Hej! I am an American grad student studying and living in Sweden. Being a grad student, I have perfected the act of budget traveling. I have a fierce passion for cute dogs, film festivals, coffee and traveling. Join me as I work towards my personal goal of visiting all 28 EU countries before I graduate in June 2019! Feel free to pop over to my personal blog, Little Mouse. Big World, to read more about my travels while balancing grad school life.
26 years old
Things to do in Budapest
In the last few years, it seems like Budapest has sprouted up has the top new tourist destination in Europe and rightly, so the city is gorgeous, and you can have a great weekend at a reasonable price. Be warned that Hungary gets very hot in the months of July and August and this also seems like when everyone is flocking to the city. If you don’t handle either the heat or crowds well, try to plan a visit in October or April. No matter what time of year you visit the city the list of things to do will not change.
The city of Budapest was once split between Buda and Pest. The two cities were connected in 1873 by the Chain Bridge to create Budapest. Upon arrival memorize which side of the city you are on because still, people refer to the two sides as either the "Buda side" or the "Pest side". The Chain Bridge is great to walk along and take pictures from. Walk along the Danube River and see what amazing architecture you can soak up. The Hungarian Parliament building lays along the river. There are always people flocked outside the parliament taking pictures or just enjoying themselves. If you'd like to take a tour of the building, then you should book a time online ahead of time. There are many different statues and monuments all around Budapest. Probably the most famous is the Shoes on the Danube monument which recognizes all the Jews wrongly killed in Budapest’s history. The Fisherman’s Bastion is another can't miss stop while in Budapest. This former fortification has two ways to get to its lookout points, you can either take the bus or hike up to the top. You can get a great view of Budapest from this point if you can try to arrive as early as possible to have the whole complex to yourself. St Stephen’s Basilica is a centrally located church worth your time to see. Its high, ornate ceilings are simply amazing. There is usually a donation box placed at the entrance and it is encouraged to offer a small donation, but the church staff does not care about which currency.
A unique experience that only Budapest can offer is a splash in a thermal bath and the city sits on nearly 125 thermal springs. These springs are thought to cure illnesses and ease the bodily pain, while this might be true most people enjoy the baths because they are relaxing and fun. There are many different baths scattered around Budapest to choose from, however, the Szechenyi Thermal Bath is one of the most popular. Entrance including a locker will only set you back about $18 and it’s the largest in Budapest. A more private cabin to change in and put your things are a little more expensive. While in a new city, one should try to understand the culture and history as possible in order to understand the city you see before you. The House of Terror Museum is a great way to understand Budapest's, not so pretty past. The museum is housed in the former headquarters of both Nazi and Communist forces that once patrolled the streets of Budapest. The museum chronicles the city’s history from during WWII up to its freedom from Communist reign.
Food and Drink
Hungary has many wonderful dishes to try during your stay. The best place to start is the Great Market Hall where you can find stalls of tasty Hungarian produce on the ground floor while on the second floor you will find a few restaurants serving traditional food as well as many different souvenir stalls. The spice paprika is used widely in Hungarian cuisine take the chance to bring Hungary home with a cute bag of either hot or sweet paprika. They travel well and are usually only a few dollars making a great gift. River cruises on the Danube are great ways to see the city while sampling wine or enjoying a great meal. Look online for deals or if you’re feeling spontaneous you can usually find a last-minute ticket by walking near the river. Expect a river cruise to cost between $20 - $40 depending on the season and if there's a meal included. Hungarians mean business when it comes to coffee which has created a great coffee culture for visitors to enjoy as well. Skip the Starbucks that seem to be on every corner and enjoy a freshly brewed cup of joe from a locally owned café. It will be more memorable and probably cheaper. Finally, when the sun goes down, there seems to always be a party going on in Budapest. Ruin Pubs located primarily in the old Jewish Ghetto of Budapest is a must. There are bar hops that are organized so you can experience a few of the larger ones in one night but going solo ends up to be just as fun. Experience the funky interior inside a historic building for one
Your Bus Stop in Budapest
Üllői út 131
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