Two amazing cities in one.
The famed Danube River flows seamlessly through Hungary’s capital, which claims a rich and varied history dating back almost 2,000 years. The city got its name as late as 1873, when three separate entities– Pest, Buda, and Obuda (“Old Buda") – merged. Pest is the commercial center of the city and flatter than its hilly counterpart across the river, Buda. There are shops and restaurants offering international and traditional Hungarian fare (think paprika-infused chicken and beef and succulent strudel for dessert) and many historic sites. Stroll down scenic Andrassy Avenue and visit the Hungarian State Opera House, a veritable jewel-box built in the neo-Renaissance and Baroque styles. Budapest is also known for its famous restorative thermal baths, havens for Hungarians and tourists alike. The very affordable Szechenyi Bath is located in the attractive City Park. Buda, on the other side of the Danube River, offers a breathtaking view of the stately Hungarian Parliament, built in the Gothic Revival style. Go there especially at night, when the city is glittering in the background.