Once you visit Budapest, you'll fall in love with it – the grandeur of its past and its monuments make the tourist never get enough of this city. To visit Budapest in three days everything should be well planned, as there is plenty to see. The best way to save time is by using public transport. A great idea can also be to get the Budapest Card, which offers access to many attractions and discounts.
Budapest was established in the late nineteenth century, with the unification of Buda and Pest. The first day of your visit can be used to visit the right bank of the Danube where Buda is located. This area has a rich cultural heritage that cannot be missed.
The first thing you need to know is that there are several ways to get to Buda, you can go on foot, by bus or using the funicular – Budavári Siklo. Once you're there, you can visit the Church of St. Matthias, an example of nineteenth-century architecture thanks to renovations carried out then. The exterior will catch your eye, but inside it is simply breathtaking. We won't, however, give it away. We'd rather let you see it for yourself.
Nearby you'll find one of the best viewpoints in Budapest, the Fishermen's Bastion – the Halászbástya. Although its style may look like Gothic architecture, it's from the early twentieth century. It's worth spending some time enjoying the sights of the city from above, but the monument's details shouldn't be missed. You'll discover seven towers, one for each founding tribe of Hungary. It is especially beautiful at sunset or sunrise.
After stopping to eat a typical Hungarian dish, you will be ready to visit Buda Castle, where the Budapest History Museum, the Hungarian National Gallery and the National Széchényi Library are located. You may choose to visit any of them or just stroll through the gardens to discover a beautiful view of Pest and the Danube. On your way down, walk across the Chain Bridge to dine on the other side of the river.
On your second day you can visit Pest. There you'll discover the most important building in the city – the Parliament. It dates back to the late nineteenth century and it represents a mixture of styles, Gothic Revival and Romanesque Revival. Inside you'll find the central hall, where the Holy Crown of Hungary is displayed.
After the Parliament, visit St. Stephen's Basilica – Szent Istvan Bazilika. There you can climb up the dome to see a different perspective of the city. Afterwards, walk through the streets of Pest and go to the Vörösmarty tér, an interesting square where Café Gerbeaud is located. From there you can walk along the famous pedestrian street Váci Utca, a very lively shopping area. At the end, you'll reach the Central Market Hall – a modernist building well worth a few pictures and where you can buy typical Hungarian food.
To finish off the day, get to know the Budapest Synagogue, the largest in Europe. Be sure to walk through the streets around it, where you'll find quaint antique shops. You'll also discover the so-called 'ruin bars' – bars built in the ruins of abandoned buildings. Top off your day there tasting a Hungarian beer.
On your third and last day, you could visit Andrássy út – a boulevard which was recognised as a World Heritage Site in 2002 and one of Budapest's main commercial streets. Should you decide to walk from one end to the other, bear in mind you'll have 3 kilometres ahead. You'll come across beautiful buildings such as the Opera House or the House of Terror. The latter was opened as a museum and shows how the Hungarian people fought against Nazism and Communism in the recent history of Budapest. A nice place to stop and catch your breath could be one of the cafés you'll encounter, like the historic Book Café – Lotz terem.
At the end of the street you'll reach Hősök tere – Heroes' Square – one of the most important squares in the city, which was also declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. Then visit Városliget – City Park – one of the first public parks created in the world. It hosts Széchenyi Thermal Baths, opened in 1913. Treat yourself to a pampering session, which will be the perfect end to your trip.
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