Of the many incredible cities and towns located along the Danube River, Budapest stands out as both one of the most beautiful and most historic. This site has been occupied since prehistoric times; now a city of over 1.7 million people, Budapest is a place where you can experience Europe’s past first hand.
As the cultural, economic, and political center of Hungary, Budapest is a lively place where you will have no trouble finding things to do. It straddles the Danube River and consists of two parts, Buda on the east bank and Pest on the west. These two sections are connected to each other by a series of bridges, which contribute to the allure of the city. Walking across one of these many bridges is a great way to experience this city. Furthermore, on your river cruise, you will have the added pleasure of seeing the bridges themselves from the vantage point of the water.
During your time in Budapest here are a few of the things that you will want to make sure to experience:
Unique (and Highly Delicious!) Cuisine
- Hungary has its own set of culinary traditions that can be traced to its unique culture and the influence of the surrounding European countries. The dishes of this nation include Lángos, a savory fried bread, cured meats, many types of hearty soups and stews including Goulash, and various preparations of seasonal vegetables. Due to the fine-tuned culinary traditions and unabashedly authentic style of this food, Budapest made a name for itself as a global food hub during the 20th century, and this reputation persists to this day.
Architecture Through the Ages
- One of the most incredible things about Budapest is the chance to see an array of architectural styles all in the same place. Wandering the city you will encounter baroque, neoclassical, Eclectic, and art nouveau buildings as well as ancient ruins that date as far back as the Roman Empire. Some of the most stunning buildings that you may want to tour include the Royal Palace, where you will find the Hungarian National Gallery and the Castle Museum; the Parliament Building, built in 1902; and the impressive houses of worship of Jewish and Christian faith: the Great Synagogue and the Basilica of Saint Stephen.
The Perfect Place to Take a Soak
- Sitting atop multiple natural hot springs, Budapest has become a hub for thermal baths. The tradition of taking a soak is therefore definitely something you should do during your time in this city. In total there are about a dozen thermal baths scattered about the city, most of which allow bathers to mingle in large coed pools – yes, bathing suits are required. Many of the bathhouses also offer other spa amenities like massages and facials, so if you have some extra time to be pampered you can make a full day of it.
There are so many other things to see in this extraordinary city, but this will give you a good place to start!
I hope that this guide was helpful to you Please reach out to me if you have any questions about a Danube River Cruise or would like more information about enjoying Budapest.