The drive to the beautiful city of Budapest is a revelation. The countryside is alight with lavender and corn farms on either side of the highway, as we race along at 150+ km/hour and the landscape flattens out from the picturesque hills and valleys of Austria to the flatlands of Hungary.
Entering the city, one is at once overawed by the soaring buildings, Budapest is deservedly one of the most stunning cities of Europe. A rich and varied history, the architectural styles range from gothic, baroque and renaissance. The twin cities of Buda & Pest on either side of Danube, the cities are not just photogenic but with a rich past and great historical landmarks.
Almost uninterruptedly inhabited from Roman times, there is a distinct cosmopolitan flavour in Budapest, with early pagan & christian, then moorish and judaic symbolism and structures. The public buildings are vast and well maintained and the throwback to communist era housing safely out of the main city areas.
The city lends itself to lots and lots of walking, we walked about 16 kms in one day, but there is no better way of exploring the lanes and by lanes. Many people have asked if it is safe & it was! We were out and about late in the night and even in the “hipster” bars district, and watching EURO 2016 matches in crowded pubs, we never felt unsafe.
A must do are the walk in the old city through to the castle and Fisherman’s Bastion & the day & night river cruises, the Danube is stunning!
For vegetarians, the city is a bit of a struggle, there are limited veg options in food outlets in key tourist attractions. Even the McDonalds does not have too many veg options that can be had as a meal, most are cakes and desserts. Pizza places have the usual margarita pizza but if you are looking for a quick meal in between tourist stops, you are better off packing a sandwich.
See pictures here: Day 5-7