2 Nights in Budapest

This entry is a follow-up to my previous entry All in Vienna. Both cities offers totally different surrounding but it is not least interesting.

Arrived in Keleti Palyaudvar nearly 6.30 p.m. Slight delay for 15 minutes from the original ETA. One thing that was a bit surprising was the fact there were no officer to check our passport as opposed to when we were en route to Vienna. Owh i also forgot to mention about the train, no need to reserve a seat in advance. Just go ahead and sit at the unreserved seat. As long as you have a valid ticket, you can sit at any of the non-assigned seat or pre-book by others. Save you few euros (which in Malaysian case is quite a lot of money by 4.8 times).

Keleti Palyaudvar is a very beautiful train station. It is one of 3 main station in Budapest, the other two are Nyugati Palyaudvar and Deli Palyaudvar which also boasts beautiful architecture. Unluckily for us that day, there were some tram disruption on the line that went to our apartment. It was supposed to be very clear cut and easy but because of the disruption we have to detour via subway and interchange to another subway to Nyugati (the apartment was 600m away). At first bought a 48 hours transport pass for HUF3,300 (EUR11) per person. Managed to reach the apartment a few subway rides later. Along the way, we encountered some nice locals who always offered their help to us (there were baby stroller and big bag going up and down the subway and tram). At first wifey and i were a bit apprehensive about it because of our experience before. But turns out it is just our luck that we encountered many nice people in Budapest (even when on the day we arrived).

Upon arriving at the apartment, there were a lady (assigned by the host) that welcomed us in front of the apartment and to show us the apartment that we were staying for 2 nights. For RM380, we got the apartment for 2 nights, centrally located and in secure old building. We booked the apartment via airbnb. The host also provided some information and tips of going around the area and trying her very best to explain even with her limited command of English. We end up showing some pictures of Budapest that we wanted to go and for her to show it on the map. Cool enough. Wifey and Eusoff rest at the apartment while i went out to scout for food. Luckily enough, there are 3 halal food establishment within walking distance from the apartment. Bought rice with chicken and some vegetables for HUF1,300 and went back to the hotel. Info: Exchange for EUR to HUF is roughly EUR1~HUF300 and please don't exchange your money at airport or train station. 

We kicked off the day by taking a tram to the Danube area. The river that separate Buda (the high end area with lots of greens very visible to see) and Pest (where almost everything else is happening from the night life and shopping street etc.).We started our morning by walking from the Margaret Bridge from the Pest side. Just strolling by the Danube straight to the impeccable Parliament building. It is such a commanding and beautiful structure to behold. From then on we took the tram straight to the Liberty bridge then walked to the Market Hall. The Market Hall has everything, i mean like literally everything from souvenirs, beautiful embroidery (have to pull wifey away from these shops), fruits, foods etc. Bought some souvenirs and fruits then walked back through Vaci street to the Elizabeth bridge (Vaci street were also filled with souvenir shops). Once again we walk all the way to the famous Chain Bridge. Breezy walk and beautiful sight to basked in. Eusoff fell asleep in the stroller during this time (Eusoff easily fall asleep when i put him in a stroller and walk on the uneven pavement, maybe because of the movement he felt as if he is in a baby cradle). Crossed the Chain Bridge to the Buda sight and took the funicular up to Buda Hill. The only mistake i made this time was buying 2 way instead of one way. It is actually better to just buy one way up and walk down to the other side of the hill. But since we already bought two-way, i hate to give it away. It cost HUF1,800 per person for two way. Tips: Accommodation in Pest side are mostly cheaper and it is easier to navigate around and there are a lot of shops. Buda side is nicer but it totally depends on your itinerary.

On the way up, we were greeted with beautiful panoramic view of Pest and the Danube. Rest for a while for coffee at the cafe by the hillside and enjoy the view. Went down through the funicular (since we bought 2 way ticket) then resumed with walking on the Buda side. I have to say, walking there was a beautiful experience. Fantastic weather, incredible view and technically, the pedestrian walkway is safe. Eusoff woke up and started with his running adventure, again. Pheww. We took picture with the Parliament building in the background accompanied with beautiful clouds. Fantastic. Info: The pedestrian walk and the bicycle track is next to each other, so have to be extra careful coz the bicycle are rather fast moving.

We took a tram back to Nyugati station to go to one of the nearby turkish restaurant for lunch. We ordered 2 dish and 2 drinks for HUF2,400. That is really lower than our expectation. The portion was huge, and of course we were not able to finish it. Then we walked back to apartment to freshen up and perform prayers. We decided to go for a night out in Budapest since the apartment is within the 24 hours tram line. Tips: Budapest is beautiful at night and it is advisable to find accommodation near the 24 hours tram line like Tram 6. 

Eusoff was asleep when we started our night sightseeing. Budapest is indeed a beautiful city. The scenery at night by the Danube was breathtaking. Since it was rather cold, there were not much traffic. But there were a lot of people still, mostly going for the night out. Some of the cafes were located by the Chain Bridge overlooking the Buda Castle. Very good place to chill out with fantastic view to match. Tips: Budapest is safe. But as any other city in the world, need to be sensible and avoid quiet and dark places. For the baby stroller, bring the rain cover as well not because of th rain but sometimes the wind are strong at night.

We done more walking at night. Then just relax by the strolling along the Danube to the Margaret Bridge. Wifey were tired by that time, so we took the tram back to the apartment and freshen up and went to sleep. Tips: You can just take a ride on the Tram line 6 in the middle of the night and just stay inside while enjoying the view outside. It is worth the try and furthermore, 24 hours travel card means 24 hours and not daily that capped at midnight.

The final morning, woke up and it was my time to prepare the breakfast. Since our apartment has almost everything, i end up doing a heavy and unbelievably unhealthy breakfast. Triple decker sandwich with salads, half fried eggs and melted cheese. For drinks i end up with coffee with chocolate ice cream. And with Mac & Cheese. Cost to prepare it, less than EUR10 as it is part of the groceries budget. We requested our host's assistance to book a taxi for us since the host also advised us not to hail taxi by the street if you want to go to the airport. No explanation was given, but i can remember her face saying NO NO NO. With the hand gestures accompanied her No NO no. The taxi arrived on time and straight to the airport. Cost about HUF8,000. Tips: We normally take taxi to go to the airport because logistic-wise it is easier and more economical at certain extend. And airport transfer should be booked through telephone, ask the hotel or the host to assist you on that.

One thing i love about some of the airports in Europe is that, they always give priority when they saw you with a baby stroller. Happened to us in Rome, Amsterdam and Budapest. So don't have to buy that fast track (always offered by some budget airlines for hefty price). Everything went smooth without much question except for Eusoff's baby milk and baby food. But it went well and off we went back to Dubai. Tips: Try to pack baby food, baby milk and baby lotions in a separate hand carry bag to ease the inspection process. For flights, try to get the seat near to the toilet at the back and we always prepare at least 1 diaper for 2 hours flight. 

First thing first. I definitely going back to Budapest again. 3 days 2 nights were not enough given the fact the total hours we were in Budapest were actually less than 48 hours. We did not get to cover the areas such as Heroes Square or even the famous thermal bath/ spa. Now we are contemplating to go there again and enjoy the spa and relax. Not in the recent future but one day, when they have affordable tickets to go to Budapest again. And yeah, wifey wants to buy all those beautiful embroidered table cloths etc. Errrr. As for this trip, we managed to work well with the time that we have and enjoy the city tremendously. Budget-wise, it is much more affordable as compared to some of the countries we have been to. For Eusoff, it is his 9th country and there will be more to come for sure. One of my good friends told me that now she knows that when Eusoff get married, we need more time just for Eusoff's travel montage. For this experience, it could start with a caption, few years ago, 2 nights in Budapest.



Fatin Days said…
From your picture it looks like Vienna is more attractive to me :D I'm thinking of where to go in Europe..


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