ABOUT THE CITY

Perhaps one of the world’s most beautiful cities, Budapest enjoys not only a spectacularly advantageous natural location, but also an atmosphere combining the exotic with the sophisticated and the cosmopolitan with the uniquely Hungarian.

Budapest will surprise you at every corner. This is due to the fact that this city of 1.7 million people stands for a lot more than purely being the capital of Hungary. It is a grand icon of the past and a modern metropolis, a treasure-trove filled with over 2000-years of history mixed with an array of cultures and riveting events.

The city is divided into two parts by the River Danube, one is the hilly Buda, the other is the more flat Pest side. Most of the 5-star hotels, the business centre, and cultural life is concentrated on the Pest side, whilst Buda is mostly a residential area.

Budapest has a long list of World Heritage Sites including the banks of the Danube, the Buda Castle Quarter, Andrássy Avenue, Heroes’ Square and the Millennium Underground Railway, the second oldest in the world. Other highlights include a total of 80 geothermal springs, the world’s largest thermal water cave system, second largest synagogue, and third largest Parliament building. The SzĂ©chenyi Chain Bridge built in 1848 is declared as one of the world’s most amazing bridges. The city attracts about 2.3 million tourists a year. It is well known across Europe for its Sziget (Island) Festival, held every August. You can also find one of Europe’s best Christmas Markets at Vörösmarty Square.

ABOUT THE COUNTRY

This small country is one of the oldest European countries, situated in the middle of the continent in Central Europe.
Hungarians speak a language, and form a culture unlike any other in the region: this distinctiveness has been both a source of pride and an obstacle for more than 1100 years.

This is the country:

  • which boasts of one of the world’s most beautiful cities: Budapest, the “Pearl of the Danube”
  • where-2000 year old Roman ruins and 400-year old Turkish monuments can be found side by side
  • where Central Europe’s largest fresh water lake – Balaton – is located, providing natural paradise for its visitors
  • where hundreds of therapeutic mineral springs gush up from the depths

And there is something else that keeps bringing visitors back to us – the legendary Hungarian hospitality.

CURRENCY

Hungarian Forint – HUF

Coins: 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 200 Forints

Banknotes: 500, 1 000, 2 000, 5 000, 10 000, 20 000 Forints

There is no obligatory daily minimum amount of conversion. When changing money, remember that most shops accept credit cards and some of them even Euros. Money can be exchanged in exchange offices and banks, local ATMs give out HUF. Banks and travel agencies offer the best rates.

The exchange offices are generally open 09:00-21:00 h

All major credit cards are accepted in Hungary, some smaller shops might only accept cash though.

FAMOUS ATTRACTIONS

Which was designed and built in the Gothic Revival style, is one of the largest buildings in Hungary, and is home to hundreds of parliamentary offices. Although the impressive building looks fantastic from every angle, to see the whole building in its full glory, it is worth viewing it from the other side of the Danube.

One of the grandest spas in the city is the Gellert Bath and Spa centre, which includes an open-air pool (which turns into a wave pool), an effervescent swimming pool, a Finnish sauna, and a range of other saunas and plunge pools. The complex was originally built between 1912 and 1918 in an Art Nouveau style. The whole spa was extensively renovated in 2008 to bring the baths back to their former glory.

It marks the end of Andrássy Avenue is home to an iconic monument which features depictions of the Seven Chieftains of the Magyars, who are believed to have led the Hungarian people from central Asia to the Carpathian basin. A top the central pillar is the Archangel Gabriel, who is holding the Hungarian crown. At either side of the central column are two matching colonnades, which depict a variety of other historical Hungarian figures. The impressive buildings at either side of the square are art galleries.

It is a 2.5km long island which sits in the middle of the Danube, which is covered in parkland and recreational facilities. One of the most famous features of the island is the “music fountain”, from which water regularly “dances” in time to classical music. Other notable features on the island include medieval ruins and small aviary which primarily caters for injured water birds and wildfowl.

This stretch of the Danube walkway goes from the Elizabeth Bridge to the Chain Bridge, and is perfect for those who want a short, but interesting walk. Promenading along the Danube is a great way to see many of the most famous sights in the capital.