5 Places to Visit in Budapest

buda

The Hungarian capital is a destination which surprises a lot of tourists. The first surprise is that it is actually made up of two cities (Buda and Pest) instead of one. These two areas sit across from each other on opposite banks of the River Danube.

Once you have found your bearings you will find that there is a lot of interesting stuff to do here. Here are 5 of the top places to visit while you are in Budapest.

The Banks of the Danube

Don’t you just love cities with rivers running through them? The Danube cuts through Budapest in the most picturesque way possible. Taking a stroll along the banks of the river is a wonderful way to see the city and start to feel as though you are getting to know it. Another option is to hop on a boat cruise here and see the city from a different point of view. For walkers, Danube Promenade is on the Pest side of the river and offers book shops, coffee shops and some great clothes shops. There are also some interesting sculptures along the route which you might like to look out for to break up the long walk.

Buda Castle

One of the prettiest and most iconic buildings in the Hungarian capital is Buda Castle. This is the centrepiece of the Castle District, which is a fantastically well preserved area of the city with lots of atmosphere. This is a World Heritage site and you really shouldn’t leave Budapest without visiting it. You won’t have any trouble finding it, as you can see the castle from all over the city. If you are lucky you might arrive here when one of the many annual festivals and events take place.

The House of Terror

When I mention that this is a museum showing the fascist and communist history of Hungary you might be less than enthralled. Having said that, it is incredibly well done and offers a great chance to learn more about the country and its turbulent political history. Even if you don’t normally spend a lot of time in museums you should consider giving this one a try to see if you like it.

City Park

PESTThis isn’t the biggest urban park in the world but it is a lovely place to spend a few hours of your trip.  Here you will find the biggest artificial ice surface in Europe, a couple of museums, an amusement park and a lot more besides. The zoo and botanical garden are also located here, as is the Municipal Circus. The Széchenyi Medicinal Bath uses piping hot water from thermal springs in Europe’s largest medicinal baths. There are many different types of pools and treatments you can try out here.Even if you aren’t overly interested in the medicinal aspect, this is still a wonderfully historic and atmospheric place to take a wander round.You can enter city Park at Heroes’ Square.

Ferenc Puskás Stadium

Sports fans should definitely check out this stadium, on the Pest side of the Danube. This famous stadium once had a capacity of over 100,000 and while the current capacity is a good deal smaller it is still a big, intimidating stadium. English football fans may recall this as the place where, in 1954, their team had the heaviest defeat in their history. That crushing 7-1 defeat happened over 60 years ago now but a trip to the stadium is still likely to reward you with a great game of football. It is also a popular venue for music concerts, with Bruce Springsteen, Michael Jackson and Queen all having played here.

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