January 5th 2020
Hello folks, as you can see I managed to write this, which means, we survived another day!
We woke up about 6.30am but never actually left until about 9am. That is because I had to write last night’s blog and our feet had blisters to show the battle scars of a long days walk.
Once we set sail, we headed towards Danube River. It was a sunny day, gentle breeze, however, it was definitely Winter Ray’s – freezing!
Firstly, we crossed the bridge entering the Buda side of Budapest. Once over there, we saw the Rock Chapel. This is literally what it says on the tin: A chapel in the rocks. It was a magnificent sight but unfortunately it seemed to be closed and just full of garbage. I can only imagine the culture surrounding this chapel back in the day when it was being used for its intended purpose.
After this, we marched up the rocky hill that the chapel was built into, to see the citadella. Apparently, this means ‘Statue of Liberty’ in Hungary. The walk was quite steep and tiring but enjoyable nonetheless. Just made even more better once we reached the top.
There was three statues watching over the city of Budapest like Guardian Angel’s. The view was tremendous and there was even Markets leading us down the bottom from the other side.
Next stop was Buda Castle. The little walk over there was actually quite leisurely and the castle was impressive. However, I don’t think it looks like a castle and instead looks more like palace or a Government building. We looked about, taking photos etc but then decided to head inside to gain some heat…
The building we entered was the Hungarian National Art Gallery, so we could use our card for the first time! After leaving our jacket and bags in the cloakroom, we headed off to look at the paintings.
Art Galleries are always interesting to stroll through: “How did they paint that?!”
“Why did they paint that?!”
“What makes this bit of wood art?!”
Anyways, it was much bigger than hoped for. I planned for us only to be at Buda Castle for about an hour but due to the wide space and four floors – that time was doubled.
Seeing art painted an appetite in my stomach: it was time for lunch. After looking for a couple options, we leaned for the Pest-Buda Bistro. This was a traditional Hungarian restaurant and I wanted to try Goulash for the first time.
We headed down the Funicular Railway. This was not long and had us down in minutes for quite the cheap price. So, it isn’t exceptional if you plan on seeing the view, but charming if you want to get down in a matter of minutes. I’d say walk one way and get a single ticket for the other.
It was pretty good, however, mines wasn’t the Goulash I expected. Looking at pictures it usually has potatoes and carrots along with the beef. Unlike that, mines was with egg barley.
The egg barley (things that look like sweetcorn) wasn’t very nice, so I just ate the steak Best part about it was the sauce. Justifyingly, this probably results in me actually liking the traditional version of Beef Goulash. Lauren had pasta and orange juice. I went for homemade lemonade (I never realised that rhymes until now). The total price was Forint equivalent of £25.
Next on the sightseeing list was Matthias Church. One of the most stunning pieces of architecture I have ever seen! The church was a smooth clear stone and the roofs reminded me of Sweden or some other Scandinavian country. The influence from other countries is natural in this city.
We also went to Starbucks round corner from Matthias church. We both got hot chocolates to warm us up on this chilly Winters day. No idea what the lady serving me wrote as my name.
Anyways, after that delightful drink, we looked at the views from fisherman’s bastion.
It was beginning to get later now – in Summer it is quite early; turning 4pm. This meant we missed the time to head up Buda tower. No worries, because we have already seen the spectacular view from other parts of the city. I also cancelled our plans for the museums further down as they closed at 6pm. We would never make it there in time. The National art gallery was to blame for this lateness.
Our final stop was the Lukacs Thermal Baths. This thermal bath was inside unlike the other ones that are outdoors. We only got this one free with the Budapest card though.
The Thermal Bath was hot, relaxing but a tiny bit crowded. I could definitely sit in there longer, replenishing my health but we had to continue on our plan.
After this, to give our feet a rest, we finally braved the tram which zoomed us over to Chain Bridge faster than our little blistered feet could do.
We walked over Chain Bridge in the path for Hard Rock Cafe.
This was probably my favourite Hard Rock Cafe meal. I went for the Atomic burger and it was excellent! I had crispy onion, a spicy sauce, cheese a delicious burger and a fried Jalapeno on the top; which burst in my mouth with one bite. The fries were also really tasty and I ate them all up because I was kinda craving fries throughout the day. I got an apple cider – my first alcoholic beverage bought in another country. (I had cocktails in Italy at the age of 16). This cider was refreshing.
The total price was about £26 which really isn’t bad for Hard Rock Cafe.
After this, we headed back to hotel to call it a night.
January 5th 2020