Thursday, 20 July 2017

T R A V E L - / / TOP SIGHTS NOT TO MISS - BUDAPEST!

If you follow me over on INSTAGRAM, you've probably seen that I've not long come back from an amazing trip in Budapest. I headed to Budapest back in May to celebrate Michael's 23rd birthday - Budapest has a multitude of sights that need to be seen, and I think we saw them all! Every day we were up and out as soon as possible to make sure we took everything in. If you want to get around, there is a fantastic tram and metro system (I'm useless at navigating but Google helps ALOT)
You'll find the best views involve a long walk, so be prepared to be permanently exhausted - but it's 100% worth it!

Budapest is known for it's beautiful Turkish baths, outstanding architecture and delicious food. With a population of over 2 million people, it's rich history and culture shines through it's breathtaking architecture. The city is safe, locals are very friendly and the nightlife is filled with great clubs, bars and restaurants.  There are plenty of tourist destinations to visit, and every sight has a story.

I've put together a small list of places that you shouldn't miss on a short stay in Hungary's capitol.




Walk up Gellert Hill

Gellert Hill is named after an Italian Bishop who was martyred in this area in the 11th century. The Gellert statue can be found at the top of the hill over seeing the waterfalls below. There are many routes to reach the top of the hill, we chose the entrance via the park just shy of the Cave Church (in Sziklatemplom) on the Buda side. It's a long walk, 235m to be exact - but totally worth it once you reach the top - and a few of the nice view points along the way.



Soak in the Széchenyi Baths.

There are plenty of Geothermal baths in Budapest for you to enjoy. We chose the most famous bath of all - The Széchenyi Baths. This is the hottest tourist destination you will find in Budapest, but you'll also find a lot of the locals (mainly the men hogging the chess tables) around also so I don't mind it too much. The outdoor baths offer two different temperatures. The bigger pool, with includes a beautiful fountain and sculpture is headed to 37oC and it's advised you don't stay in the pool for longer than 15 minutes. Inside there are a number of steam rooms, wet rooms, a splash pool and a variety of pools with temperatures to meet everyone's needs. 



Hit the Ruin Pubs.




Following the Second World War, many buildings were left empty and abandoned. That until artists and the hipsters came along and turned them into the most unique and eccentric pubs I have ever seen. There's too many to list for you - but my favourite was Szimpla Kert. Each room had it's own genre of music, it was alive but still calm enough that you could talk to the person next to you. The drinks were super cheap - I'm talking £2.50/£3 for a large cocktail and pints at around £1.20. Each room had it's own quirky aesthetic, with something for everyone. Me and Michael loved the cocktail bar downstairs in the outdoors area, but also loved the cafe upstairs with their amazing home made burgers - and even enjoyed a few round of foosball across the hall. 
It was so good we went back every night. I recommend you stumble through the back alleys as much as possible, you never know what gem you might stumble across.  







Head to Fisherman's Bastion.



Fisherman's Bastion is without a shadow of doubt one of Budapests top attractions. The beautiful towers were built in the 19th century to serve as a lookout for the best panoramic views of Budapest you'll ever witness. These real castle walls now welcome 1000s of visitors from around the world to take in an outstanding view. Entrancde is free to the balconies, but a fee is payable to explore the top turrets. These turrents represent the 7 Hungarian tribes who founded the present day country in 895. 

         




Cross the bridges between Buda and Pest.



The Chain bridge joins Buda and the Pest together as one. There is more to the bridges than simply a convenient path between to two halves. Each bridge has an interesting history that you can read up on. What better way to appreciate their history than walking from the Buda to the Pest, or vice versa, until you can't do it any more?






Sit down for food at the New York Cafe.


Now, we were very lucky to be able to stay at the Boscolo Residence which is connected to this stunning dinner hall. We booked in for the all you can eat breakfast for the morning after we arrived. The area is beautiful, perfectly clean and the service was second to none. The breakfast was a hefty price - at 25 Euro each, not the biggest selection of food (specially if you're fussy like me and don't eat meat) But there's enough for everyone.
The food was great, I even helped myself to salmon - because I'm a terrible vegetarian. Our table was a little far away from the buffet but I loved being able to look around the whole area.
It's worth a visit even if you just pop in for a coffee. It feels first class! This cafe is just total perfection.