Budapest, Hungary — FORTLOC

Budapest – City of mystery and intrigue

Parliament building in Budapest, Hungary
 Szechenyi Chain Bridge
Fisherman Bastion Gate
Budapest is a city of contrasts. New meets old in the Hungarian capital as the city’s communist-era remnants rub elbows with more modern structures built post “Iron Curtain”. As a travel destination, Budapest is still a city that remains cheap for tourists. While Prague and Dubrovnik have become popular getaways with escalating prices, Budapest has remained a city in which travelers can enjoy food, drinks, and a night out for a relatively reasonable price.

Car enthusiasts will have plenty of reasons to descend on Budapest. The city is home to the Hungarian Grand Prix every July. The famed Hungaroring racetrack offers an amazing day out for car lovers. Whether it’s touring the racetrack or sitting in the driver’s seat for a driving experience, the Hungaroring won’t disappoint.

 Buda Castle

Buda Castle is one of the most iconic structures in all of Budapest. It provides the backdrop to some amazing photographs. Budapest is split into two parts. On one side of the Danube River is Buda, which is the oldest part of the city and where Buda Castle lies. On the other side of the Danube is Pest, which is the newer part of the city.

Buda Castle sits upon a hill that overlooks the capital. There is a funicular railway that takes visitors to the top. Next to the castle is the beautiful Matthias Church, which has been repaired over the last few years. It’s free to explore and is a must-see. Every year, a number of festivals are held on the castle’s grounds. One of the most popular is a Palinka (Hungarian fruit brandy) and sausage festival that attracts thousands.

Hungaroring

The Hungaroring racetrack is famed for having continuous sequences of turns. Every year the circuit puts on memorable Formula One races, and car enthusiasts can visit the circuit on a trip to Budapest.

Petrol heads that want to do more than just visit the racetrack can do so. Rajamäki Racing offers unforgettable open wheel driving experiences featuring Formula Renault and Formula One cars. Visitors who are brave enough can get behind the wheel of the modified 2007 Williams FW29 driven by Nico Rosberg and Alex Wurz. The experience is offered at this track on a limited schedule so your trip needs to be carefully planned.

St. Stephen’s Basilica

St. Stephen’s Basilica is one of the most awe-inspiring attractions in the center of Budapest. Located in a square, visitors can tour the basilica for free before sitting at one of the many of nearby cafes for a drink and bite to eat.

The area is just as beautiful once the sun sets and visitors can enjoy a night out in the Basilica’s shadow. Inside the basilica, visitors will find a world of ornate imagery and beautiful statues. Visitors can ascend to the basilica’s cupola for panoramic views of Budapest.

Parliament Building

Travelers can easily walk around parliament building and take in the views of the gorgeous structure. It is the third largest parliament building in the world and its size must be witnessed first hand to truly appreciate it.

Travelers can take the city’s trolley right to the foot of the building before disembarking and walking around the area. There are guided tours of the parliament building when the country’s politicians are not meeting.

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Saint Stephen's Basilica in Budapest
black steam locomotives in train museum, Budapest
 Szechenyi Chain Bridge

The Szechenyi Chain Bridge stretches from Buda to Pest across the Danube River. Built in the 1880s and rebuilt after World War II, the bridge still possesses many of its original features. The bridge isn’t far from St. Stephen’s Basilica and it is easy to get from one to the other on a walking tour.

Visitors can walk across the 1,250-foot bridge in no time and explore the various sides of Budapest. The bridge’s ornate lions that decorate it are perfect for photographs, and its promenade is perfect for strolling at any time of the day.

Hungarian Railway Museum

The Hungarian Railway Museum showcases a collection of Soviet-era steam trains for visitors to enjoy. The park has a mini railway train that passengers can ride. Much of the park is outside, so visitors can explore the displays at their leisure.

Budapest has several outdoor parks that showcase the country’s USSR history. Unfortunately, due to being underfunded, the parks’ displays don’t receive the maintenance they should. Regardless, any railway enthusiast or history buff should plan a trip to the Hungarian Railway Museum.

Budapest is filled with history that stretches back centuries. It is a city of proud people that endured decades of Soviet rule and is still coming to terms with capitalism. The city has many great attractions and anyone planning a holiday to the Hungarian capital needs to plan carefully because there may not be enough time for it all.

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