Explore and experience. The remnants of the ancient Roman Civil Town, Turkish baths, monarchical grandeur, Zsolnay-accented Art Nouveau, Bauhaus and award-winning modern architecture. Thematic walks to discover Europe’s first café culture, the fine-de-siècle landmarks, the quaint Jewish quarter or leafy Buda. Consult the concierge for bespoke sightseeing options in Budapest.
Best Cultural Secret - Socio-Cultural Walking Tour
This tour features both the diversity and the contrasts Budapest's eighth district is known for: luxurious palaces and time-worn backstreets, former aristocratic residences and slummy neighbourhoods. As part of the Socio-cultural Walking Tour, Budapest Beyond Sightseeing will take you to the home of a musician’s gipsy family, a hundred-year-old blacksmith workshop and an authentic pastry shop. Battle-scarred buildings from WWII and bullet holes left behind by the 1956 Revolution are also part of the tour, along with interesting tales and original stories from the locals. It's an interactive experience that gives a unique insight into the district's diversity and daily life.
Top Day Trip - Várbarlang / The Castle Cave
Take a break from looking up and around to descend to the depths of the city. The Castle Caves in Buda Castle Hill reveal not just a fascinating maze of underground passages and nooks, formed by natural springs dissolving the cementation of the rock, but also funky titbits of history. Count Dracula was imprisoned here in the 15th century, for starters… You can visit various exhibitions and a wax museum or roam free, and after 6:00pm, there’s a guided oil lamp tour for the less faint-hearted.
Top Architectural Find - Hungarian Art Nouveau
Paris, Brussels… Budapest! The heyday of modern Hungarian history not just encouraged a construction boom but inspired architects to create their own derivative of contemporary aesthetics. Ödön Lechner’s riotous, colour-crazy ornamental glazed tiles remain the most conspicuous of this imaginative era, with others drawing on folk art and Oriental traditions. Explore the facades and what’s behind them of a versatile range of edifices, such as the Fasori Calvinist Church, Gellért Spa, the Institute for the Blind, the Geological Institute, the Paris Department Store, and the Hungarian State Treasury (former Hungarian Royal Post Office Savings Bank).
Top Three Sights
Picnic Over the City
For me, Budapest is best enjoyed from Buda. Because leafy Buda is built on a series of hills overlooking the Danube and commercial Pest, you get the most striking impressions of the city from the Buda Hills. My favourite vantage point is at the top of Gellért Hill, the Citadella area, where I walk to have a picnic over the city, 140 m above the Danube. I find it is one of the best parts about living in Budapest. The Citadella was once a fortress, and one can enjoy the lush greenery of Buda as well as views of Buda Castle, which sits like a crown on top of the next hill. Then there is our blue Danube, with its many bridges of differing architectural styles, split by Margaret Island. It is the perfect opportunity to bring the family together for a hiking outing, and frankly, for me, it is also the most romantic part of the city, especially at night, when the Citadella and the night-lit city below show the unforgettable sparkle of Budapest.
István Kovács - Hotel Manager
Fun on the River
The best part of my Budapest is that it’s a truly unique waterside city. The breath-taking views never fail to amaze me, and I enjoy the buzz of its people coming and going. I never miss a chance to look at the view over the floodlit Castle and Chain Bridge as I drive home on Elisabeth Bridge. To experience such unforgettable moments of beauty, I sometimes take a river cruise on the Danube. There are several kinds of boat trips both within and in and out of Budapest. Apart from sightseeing, you can also dine and wine aboard. If you’re looking for adventure, I would recommend River Ride, which is an amphibious vehicle. The experience is something like taking a floating sightseeing bus, as it shows Budapest’s main attractions on both land and water. There is more to the Danube than views and cruises. Since I am a music fan, I go to the A38 Music Boat. This decommissioned stone hauler ship holds some of the coolest music events both Hungarian and international. In 2012, it was voted the best bar in the world by Lonely Planet.
Árpád Szó - Revenue Manager
The Most Spectacular Tram Ride in Europe
I’ll let you in on a secret: to discover the world-famous sights Budapest has to offer, the best way to experience the must-sees is by taking public transport; namely, tram No. 2. This signature yellow vehicle chugs along the Danube on the Pest bank and its route showcases thrilling views of historical and architectural gems. I get on the tram at the magically lace-like parliament building and head south, enjoying the scenery of the river, the grandiose bridges and the Royal Castle. I get off at the Eötvös tér stop and walk on the picturesque Danube promenade, where Budapest’s buzz quiets and slows. I would continue my ride to the iconic Great Market Hall (Vásárcsarnok), which is the largest indoor market in Budapest. Simply put, this is foodie heaven and a fabulous landmark! By all means, savour lángos on the first floor. You know the saying "it’s so good they do it twice"? It definitely applies to this experience. Ride tram No. 2 by day and by night.
Zoltán Schubert - Financial Controller