As a lover of great architecture, visiting Budapest has always been on my bucket list. It may be a cliché among tourists, but those who would pass up an opportunity to take in the capital city’s natural and manmade splendour are missing out on one of the finest travel destinations in Europe.
Budapest boasts a diverse mixture of old and relatively recent architecture. It seemed only natural to start with the oldest, so I headed first to the Vörös Sün Ház (Red Hedgehog House) which is estimated to have been built in the mid-13th century. It has since been renovated in the Gothic style, but its original structure remains intact.
Having checked this off my list and feeling ready for more splendid sights, I set off to find the renowned Castle District. After crossing the historical Chain Bridge that unites the Buda and Pest sides of the city (while taking in the remarkable view of the Danube River below), I decided to earn my trip to Castle Hill by braving the steep path that begins in the bustling Clark Adam Square.
Less than halfway up the hill, I began to regret both my decision to walk and my lack of physical fitness. I was, however, resolved to complete my pilgrimage but promised myself to take the funicular should I wish to revisit Castle Hill.
By the time I reached the top, I was almost too exhausted to appreciate the vista that greeted me – almost. The panoramic view of Pest from Castle Hill alone makes the entire trip worthwhile. From there, I spent the day taking in the rich cultural and architectural wonders that draw travellers from around the world to Budapest.
Buda Castle is a gargantuan baroque-style building that looms over the Chain Bridge and its pedestrians. It is truly wondrous to behold, especially at night when the entire structure is brilliantly lit. A foray into the castle itself will keep you occupied for hours on end as it houses both the Hungarian National Gallery as well as the Budapest History Museum.
After spending most of my day climbing Castle Hill and then exploring the palace, I had found my next activity: lunch. I indulged in a fantastic meal and a perhaps unwise amount of red wine at the Marvelosa restaurant just off the river, and this was one of the bet apuestas argentina of my trip .
The wine gave ballast to my bravery, so I opted to try the self-guided tour of the underground labyrinth. After paying the fare, I was given a gas lantern and turned loose into the pitch-dark passages. I was uncomfortably aware that weight of the Buda Palace was resting not far above my head.
The eerie atmosphere quickly brought me back to sobriety as I navigated through the darkness, occasionally coming across an intricately sculpted fountain or statue. My mind wandered inevitably to the centuries wherein the caverns were used as prisons and torture chambers. By the time I reached the exit, I was more than slightly relieved to be in the open air once again.