Budapest, "the pearl of the Danube"
Have you ever thought of purchasing a plane ticket for Budapest?
Air France offers flights to Hungary's capital. All flights have one connection, usually in Amsterdam or Paris. For example, if you leave from New York, you should plan on about ten hours of travel time and a + 6-hour time difference.
Budapest is perhaps a lesser-known European capital than Paris, France or Rome, Italy, but its history and architecture are worth spending a few days time to discover.
There is a good reason why Budapest is called the "pearl of the Danube". The city is spread out (15 miles in diameter), and covers both a city center with a wealth of buildings as well as rural areas.
The city center is divided into two sections that straddle the Danube River. Buda, the ancient city on the right bank, and Pest on the left bank. Buda and Pest were united in 1873; that was the birth of Budapest.
- In Buda, climb the castle hill whose neighborhood is on UNESCO's World Heritage list. Enjoy the spectacular view of Pest. Stroll through the cobblestone streets and among the colorful, baroque style houses. The Royal Palace is worth the visit. It was rebuilt after having been destroyed during WW II. Today it houses several museums. Also, discover Saint Matthias Church and Fisherman's Bastion.
Stop in the belvedere on top of Mount Gelbert, in front of the Liberty Monument, commemorating the liberation of Budapest by the Red Army in 1945.
- In Pest, the neo-gothic style Parliament building is obviously one of the city's emblems. Hero Square and the Millennium Monument are also quite impressive.
- Budapest is also known for its thermal baths among which some of the most famous are the Gellert, the Szechenyi and the Kiraly baths.
The city of Budapest has a very good, inexpensive public transportation system with many subways, tramways and buses.
US citizens travelling from the USA to Budapest in Hungary, need a passport that is valid for at least three months after departure. The passport will enable you to travel to the 25 other countries in the Schengen area (France, Germany, Spain, etc.) which acts like a single country for travel purposes.