We all are aware that we went to Budapest for my Birthday, but coincidentally we were there for Christmas also. We were only in Budapest for five nights, and from about 2pm on the 24th until at least the 27th Budapest is pretty much closed. With us leaving early on the 28th, we didn’t get out and about as much as we may have liked, but we still managed to pack a bit in!
We took Christmas day “off”, and stayed in our apartment all day decadently hanging around in our PJ’s drinking New Zealand Sauv (thanks Aldi!), which was just the ticket! Our Airbnb was all that we could have wished for, and is the only place we have stayed without sharing the home with our host.
With Budapest being under communist rule from around 1949 to 1989 and formally “behind the Iron Curtain”, we were not too sure what to expect. English was widely spoken, with pretty much everyone under the age of about 30 speaking it really well. People seemed happy and got along with their lives, however for me it felt a little like Hungary hadn’t really created much of its own persona since 1989. They were a very friendly people, however I got the impression that if Russia put a little pressure on them, they would be more than ok to move back to their version of soft communism – but conversely we did only spend 5 nights there, and it is most definitely not enough time to form a hard opinion.
Public transport in Budapest is pretty good and very reasonably priced. We picked up a 7 day unlimited pass which was essentially $25 AUD each, also the metro tends to run on a schedule rather than a timetable. This means that with the metro running every 5 mins to 10mins (depending on the time of the day and day of week), at no point in time did you need to wait more than 10 mins to get to pretty much any corner of Budapest.
There were many many sights in Budapest, and there is so much more we need to see, so it is on the list again for the future. In the meantime, here is a taster of some of the sights we did manage to check out!