Budapest

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WHY VISIT BUDAPEST?

You visit Budapest for the beautiful views, amazing architecture, thermal baths and extensive nightlife.  Budapest is grittier than the clean and polished capital cities of its neighbors, but in a good way.  It’s also a great city to visit all year round.

Why visit Budapest? Check out the Travel Honey BUDAPEST PHOTO GALLERY.

Why visit Budapest? Check out the 3 Day and 4 Day Travel Honey Itineraries.

WHERE TO STAY IN BUDAPEST?

Budapest was formed by combining the hilly Buda and flat Pest bisected by the River Danube. If you prefer quiet, historic neighborhoods, stay on the Buda side.  If you like the hustle and bustle and be near most bars and restaurants, especially those more frequented by locals, stay on the Pest side.  

Budapest is broken up into 23 districts, which are numbered and also named.  Some important ones are District 1 (Castle District around Buda Castle on the Buda side), District V is along the River Danube on the Pest side.  District VI, District VII (Jewish Quarter, and District VIII are triangle shaped districts on the other side of District V pointing towards the River.  If you’re walkable to the river in any of these districts, you’ll be close to most restaurants, hotels and sights. If you want more details on each of these hotels and see them on an interactive Google map, it’s included with the Travel Honey Budapest itineraries.  You’ll also get a day-by-day guide on the best activities to the best activities.

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*Get the key to $, $$, $$$ and $$$$ in the Travel Honey Pricing Guide.

Boscolo Budapest ($$$) An elegant hotel in District VII a bit away from the river.  Think gilded and grand.  Enjoy the great service, spa and cavernous pool.  Even if you don’t stay, check out it’s impressive lobby.

Brody Hotel ($$$) A charming boutqiue hotel in District VIII.

Baltazar Boutique Hotel ($$) A wonderful family owned boutique hotel on the Buda side in a quiet neighborhood in District I near Matthias Church.

Casati Budapest Hotel ($$) A centrally-located boutique hotel in District VII with an awesome spa, bar and breakfast.

Magazine Hotel ($) Clean rooms with hip decor, some with windows that look directly at St. Stephen’s Basilica. 

WHERE TO EAT IN BUDAPEST?

Why go to Budapest?  You can get awesome food without a big price tag.  You can eat awesome meals on the cheap and if you want to splurge, eat at a Michelin star restaurant for under $100 a person.

*Get the key to $, $$, $$$ and $$$$ in the Travel Honey Pricing Guide.

Caelis Restaurant ($$$$) Fancy and formal, for serious foodies. The price fixed lunch menu is a steal.

Uma Restaurant ($$$$) Avant-garde, tasty and modern cuisine. Courses include stone fish with apple broth, suckling pig, chocolate bomb with coffee ice cream and berries with rose petals.

Petit Pau ($$) Only 6 tables at this hidden gem. Fantastic duck, clams and chocolate cake.

Mastico ($$) Go just for the risotto. Modern setting and great pasta.

Bar Canete ($$) Awesome, stylish tapas. Order the tomato bruschetta, sangria, eggplant and lobster croquettes.

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View of Budapest from the Citadella; Chain Bridge at Night

WHERE TO GO AT NIGHT IN BUDAPEST?

The nightlife is a big reason why many visit Budapest.  Budapest is famous for its ruin bars, which are bars built in the ruins of an old abandoned buildings.

Bar Pharma A cool cocktail bar with a long list of inventive cocktails and friendly staff.

Simpla Kert  Iconic ruin pub in Budapest with an eclectic collections of things hanging from the walls.

Budapest Jazz Club  An informal jazz club with affordable drinks.

BEST INSTAGRAM ACCOUNTS FOR BUDAPEST?  

Local Budapest account @budapest_hungary

Closeup shots of food, drinks and architecture in Budapest @welovebudapest

Budapest cityscapes captured by a local @thisisbudapest

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Drinks at Bar Pharma; Travel Honey Bear at Bar Pharma

HOW TO GET TO BUDAPEST?

Budapest has one major international airport, Budapest Ferenc Liszt International Airport or BUD.  But it’s often called by its former name, Ferihegy.  There are direct flights to/from major cities in Europe but direct flights from the U.S. has been limited.  Starting in spring 2018, there will be direct flights from New York, Chicago and Philadelphia.

The airport about 10 miles from the city center.  A taxi from the airport to the city center will cost around EUR 25 and about 30 minutes. You can also take a 45 minute bus ride to the Kőbánya-Kispest metro terminal on the M3 metro line for under $2.

HOW TO GET AROUND BUDAPEST?

Budapest is a walkable city. Uber is not allowed to operate in Budapest, so you have to rely on cabs or public transportation.  Public transportation is great and may be a better option than hailing a cab. Budapest cab drivers are notorious for overcharging passengers, even if they have a meter.  You should ask your hotel or restaurant to call cab, but be prepared to wait  a few minutes.  If you hail a cab on your own, either negotiate a price up front or be very clear with cab driver about the estimated cost.

BEST ITINERARY FOR BUDAPEST?

Still need more reasons for why you should visit Budapest?  Check out these awesome itineraries from Travel Honey’s savvy traveler contributors.