A while ago, my friend suddenly messaged me. ‘Hey, Rosalie, what would you think about going to Budapest for a few nights?’. Turned out, she’d stumbled upon a great offer for a three nights trip to Budapest and wanted me to come with. Since I’d never been and I like a bit of travelling (and also because it was really cheap for a three nights trip with hotel and breakfast included), I said ‘Sure!’ and so it happened that three weeks ago, my friend and I found ourselves in Budapest.
Our hotel was located near the station you see in the picture above: Keleti Pályaudvar. It is a beautiful station, as you can see. I don’t know how big of a station this was (as in, importance), but the part you are able to see, is a train station, so I’d say it was at least a bit important. I wonder if a lot of stations in Budapest are this pretty. We mainly saw subway stations and those were all hidden under the streets. During our stay, I figured out that pályaudvar means station, kijárat means exit and bejárat means entrance. I picked up a couple more words, but I’ve forgotten them since.
This picture shows Heroes’ Square. It’s a homage to the Magyar tribe that settled in this land in 896 AC and who are viewed as the forefathers of the present Hungarians (or at least that’s what our tour guide told us). Heroes’ Square was built in 1896 AC, a thousand years after the foundation of the Hungarian state.
Linked to Heroes’ Square is Andrássy út (Andrássy avenue). Andrássy út is a boulevard with a lot of interesting buildings, such as the House of Terror and the Opera House. The street is said to resemble the Champs-Élysées, and even though I’ve never been to Paris, I could understand the comparison.
House of Terror is one of the more interesting buildings on Andrássy út. I didn’t go inside, but the outside itself is pretty impressive already. It stands out because of it being so different to the buildings surrounding it and the vibe coming off the house is quite daunting.
The Opera House is also very impressive, but in a total different way. Again, I didn’t go inside, but I am very content with just admiring these beautiful buildings. You’ve always got some prejudices before going somewhere and I just thought of Budapest being very poor. And while I am not denying that it is obvious that Hungary is not a rich country, I also can’t deny that Budapest has loads of places and building that completely shatter that mindset. The Opera House is one of those places.
I believe this ferris wheel was located near Déak Ferenc tér. It was fun to ride this ferris wheel and to see things from a different perspective. It reminded me a bit of the London Eye, though much cheaper.
One thing I absolutely can recommend, is to take a tour on the Danube. It doesn’t cost much and you’ll be seated for about two hours. It is fun to just sit back, relax and take a look around. This bridge is the Liberty Bridge.
This bridge is the Chain Bridge and it is designed by an Englishman. You can’t see this from this picture, but the lions standing at the beginning of the bridge don’t have tongues. We were told that someone in the crowd yelled this on the day the statues were revealed and that the Englishman promptly threw himself in the river when he saw he made a mistake. Luckily for him, he was saved quickly (though his pride may have drowned a bit).
This is me, enjoying a mojito cocktail on board of the ferry. I don’t normally include pictures of myself in these travel diaries, but I really like this one!
I honestly don’t know any of these buildings, but the picture is beautiful and a perfect ending to this post.
I liked Budapest a lot, but I don’t know if I’d want to visit it again. My friend and I walked around a bit, joined a Big Bus tour (recommended!), took a tour on the Danube (also recommended!) and I don’t feel the need to go back and see it again. Surely, there’s lots more to Budapest than I’ve seen so far, but I liked this experience good enough. If you’re a student or just don’t want to spend a lot of money, Budapest is a perfect destination. Food and travelling is fairly cheap and even though not a lot of Hungarians speak English, you should be fine to find your way.