Last weekend I headed to Budapest with a girlfriend and it did not disappoint! The weather was great, the city itself was beautiful and we ate some pretty good food too (obviously essential to all trips). We spent most of the weekend wondering around Budapest; walking along the Danube and exploring some of the signature sights. I’ve tried to break down my favourite parts of the trip, including food/my favourite restaurants.
What I loved about Budapest is that you can walk everywhere. No where seemed to take us more than 30 minutes to walk to, which meant we only used the metro once (mainly through fear of tired legs finally giving up). There are so many different places you can go to get amazing views of the city, from the top of St Stephens to the stairs up towards the Castle District, so take your time to appreciate the eastern-influenced architecture around you.
And for more pictures, head over to my Instagram.
Matthias Church – Budapest Castle District
Don’t be tempted to table the cable car up to the Castle District. Whichever way you walk, you’ll be interrupted by breathtaking views of the city below. The Castle District itself is full of historical sights, including the Royal Palace and Matthias Church. The real beauty though, lies in the crooked streets that circle up and around the hill. We didn’t get the chance, but dusk is supposed to be the best time to visit, with less tourists and the opportunity to watch the sun set over Budapest.
Tip: The bell tower of Matthias Church has a lookout tower where you can climb to its lower terrace and enjoy the view.
St Stephen’s Basilica
We did this on our last day, and it felt like the perfect goodbye to Budapest. One of the most beautiful buildings in Budapest (in my opinion) and the largest church in the city – holding up to 8,500 people. Inside the church is decorated by famous artists of the era and well worth spending time in. It’s also worth noting you’ll need to cover your shoulders, something I had not thought of and resulted in a slightly awkward conversation with the priest…
Climb the basilica for panoramic views of Budapest that really take your breath away. There’s 364 steps but there is a lift all the way to the top. It costs 500 HUF which works out about £1.20. There are guided tours available but to be honest it’s the perfect place to just stop and take in the views, especially if you manage to arrive before crowds of tourists.
In the Jewish Quarter, Koleves offers a wide selection is European and Hungarian food – also Kosher and gluten free options. I’m eating gluten free at the moment, so this was perfect. There are a variety of specials on offer, including these amazing sticky, chicken wings above. Great value for money, with an at-home kind of atmosphere. You can eat indoors or outdoors, but if it’s warm, it’s worth trying to get a table outdoors.
There’s a bar area outside too, featuring hammocks and lots of fairy lights. My favorite ruin bar in Budapest, it was the perfect, peaceful oasis needed after a long day exploring, day or night.
Born 2 Bio
Budapest, like most cities, has seen an increase in people looking for gluten/dairy free options for their food. Right around the corner from our hostel, Born 2 Bio, stocks around 1,200 items that are vegan, gluten-free, fair-trade, or paleo – pick up some snacks for the day while you’re here.
Their on-site café was perfect for breakfast too, whether you have any of the above dietary requirements or not! The gluten free/paleo chocolate orange brownie should definitely be your go to.
We stayed at Friends Hostel & Apartment – amazing value and location.