Sunday, 22 February 2015

A Bit of Budapest - Part One

Hey folks! Sorry for the slight absence. As the title suggests, I've been away this week and as it was a kind of last minute arrangement, there were a few things to organise before the trip.

I spent three days in the lovely capital of Hungary and I thought I'd write a couple of posts about what I got up to!

A trip on the Castle Hill Funicular to take us up to Buda Castle was first on our itinerary. A little tourist attraction in itself, the old public transport offers a much more fun way to get to the top of the hill!

We admired the grandiose exterior of Buda Castle before heading into the National History Museum and National Art Gallery - both with beautiful exhibitions and a sense of what the inside of the castle had to offer.

After a stroll around Buda Castle, we headed down to the Fisherman's Bastion. It takes it name from the group of fishermen responsible for protecting the stretch of the city walls, but now it offers some of the best views of both sides of the Danube river. The gothic architecture is incredible - a definite must see!

Just up from the Fisherman's Bastion is the beautiful, decorative, Roman Catholic Matthias Church. Some of my favourite sights when I visit cities are those of old religious buildings and this definitely didn't disappoint. The outside alone, with it's colourful tiled roof and gothic architecture, is incredible; the inside is just as gorgeous, with fine detail in every tiny corner.

After a quick lunch, we headed to the top of Gellert Hill where the Citadel and Statue of Liberty is situated. It was a bit of a climb, but was worth it to see the view of Budapest from the highest point in the city.

We then walked alllllll the way down to the other end of the stretch, and other side of the Danube, to admire the amazing Parliament Building. In keeping with the gothic style, this building is the biggest in Hungary. Unfortunately, the building was heavily guarded at the time that we approached it, so didn't get to go inside. Nevertheless, just to see the intricate design up close felt special!

A short walk down from the Parliament Building, are the Shoes on the Danube; a moving tribute to the Jews who were killed by fascist militants in World War II. 

Next up, a walk to St. Stephen's Basilica; another beautiful, but more traditional looking Roman Catholic church. It features a magnificently decorated interior, in particular, the colourful central dome. 

We finished the first day with a meal at a restaurant near the Chain Bridge called the Meat Boutique. It served steaks, burgers, wings, you name it! I opted for roasted chicken fillet and vegetables. It doesn't sound much, but it was probably the best chicken and veg I've ever had - so tasty! We took in night time views of the city before heading back to the hotel to get some much needed rest in preparation for our next day of exploring.

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