A walking tour was a great way to hit up all the sightseeing spots. Our guide was a local student who was friendly, witty and very knowledgeable about the city (everything you’d want from a guide really!). The tour started at St. Stephen’s Basilica in Pest, through the city, across the chain bridge and up to Buda Castle. The Fisherman’s Bastion and Matthias Church were my favourite parts of the tour. The church is magnificent and the beautiful white stone carved bastion has amazing views across the city.
After all the walking around, a relaxing dip in a thermal spa and a massage was just what was needed. We chose the Kiraly Bath, one of the oldest baths in Budapest, built by the Ottoman Turks in the 16th century. It has one main pool, a small hot pool and a steam room. There is also a plunge pool which, after the initial shock of the freezing water, gets quite addictive to jump into and then feel the tingle on your skin when you go back into the warm water. On our walk back from Buda to our hotel in Pest, we saw the parliament building lit up across the water. Like so many of the buildings in Budapest, it’s architecture is stunning and the reflection on the dark river made it even more so.
We couldn’t really go to Budapest without going to one of the famous ruin bars. We headed to the Jewish quarter and found Szimpla Kert. We spent the evening wandering around the maze of rooms, all decorated differently with funky designs and junk furniture. There was beer, cocktails, shisha and carrots all on offer to keep our night going in the right direction.