Central Europe, in the Carpathian Basin. Greatest distance from north to south is 268 km; greatest distance from east to west is 526 km. Bordered by Austria, Slovakia, Ukraine, Romania, Serbia, Croatia and Slovenia. The Hungarian capital, Budapest, with a population of 2 million people, is situated on both sides of the river Danube. Pest is flat, while Buda is hilly.
The country has a continental climate with considerable variations in temperature. Summer - nowadays starting late May - is almost Mediterranean, with the hottest temperatures sometimes above 35°C (95°F). The hottest month is July. Winters are cold and snowy, and the average daytime temperature in January goes below 0°C (32°F). Spring and autumn are very pleasant.
Electricity: 220 volts – standard continental-type plugs. Adapters are available at Kempinski Hotel Corvinus - please ask the concierge upon your arrival.
CALLS TO HUNGARY
From abroad, first dial the international prefix of the country you are calling from; second, the country code to Hungary (36); third, the city code (1 for Budapest); and then the local number. When calling a mobile phone, after 36, dial the mobile network code (20, 30 or 70).
USEFUL PHONE NUMBERS
Emergency - 112 (English, German and other foreign languages)
Tourist Police - (0-24): (+36 1) 438 8080
Airport Ferihegy - general (flight information) number: (+36 1) 296 7155
Information about local and international trains: MÁVDIREKT (+36 1) 371 9449
For assistance, please contact our Concierge Team on (+36 1) 429 3391 or at firstname.lastname@example.org
The official currency is the Hungarian forint (Ft, HUF). You will find some shops, hotels and restaurants displaying prices in both HUF/Ft and euros and many are likely to accept payment in euros, but if you pay in EUR, you will not always get a favourable exchange rate. You can change the major currencies to forint at the hotel reception. (However, the hotel provides only limited exchange services.) You can check out the offer of the money exchange bureau, accessible from Fashion Street.
American Express, Diners Club, Eurocard, MasterCard and Visa are accepted at hotels, restaurants, larger shops and department stores. Visa Electron is also accepted at many shops and department stores.
NATIONAL AND PUBLIC HOLIDAYS
15 March, 1 May, 20 August, 23 October (national); New Year's Day, Easter Sunday and Monday, Whit Sunday and Whit Monday, All Saints' Day, Christmas Day and Boxing Day (religious).
Opening hours below are a general guide, and there may be variations:
Weekdays: from 07:00–10:00 to 18:00–21:00
Saturdays: from 09:00 to 14:00–21:00
Sundays and on public holidays: 09:00-10:00 to 14:00-20:00 (various opening times; some shops might be closed)
Official language: Hungarian foreign languages spoken in the city: English, German. (At the hotel: English, German, French, Spanish.) Hungarian has a reputation for being a difficult language. You don’t have to learn how to pronounce these words, but to help you get started, here’s the word for “hello”: helló. If you want to be cool, you can say, “Szia” (seeya). When getting a favour, or after a delicious meal, it’s always polite to say, “köszönöm”, pronounced “kur-sur-nurm”.
There is much more to Hungarian cuisine than paprika! Hungarians like eating very much, and the country’s cuisine is reputed to be heavy and spicy, with heaps of meat and few fresh vegetables. A typical Hungarian meal has three courses: first is the soup; the second course is a meat dish, with potatoes or rice; and the third one is dessert. Try the well-known Hungarian fish soup, if you like freshwater fish, or - the most famous of all - the pörkölt (slowly stewed meat). For dessert, go for the Gundel pancake, which is stuffed with walnuts and chocolate sauce, or somlói galuska, a sponge cake with chocolate sauce and cream. The Hungarian red and white wines are very good, just like the Unicum, which is a special bitter, and the pálinka, which is a Hungarian fruit brandy.
Our hint: try ÉS Bisztró, serving Hungarian-Viennese cuisine at our Gastronomic Quarter Downtown Budapest.
Facts about Budapest, Hungary