When I asked a good friend of mine what she wanted to do to celebrate her 21st birthday, she told me that she would like to spend a weekend in Budapest seeing as we’re already in Europe and not too far away from Hungary. She then asked if I’d like to join her on this trip… Who could say no to that?! So we made the travel arrangements – I booked a return flight from Milan, and she booked a return train journey from Vienna – and waited excitedly for the end of May to arrive! The holiday was even better than we’d planned… In fact, we did so much in our 4 days in Budapest that there’s too much to write about! Instead I’m just going to have to let the photos do the talking…
But first, here’s the quick version of what we got up to:
Once we’d successfully dropped our luggage off at the hotel we decided to aimlessly explore for a bit. We took a wander along the riverside, visited Parliament, City Hall, and the Basilica, before finally finishing up the night with a birthday meal at The Hard Rock Cafe and heading back to our hotel.
Our second day in Budapest was used to get as much done as humanly possible. We took a tour bus over to the Buda side of the river and visited Buda Castle, the National History Museum, Fishermen’s Bastion, St Matthias Church, and the Statue of Liberty.
This was another busy day, spent finishing up the remainder of the tourist attractions. We took the bus further into the Pest side of Budapest and visited Heroes’ Square, Vajdahunyad Castle, and Szechenyi Thermal Baths, before heading back to Parliament for a guided tour of the inside of the building and then ending our day by returning to the baths to relax in the thermal pools.
Our last day (morning) in Budapest was spent inside the Basilica and sitting down to a lunch and a Starbucks iced mocha, before going our seperate ways in order to get our transport back to Italy and Austria.
As you can clearly see from these pictures, Budapest is an absolutely stunning city with plenty of history and tourist attractions! Though I have to admit that this was definitely a new experience for me. It has been a very, very long time since I have been to a country where I can’t communicate with people in their own language. It was really strange to have to hope that I would find some who spoke English… In fact, as a language student it actually made me really uncomfortable even though I did make the effort to learn the usual basics (hello, yes, no, please, thank you, do you speak English? – Jó napot, igen, nem, kérek, köszönöm, beszél ön angolul?).
The only other things that caused us a bit of difficulty were trying to calculate the how much we’d spent in euros, and the temperature. By the end of our weekend we were experts in converting forint into euro, but unfortunately we continued to struggle with the heat throughout the entire weekend. As British citizen we aren’t particularly adept at dealing with 36 degrees centigrade every day! It was probably slightly too hot for all the sight-seeing we had in mind, but I’m just glad that we didn’t decide to go and visit in July!!