Filled with beautiful gardens, amazing architecture and a great atmosphere, the capital of Hungary is one of the real highlights of Eastern Europe. Now united as one city, the two Buda and Pest have kept their distinct personality with Buda having a more traditional and quaint feel while Pest is much more of an urban centre.
Take the Sikló, the funicular train up the Castle Hill which is on UNESCO’s World Heritage list where you can explore the Buda Castle or sample authentic Hungarian wines in the historic Faust Wine Cellar. The 19th Century Fisherman’s Basiton also on the hill looks like it came straight out of a fairy tale, and why not climb its turrets to experience spectacular panoramic views over the city which is said to be at its most beautiful at sunset and sunrise.
Set on the banks of the river is the imposing Hungarian Parliament, a beautiful architectural masterpiece and visitors can take a guided tour around this functioning parliament and visit the Hungarian crown jewels. Budapest is home to many great monuments and buildings which are worth a visit but perhaps a standout is the Shoes on the Danube, a humbling tribute to the thousands of Jewish citizens executed along its banks in the Second World War. A highlight for many tourists is to take a boat cruise along the river Danube which allows them to see amazing views of the city and many of the best sights, with cruises running both in the day and at night.
In the evening take a walk down to the Chain Bridge, the first bridge to connect Buda with Pest which is even more impressive when illuminated at night. Watch one of the amazing performances in the State Opera House or spend the night in one of the ruin pubs which are quite unique to the city, set in an abandoned building containing numerous different rooms, bars and eccentric fittings.