Sunday, 17 January 2016

Budapest from A to Z

I have a feeling people who visit Hungary, usually only come to Budapest, and are likely to just visit the main attractions and the sights that you can't even miss when in the Hungarian capital. The idea of a Budapest ABC came to my mind, and as I tried to list the sights and hidden gems, I realised that it gave me a hard time doing so, as I often came up with several places to mention for each letter. 
There are some sights that you might have heard of, and places that are famous and well-known, but I tried my best to also choose places that most people never would have thought about visiting or even seeing in Budapest.

A for Anker köz
 This is a little street near Deák square, which is made special by the wonderful houses set here. It's not like a main sight, but as it's in a walking distance from the shopping street, the Basilica and several other places, I'd recommend you see it for yourself.

B for Buda Castle
This castle is something you can't, and probably won't, miss on your tirp to Budapest. The Castle District is adorable with its old houses, and there are some great galleries and museums in there. It's situated on top of the Castle Hill, and you can get there easily by walking, or by bus.

C for Chain Bridge
Budapest is famous for its Danube bridges, because we have lots of them, but the Chain Bridge is easily the most beautiful of them all, especially at night. 

D for Danube
This river comes from Germany, through Austria, halves Hungary, and then arrives to its final destination, Romania. The Danube bank is embellished with breathtaking buildings on both sides.

E for Elisabeth Bridge
Elisabeth Bridge connects the shopping street (Váci utca) of the Pest side with Mount Gellért on the Buda side. It's a really simple bridge, but you have a great view from both of its sides.

F for Fisherman's Bastion
This is one of my favourite buildings of Budapest. It's mixture of architectural styles makes it very special and extraordinary, and offers a picturesque view.

G for Gellért Baths
Our country is famous for its spas and baths, so I wanted to include one of them in this post. Though, Széchenyi is the most famous one, Gellért is just as great, by the Danube, next to Mount Gellért.

H for Heroes' Square
Heroes' Square is a really popular sight in Budapest, with statues of Hungarian historical figures, museums on both sides, the Andrássy Ave in front, and the City Park behind. Its great location makes it a must-see.

I for Island of Margaret
In the middle of the city, and in the middle of the river, is a very popular island that the locals like to chill at. There are wonderful parks, sports facilites, a little zoo, and a great view. Though, it's one of the most dangerous places in Hungary at night, so only visit during the daytime!

J for Jánoshegy
Chairlifts take you up to the top of Jánoshegy on the Buda side, to admire this breathtaking view of the city and the surrounding hills and mountains.

K for Keleti Railway Station
Keleti is one of Budapest's main train stations, in the 7th district, where you won't find many sights, as the district is famous for its pubs and street art, but the wonderful architecture makes it all up.

L for Liberty Bridge
Liberty Bridge is situated near Mount Gellért, the Gellért Hotel and Baths, the Great Market Hall, and two of the best Hungarian universities with awesome architecture, Corvinus University and the University of Technology and Economics. At night, you could sit on the bridge, and just admire the amazing city.

M for Metro Line M3
Line 3 connects North and South, so you're likely to take this metro when you're in Budapest and using our public transport system, as it's also a way to get to the city from the airport, and back. It can easily remind you of the Soviet era, as it was built back in the late '70s, early '80s, and most of the trains haven't been changed ever since.

N for Night at Budapest
 Wonderful, isn't it? Opposite is Mount Gellért with the Statue of Liberty and the Citadel. On the right hand side is the Castle and the Castle District, and several churches on the Buda side. Right in front of us is the Chain Bridge, and, eventhough you can't see it in the photo, on the left should be the Parliament.

O for Opera
The Opera House is a breathtaking building, both inside and outside. If you get the chance, take the Opera-tour - it was a really wonderful experience in my opinion, and I would take it again and again!

P for Parisian Court
My heart aches a little at this part. This is an adorable hidden gem in the city, near Elisabeth Bridge, now empty, but just wandering around the place, doing nothing, lifts my spirits. Now, it seems as it's going to be bought, and turned into a luxury hotel. If only that wouldn't happen to such a perfect place!

Q for Turkish Quarter
It's also on the Buda side, and it's also a little hidden from everything and everyone, but it's free to enter, and offers a wonderful view, after taking the steps from the adorable cobble stone street of Gül Baba. I'd recommend visiting during the summer for flowers of vibrant colours.

R for Ruin Pubs
Budapest is also famous for its ruin pubs, that can take you to a different world. In my opinion, everyone should visit a pub like this once in a lifetime, because it's so extraordinary, and people from all ages tend to enjoy its atmosphere!

S for St. Stephen's Basilica
This basilica is the third largest church building in Hungary today. It's in a great location, in the middle of the city, offering an amazing viw from the top, and a beautiful interior. 

T for Trams
In Budapest, we still have cute old yellow trams around most of the city, bonus history on the streets. They look adorable! I'd recommend taking tram number 2, as it takes you around the Parliament, along the Danube, and you can admire almost all sights of the city centre just sitting on a cute old tram.

U for Újpest
This is a district of Budapest in the north, with some amazing buildings and cobble stones, and with awesome transportation! You can even hop on a boat (only BKK boats, and not in the winter), then get as far as Liberty Bridge, and fall in love with the city.

V for Vajdahunyad Castle
This castle is a little hidden, in the City Park, by a lake (ice rink during the winter months), behind the Heroes' Square. This park around the castle offers you tons to explore, and breathtaking architecture to admire.

W for Water Tower
Budapest is full of beautifully built water towers. My favourites are in Újpest, the one on the Margaret Island, and in the 10th district.

X for Xmas Market
Budapest has several Christmas markets during the festive season, all really nice and cozy. I'd recommend tasting some Hungarian national dishes or desserts, as these markets often offer lots of them alongside some mulled wine.

Y for Ybl's Architecture
 Miklos Ybl must've been one of Hungary's most famous and most amazing architects. There are several wonderful buildings of his in the country, but there are also a few in the city, for example St. Stephen's Basilica, or the building of the Corvinus University of Budapest.

Z for Zoo
 Our zoo is located next to the City Park, near the Heroes' Square, some museums, and the Széchenyi Baths. It has just been renovated, so I'd recommend a visit, especially with children.

Have you visited any of these places? Have you found anything that I mentioned that you haven't heard of?

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