Budapest: ‘Andrássy út’ and the city park

On my last full day in Budapest, I had planned to go see the main street in Budapest; Andrássy Út and the City park and everything around it. This was also the fourth walking tour in my ‘100 % Boedapest’ guide.

I took the metro to Bajcsy Zsilinszky utak, where the tour started, and walked along Andrássy Út all the way to Kodály Körönd. This street has unofficially been named the “Champs Elysées” of Budapest many times, and I definitely get why. It feels very Parisian, which also counts for many other streets in Budapest.

Along Andrássy Út, you can see the Opera and The House of Terror. The House of Terror used to be the headquarters of the secret service during the Facist and Communist Dictatorial Regimes of the 20th Century, but now it’s a museum containing information on that era. You can visit both the Opera (or attend a concert) and the House of Terror, but because of lack of time and because I wasn’t 100% interested in the museum, we skipped this and enjoyed the view of the other buildings on Andrássy Ut instead.

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From Kodàly Körönd, we took the oldest metro of Europe, which was built in 1896, to Heroes’ Square. The most notable thing on Heroes’ Square is definitely The Millennium Monument. This monument was also erected in 1896 and consist of one central colon with the archangel Gabriel surrounded by the many kings and rulers of Hungary, the heroes. In the middle, there is also the grave of Imre Nagy.

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After having spend some time on this square, we went to the City Park to discover all the beauty of it. Right before the park, you can find Városligeti Müjégpálya, the ice rink of Budapest. From November until March you can skate on this big surface, which has recently been renovated. Not far from the ice rink, you can find the Vajdahunyad Castle, which is a really beautiful building that looks almost fairytaleish.

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We wandered around the park a bit, before going to Széchenyi Bath and Spa. I’m usually not someone who enjoys going to a spa, but this is really worth a few hours of your time. I really recommend going in around 5pm. The inside pools are only open until 7pm while the outside pool is open until 10pm. Entrance to the spa costs 4000 florints for a locker, and a bit more for a cabin. A cabin is really useful as you can get changed privately and leave your stuff there instead of just in a locker. If you go in by the time I recommend, you can see the outside pool both by daylight as by night. It’s so beautiful and really relaxing. Even in winter, it’s worth it, because the pools outside are 36° Celcius and 38° Celcius.

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When we were truly cleansed, we took the metro to go back to Fisherman’s Bastion and the Matthias Church so I could be at my favorite place in Budapest one last time before I left. It’s equally – if not more – beautiful by night. Even though it was freezing cold by then, I really enjoyed the view. It’s definitely worth it to go back up there once more once it’s dark. On the way over there, we also passed the Gresham Building once more, which is also so beautiful lit up.

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Satisfied with all I had seen that day, I went to sleep, sad that I would be going home the next day.

I didn’t have a lot of time left the day of my return, so I’ll just include it in this post as well. The only thing that I still really wanted to see was the Market Hall, so that’s where we headed. It was also a great opportunity to get some souveniers as there were many typical products of Hungary being sold there. For my parents, I got some paprika, and for my sister, I got some Turu Rudi, a bar of cream cheese coated in chocolate.

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So it was with a heavy heart that I took the train to the airport to go back home. Budapest is definitely a city I recommend if you’re looking for a diverse citytrip. It has so much to offer and it’s just such a beautiful city. I really hope I can go back one day.

I also want to take another second to thank my friend Lea for taking the time to show me around, and also Lea’s mom to make me many typical Hungarian dishes. You’re the best!

Until next time,

With love, Ellen

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