Last year we went to Budapest for a weekend getaway. Budapest, the capital city of Hungary, has a unique atmosphere, offers an extensive nightlife, beautiful architecture and various natural thermal baths. The city is the result of the combination of the cities Buda and Pest. In this post we share 7 things to do, where you can sleep and where you can eat. Enjoy!
7 things to do in Budapest
1. Climb up Gellért Hill
Start the day by climbing up the Gellért Hill to enjoy some of the best views of Budapest. From here you can see the difference between the Buda side and the Pest side of the city, with the Danube dividing the two sides. Visit the Hungarian Parliament Building and its surroundings and learn about the Hungarian history. Afterwards, visit one of the famous thermal baths.
2. Visit one of the Thermal baths
Budapest has a lot of relaxing spas that you can visit and is actually famous for its thermal baths, where you can swim and soak in mineral waters of different temperatures. The hot water of thermal baths is drawn from deep under the surface. We went to The Széchenyi Thermal Bath, which is one of the largest spa complexes in Europe; the spa has 18 pools and 10 saunas. Not only does this spa offer amazing medicinal natural hot spring waters and saunas, they also have steam cabins, several massage therapies, facial treatments and serene places where you can relax in hammocks or lounge sofas. What to bring to a thermal bath? A swimsuit, flip flops and towels, and if it’s summertime; your sunglasses and sun protection. You can get a bathrobe there.
3. Explore the amazing architecture
One thing that struck us in Budapest is the architecture. There is a mixture of old and modern buildings, which makes it a fascinating city. A couple buildings worth to admire are the Heroes’ Square, Parliament Building and the Museum of Fine Arts. Currently the Museum of Fine Arts is closed for renovation of the buiding until March 2018, as you can see on the website. So you can only admire it from the outside.
4. Take a dinner cruise on the Danube River
It’s possible to take a beautiful dinner cruise on the Danube River. It’s perfect for a romantic night in Budapest. For more information check out this tour on TripAdvisor. It can be as cheap as 19 euros including two drinks!
5. Go to the shoes on the Danube Bank
If you’re going to the Parliament Building you’ll find the 60 shoes on the Danube Bank. It’s a memorial by film director Can Togay to honour the people who were killed by fascist Arrow Cross militiaman during the World War II. A tragic, yet important piece of history.
6. Have a drink at a ruin pub
We loved going to the ruin pubs for drinks and a fun night. These pubs are located in abandoned buildings and are often very cool with a lot of different styles of interior.
7. Visit Fisherman Bastion
This is a terrace located on Castle Hill. It’s a beautiful place with an amazing view, you can see the Széchenyi Chain Bridge and the Hungarian Parliament Building from here.
Where to have food and drinks in Budapest
When we went out for something to drink or eat, most of the time we actually used Tripadvisor. This is very convenient if you’re a bit lazy to go look for a nice place yourself. However, we stumbled upon some fun places all by ourselves as well. For instance, there was this fun cocktail bar, Rumpus TiKi Bar. This bar has all kinds of cocktails, the menu is extensive. They were delicious, but a bit pricy for Budapest standards. What we liked most about Rumpus TiKi Bar was the interior, it was very tropical! In Budapest you can also find a lot of good restaurants that are very affordable. Click here for a list of restaurants in Budapest and take your pick!
Budapest has some amazing clubs you can go. For instance, we went to club Instant. This club has a lot of different rooms, bars and dance floors; you won’t be bored there. We also went to a party on the boat A38. A party on a boat; always a good idea. The party we went to was a techno party, but on A38 – which stands for Artemovszk 38; the name of a ship prototype- there are many different kinds of events. Different music bands, dj’s and art exhibitions use this boat as a venue. If you’re just looking for a place to eat or drink, that is also possible at A38, as they have a bar and restaurant.
For our accommodation we rented a cute little apartment in the city center. We found it on Wimdu, which is quite similar to Airbnb. The apartment was located on Karoly Korut in a typical Hungarian IXX Century renovated building and was right in front of the Great Synagogue. The neighborhood of this location is a very popular area with many clubs, bars, ruin pubs and restaurants.
Also check out Airbnb and use our referral link if you never used it before for 30 euro discount!
Have you ever visited Budapest? We would like to go again in the future, so any recommendations are always welcome. If you haven’t visited Budapest make sure you go there; it’s really worth it.