When we thought of travelling around Europe in the Autumn we expected it to be cold but hoped for some blue sky days and so far we have had more snow than blue skies but today delivered it was gorgeous! Perfect for walking around beautiful Budapest!
We set off towards Heroes Square and on the way we got to admire all the fantastic avenues in downtown Budapest. The buildings are all very grand and the detail in some of the facades is brilliant so it was our usual wandering around gazing upwards and pointing. The highlight was walking down Andrassy Ut which was lined with trees and great old buildings. On the way we passed by a museum which had an exhibition actually out on the street which was quite a unique and good idea. It covered the revolution in 1955 where the Hungarians tried to rise up against the Soviet Union. After two weeks of success the Soviets crushed the rebellion with ruthless force (a familiar tale in the East of Europe unfortunately).
One of the main “things to do” in Budapest was to visit a bathhouse and while we both wanted to go to one we weren’t sure what the best options would be. It was a bit difficult to pick which ones to go to as there were loads of options all with good and bad reviews but the place we picked, Szechenyi Baths, was about 100 years old and had 15 different pools. The building was mustard yellow and quite splendid from the outside and inside was no different. It was ornate without being too flash and was kept spotlessly clean which was impressive as there were plenty of people there.
We didn’t quite get into all 15 baths (one required hats, one was empty and we only needed to go into one of the ice cold baths!). But we did get into the other 12 which varied in temperatures from 20 to 40 degrees and for us the hotter the better. We braved the cold plunge pool too which I guess you could describe as refreshing or bloody cold!! We managed to have saunas as well and after getting a sweat up in the saunas we ran outside to jump in the outdoor pools. All in all we had a great time. It wasn’t exactly a pampering session in a day spa but was a lovely experience and even with the crowds very relaxing. It was definitely where the tourists went and we heard an absolute multitude of languages and it was only the older Hungarian generation who were there, and no doubt had been enjoying the baths for years. I can understand the attraction of the place, dipping in and out of the pools in such a beautiful surrounding was great.
Feeling fully relaxed and cleansed we enjoyed our walk back through the city as the sun set and on our way back found a great market where we stocked up on some Hungarian sausages, cheese and bread and headed back to our room to sit back and enjoy!
I wouldn’t say that Budapest has the most number of amazing sights to see but the city as a whole is very very beautiful. I can see why it’s such a popular destination though I have to say that some of the prices of things were fairly high and we were pestered a lot by various tour companies trying to get your last tourist dollar but apart from that we had a fantastic couple of days in Budapest. It would have been great to have visited more museums to learn more about the history but I think we got the best of Budapest with two days of walking around the city in some pretty glorious weather. T
The sort of scene you start getting used to walking around Budapest.
With so many amazing backdrops available for this sign we wondered why they had put it here!
A couple more streets in downtown Budapest.
The inside of one of the 15 pools.
Even though it was busy it was still a very relaxing experience.