Project Description

Budapest? It is a great city dating back over 1,000 years and located in the heart of Central Europe. We can feel it at the first step: the Hungarian capital was rich, beautiful, cosmopolitan and prosperous until the party stopped to let the devils of History sow terror. Wounded by wars, devastated by Nazism, impoverished by communism which almost killed its soul, the Pearl of the Danube has finally regained its past glory and is today a bustling capital, full of life both day and night, and listed as one of the most beautiful European cities!

I had the opportunity to travel to Budapest several times and therefore was able to enjoy my time there and everything that the city has to offer: from the Castle District to the Parliament, through St. Stephen Basilica and different thermal baths. I even went back to some places several times and that’s why it’s hard to write (as I usually do) an article summarizing roughly one or more days of sightseeing; I may get confused or worse, repeat myself! Therefore I will do things differently and will write an article regrouping all the different places I’ve visited under two “chapters”: one on Buda and the other on Pest. Finally, note that the content of these articles is of course far from being exhaustive, but can always be completed with one or more other trips!

As for the accommodation, I had the opportunity to stay in two establishments of different categories: the Bohem Art Hotel and the Avenue Hostel, respectively a 4 star hotel (once in a while doesn’t hurt, especially as I got a great deal there!) and a youth hostel, both located in Pest. The Hill of Buda also has loads of hotels and restaurants, but they are very often more expensive than those of Pest, even if the latter hosts a much larger amount of them. I guess that in Buda, we pay for the view on the rest of the city which is awesome, as you’ll see a bit down in this article. I also bought a “Budapest Card” which will grant me many discount prices and, most importantly, free public transportation!

Bohem Art Hotel

    • Combines a hip hotel with very high standards and an amazing art gallery featuring young Hungarian artists.
    • Clean, modern and comfortable, excellent wifi, transfer from/to the airport included with most bookings.
    • Located just 50 meters from the Danube, Vaci utca shopping street and close to numerous restaurants, cafes and bars.
    • Hearty breakfast buffet, coffee, tea and snacks available in the lobby daily from 2PM to 5PM.
    • Usually, prices are much higher that what I got for a long weekend of 4 days, but I was lucky to received a great offer. Honestly I would not go back if I have to pay full price as the place, despite the excellent quality of the hotel, is clearly off-budget to me.
    • No views of the Danube despite the proximity to the river, as the hotel is situated between two pedestrian streets. Too bad, especially for the price!
    • Nothing more to say about the Bohem Art Hotel. Frankly, I was not disappointed by the service and I have rarely been so well received in my travels in Eastern Europe, not to mention the quality and comfort of the room, and the huge choice for the breakfast, just great!

Avenue Hostel

    • Central location, next to “Oktogon” metro station and excellent value for money, especially at the last minute!
    • Shared kitchen where breakfast is served every morning (bread, butter, jam and eggs, sometimes even fruits).
    • Reception open 24/7, great wifi, very friendly staff, always willing to help (advices and bookings of any kind)!
    • Private huge box to store individual stuff with a lockpad that can be lend for free by the staff at the reception.
    • Located right next to one of the busiest crossroad between on this side of the Danube. Therefore and as you imagine, it is very noisy at almost every hours of the day (especially on mornings, evenings and nights). Impossible to sleep with the windows closed, so earplugs are essential!
    • The bathrooms and toilets are common and sometimes left in a deplorable state after use… But I shouldn’t blame the hostel for that.
    • Pure inn atmosphere guaranteed! If you don’t like to be surrounded by a group of 14-18 years old whose discussions comes down to “where getting drunk cheaply” or “how many bars can we see in a single night,” go somewhere else or isolate yourself!

Budapest, the Pearl of the Danube

At each of my trips, I arrived by plane directly at Budapest Liszt Ferenc international airport, but you can also reach the Hungarian capital by bus and of course by train, directly and easily from any neighboring capital (like Vienna for instance). From the airport, you can get to the city center with a bus-metro journey, a transport provided by your hotel or by taxi. For my part, I experienced the first two solutions, but the bus-metro ride remains the easiest, fastest and cheapest of all! Just after getting to the arrival hall, you will certainly be approached by drivers or hostesses offering a trip downtown at a specific price: ignore them (unless you’re interested by the offer, but watch out for scam!), leave the building and head to the bus stops.

There, you will find automatic terminals: look for the famous combo ticket for the city center, pay (everything is in English, follow the directions on the screen or on posters around) and stamp it once inside the bus in one of the little orange boxes. Ticket controls are rare, but it’s better to be in order. After about 10-15 minutes, get off the bus and head to the “Communist green toned” subway station nearby. Follow the other tourists in case of doubt or ask a local, assuming they speak English… A man checks your ticket, then let you access the platform. If the metro is already there, get on quickly because the driver will not wait for everybody to board before leaving the station… Yes, I’ve seen it, as we were only 4 on 25-30 people who made our way in the first car before the doors closed. When is the next metro? In about 15-20 minutes.

A few words about the Hungarian underground transportation system: despite the stereotypes, you should not worry about safety (presence of staff almost all the time) and cleanliness (very clean, much more that what I expected). I’m on my way for a half an hour journey towards the city center. That’s the time to get your map of the subway out of your bag, as you’ll have to determine the nearest station to your accommodation, which may require a change of line. Once again, don’t worry about it because it is included in your combined ticket and the various subway lines are well indicated with a color system. By the way, it’s hard to get lost in the heart of this network of only 4 lines. Getting lost in the Tokyo Metro, that I can understand, but there is little chance to happen in Budapest.

In all cases, travel time from the airport to a downtown hotel lasts in average between 30 and 60 minutes. Once you have checked in, take a shower or a nap, but people like me will have only one desire: go for a walk around! After an hour through the different streets and squares around my lodging, I’ve found everything I need: a few cheap places to eat, a conveniently placed ATM where I can withdraw Hungarian forint (the local currency), and a small supermarket where a liter of still water is only 0.49cts! Oh, also note that there are a few tramway lines on the surface which will take you along major roads between Buda and Pest. Great way to save time while traveling and to admire the surrounding buildings easily. The famous “Hop-on, Hop-off” red bus offer the same, but are subject to traffic jam! Then enjoy a good night of sleep before an early morning start, certainly in contrast to your fellow hostel roomates who will stay in bed the whole morning, if not more after a short and alcoholic night!

This article is about a tour of Pest, Buda is avaiable by clicking here. Enjoy!

The Parliament, St. Stephen’s Church, Andrássy Avenue and more!

This time, let’s start our tour of the second half of the Hungarian capital, Pest. Like I did for my article about Buda, I’ll try to write here the summary of the places I’ve visited on this side of the Danube. It starts early as usual, to enjoy the calmness of the beginning of the day even if it is not easy in a big city like Budapest. So I climb on the first tram passing by and head to Buda. While I am crossing the Danube via Margaret Bridge, I get off at “Margit-Sziget” stop or “Margaret Island”, a small piece of land located in the middle of the river, connected between towns on both sides by a bridge at each end and named in honor of the daughter of King Béla IV, St-Marguerite. The place, also called “Island of rabbits” once, is a real attraction for the inhabitants of Budapest, just like the thermal baths. On hot summer days, you will see huge crowds of people sitting in the grass, drinking beer, laughing, singing and having fun. In winter, there are obviously less people outside, given the often freezing temperatures, but the island still remains the favorite spot of joggers and cyclists with its 5.3 kilometers of specially adapted tracks.

At a totally different pace, I follow a few runners on the roads bordering the Danube and discover the charm of the island. I understand also quickly why this place is so well-known: I feel quite isolated from the rest of Budapest, away from traffic, exhaust gases, noise and of course other tourists, especially so early in the morning! I even forget for a moment where I am when I cross a very simple, but so peacefull small Japanese garden. Over here, the plants are watered and over there, bushes are cutted. Some elderly even take a morning sunbath sitting on a bench and I almost regret not speaking any Hungarian just to have a chat with them. A plain and simple “Good morning” will do it, especially when it is returned to you with a friendly smile! So I get gradually back to reality as Margaret Bridge comes closer, but I decide to come back here the next day at the same time to enjoy once again this peaceful place.

I now retrace my steps along the tram line. My goal once back in Pest is to walk along the Danube to the Chain Bridge and visit all that can be between St. Stephen’s Cathedral and the Heroes Square far east. Rest assured, this was done in several days as there is little interest to do so running in every direction (as I often say), especially when visiting the capital of Hungary. After a short walk, I arrive in front of a masterpiece of architecture and one of the wonder of Budapest: the Parliament. Undoubtedly one of the most recognizable buildings in the capital and printed on all the postcards, the largest building of Hungary sits majestically along the river Danube and is surrounded by a large square and landscaped gardens. I enjoy now a complete tour of the building from outside. Each element seems to differ from the others, including the foothills, the towers and the imposing dome, not to mention so many windows that I quickly stopped counting them! To admire this building from such a close angle is a real treat for the eyes, perhaps even more than from the Fishermen Bastion on Buda by night, even if the Parliament was at that time coated with a sublime golden light adornment.

Now, some numbers about it. Its construction began in 1885, lasted 17 years and employed about 1000 workers. It is not less than 40 million bricks that were used and about 40 kg of gold 22-23 carat. The building is 268m long, 123m wide and the dome is 96m high. The main entrance opens on Kossuth Square, itself covered with various monuments like the Statue of Kossuth (who led the revolution of 1848 to 1849, governed the country and was sent into exile), the majestic equestrian statue of François Rákoczy II and the monument to the heroes of the Revolution of 1956. Inside are 691 rooms, 10 courtyards and 29 staircases. Its neo-Gothic style is inspired by the Palace of Westminster in London and like his “English counterpart”, the building can be visited. Remember to book your tickets online or directly on site. Group size is limited and tickets are sold very fast, but if you come early in the morning you can certainly visit the Parliament the same day. This is exactly what I am planning to do and the time that my group is forming, I even have the opportunity to enjoy a cup of coffee and a small pastry!

An obligatory passage through a metal detector follows, as well as a full search of my backpack. It’s like passing the security check at an airport! We are then greeted by our guide who tells us more about some safety rules, things we must not do and we finally left for our tour of the Parliament. We start by climbing some stairs, the first of a large series. Allergic to them? Ask the guide to be able to use the lift! Once in the first rooms, I admire with interest the magnificent marble interior. We walk from small corridors to large hallways, most of them being beautifully decorated with stained glass windows, chandeliers, carpets, patterns and intricate designs that emerge from the ceiling, accented with a large amount of gold! In fact, the construction of the Parliament cost so much that the money used to build it would have been enough to build a small town in the Hungarian countryside! Special mention to the many “cigar-holders” located around the outskirts of the Assembly Hall. Once used by the aristocrats, bourgeois and other members of the local elite, cigar holders are numbered, allowing a smoker to easily find where he or she had deposited his or her precious Havana.

Our tour of the building continues, first in the main staircase, then in the hall of the National Assembly of Hungary to finally end in the room of the dome, in which is the most important attraction of the tour: the Crown of St. Stephen. The latter, enclosed in a large glass case, is protected by two guards who ceremoniously change the position of their swords every five minutes. Photos and videos are strictly prohibited! We can nevertheless take our time to admire the crown while our eyes linger on one of the elements that compose it: the enigmatic bent cross, as bent as the Tower of Pisa, which sits at the top of the crown. All visitors and all tourists without exception imagine that the bent cross has a precise symbolic meaning. Well, sorry to disappoint you, but there is none. The inclination of the cross is due to a fortuitous circumstance. During a political upheaval, Queen Isabella wanted to flee with the holy crown. She put it in a box far too narrow and relying on the lid in order to close it, she broke the cross which bowed on one side. Since then, the crown remained in this state, the Hungarians being reluctant to change that accidental failure. After about one hour, our guided tour of the Parliament finally comes to an end. I am a bit disappointed because this was relatively short, but it still provides a very good overview!

A quick passage through the souvenir shop as in any similar places and I left the vicinity of the Parliament to continue my walk along the Danube. In doing so, I admire many beautiful buildings on the other side like the Fishermen Bastion, Matthias Church and even the Royal Palace and the Chain Bridge. The view of Buda is stunning and the mid-morning is ideal to enjoy a good light. So, it is the opposite if you are on the other side of the Danube and the afternoon will offer great views over Pest! This is also a real pleasure to admire from another point of view the buildings that I have had the opportunity to visit not so long ago. Everything looks so calm, even the Danube seems still asleep…

Always with this beautiful panorama right next to me, I continue my walk to the memorial named “Shoes on the Danube”, created and designed by Gyula Pauer and Can Togay in 2005 and dedicated to the victims of the Holocaust in Budapest. It consists of sixty pairs of metal shoes, sealed on the banks of the Danube on over forty meters long and representing the people shot by the Arrow Cross party who had to remove their shoes before being executed. I walk silently between these shoes dating from a time not so long ago. Some are decorated with ribbons, others with plastic flowers or candles and one of them, a real pair of shoes much more recent, seems to have been deposited here as an anonymous donation. After a few minutes there, and as many photos taken, I continue my journey with a thought for the unfortunate victims of the madness of men.

I decide to change my route and return close to the Parliament before going away from it again, but this time towards Freedom Square. On the way, I discover some of the numerous statues scattered all over the city and representing different scenes: famous people both local and from abroad, scenes of daily life, etc. There is a dozen of them and unless you know their exact locations by heart, you have to be quite lucky to find them. On the other hand, this will be easier if you stay close to the famous buildings of Budapest, because most of these statues are scattered nearby. Far from having admired all of them, I’ve found the one of Ronald Reagan, former US president, as well as another representing a policeman that looks (to me) coming straight out of a belgium comic book named “Quick and Flupke”! Ok, this is of course not the same uniform, but this is the first thing I came to my mind… Jeez, what a reference!

A hundred meters away from the Parliament, I then reach Freedom Square, itself surrounded by two massive buildings: the former Budapest Stock Exchange (now the headquarters of Hungarian Television) and the former Austro-Hungarian Bank (now the National Bank of Hungary). During a break in the center of the square occupied by a monument to Soviet heroes, I start comparing these two imposing buildings. Although they are completely different in every way, yet they go perfectly well together without any clash or dissonance between them. They thus illustrate well the principle that one can obtain a varied, changing urban landscape which can even reach some kind of harmony from radically different elements. I think this can be seen on the picture below, but maybe it’s just my own way of seeing things.

Come on, our tour of Pest is just beginning and we’re not about to stop yet! I continue my journey through the still empty streets, where only circulate some delivery vans and very few other motivated tourists. I finally arrive on Zrínyi street, at the end of which I see another masterpieces of Budapest: St. Stephen Basilica. This is one of the largest churches in Hungary and one of the most popular among tourists with St. Mathias in Buda. Its domed roof houses several relics and works of art, especially the stunning Sainte Dextre, the mummified right hand of the first Hungarian king Stephen whom the church is named after. Talking about architecture, the church has nothing to envy to “her sisters” and even the locals say they like to admire it each time they pass by, so imagine when this happens to you for the first time!

Of course, it would be a shame not to visit the splendid interior of the building, curiously almost deserted by tourists. It’s still early and the doors of the building having just opened, this explains why I feel I have the basilica all for myself and that’s great! Knowing that the entrance isn’t free, I intend to enjoy this moment of exclusive tranquility! Amazed by the walls of red marble upon which are gilded ceilings covered with beautiful religious paintings, I discover the place slowly but surely. After soem time, I finally manage to spot the entrance path to the panoramic terrace which circles around the dome of the Basilica and choose to climb the… 370 (!) stone steps. Well, I could have taken the elevator, but why always choosing the easy way when you can do it the hard way? Once at the top, the reward that awaits me is an amazing (and the word isn’t strong enough!) panoramic view of the capital at 360°, the “Pest” equivalent of the view I had admired at the top of St. Matthias church during my visit of the Hill of Buda. Awesome!

Barely out of the basilica, I feel again that summer heat I almost forgot about, thanks to the freshness inside the building. So, I think it is the perfect opportunity for a short but “icy” break and the place to go is already known, coincidentally very close to the St. Stephen Basilica!

The place is called “Gelarto Rosa” and is known for these rose-shapped ice-cream. Sometimes you have to queue for quite a long time, but it’s worth it! First you have to choose how many flavour you want (in fact now many “layers of petals” you want, up to 5 if I remember it correctly), then you pay in exchange for a ticket that is then to be handed to the first lady ready to you create an eatable icy wonder! Have the flavours you want in mind at that time or leave the girl the freedom to create whatever mix she wants for an even greater surprise! Seeing how the rose is made is very interesting, such a dedication petal by petal. My verdict? It’s exquisite and I want more! That is why I went back there every single day! I tested a dozen different flavors and all were downright delicious! You can see here two of them which I thought about getting a picture of before devouring them: the first is pistachio-strawberry-apricot and the second vanilla-raspberry/yoghurt-milk flower. Yum-yum-yummy!

While enjoying my ice cream, I continue my tour toward Elizabeth Square, a gathering place for local youth. It is August and the Sziget Festival has completely transformed the Hungarian capital with stands, music bands, including a 65 meters high Ferris wheel from which you can again enjoy an amazing panorama. I then join Vörösmarty Square and Váci Street, one of the most touristy pedestrian streets of Budapest. It is bordered on both sides by beautiful buildings and extends to the large covered market. The street is crowded with restaurants and souvenir shops, often much more expensive than in other parts of the city. So be careful not to let yourself bamboozled by people trying to lure you in restaurants, because in addition to being more expensive than the average, the food there is far from being good, sometimes even quite disappointing. I do not speak from experience, but it is generally the case along such streets. Remember to look up from time to time, just to admire the first floors of buildings often richly decorated with paintings and statues.

Just before reaching the end of the street, I slightly deviate from my goal to visit the Great Synagogue, the largest in Europe and the second largest in the world. 75m long and 27m wide, it offers a capacity of 3500 seats. The building is located in the old ghetto of Budapest and now plays a central role in Jewish cultural life, in addition to being very popular among tourists. As I arrive at the entrance of the building, several militarymen and policemen are blocking the entrance. I approach them and ask if it is possible to visit the synagogue. They replied in a broken English that there is a ceremony and no, I can not go inside if I do not intend to participate to what’s happening there. Other men, dressed for the occasion and wearing a kippah go inside without any issue. Somewhat disappointed and fearing something at the sight of this important safety device, I don’t insist and finally retrace my steps towards the covered market.

I arrive after a few minutes in front of the building situated just a few meters away from the elegant Liberty Bridge. The covered market of neogothic style is really beautiful, especially its roof covered with sublime ceramics from the famous Hungarian factory called Zsolnay. The interior architecture, which can also be found in other buildings of Budapest such as the West Railway Station, is quite interesting to see and it is only once we’re inside that we realized how big the building is! Although the market has become over the years a tourist attraction, it is primarily a… market place (you got that right) where it is possible to buy many products of great quality at very attractive prices. Try the Hungarian salami with paprika that can easily be store for several months or some duck, a local specialty. Honey, poppy and nuts are also cheap products one can find here, but the flagship of gastronomy remains the Hungarian pepper or “paprika”. The main varieties are “édesnemes” (very soft), “élédes gulyás” (half sweet), and finally “Eros” (the strongest). Know that Hungarian love it and put it in almost all their dishes. Often in restaurants, there is even a paprika pot between the salt and pepper! Overlooking the market, the first floor hides small shops behind the craft stalls. There, you can eat delicious Hungarian dishes, much better and cheaper than what international fast-foods can offer. There are sausages, lángos (a kind of Hungarian donut that is eaten with sour cream), goulash soup, etc. I think I spent almost an hour trying out different specialties, drizzled with a cool Hungarian beer! It’s a great place to visit and also to enjoy some local specialies at the same time. Don’t miss it!

After visiting the covered market, it is time to join Andrássy, a 2.3km long avenue that brings together a large number of famous monuments. Connecting the city center to Városliget (the City Park), it is with the Budapest Metro Line 1 a World Heritage Site by UNESCO since 2002. The artistic level of these buildings throughout the avenue is impressive and gives the place a stately look. Many tourists walk the avenue all the way on foot, then return to the city center by metro and that’s exactly what I intend to do. The avenue begins right behind St. Stephen Basilica. With a good walking pace, I quickly reach number 22 where I admire the famous Opera House of Budapest. A sign says that group visits are organized twice a day and one of them will start in about 5 minutes! The time to enter the building, buy my ticket (yes, the visit is not free) and I join my English speaking group on the stairs.

For a bit more than an hour, our guide will take us through the history of the Opera and its architecture that makes it one of the most beautiful buildings of the Hungarian capital and also the symbol of the rich classic musical culture of Hungary. It was designed by the famous architect Miklós Ybl and built from 1875 to 1884. The 19th century has seen a cultural rivalry between the cities of Vienna and Budapest, both wanting to have the most beautiful opera. Therefore, the one of Budapest has been decorated by the greatest painters and sculptors of the time and the most revolutionary technical solutions, such as hydraulic mechanisms, were used. The visit also takes us to the discovery of the building, from beautiful corridors with carved wood decorations to small recreation rooms with a charming atmosphere. The everpresent red carpet finally leads us to  the huge main room where I stay in ecstasy at the beauty of the ceiling and its frescoes… Not to mention the monumental chandelier of three tons (!) that can be lowered with a pulley system. Great tour!

Back on Andrássy where I continue my walk to the east. After each boulevard I cross, the avenue seems to change somehow, here with paths lined with trees and there with flowered squares and a few benches. On the way, I pass the number 60 where is situated the House of Terror (Terrorháza), a fascinating museum devoted to Hungary during the dictatorship of the Arrow Cross, the Hungarian Nazis. I recommend you this visit as it will add a nice break in your walk before you finally reach the other end of the avenue.

I’ve seen it getting closer at each step, but here it is: Heroes’ Square (Hősök tere). In the middle of the place stands the Millennium monument built in 1896 and commemorates the 1000 years of the arrival of wild Hungarian tribes in the Carpathian Basin. I really like how the place is set up. The monument consists of a central column of 36 meters high topped by a statue of 5 meters from the archangel Gabriel. Below this column is the statues of the seven chiefs of the Hungarian conquest of the Carpathian Basin. Behind the monument is located two quarter circle with a total width of 85 meters that house the statues of Hungarian rulers, below which there is a bronze bas-relief relating to the sovereign in question. It’s now time to take some pictures of the surroundings as I see many tourist groups making their way towards me. No, you won’t be on my pictures!

On each side of the square are the Art Gallery and the Műcsarnok museum. Both buildings offer various exhibitions and Műcsarnok even turns into a kind of trend nightclub at night. That’s clearly not for me, but maybe you like such kind of places? Good for you.

Following a walking path named “Károly Kós” right behind the millennium monument, I head to Városliget, a small island where are situated some historical architectural reconstructions like Vajdahunyad castle for instance. Ruins have been discovered during the Millennium celebrations and a reconstruction process was launched. The goal was to to illustrate the architectural past of Hungary using temporary buildings materials. In other words, the current exhibition of buildings is a trip through many great architectural styles from 11th to 18th century, the 19th century being represented by the entire site itself. Its authors have built accurate reproductions of buildings by respecting each of the most characteristic styles involved in the construction process. The exhibition was so successful that they rebuilt the whole site with stone between 1904 and 1908. It is now possible to walk there no matters the day or the hour, and I admit I enjoy admiring the architectural look of all these buildings, such a great mix of styles and eras!

Back on Heroes Square where I continue my walk on the small boulevard next to the Art Gallery. In the next 10 minutes, I pass next to Gundel restaurant, the most famous in Hungary, the Zoo and the Botanical Gardens of Budapest. I expected the prices at Gundel to be far more expensive, but they are surprisingly affordable. You just have to wear a proper attire when you go there, that’s all. However, no time for lunch or dinner now, as the last attraction of the day will be a dip in the heart of Szechenyi Spa, located about a hundred meters away!

These are undoubtedly among the most beautiful thermal baths of the capital. The multitude of pools of different temperatures offers rest and relaxation in a natural universe. Between hot baths, saunas, and steam rooms, each finds his/her happiness. A route is to follow, although not always easy to understand. So, after having pleasantly sweated in a sauna close to 40°C, you can throw yourself in a tiny pool of water at 8°C. “Awakening effect” guaranteed! And for those who do not have the courage to do so, there is an ice fountain where you can pick up frozen blocks to pass on your body, for chills and incomparable relaxation. But the charm that makes Széchenyi a jewel is found mostly in the outdoor pools, located in the enormous neo-Baroque courtyard all dressed in yellow. A large warm pool where water jets and fountains massage the back, while the bravest will defy the Hungarian grandpas to a game of chess, no matter if it is summer or winter. A second cooler basin offers a bubble massage and a water circuit… Young and not-so-young-anymore will surely have fund and I’ve really had a great time there. Note that in winter, the courtyard is covered with snow and the steam coming out for the hot pools exude a magical and unusual atmosphere which usually leave a great impression to many visitors!

After returning to my accommodation by metro, I take a shower and get some rest before going to eat a meal at Puli along Andrássy Avenue. On the menu: goulash soup, chicken with paprika accompanied with buttered noodles, and for dessert, a slice of Somloi, a delicious Hungarian pastry. A typical local meal, and it was yummy!

As I did in Buda, I spent many evening wandering the streets of Pest by night in order to see once again the buildings I’ve visited on this side of the Danube, to my greatest pleasure! The difference between some areas is impressive: Pest center with its night clubs and other bars is constantly populated whatever the time (kinda normal, you might say), but other places like the Hero Square or Vajdahunyadest Castle are almost completely deserted.

This concludes my non-exhaustive tour of Budapest, I remember you that I’ve done it in several days and not all in once! The separation of the article into two parts was necessary, given the amount of text and pictures. Obviously, I read what I wrote countless times and after a while, I always end up telling me that I could develop this a little more or shorten that. But then, I remember what I planned to do on my blog: write a summary of my travels, and secondly, share it with my family, my friends and other travelers. Nothing more. Doing this after a trip and not while I’m travelling is not an easy task, but I’m very satisfied with the current state of the blog and hope that you have as much pleasure in reading these stories as I have to write them!