Budapest has always been one of the European artistic and cultural centers, but there is much more to Budapest than architecture and history.
There are endless ways to discover Budapest. It doesn’t matter if it’s your first time here or you already feel like home, you will always find something new and interesting to do and learn. Budapest has always been one of the European artistic and cultural centers, but there is much more to Budapest than architecture and history. As if endless sightseeing wasn’t enough, the city offers you many interesting activities that will make your holiday ever more interesting.
You don’t have to restrict yourself to endless visits to museums, monuments or interesting buildings. While it is interesting and you do learn plenty of new stuff, it can bore you after a while, and at that moment you need something different. You need to break the monotony and try something that you haven’t even thought about trying, especially not on your vacation in Budapest. Here are some suggestions.
Take an interesting course
Well, first of all, you can try and learn a few words of Hungarian. The language is considered to be really hard for foreigners to learn, but you don’t need to get a PhD in couple of days. You only need to learn a few words and phrases. It may not help you much in the communication with the locals, but it will impress your friends and make you the most interesting member of your group…at least for a while.
Other than language, you can learn to make some local dishes, like goulash which is a stew of meat and vegetables, or, a little less complicated, lángos which is a deep-fried flatbread usually topped with cheese, sour cream, bacon and condiments. You can learn to make a few meals and this way you will always have a piece of Hungary with you, even when you get back home.
Take a nice bath
When I say that you should take a bath, I don’t mean to offend you and neither do I mean that you should take a hot bath in your hotel. What I do mean is that you should take a relaxing bath in one of the many famous Budapest thermal springs. The city is known as ‘City of baths’ and it does live up to its name with several extremely popular baths, some of which date back to 16th and 17th century.
Thermal water in these baths is considered to be healthy and therapeutic, which is why many people go there to fix their bodies and relax from the pain. Some baths are more popular than others, and some of the most prominent are Gellért, Rudas, Szechenyi and Kiraly. Kiraly and Rudas were made in the 16th century, while Kiraly is also one of the smallest in Budapest. It has a wonderful, relaxing and even more secluded atmosphere.
Most of these baths were made under the Ottoman occupation of Hungary, while some where even made in the Roman era. However, there are even thermal waters considered to be here from the time of the first settlers in this area, the Celts.
Discover the nightlife
There comes a time in everyone’s life when nightlife just isn’t that interesting. You don’t want to go out and spend the whole night in clubs; you just want to stay at home, go to sleep early and wake up refreshed. If that time still hasn’t come for you, then you might want to go out and start partying. Well, you can’t just party alone in front of your hotel. Find a nice club first.
There are plenty of pubs and clubs all over Budapest and, what’s more interesting, many thermal baths offer late-night parties with awesome music. Except in a pub, club or spa, a great party can be found even on a boat. This is a great opportunity to see the city from the Danube River during the night, just be careful not to get too drunk. Tomorrow you won’t remember what you saw.
As the city is quite big and popular among tourists, many see an opportunity to rip someone off and make an easy buck. Be careful of these people, as they can turn up in any bar or nightclub. Some try to charge you more than the price on the menu, some forcefully take money from you and others try to manipulate you into buying them stuff and spending money on them. You should try and stay away from any suspicious-looking place.
Take an organized tour
Taking a tour is definitely the best way to get to know Budapest. No written or electronic guide will do the trick and, plus this way there are numerous tours to choose from. You don’t have to always stick to the one tour and the one style of tour. What do I mean when I say style?
Well, first of all, there is a tipsy tour. You get to explore the famous Ruin Pubs and in the process you get to have a few drinks. You don’t have to end up on all fours, crawling back to your hotel. The goal is to unwind and see a whole new level of Budapest while having fun and drinking (responsibly of course).
A retro tour will bring you back to the 60s, 70s and 80s and show you why Hungary was one of the most intricate and distinctive communist country. The tour will teach you about the Hungarian past, about its history and about the period that was both hard and victorious for the Hungarians.
A biking tour is definitely one of the most interesting tours you can get. It makes your holiday a funny activity and it helps you feel healthy while teaching you about Budapest. The tour introduces you to some of the most famous Budapest sights and also gives you an insight to some of the hidden jewels. You can choose from a variety of biking tours like riverside or night tour, or you can simply take a private tour and customize it to your liking.