On a trip to Europe this spring, my friends and I had a blast visiting Budapest! We were in the city for a few days (see our itinerary here!) but it was enough time to come up with my list of things you have to do while in Budapest, whether it’s a quick trip like ours or you spend a little longer there, so here they are…
- Take in the views – from both sides of the city! Budapest is split down the middle by the Danube River, separating the two sides of the city, Buda and Pest. And each one has incredible views of the other. From Pest, you can walk along the river looking up at Buda Castle and Matthias Church or see them from the bell tower at St. Stephen’s Cathedral. And then look down at the Chain Bridge, the Parliament building and the rest of Pest from the Buda Castle and Fisherman’s Bastion.
- Take in the views at night! I know I’ve already recommended checking out the views, but seeing them at night is worth its own bullet point! While we were in Budapest, we went on a dinner cruise and saw the sights from on the river itself. It was really neat to see the castle, the parliament building, Gellert hill and more all lit up at night!
- Spend a few hours at a thermal bath! There are many baths across the city, varying in what they offer and how traditional they are. Find one that suits you and make some time to relax at one of them – read about our experience at the Gellert Thermal Baths here!
- Check out a ruin bar or two! An experience that is unique to Budapest, ruin bars are in old buildings in the city’s seventh district that had been damaged in World War II, where instead of fixing them up first, they just set up bars in them. We went on a pub tour and got to check out a few different bars – more in this post. If you don’t see any others, at least check out Szimpla Kert, the original ruin bar!
- Try the street food! I’ve never been to a city where I heard more about the street food than in Budapest – and all the hype was on point! We tried a lot of different things – favorites were lángos, a fried dough topped with sour cream, cheese and garlic, and chimney cakes, spiral shaped dough covered with sugar roasted on a spit over charcoal.
- Take a walk down Andressey Ut! This beautiful avenue is a UNESCO World Heritage Street lined with boutiques and elegant mansions, as well as the State Opera House.
- Hang out at Elisabeth’s Square on a nice day! Elisabeth’s Square is a large park in the middle of the city, where you can drink a frocc (a wine spritzer) at the open air bar, get a table at the Akvarium Klub (aquarium club – named such because it is underneath the fountain in the middle of the square!) or just relax with friends in the square’s green space!
Those are my 7 must-do’s in Budapest! Is there anything you’d add to my list?