Days around the first of November, we traditionally spend with our loved ones and remember those who are no longer with us. However, this year we put those morbid things aside, took advantage of extra-long weekend, and went on a short road trip. Yes, back to the neighbours. But this time to those who speak such a different language that you don’t understand a word, they are known to be a masters of goulash and when you have, in addition to euros, in your wallet their money, you think you just became a millionaire. Yeah… Hungarians are really special and cool.
Of course, we had to see with our own eyes if Budapest is truly one of the most beautiful capitals in Europe, as alleged by some travel magazines. Are you interested in how to get there? If you go there from Ljubljana, then just straight down the highway – not a single bend in total of 500 km (Ljubljana – Budapest). For this endless straight road, you need a vignette, which costs about 10 euros and is valid for 10 days.
Given the fact that we decided for this road trip 12 hours before departure, we was in a slight panic searching for a hotel, but this time we got lucky. Green hotel is located only a minute or two walk from the metro station, a huge shopping mall, tidy, clean and have everything you need.
Our motto could be… why go with metro, when you can take 14 kilometers walk 🙂 and this on our first day here. Really not a problem for us,… only consequences which you feel the next day.
What can you see in Budapest? We are first starting with a Great Synagogue Dohanyn, which is the second largest in the world and can take as much as 3,000 worshippers. Due to the architectural style, which is reminiscent of the Christian is also called Jewish cathedral. Then a jump past National Museum to a huge Central Market Hall. Fruits, vegetables, souvenirs, crocheted tablecloths, clothes, really everything you can image as well as the meat and all kind of sausages at the butcher – expect somewhat higher prices than elsewhere and catastrophic crowd. This is especially true for “restaurants” in the upper floor. Today on our menu… traditional Hungarian specialty – goulash. Crazy good dish, which is on top of everything served in a large bread bowl. You will definitely lick your fingers after this one.
With a full stomach, we cross the Szechenyi Bridge and climb the hill to reach a small town. No shortage of shops, coffee shops, confectioneries and even attractions, among which stands out the Royal Palace. This was the domestic residence of the royal family, until the Turkish invasions. Now it is a home of National Gallery, Library and Museum. Nearby is another attraction which needs to be mentioned… the neo-Gothic Mathias Church. The final image is obtained from good hundred years ago, but its foundations were established for more than 500 years ago.
One blister, sore feet and even more sore back… All day walk take its toll. However, nothing serious, a large breakfast in the hotel and we are off. This time with a little more driving, especially by metro. We bought a single ticket for each of us and we rode five times. Great deal, Hungarian deal 🙂
First, the Parliament. The biggest building in the Hungary, which was created along the lines of London’s Westminster Palace, is situated on the banks of the Danube. You can also enjoy a guided tour, where you can admire the frescoes, statues and chambers in which parliamentarians are making their plans. However, you will need to test it yourself, because we didn’t.
If you are a fan of beautiful buildings, churches and architecture, Budapest is your place to be. You will find a church behind every corner. Among all stands out the most beautiful and largest in the city, the Basilica of Saint Stephen. It is named after the former Hungarian king. His right hand (literally) is put on display and is considered as the holy grail of the area. Ohh, those religious relics.
Just remember the next word, langos. It is really greasy but delicious,… not a word, but the dish. Fried dough (like a donut, only bigger and flat) coated with sour cream and grated cheese. Njamiii. You will get the best one in Retro Langos Bufe.
To escape from the concrete jungle hop on metro and get off at the city park. There is ZOO, Heroic’s square, millenary monument and Szechenyi Baths. Yes, true spa just a few minutes from city center. There is more than 125 thermal springs in the city. So, if you have some extra time and you feel like 60 years old, we recommend a jump into a hot thermal water (38 °C) and a game of chess with the locals, while you getting your back massaged with tones of bubbles. Oh where are those senior days 😄 too far!
Days are around, but we already have new plans. Why we should go straight home, if we can make a big detour and serve you with another post from another European capital. Follow us and you will see where the trail led us this time.
S & B