Hungary, located in central Europe, is landlocked with a rich history, stunning architecture, and natural beauty. It is a country with a unique culture that its turbulent past has shaped and diverse influences. Hungary offers travelers a wide range of exploring experiences, from its vibrant capital city Budapest to its quaint villages. Zitango Travel will take you on a journey through Hungary’s most charming destinations and must-visit attractions.
Hungary’s capital, Budapest: “Paris of the East.” is a city that has something for everyone. Whether you are interested in history, culture, or entertainment, Budapest is divided by the Danube River, with Buda on one side and Pest on the other.
Budapest – A City of Spas and Thermal Baths
Budapest is renowned for its rich cultural heritage and stunning architecture. But perhaps one of its most unique and appealing features is its abundance of thermal baths and spas.
The thermal baths in Budapest are a product of the city’s unique geography, which sits on top of a network of natural hot springs. The warm, mineral-rich waters have been used for their therapeutic properties for centuries, with the Romans being among the first to take advantage of the city’s natural spa resources.
Today, Budapest boasts many thermal baths and spas, many of which are historic landmarks. The most famous of these is undoubtedly the Széchenyi Thermal Bath, which is the largest spa complex in Europe and features a range of indoor and outdoor pools, saunas, and steam rooms. Other popular thermal baths in Budapest include the Gellért Thermal Bath and the Rudas Thermal Bath.
In addition to their therapeutic properties, the thermal baths in Budapest are also popular tourist attractions, with many visitors coming to experience the unique combination of relaxation and history that they offer. Whether you’re looking to unwind after a long day of sightseeing or simply want to indulge in some pampering, Budapest’s thermal baths offer an unforgettable experience.
Budapest is a beautiful city with a rich history and many things to explore. Here are some of the top things to do and see in Budapest:
The Hungarian Parliament Building: A Symbol of National Identity
The Hungarian Parliament Building is one of the most iconic buildings in Budapest. It is a stunning example of Neo-Gothic architecture and is the largest building in Hungary. Visitors can take a guided tour of the building to see its magnificent interior, including the Hungarian Crown Jewels.
The Hungarian State Opera House: A Treat for the Senses
The Hungarian State Opera House is a must-visit attraction for music and theater lovers. It is one of the most beautiful opera houses in the world, with its stunning Neo-Renaissance architecture and ornate interior. Visitors can take a guided tour of the opera house to learn about its history and see its impressive auditorium.
Walk across the Chain Bridge in Budapest, Hungary
The Chain Bridge is one of the most famous bridges in Europe and is a symbol of Budapest. It connects Buda and Pest and offers stunning views of the city.
Buda Castle: A Walk-Through History
This UNESCO World Heritage Site that overlooks the Danube River. It was built in the 13th century and has undergone several renovations over the years. The castle complex includes the Royal Palace, the National Gallery, and the Budapest History Museum. Visitors can take a guided tour of the castle to learn about its fascinating history.
Széchenyi Thermal Baths – A Relaxing Experience
The Széchenyi Thermal Baths are one of Europe’s largest thermal bath complexes. It’s a popular spot for locals and tourists alike, offering a relaxing and rejuvenating experience. Here are some interesting facts about the Széchenyi Thermal Baths:
- The thermal bath complex has over 15 indoor and outdoor pools, saunas, and steam rooms.
- The water temperature ranges from 28°C to 40°C, providing a soothing and therapeutic experience.
- The architecture of the thermal bath complex is stunning, with a unique blend of neo-baroque.
Take a Danube River Cruise
A Danube River cruise is a great way to see the city from a different perspective. You can enjoy a relaxing boat ride and enjoy the beautiful views of Budapest’s architecture and landmarks.
Visit the Great Market Hall
The Great Market Hall is the largest indoor market in Budapest and is a great place to buy souvenirs, local food, and Hungarian specialties.
Some of the top things to do and see in Hungary other than Budapest:
Debrecen: The Cultural Capital of Hungary
Debrecen is the second-largest city in Hungary and it is the country’s cultural capital. It is home to several museums, galleries, and theaters, making it a popular destination for art and culture lovers.
Hortobagy National Park: A Nature Lover’s Paradise
This is the largest national park in Hungary and is a paradise for nature lovers. It is home to diverse flora and fauna, including rare bird species, wild horses, and water buffalo. Visitors can explore the park on foot or by taking a guided tour.
Lake Balaton: Hungary’s Sea
Lake Balaton is the largest lake in Central Europe and is known as the “Hungarian Sea.” It is a popular tourist destination, especially during the summer months when visitors can enjoy swimming, boating, and sunbathing on its beaches. The lake is also surrounded by several charming towns and villages, making it a great place to explore.
Eger: A Town of Wine and Castles
Eger is a charming town in northern Hungary that is famous for its wine and historical sites. It is home to several wine cellars where visitors can taste the local wine, including the famous Egri Bikaver or “Bull’s Blood of Eger.” The town is also home to Eger Castle, which played a significant role in Hungary’s history.
Tokaj: The Birthplace of Tokaji Wine
Tokaj is a small town in northeastern Hungary that is famous for its sweet white wine, Tokaji Aszu. It is one of the oldest wine regions in the world and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Visitors can explore the town’s wine cellars and vineyards and taste some of the best wine in Hungary.
Sopron: A Quaint Border Town
Sopron is a charming town on the Austrian border known for its well-preserved medieval architecture. Visitors can explore the town’s historic center, including the Fire Tower, which offers panoramic views of the town and the surrounding area.
Pecs: A City of Culture and History
Pecs is a beautiful city in southern Hungary known for its rich history and cultural attractions. It is home to several museums, galleries, and theaters, including the famous Zsolnay Museum, which showcases the work of the Zsolnay family, who were famous for their ceramics.
Gyor: A Hidden Gem in the West
Gyor is a beautiful city in western Hungary that tourists often overlook. It is known for its stunning architecture, including the Baroque-style Basilica of St. Ignatius and the beautiful City Hall. Visitors can also explore the city’s historic center, which is full of charming streets and buildings.
Fisherman’s Bastion – A Fairytale Fortress
The Fisherman’s Bastion is a fairytale fortress that offers stunning views of Budapest, Hungary. It’s a popular spot for photographers, offering panoramic city views. Here are some interesting facts about the Fisherman’s Bastion:
- The fortress was built in the 19th century and was named after the fishermen who defended the city in the Middle Ages.
- The architecture of the fortress is stunning, with seven towers representing the seven Hungarian tribes that settled in the Carpathian Basin.
- The Fisherman’s Bastion is popular for weddings and other special events.
Visit the Museum of Fine Arts
The Museum of Fine Arts is one of Europe’s most important art museums and home to many worldwide artworks.
Go on a pub Crawl!
Lively nightlife is another feature of Budapest. There are variety of pubs and bars to choose from. A pub crawl is a great way to experience the city’s nightlife and be social.
Try Hungarian Cuisine
Hungarian cuisine is hearty and flavorful, with dishes that reflect the country’s history and culture. Here are some foods to try:
- Goulash: Hungarian goulash is a meaty stew with vegetables and spices like the Czech version.
- Langos: A deep-fried dough topped with sour cream and cheese, often eaten as street food.
- Chimney cake (Kürtőskalács): A sweet pastry made from rolled dough coated in sugar and baked over an open flame.
- Palinka: A strong fruit brandy that is a popular traditional Hungarian drink.
Hungary, with its capital Budapest, is a beautiful country with a unique blend of culture, history, and natural beauty. From its vibrant capital city to its charming towns and villages, Hungary has something for everyone. Whether you are interested in exploring its historic sites, tasting its delicious cuisine, or simply relaxing in its thermal baths, Hungary is a destination that should be on every traveler’s bucket list.