The next city that I can tick off of my gap year travel list is Budapest! If you’re wanting to go to a gorgeous city that is architecturally beautiful and is not really manic and busy then this is definitely the place to go.
Also if you’re on a budget then I would definitely recommend it because it’s so unbelievably cheap, you can find hostel accomodation for as little as £6 per night, coffee was roughly £2 (unless you went to Starbucks of which there were tonnes) and you could get a full McDonalds meal for about 3 or 4 pounds. I went last week so the prices of some things may change if you were to go during the summer and it would definitely be a lot busier around that time as well.
It’s very nice to go to places out of the typical tourist seasons because I feel as though you get to see the real city!
Here are all of the places I visited and would recommend if you’re planning a trip there:
Fisherman’s Bastillion and Matthias Church
Gonna be honest and say that I get these two mixed up. I believe that Fisherman’s Bastillion is the area and the fortress walls and then you have Matthias Church in the middle. This is definitely a must see because you get to see some gorgeous views of the city over the river! It’s definitely a tourist hotspot and was probably the busiest place that I went to on the trip.
Then you have the church which was absolutely stunning, the architecture here was gorgeous. You can go into the church but you do have to pay which I chose not to do because I knew it was gonna be busy and instead I decided to just marvel at the exterior.
Hungarian national gallery
Now if you keep on walking along the top of this hill then you get to Buda castle which you can walk around for free and in the grounds of the castle is the National Gallery. You can see this from the ground and it is really quite something! It wasn’t hugely expensive to go in and if you’re under 26 and have an EU passport then you do get reduced entry.
Any where I go I always try to look out for an art gallery because I find it very interesting to look at art in other countries, and this did not disappoint. I spend a very happy couple of hours wandering round here and it was very quiet as well which was an added bonus. They recently had a Dali exhibition on that sadlt closed a couple of days before my visit which I was gutted that I couldn’t see.
Because it basically rained the whole time I was here it was very nice to spend a couple of hours inside in the dry and warm.
This is the obvious place to go and every website I looked at told me to go here. You can pay for a tour around the building but it did look a little bit more expensive and you have to pre book, so instead I decided not to. I actually went here around sunset which was the best time to go because the rained had cleared up so it was a beautiful evening which you can see in these photos.
Again this is another tourist hotspot so I can imagine that it’s extremely busy in the summer. They also do boat tours in the evening along the river and they light up the whole of this building so I can imagine that it looks gorgeous! I didn’t do one but saw them advertised everywhere.
Architecturally this building is amazing, it’s kinda similar to the Matthias Church actually.
Shoes on the danube
This is a memorial to the Jews who were killed during World War II as they had to remove their shoes before being killed basically. It’s a terribly sad story. If you actually visit the shoes, there’s no information around to say what they are, so you have to do some research online to find out the proper story. They’re located just outside Parliament on the riverside and it was quite busy with people taking loads of photos.
There were people who were actually putting their own shoes on the ground and taking photos which in my opinion is extremely disrespectful, and they were getting a lot of stares. So if you’re planning on visiting then I wouldn’t do that!
Yes this is just a bridge, but it’s a pretty bridge.
It spans over the River Danube and is actually quite a walk because it’s a very wide river. I have nothing else to say other than this is a pretty bridge….
So this rather large island is located in the middle of the river danube which you can easily walk to or even get the metro to. It was very quiet when I went but I imagine that in the summer this place is packed.
It’s not just a gorgeous park, it is also home to a very small zoo and loads of thermal baths as well. Not all of them were opened when I went past but I am sure they are lovely, same as the zoo, it also wasn’t open. You can actually hire a bike or a scooter to get around the island a bit quicker which I actually kinda wish I did now cause it would have been a lot of fun.
If you are wanting a break from the city the this is a lovely quiet place to go and sit! You could easily spend a couple of hours just walking around the edge of the island. Because all the autumn leaves are in full colour now, it was absolutely gorgeous.
Heroes square and city park
Last but not least is Heroes Square which is sort of like Trafalgar Square in London but it was lot less busy. It leads onto the city park which was another gorgeous green space in the city. When I went loads of it was actually under construction, it looked like they are adding loads of buildings, so I couldn’t actually walk around the whole thing but I imagine when it’s all done it’s gonna look gorgeous!
There was also a sort of small castle surrounded by a small moat which looked like a mini Hogwarts to me but I actually think it was a museum….
This is located a little but further away from the city centre and the river but worth a visit nonetheless if you are looking for somewhere peaceful and quiet to go.
If you are looking for a recommendation of somewhere to stay then I’d recommend the Avenue Hostel which was very cheap and was pretty decent. Being located in the city centre made it extremely handy so I didn’t have to pay for public transport. You can very easily save some money and just walk around everywhere. I actually ended up walking about 13 miles on each of the 3 days that I was there. Safe to say that my feet hurt a lot afterwards!
From Budapest I actually travelled to Vienna on the train for a couple of days so you can expect to see a post about the city in a few days
Have you ever been to Budapest? Would you want to go?