Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Budapest, Hungary

We left Slovakia for Hungary in a slight drizzle.  It took only 2 1/2 hours to get to Budapest from Bratislava. We were given about 3 hours to see the Matthias Church and Buda Castle on a hilltop, view the city from there and have lunch. After that, we were taken to another hilltop for another aerial view, then a quick visit to some monument for heroes, the parliament building, the citadel and an hour on our own in the city. I'v said it before: I don't like organized tours because what you get to see is limited to what's most convenient for the tour itinerary. Looking at the aerial view of  Budapest's buildings and especially of a building with a shiny brown sphire, I just wished that we could explore the city on our own.

Budapest is made up of Buda on the west and Pest on the east with the Danube River in between. Contrary to the popular song, the Danube is not blue but a light beige-grey.  Budapest is big, beautiful and very historic. I saw so little of it. I must go back one day.

Saint Stephen's Basilica, downtown Budapest

The Danube River cuts Budapest in half. Photo taken during a light shower.

The Hungarian Parliament Building in the back.

View from Castle Hill. St Stephen's Basilica is in the distant center.

The Heroes Square

The weather that evening was very threatening. It drizzled unceasingly and only one person decided to join us for a night stroll, the 2 others opting to stay in the hotel. We took a bus from the hotel but nobody could interpret for us until finally a young lady told us that tickets have to be bought at the metro station. The bus conductor wouldn't sell us the tickets so we had a free ride to Elisabeth Bridge, our destination.
With the rain, nobody sat outdoors.

The Buda Castle

Elisabeth Bridge

Elisabeth Bridge was even more lighted up than Prague's Charles Bridge, and even more beautiful, I dare say. The castles and buildings on the hills were also prettier because the hill was nearer and steeper. But despite all that beauty, the romantic atmosphere was missing. Elisabeth Bridge just lacked the special  aura that Charles Bridge had. Maybe because it was raining and the bridge is open to both pedastrians and vehicles or maybe that's just the way things are somehow.

My Documents16
The metro is new and the escalator on the left is the longest I've ever been on. It made me dizzy just looking down. The end of the escalator can hardly be seen and extractor fans are needed to draw out the CO2.


We took the metro back to our hotel, only 270 HUF (Forint)/1 euro/RM4 per person. There was a KFC on the way back and we had a chicken sandwich, fries, coleslaw and the best fried wings ever ever, a meal which cost 1,050 HUF/4 euros/RM16.


kwpang said...

This place definitely have some breath taking view to be appreciate, the detail write up really give a clear idea of the place. thanks for sharing.

terri@adailyobsession said...

kwpang: welcome. i hardly scratched the surface really.

malaymui said...

hey Terri, interesting I also visited Budapest recently (part two of my summer holiday), I spent 5 days in the city and been to the similiar spots - Hero Square, Buda Castle, Fisherman Bastion, Elisabeth Bridge.. I actually like the city and it is very cheap. I haven't got around to post the photos yet, lots of backlog...

Johnathan Oh said...

Hi Terri, absolutely beautiful photos! Great work! I imagined the photo with the Danube river would be even more breath-taking if it is toned to Sepia which sorta gives it the rustic touch. Wonder when I could do what you did... perhaps when l reach retirement.

tina said...

You take really beautiful photos!

Lily Anette said...

oh my~ u have captured the best shots of Budapest! Makes me wanna chuck my camera and get a real DSLR! All the cities with the Eastern European touches are the best!

the lunch guy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
the lunch guy said...

hi, i was wondering when you would post BP. i spent 14 months there. you actually have 2 pics of the block i lived on. pictures 2 and 3, i was in the block immediately adjacent to the Parliament building to the left on the river side corner. i looked out my 3rd floor window at Margret Island in the Danube. one of the coldest and windiest places i have ever been.

it took me 6 months before i grew to like it and found all the things i needed. did you go to the main market near Friendship Bridge? that is where i shopped for all my fresh veggies and meat. i discovered that fish for the Hungarians is almost non-existent. ate a lot of duck and pork.

Quay Po Cooks said...

This is the next place my hubby and I planted to visit. Beautiful photos of the place make me want to go now! thanks for sharing:D

terri@adailyobsession said...

malaymui: i'll be checking your blog for the hungary photos. your photos are gorgeous btw:)

joh: thnx, johnathan. don't wait until retirement. you'd be too old. ehem. i know, i am retired.

tina: hey, miss you lah!

lilyann: my dear, these aren't taken with a dslr! i didn't bring my daughter's dslr bc it was too heavy. i wish i did though. but aren't your photos taken with a dslr bc they look so good?!

lunch guy: you don't say...but then again if you live right next to the parliament bldg, your aprtmt is probably in every tourist's pics. i shd've asked you where to visit in hungary bc i'd love to visit a hungarian market.then again i didn't have the time bc i was on a group tour.btw, have you got a good goulash recipe?

quaypo: your blog name makes me smile. does it mean 'busybody' in hokkien? yes, go to eastern europe, it's still unspoiled.

Anonymous said...

Your Budapest trip experience was great..I remembered my Budapest trip and was admiring those days..Thanks for posting this article as it reminds me of my trip.

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