I always like to chatter about the cool and interesting cities I’ve been to over the years, and one I really truly enjoyed was Budapest. I had the opportunity to travel to this interesting city for a conference a few years ago, and I had a really great time exploring the nooks and crannies of this city.
Budapest is the capital of Hungary, and the 7th largest city in the European Union. The city started out as a Celtic village on the banks of the Danube River. By Roman times it was already a significant city, and was established as the capital of Lower Pannonia. The Mongols destroyed the city in 1241, but it wasn’t long after that it was rebuilt, and by the 1400s it was a major centre of the Renaissance. Several revolutions and wars later we come up to the present day. Budapest is still a thriving city and a cultural hub for the region. It is considered to be one of the most beautiful cities in Europe – it really is a place you have to see to believe.
Keeping yourself entertained
There is no shortage of things to see and do while you are visiting this city. After my conference was over I managed to sneak away and explore a little. I went on a tour of the Parliament buildings and got to see the Hungarian crown jewels. The Holy crown with its bent cross on the top made me smile. You will see that bent cross repeated on statues and busts throughout the city.
If you enjoy museums, you may need to plan a few trips as there are an incredible 223 museums scattered across this city. Yes, 223 museums, and they are all well done, each with their own theme. I’ve not managed to see even a quarter of these museums. Maybe one day I’ll visit again to see if I can make it to one third or more.
One of the arranged events through the conference was a nice river cruise. We boarded a river boat not far from the Parliament buildings, and had a wonderful evening cruising past some of the most famous sights in the city. I was fortunate enough to share a table with two local people, and they gave me a personalised narration of the various incredible buildings and islands we passed on the dinner cruise.
A place to sleep?
Of course, no visit to a city is complete without a great place to sleep the night away. I stayed at the art’otel Budapest. This lovely place is located right in the city centre, just across the river from the Hungarian Parliament buildings, and the Central European University which was host to my conference. The location right down on the river is perfect! You have easy access to the city transit trams and trains. You also have a wonderful view of the river and the city and, above all, you get 5 star service from the hotel staff.
If you have had a chance to stay in this great hotel, leave a comment here and let everyone know what you thought of it!
© Marco Martins-Costa/flickr.com
© IK’s World Trip/flickr.com