Budapest, one of the largest cities in the EU, originally was the combination of three cities (Buda, Pest, and Obuda) beginning in 1873. Our apartment is in the former Pest side (east of the Danube River), and that is what we toured today. We did a ton of walking today and by the end of it Ada was not thrilled, so tomorrow we intend to take it a bit easier. There is a whole playroom chock full of wooden toys and legos within our current apartment and she has been in heaven.
After breakfast we ventured out and realized where we are staying is just a couple blocks from the Danube river, so we started there and made our way along it and knocking off some of the major must-sees. Included in that list are the Hungarian Parliament, Széchenyi Chain Bridge, the Great Market Hall, Vaci Street (the “heart” of Budapest), and St. Stephen’s Basilica. We had lunch (Goulash soup and a cold cut plate of meats and cheese and veggies) and kept going, stopping at the Christmas markets to buy Ada a new pair of sheepskin gloves (somehow she managed to lose hers on the walk) and have some hot mulled wine.
After our break we continued our tour down Andrássy Avenue until we reached Heroes’ Square, the largest and most impressive square in the city. It is the entryway to City Park, a large park that houses Vajdahunyad Castle, built in celebration of the 1,000 years of Hungary since the Hungarian Conquest of the Carpathian Basin in 895, and home to the largest agricultural museum in all of Europe. Also within the park is the Széchenyi Medicinal Bath, the largest medicinal bath in all of Europe; its water being supplied by two thermal springs. We only popped in to peek inside, but we have plans on visiting a bath tomorrow.
After all of this walking we were wiped and Ada was pissed. We came back to the flat, got some pizza to go, and spent the evening playing, bathing, and doing laundry. Tomorrow will be more relaxed, we may even take turns going out separately so Ada has more time to just chill in the apartment.
Here are the photos from today, as we took a bunch. I’m off to continue reading Bram Stoker’s Dracula in preparation of Romania.