sâmbătă, 8 februarie 2014

For Romania with love from Budapest

As I am a proudly Romanian very fond of Romania and its history, people and values, you expect from me probably to introduce Romania reporting about it. Which I do basically, I hope to be useful to you. But now I am going to make an exception ( but not entirely, as you are going to see!)

View of Budapest from Buda citadel, with the chain bridge

I have visited for a few days the wonderful city of Budapest, after having driven through the Romanian Transilvania and its nice cities like Brasov, Sighisoara, Targu-Mures, Cluj-Napoca and Oradea. Everyone of it is worth a separate mention and article, and I hope to make this entreprise within a shorter or longer time. Until then, let's resume to Budapest and the things to do in Budapest, eventually like a completion of your travel to Romania.
The spectacular church of St. Stephen from Budapest, which can host unbelievable 8000 people

Budapest is not a huge city, hosting nevertheless 20 % of the Hungarian population, also 2 000 000 people call Budapest home. From this aspect, is easy comparable with Bucharest, but also from other aspects (position in the eastern part of Europe, pronouncing etc. Btw, a plane with a few hundred Spanish fans landed by mistake in Budapest, instead of Bucharest). The Hungarian people  from Budapest are very kind, polite, friendly and helpful, but still different comparing to the Romanians. I mean the both have this qualities, but their tempers are still totally different.Hard to say who might be in advantage!
The huge Hungarian Parliament with its 20 kilometers of passages and corridors drives the local politicians crazy and exhausted!

I lived in Budapest on a budget, it is possible! Hotel Ibis Aero offered a good report between price and services, for 35 Euros per night, without breakfast. My tip: the breakfast for 10 Euros ( buffet) is really too much, and you still eat good if you buy something in a mall (again on a budget. You can also discover Budapest in style, there is another discussion!). Otherwise, Budapest is really expensive.

Discover Budapest from its center, the downtown, starting from Pesta, the plain region. There are many kilometers to walk through this fascinating part of the city, where modern luxury hotels meet old renovated building, which are very spectacular indeed (e.g. The Hungarian Parliament, made on a British pattern, anyone could observe). Make your purchase on the wonderful and really expensive Vaci utca, and walk further on Andrassy ut, to the Heroes Square, through the spectacular, but very harmonic, Oktogon Square. Amazing in Budapest, you can follow the steps of Sissi, the beloved Austrian Emperess of Hungary.
The Fishermen Tower, with the statue of Matei Corvin, the most important Middle Age ruler

The Palace of Sissi, also the Royal Palace of Budapest is impressive, but lies on the other shore of the Danube, in Buda. Cross the Danube on one of the many bridges of the Hungarian Capital, my tip and proposition is to use the Elchid bridge (Chain  bridge). The Chain Bridge is the oldest and the nicest in my opinion. Visit in Buda the Citadel from atop the hill, The Fishermen Tower and the St. Matyas Church where the future ruling princes should be confirmed. From the Citadel and from the Tower you have an excellent panoramic view toward all city, e.g. the Parliament and entire Pesta (interesting and funny mention, these cities came together in 1880, but are even today a sort of rivals).

Briefly speaking, Budapest is a gift of the Danube. It is very easy and recommendable to take also a River tour, there is a wide offer, from budget to exquisite, and you can take the necessary informations from the piers.

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