When I decided to visit Budapest, I did no research on it. I didn’t know what to expect. I have read about Budapest in my history classes and I know a little bit about its geography, but that’s about it. Hungary or Budapest was never a must-visit place for me. But I was pleasantly surprised. Budapest is a beautiful city, with lots of history, culture and architecture. And I definitely had a great time.
Read about my 36 hour itinerary in Budapest, Hungary here
Here are my top 8 must-have, fun things to do in Budapest
1. Danube Dinner Cruise
Dinner cruise by Danube tops my list of must-dos. Dinner cruises are widely available and it can fit any budget and style. But you will have to experience it – don’t pass this cruise as cliche or being too touristy! You wont regret the stunning night views of the city which only a cruise or a ride on the Danube can provide.
2.Eat and Drink Local – Goulash and Tokaji
Hungarian delicacies are spicy and full of flavor. Goulash as pictured below is a stew of meat and vegetables, seasoned with paprika and other spices. You can make goulash at home too, there are tons of recipes available online. But do give it a try when in Hungary.
Goulash is also eaten in other parts of Europe and are customized to their region based on availability of spices and taste.
Tokaji wine is the name of the sweet/white wine from the Tokaj wine region in Hungary and Slovakia.
I am personally not a wine person, but I loved this one. It was subtle and sweet.
Now a days, there are different versions available for tokaji wine, not all wines are sweet or white. Historically Tokaji was a white wine from the region of Tokaj in the Kingdom of Hungary.
3.Drink Coffee from an Offbeat Place (old or history related)
Budapest is such a historical place that you can enter any cafe or hotel and you will be in a living history space. We went in to have coffee at New York Hotel Cafe, this space has been through world wars and the interior of the cafe is mind-blowing
New York Cafe is just one option. But there are many others like – Ruszwurm – the Oldest Cafe in Budapest, Café Gerbeaud, Central Cafe.
For more options and history behind some of the cafe, click here
4.Central Market – Shop-Hop
Shop with locals or buy some traditional Hungarian souvenirs at Central Market Hall. Top souvenirs to buy include – crystals, embroidered items, paprika, Lace Items, rubiks Cube, Painted Wood Souvenirs (pencils, toys), hair accessories, etc
5. Take a dip a the Baths
There are tons of options for Baths in Budapest. The Széchenyi Medicinal Bath is the largest medicinal bath in Europe. Other notable baths include – Gellért Baths , Király Baths, Lukacs Baths, Rudas Baths. This is one of the must-do items in Budapest. These baths have medicinal properties, other than being of relaxation and entertainment value.
6. Go see an Opera
The opera house in Budapest is one of the most beautiful Neo-Renaissance buildings in Europe. Enjoy incredible performance at one of the opera houses, you wont be disappointed. Some opera houses have day tours as well for the building and it showcases its historical importance.
7. Take a walk across one of the bridges connecting Buda and Pest.
There are about 14 beautiful bridges in Budapest. Of them 7 are most stunning and famous and they are – Chain Bridge, Elizabeth Bridge, Margerat Bridge, Arpad Bridge, Liberty Bridge, Petofi Bridge, Racokzi Bridge.
Chain Bridge is the oldest bridge that connects the 2 parts of Budapest. Take a walk across it and witness the amazing views of the city.
The most photographed and visited place in Budapest – The Parliament of Budapest. Enjoy a visit to the building and admire its architecture.
Have you visited Budapest? Whats your favorite thing to do? Comment Below!