Budapest Bliss: 3 Days of Pure Delight!

In April 2018, we embarked on an enchanting 3-day exploration of Budapest, Hungary, a city steeped in history, culture, and culinary delights. Our journey was a captivating blend of iconic landmarks, vibrant neighborhoods, soothing thermal baths, and exquisite cuisine, leaving us mesmerized by Budapest’s charm.

Travel Trivia:

  • Flights: Budapest Ferenc Liszt International Airport (BUD) serves as Hungary’s primary airport, with direct and connecting flights to major cities worldwide.
  • Visa: EU citizens can travel to Hungary with a valid ID card, while non-EU citizens may require a Schengen visa for entry.
  • Currency: The official currency of Hungary is the Hungarian Forint (HUF), and credit cards are widely accepted in major establishments.
  • Weather: Budapest experiences a continental climate with four distinct seasons. April offers pleasant spring weather, ideal for sightseeing and outdoor activities.
  • Neighboring Countries: Hungary shares borders with Austria, Slovakia, Ukraine, Romania, Serbia, Croatia, and Slovenia, offering opportunities for cross-border exploration.
  • Population: Budapest is Hungary’s capital and largest city, with a population of over 1.7 million residents.
  • Languages Spoken: Hungarian is the official language, but English and German are widely spoken, particularly in tourist areas, hotels, and restaurants.

Stay – Avenue Hostel

Day Wise Itinerary:

Day 1: Discovering Buda and Pest

Morning:

  1. Buda Castle: Our day began with a visit to the illustrious Buda Castle, perched majestically atop Castle Hill. The panoramic vistas of the Danube River and Budapest’s skyline from the castle’s terraces were simply breathtaking, offering a glimpse into the city’s rich past and scenic beauty.
  2. Fisherman’s Bastion: Next, we explored the whimsical architecture of Fisherman’s Bastion, a fairytale-like structure with seven turrets representing the seven Magyar tribes that settled in Hungary. The intricate details and panoramic views from the bastion made it a highlight of our morning.

Afternoon:

  1. Lunch at Szimpla Kert: We savored a hearty Hungarian lunch at Szimpla Kert, one of Budapest’s renowned ruin bars. The vibrant ambiance, eclectic decor, and delicious local dishes made it a memorable culinary experience.
  2. Matthias Church: Post-lunch, we admired the Gothic splendor of Matthias Church, known for its stunning architecture, colorful roof tiles, and historical significance. The interior adorned with frescoes and stained glass windows was a sight to behold.

Evening:

  1. Danube River Cruise: As the sun began to set, we embarked on a romantic Danube River cruise, gliding past Budapest’s iconic landmarks bathed in golden hues. The illuminated Parliament building, Chain Bridge, and Buda Castle created a magical ambiance, perfect for capturing unforgettable moments.
  2. Dinner at Gundel: Our evening culminated with a gourmet dinner at Gundel, a legendary restaurant renowned for its traditional Hungarian cuisine with a modern twist. The elegant setting, live music, and exquisite flavors elevated our dining experience to new heights.

Day 2: Immersing in Thermal Baths and History

Morning:

  1. Széchenyi Thermal Bath: We indulged in relaxation at Széchenyi Thermal Bath, immersing ourselves in the healing waters of Europe’s largest medicinal bath. The thermal pools, saunas, and ornate architecture provided a rejuvenating start to our day.
  2. Heroes’ Square: Adjacent to the baths, we explored Heroes’ Square, a monumental plaza honoring Hungary’s national heroes and showcasing the iconic Millennium Monument. The grandeur of the square and its historical significance were awe-inspiring.
  3. St. Stephen’s Basilica: The basilica is a magnificent testament to both the city’s rich history and its enduring architectural grandeur, and beckoned us with its awe-inspiring beauty and spiritual significance.
  4. Gelarto Rosa: We tried their rose ice-cream which is made exclusively from the finest imported and local ingredients.

Afternoon:

  1. Lunch at New York Café: We dined in opulence at New York Café, often referred to as the “Most Beautiful Café in the World” The grandiose decor, rich history, and delectable Hungarian pastries made it a culinary delight.
  2. Hungarian Parliament: Post-lunch, we marveled at the Hungarian Parliament building, an architectural masterpiece on the banks of the Danube. The intricate Neo-Gothic design, towering dome, and riverside location made it a symbol of Budapest’s grandeur.

Evening:

  1. Stroll along Váci Street: We took a leisurely stroll along Váci Street, Budapest’s renowned shopping and dining boulevard. The bustling street lined with boutiques, cafes, and street performers offered a vibrant glimpse into Budapest’s urban life. We even tried the famous Lángos which is a typical Hungarian food. It is made of deep fried bread topped with cheese, onions and sour cream.
  2. Dinner at Onyx Restaurant: Our evening concluded with a fine dining experience at Onyx Restaurant, a Michelin-starred culinary gem specializing in Hungarian gastronomy. The innovative dishes, impeccable service, and elegant ambiance made it a fitting finale to our second day in Budapest.

Day 3: Embracing Nature and Cultural Heritage

Morning:

  1. Margaret Island: We spent the morning exploring the serene Margaret Island, a verdant oasis in the heart of Budapest. The island’s lush gardens, historical monuments, and recreational facilities provided a tranquil escape from the bustling city.
  2. Margaret Bridge: Crossing the Margaret Bridge, we admired panoramic views of Budapest’s skyline, the Danube River, and the iconic Parliament building. The bridge’s architectural elegance added to the scenic beauty of our morning.

Afternoon:

  1. Lunch at Rosenstein Restaurant: We relished authentic Hungarian Jewish cuisine at Rosenstein Restaurant, known for its flavorful dishes and cozy ambiance. The culinary heritage and cultural richness of Hungarian cuisine were evident in every bite.
  2. Dohány Street Synagogue: Post-lunch, we delved into Budapest’s Jewish heritage with a visit to the Dohány Street Synagogue, Europe’s largest synagogue. The synagogue’s architecture, history, and poignant memorials offered insights into Hungary’s Jewish community.

Evening:

  1. Opera House: Our cultural exploration continued with a visit to the Budapest Opera House, a magnificent venue showcasing opera, ballet, and classical music performances. The opulent interiors, exquisite performances, and rich artistic heritage were a testament to Budapest’s cultural legacy. We watched GOLDEN AGE – YBL210 and it was an amazing experience.
  2. Farewell Dinner at Spoon The Boat: We bid farewell to Budapest with a memorable dinner cruise aboard Spoon The Boat, sailing along the Danube amidst Budapest’s illuminated landmarks. The scenic views, delectable cuisine, and festive atmosphere provided a fitting conclusion to our Budapest adventure.

Our 3-day sojourn in Budapest was a tapestry of experiences, weaving together history, culture, gastronomy, and natural beauty. From the regal allure of Buda Castle to the therapeutic indulgence of thermal baths, Budapest offered a captivating journey through time and traditions. Each day unfolded new discoveries, leaving us enchanted by Budapest’s charm and hospitality. Until we meet again, Budapest, thank you for the unforgettable memories and enduring impressions.

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