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Source: (consider it) Thread: Budapest tips
Dormouse

Glis glis – Ship's rodent
# 5954

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Since becoming a member of an Episcopal church (but not THE Episcopal church)in Europe I have had opportunity to travel to various conferences & conventions around the Diocese - Munich, Paris, Weisbaden, and now I am going to a Vocation Discernment conference in Budapoest in November. Not that I am expecting to discern a vocation (God might have other ideas!) but because, since my LLM-ship in the CofE has been recognised as Worship Leader/Preacher in the Episcopal church, I am expected to go on such a conference.

All well and good. Due to the vagaries of budget airlines, it is cheaper for me to take a return flight Thursdy/Thursday, than travel Friday/Sunday for the conference. Thus I am taking advantage of this fact to spend 4 days afterwards in Budapest with a friend. We're staying in an AirB&B, and I wonder if anyone here has any tips about places to see/ eat at etc. Either mainstream or quirky. Anything is welcome!

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Posts: 2997 | From: 'twixt les Bois Noirs & Les Monts de la Madeleine | Registered: May 2004  |  IP: Logged
Baptist Trainfan
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# 15128

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Haven't been there for some years. But if you want quirky, try the "Statue Park" (although it's a bit out of town). The Children's Railway is a nice ride in the Buda woods (go to "Menterend" for timetables, doesn't run on Mondays) and you can even get to one end on a genuine Swiss rack railway (part of the normal Budapest public transport system, Line 60) and a very short walk. If you want a cheap boat trip on the Danube, there are public boat services (lines 11 & 12). For info. on public transport read this.

[ 25. September 2017, 11:17: Message edited by: Baptist Trainfan ]

Posts: 9230 | From: The other side of the Severn | Registered: Sep 2009  |  IP: Logged
Baptist Trainfan
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# 15128

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PS I don't know your musical tastes. But the operetta theatre is well worth a visit - though by no means all the shows are operettas!
Posts: 9230 | From: The other side of the Severn | Registered: Sep 2009  |  IP: Logged
Lola

Ship's kink
# 627

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Dear Dormouse

I was in Budapest earlier this summer and it was amazingly beautiful.

I did a group road trip (but there were trams, boats, trains and buses involved too) starting in Krakow, stopping a various places in Slovakia and the last day in Budapest. I booked myself a really late flight home the next day so I could squeeze in as much time there as possible.

As I only had a very short time and my trip ended at the weekend I booked myself a spa ticket in advance as I'd read they can be busy and you can end up queuing. It was insanely hot weather so it turned out to be a really good decision as I had a good rest and relax.

I chose the 1920s Gellert Spa because I wanted to see the Art Deco - it was really beautiful and the cool pool inside was refreshing to swim in and a bit mad with all the marble and mosaics. You need to wear a swimming hat. They are strict about hygiene rules and washing before you use the facilities. I also did some saunas and steam rooms, hot baths and the big outside pool which turns on a massive wave machine regulalry throughout the day. I ended up sitting right at the back where the waves have become massive and crash on the steps, giggling away with some comfortable Hungarian grannies.

We'd had a bit of a tour with a local guide on the Saturday evening - I liked the covered market - there was cheap and delicious street food for sale on the upper level. I ended up having a chat with some polite Spaniards on a stag do who were playing a game with dice every twenty minutes while I ate - the loser had to drink and they insisted I also play - luckily I did not have to do a shot!

The guide took us to the Parliament which is the famous image of Budapest and told us some history. I found this really interesting and extremely moving - all of the bullet holes are marked in the buildings opposite where the Soviets fired on the people protesting outside the seat of their government. I recommend a visit and would have loved to have had time to go inside too.

We walked along the river to (I think) Castle Hill but we didn't take the Funicular which the guide said was expensive - instead she had us keep walking further along and lo and behold there were some lifts and escalators that took you up for free via some lovely gardens. The view is great at the top too. The buildings where the lift/escalators were is only just being restored in the post communist era but must have once been some grand palace. The stairs beside lift-y bit have great acoustics - she asked if anyone would sing to prove it but we were all a bit shy!

We took a tram to Fisherman's Bastion and that was lovely and again great views, lots of statues. There were bells ringing at the church there and one of the party was very excited (technical reasons not clearly understood) because they were being rung in the way that British church bells are and she said this is very unusual in Europe.

I really liked Heroes Square - it was completely huge and full of statues, history and music being played - if you like that kind of thing! To be honest - I think that's the whole city centre!

Everything I ate and drank was completely delicious but I can't remember what it was! The Polish/Slovakian/Hungarian food and language was all brilliant but I did get quite confused moving about so much.

The underground, trams and buses were really easy to use but I would take a photo of the stop that I started from (and needed to get back to) on my phone as I struggled with the names.

As my last day was Sunday I went to St Stephen's Basilica in the early evening (also a plan for dealing with the crazy heat in July). It was beautiful. Extremely opulent. Quite peaceful. Lots of candles.

There is an English language (Roman Catholic) mass in a side chapel. I didn't really know what to expect - it turned out to be a mix of the local congregation, most of whom I think were from African countries and tourists like me. They were so lovely and welcoming. I was expecting a cathedral style quite formal service with perhaps some fancy vestments but it was a calm and relaxed service with three younger members of the congregation providing acapella (sp?) harmonies to lead the singing.

The priest was (I think) Kenyan and announced he was available to hear confessions in English or French. Since he presumably also speaks Hungarian, preached an uplifting sermon, also joined with the choir and accompanied some of the songs on the guitar on top of doing all the mass-y (apologies not a catholic) stuff, I was massively impressed!

It was a beautiful service and I was so disappointed I had to run off at the end to catch my flight. (I was somewhat distracted part way through by realising the chapel is the one which has the relic in being the holy right hand of St Stephen and being unable to stop thinking about Jamie Lannister).

I don't know if this is any help at all! I hope you have a lovely, lovely time.

Lola


[Hot and Hormonal] [Hot and Hormonal]

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I asked her her name and in a dark brown voice she said Lola

Posts: 949 | From: UK | Registered: Jun 2001  |  IP: Logged
Boogie

Boogie on down!
# 13538

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Oh yes, visit the spa - you can spend a day there, it's fabulous!

[Smile]

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Garden. Room. Walk

Posts: 12552 | From: Boogie Wonderland | Registered: Mar 2008  |  IP: Logged
Baptist Trainfan
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# 15128

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Gellert is, I think, pricey but probably the easiest for tourists to use. (I've never been to any of them).

Yes, the covered market is good, or at least it was when I was there 10 years ago.

Posts: 9230 | From: The other side of the Severn | Registered: Sep 2009  |  IP: Logged
roybart
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# 17357

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This isn't appropriate for Dormouse's November trip -- but if you are in Budapest in the summer, there is a fantastic complex of outdoor pools on Margaret Island. The crystalline water is from underground springs. You can swim laps, paddle, float on your back, or just cool your feet - much nicer than the rather claustrophobic feel (IMO) of the Gellert baths. Easy to get to on public transport, too.

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"The consolations of the imaginary are not imaginary consolations."
-- Roger Scruton

Posts: 532 | From: here | Registered: Sep 2012  |  IP: Logged
Baptist Trainfan
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# 15128

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There are the Szchenyi Baths up beyond Heroes Square, easily accessible by Metro line 1.
Posts: 9230 | From: The other side of the Severn | Registered: Sep 2009  |  IP: Logged
Gee D
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# 13815

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Seconding Castle Hill and St Stefan's Cathedral. The views from the hill are good, as the countryside to the east is pretty flat. Very close to the Cathedral and St Matthias's Church is a Hilton, where an excavation shows remnants of a medieval monastery. Eating around there is (or was) good but expensive.

St Margaret's Island is none too easy to get to for a tourist and we'd not bother going again -and would not have made the journey had we known beforehand. Vorosmarty was unrestored when we were there in communist days, little of the fabled splendour remaining.

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Not every Anglican in Sydney is Sydney Anglican

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leo
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# 1458

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I wrote up my Budapest holiday

[Removed advertising.]

[ 27. September 2017, 00:48: Message edited by: RooK ]

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My reviews at http://layreadersbookreviews.wordpress.com

Posts: 23023 | From: Bristol | Registered: Oct 2001  |  IP: Logged
Dormouse

Glis glis – Ship's rodent
# 5954

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Thank you for your tips & advice. I will be printing them off & taking them with me. Much appreciated!

--------------------
What are you doing for Lent?
40 days, 40 reflections, 40 acts of generosity. Join the #40acts challenge for #Lent and let's start a movement. www.40acts.org.uk

Posts: 2997 | From: 'twixt les Bois Noirs & Les Monts de la Madeleine | Registered: May 2004  |  IP: Logged


 
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