options. From traditional Hungarian cuisine to Jewish classics, the dining scene spans all around the world. While there are a plethora of traditional restaurants, you can always choose to eat out at market halls, which are favored by locals or just have a quick bite at a street food place in the heart of the city center. Since the gastronomic scene is basically endless, you won’t be disappointed either way. After you had a satisfying dinner, it’s time to taste the nightlife of the city that never sleeps. Budapest is famous for its ruin bars, among which the most legendary is Szimpla Kert. If you are not bothered by crowds, head to the inner 7th district and you’ll be overwhelmed by choices. In Gozsdu Udvar and its surroundings, party-goers can indulge in all sorts of scenes including the most famous clubs and bars of Budapest.
Sadly, due the city’s size and the never-ending program options, this one-day itinerary will only scratch the surface. For a more relaxing and thorough sightseeing trip, I’d recommend you spare a long weekend and take it easy. If you haven’t been bitten by the travel bug yet, look around on this website and get lost in the wonders this dazzling city has to offer.
If after reading this article you would like to explore Budapest right away, you can get a quich virtual tour of the city here.
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