Monday, July 09, 2012


Our journey to Europe started out as a chaotic one. Our plane left late, we had to go through a second baggage screening at Heathrow before running for our Budapest flight which was about to close. We made it all fine and dandy, and got a car service into town to our very fancy hotel (Le Meridien Budapest!). The sun was shining, it was warm, and we went for a walk and had dinner. Fell asleep in a big squishy bed by 7pm.

Budapest wasn't so much a destination for us as the cheapest place to fly into/out of. We didn't have a ton of time on this trip (we arrived on a Sunday and flew out the following Monday), so we only scheduled one night in Budapest on each end. We figured we'd explore as much as we could while we were there but not stress about it. As it turned out, we saw even less than we'd thought. Partly because we were tired and didn't want to deal with figuring out what to see and how to get there, but also because it was kind of a disappointing place. You can just see that it's been neglected--there are lovely buildings all over the place, but most of them are crumbling or abandoned. It still feels like the Soviet era is still hanging over the place. I just looked it up--and it was only in 1990 that Communism ended there, so no wonder!

Holding a goose

 St Stephen's Basilica

Looking up at the dome inside St Stephen's
 The second morning, it was rainy, but we still wanted to go, so we climbed 302 steps to get to the top of the basilica. Here's part of the view looking out over Budapest!

Fun art

Pretty but decrepit building

Parliament buildings

Antique public transportation

Our first meal, I had raspberry cream soup and salad, while Mister Melancholy had some goulash. For dessert, of course we had strudel! In Europe strudel is almost all fruit and a little pastry wrapping, whereas in American bakeries it's a lot more pastry.

Train Station

So overall, we were not sad to move on to Prague after our day in Budapest!

1 comment:

Nancy Cavillones said...

Ah, I'm sorry Budapest was so disappointing. I had a little more time there when I went, and explored the Jewish Quarter. The synagogue there is the largest in Europe (maybe the world) and sits near the birthplace of Theodore Herzl (the father of Zionism). There were some Holocaust memorials nearby as well, including this cool Tree of Life with silver leaves (or something.... I can't remember now. LOL)
We also crossed the Danube to visit the Parliamentary buildings. Gorgeous!
Also, communism ended in Prague about the same time but I think the Czech Republic is a wealthier, more liberal country and that probably attributes to it being less run-down. Can't wait to read about your Prague adventures!