Friday, April 3, 2009

Budapest, Hungary

Last weekend we took advantage of some cheap airline tickets from Swiss Air and booked a whirlwind 48 hour trip to Budapest. It's been on our list of places to go and we got it crossed off! Budapest is divided into two different sections. On the west of the Danube river is the old town called "Buda" and on the east is "Pest". We got a great deal (again) on Priceline and stayed at the Hilton WestEnd of 70 dollars a night for this 5 star hotel. It was quite the deal! It was connected to this huge modern shopping mall which made things like a supermarket and a pharmacy very convenient.



When in Hungary it is not hard to joke about being "hungry" all the time. I am sure you can think of all the silly jokes that come along with a country named after a human condition. "Are you hungry?" "Yes, I'm hungry in Hungary." And.... so on. 



One downer of the trip is that I was pretty sick. Rob had gotten a cold earlier in the week before we left, and I caught it the day before we left. Unfortunately it peaked for me while we were there and we had to take our weekend easy. We didn't do as much as we wanted too but we got to see what we wanted.  The only thing we missed was the Opera on Saturday night. I bought the tickets online a few weeks ahead of time for 2000 forants ($9) but felt too sick to go. 



We did enjoy the Szechenyi baths. It is the largest bath complex in Budapest with both indoor and outdoor options. We had NO idea what we were doing and it took us awhile to get tickets and get into our bathing suits. There was this huge list of items that could be purchased and we had no idea exactly what they all were. The one cashier lady who spoke a little bit of English just kept repeating a price of an entrance fee for two people. So, we went for it, and paid it not knowing what we were getting. We got this plastic cards and headed toward the entrance. We tried to watch other people enter and see what was going on and what we were supposed to do. But watching others provided zero more insight then we already had. I handed my plastic card over and went thru the turnstile. They ended up stopping and rejected Rob! Now we were stuck on two different sides! Him in the entrance, and me being passed by old European men in speedos in what seemed like a large locker room.  The turnstile lady enlightened us, we needed to go buy a "cabin" for two people to change in and there currently wasn't any available.  Rob went to go buy one and we both waited for a cabin to become available. We rented some "towels" (they were kinda like large bed sheets) and got led to our cabin to change into our bathing suits.  After leaving the large locker room we walked into the indoor area of the baths were there were several types of pools.  We proceeded thru several rooms and headed to the outdoor saunas and pool. There must have been 50 people in the large (i mean large) sauna and we joined in. It was really relaxing. We tried out several pool including one that had jets that made everyone go in a circle around the pool. It was actually a lot of fun to be swifted around without much effort!



Overall, it was very relaxing weekend. Thanks to Rob's Grandma and Pop! This is how we spent half our Christmas money and the other half we reinvested into Kiva.org. We are up to 86 loans now!

At a Soviet Union era restaurant called "Marquis de Salade" eating Azerbaijan food . . .


In front of Parliment this Hungarian flag with a hole it. The location where the hole is where the soviets put their mark. It flies as a reminder of that time in their history


Parliment (with a bunch of scaffold) from the Buda side. 


Parliment up close. 


On the chain bridge


View of "Pest" from "Buda"


Szechenyi Baths entrance. I didn't get many pictures of the rest of the baths - since I didn't want to bring my camera into the pool areas. 


At Grand Central Market at the end of Vaci Utca


Street Grate


What is this? It's a christmas market! Well.... not really. It's the Spring Festival market complete with hungarian dancers and lots of meat cooking. I would love to eat here, but there never is anything for Rob. 

2 comments:

Amanda April 3, 2009 at 2:11 AM  

That Hungary Pest looks cool! Haha, I couldn't resist! Thanks for the detailed info. on the baths. I'd like to make a trip there one of these days. I hope Isaiah wants to come to!

About This Blog

Tina & Rob have relocated their lives to Geneva, Switzerland. This blog is a story of their adventure during the year and all the details inbetween.

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