Tuesday, 29 December 2015

My House In Budapest

Hi Everyone,

   I hope you all had a fab Christmas. As promised here is a blog about Budapest. During the last week of the summer holidays, my teacher friends and I spoke about going on holiday together, during the October half term. We first listed places we would like to visit and from there we tried to narrow it down. There were at least 8 places on our list. Dublin being one of them, I love Dublin, but expressed to my friends that I've already been once this year, and would love to go somewhere else. Though I am happy to go back to Dublin next year! Anyway, so we ruled Dublin out along with Prague (because of the price, though we all really wanted to go there). Then we ruled out Madrid (I was the only one who was team Spain and Berlin). Finally that left us with Budapest and Vienna. I think there were more on the list but I can't remember the rest. After debating on which city we would prefer we all voted on Budapest. So one/two hours later we started to look at flights & hotels. We finally booked with Easy Jet for our outbound flight and Norwegian Airlines for our inbound flight. Gatwick was the most convenient airport for us three so we decided on paying a high fare just so we could fly from Gatwick. Anyway, after booking our flights, we looked at hotels, after another hour we settle on one hotel in the Buda side of Budapest. Which came under District I. It was a nice and very central place to stay, we were a good 15 minutes walk from the most beautiful place in Budapest (In my opinion). Anyway the hotel we stayed in was called the Carlton Hotel. A lovely nice hotel with a very steep hill! The Buda side is known for being steep and hilly!. 

Anyway, so all was booked and I started work in September, slowly counting the days to half term and my trip with my gorgeous friends. About two weeks prior to our trip, my dear friend Nik dislocated her knee again! But luckily she was able to travel with us, using her crutches. Being with someone on crutches has it's perks, we sailed through security, well when I say sailed through I mean we cut the queues. Anyway once on the plane, we were up in the air it wasn't long before we landed in Budapest on a glorious day. (Flight was about 2 hours & a half). 

From Buda to Pest <3 

We got a taxi to our hotel, which cost us about 7800 HUF (Hungarian Forint) Which is about £18, which isn't too shabby when split between three of us. The journey took about half an hour/ 45 minutes. Besides we were one leg down so a taxi was the best mode of transport. After checking in and settling in, we took a stroll of the Pest side of Budapest and had a quick coffee break before heading back to our room, to doing some much needed planning. You see we would only be in the country for three days, though technically it wasn't really three days, we arrived around midday Tuesday and were due to leave Thursday around 3PM. So in theory that was what two days? So yes we planned what we would visit, starting with the attraction furthest away and working our back towards our hotel. After a long few hours planning we head out on our side of the river (Buda) in hunt for a restaurant that we saw had good reviews online. On our way there, we came across the most beautiful view of Pest. We didn't even intend to take that route(we thought we were lost, don't think we were), but we were glad we did, once we saw the beautiful sight we paused and took in the beauty of it. (Unknowingly to us we stumbled upon one of Budapest's iconic sights. the Fisherman Bastion.) 

This was the sight that made us stop to catch our breath, it was so beautiful. This photo simply doesn't do it any justice. 

This image made me feel like I was a Hufflepuff student at Hogwarts.

Forgetting the fact that we were hungry, we kept on walking further up, until we came across a clearer and more beautiful view. After staring at the view for more than ten minutes we continued on walking until we eventually found the restaurant we wanted to eat at. Unfortunately for us, it was fully booked out and we couldn't try out it's amazing cuisine. A little disheartened we continued to stroll along the same street and stopped by a hotel/restaurant and settled for a not so amazing meal. After dinner we headed back the way we came and took more pictures of Matthias Church (which was just behind the Fisherman's Bastion.) This place was definitely my favourite spot. After all reviews have been raving about it's view and how it is the best place for views of the city, and they weren't wrong. It was breathtaking. 

Following, stumbling on the prettiest sight,we headed back to our hotel and went to bed, ready for an early wake up call and a long full day of exploring. 
Up at 6 we were down for breakfast before 7, and out the door by about 8. We walked to our nearest metro station and bought a day travel card (which unlike travel cards in the UK) It last for an entire day, yup 24 hours. so it lasted from 8:30 am Wednesday right through until 8:30 am Thursday morning. It was amazing! Anyway, the first place on our list was the Budapest Spas (Szechenyi thermal baths is the proper name.) It took us a while to find the entrance, after walking round the building once, we realised that we actually walked past it. Oops. Anyway, after going in we thought we would be able to take a tour, unfortunately we couldn't and we didn't bring any of swim stuff with us. So we left the spa and headed outside to grab a bus (which was included in our travel card). Then another bus and headed to Margaret Island. A wee Island in the river in between Buda & Pest. It such a pretty park, we practically walked the entire park before heading out and got off near the Parliament buildings. (which you can see for free with an EU passport) - Though we didn't go in, we were quite content with just staring at the stunning building from the outside. 
After admiring the building we strolled around the street and found a nice little restaurant. The staff were lovely, actually in general Hungarian people are really nice, well mannered, offered to help my friend on crutches without even asking. 

This, god this was disgusting. It is a fruit brandy, famous in Hungary, think it was peach flavour. It came free and the waitress asked if we wanted to try it, luckily my friend asked for a little bit rather than a whole shot, god was it awful and strong.  Well at least I can say I tried it!

Anyway, after lunch we took another walk and found ourselves back to where we were the day before. So we decided to head back to our room, and wait for sunset to begin so we could get a better view of the city as it set. 
We got a bus up to Buda Castle, I refused to go on the tram that went up a big and steep hill. (The day before we came across the tram that took you to the top of the peak, and the pansy that I am I was like Hell No am I going on that.) Luckily for me there was a bus. Anyway, we got the bus up there and it looked over the city and it was another beautiful view, though nothing on The Fisherman's Bastion. After taking a some snaps, we took a bus that was supposed to take us back down, instead it took us to the Fisherman's Bastion, it was then we clocked on that we had already been there and it was the Fisherman's Bastion. We happily got off at this stop, as the lighting was just perfect and we wanted a picture of us and the beautiful view. 

Just look at the lighting! It was just perfect. Still blue but slowly getting darker. 

Instead of getting the bus back down we headed back to the hotel and found another bus that would take us to the other side of the city. (By this point we had done an awful lot of walking and it wasn't fair on poor Nik's leg!). Once we got to the other side of the city, we stumbled across St Stephen's Basilica took some spooky looking photos and then headed out to a trendy outdoor bar my friend saw online. (We decided to walk, according to Google maps it wouldn't take too long to walk...it lied). Finally reaching this bar, for the life of me I cannot remember the name. (Just asked my friend, it was called 'Szimpla Kert'). It was a cool graffiti, misc mash furniture bar. After a couple glasses of very cheap wine, we headed downstairs and stumbled upon a photo booth and naturally we took photos. 

St Stephen's Basilica 

Anyway, after the bar we headed for dinner nearby where we laughed and reminisced about our time living together in London. It was there we decided to go to the spa early in the morning, with our day travel card, (might as well use it until it's deadline). It was a good shout out, as what other way to end our trip than, a dip in the heated water and saunas before our flight home. The outdoor pools were nice but freezing, It was a long walk from spa house to the outside pools but well worth it. 

So that was Budapest, we surprisingly got a lot done in the short amount of time we were there. I definitely will want to go back, hopefully next time I go, I will not be feeling rubbish, with a horrid cold, I had it all, the sniffles, sore throat and a cough. (Which in my opinion lead me to being sick on this trip). 
So yes Budapest is a definite recommend. It was so beautiful and romantic and just wow. 

Thanks to the beautiful girls who accompanied me on this trip. Also photo credits to Niki (last three photos in this post).

Hopefully I will be able to get another post out before the new year, if not it will definitely be out first thing next year! I'll blog about, the highlights of this year, like I have done so every year since I started blogging. Maybe this time I'll include some resolutions. As well as other highlights of this year. Other than going on holidays and working abroad. Highlights such as getting a job, being apart of my cousin's engagement, seeing Hunter Hayes, the birth of my new baby cousin oh and perhaps many more. I will have to have a little think. 

Amazing Photo box Polaroid style photos!

Anyway, if I don't post before the new year, then I will wish you all a very Happy New Year! May all your dreams come true.


Sam x

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