I decided that I wanted to bring in my 30s with a girl’s trip to Budapest. I don’t know what it is about the city, but it was a place that Ive always dreamed about.
The city did not disappoint. The architecture reminded me of my time in Italy. There were portions of the city which were more modern but many of the buildings we old and beautiful with statues throughout. I am a girl who loves color as well and there was beautiful street art throughout the city. I wish I would have gotten the opportunity to take photos of it all but …. IT WAS COLD.
I live in Germany, so I understand the concept of cold. I know that if you want to see something you just get out and do it regardless of the weather and we did for the most part but when you must choose between warmth and getting a picture you choose warmth.
This sadly meant I missed a lot of amazing photo opportunities. It was bone chilling cold. Even the locals said that it was the coldest they have felt in a long time.
We did not let the cold weather deter us. We stayed in a beautiful apartment located right in the heart of the city. We went through Booking.com and found Two Couples Apartment. The owner offered pickup service from the Airport, which was so convenient. The apartment was remarkable. Beautifully decorated and in a secure building. Right before we dropped off he was gracious enough to give us a short tour of the city so that we had knowledge of where things were. He also gave us some great recommendations for local dining.
We took him up on the first recommendation and had lunch at a restaurant just below the apartment called Drum Café’. He warned us that the line can get a bit crazy, so we got there a little after opening. It was a traditional Hungarian restaurant and worth every penny. We ordered the traditional Langosh dish that we heard so much about. The bread reminded me of an elephant ear that you would get at a fair, light and fluffy. Then it was topped with sour cream, bacon and cheese. We also ordered one with just onions and cheese. I am not a fan of sour cream but that one was so worth it. The balance of flavors was just right. It had me thinking of that all-day long. We also ordered a goulash, chicken risotto, and pasta dish stuffed with cheese and bacon. We each then ordered a pint of their popular flavored beers to wash it all down.
We then hit up the city. Finding the nearest Starbucks and then we stumbled upon The Doughnut Library. We of course bought more doughnuts then we could have possible eaten and headed to the apartment to warm up.
The next stop on this adventure was the infamous Central Market. If you are looking for food, souvenirs or a fight to get Langosh, this is your place!
That night we grabbed a quick bite to eat before our Ruin Bar Crawl. We stopped at Arriba Taqueria, a fast food tex-mex place. The atmosphere was cool, with art all over the walls and the food hit the stop.
Then we were off to the Ruin Bar Crawl. Let me remind you that it was cold, very very cold out so I am sure this had a great deal to do with my experience of the crawl. I mean, it was fun, but I can have fun hanging out in a field of corn. We went to 4 different Ruin Bars, each interesting and unique but the distance between then was a bit far. It also didn’t help that right by our hotel was a whole alley about two blocks long of Ruin Bars. We did not visit these bars instead we traveled throughout the city to a few others. I am sure in the other warmer months this is great but when you’re cold it just is a buzz killer. On top of that the later in the night the more you are just waiting around waiting on the rest of the group to catch up. Our last bar was my favorite though. We came in to late 90s music being blasted through the speakers and that was awesome. The music started to drift into the 2000s and not really hits and it was just a bit awkward. We ended the night at a club around 2 am. The club was pretty cool but by this point we had again, walked a long way to get there and I was losing my buzz and getting a bit sleepy. (it was my 30th remember)
The next day was a day to celebrate and tour the city.
We started with lunch at Epic Burger and Bar. They had some amazing burger options and even gluten free buns, but the buns taste like saw dust so I would skip it together. They even had some amazing lemonade that I am still thinking about.
Next, we grabbed a city tour bus and headed to Castle Hill. We took the Trolley up the hill and got some amazing views of the city. It was breathtaking up top. Then we headed into the city to do some shopping.
After a long day out, we needed to defrost and decided to order food in for the night. The list for delivery in that area is extensive and in the end, we decided on Arriba Taqueria again. They won us over but announcing that they delivered Margaritas!!! I mean come on!!!
Monday was a much-needed spa day. After hearing a few horror stories about the Szchenyi we decided to go to the Gallert Thermal Bath. It was a great decision, we got there around 9:30 in the morning and it was empty and easy for us to schedule our massages and facials. The whole place was beautiful and easy to manage. We relaxed in the indoor baths, had our massages and went outdoors to the baths. This would have to be the benefit to visiting Budapest in the winter. I do not think I would be able to tolerate the outdoor baths in the heat of the summer. After soaking we dried off in the sauna and headed over for some relaxing facials.
Upon leaving the spa we walked across the bridge to have lunch and warm up with some Goulash.
Afterwards it was time for our boat tour. Budapest is a city that you must see at night. I would recommend anyone who visits to do some form of boat tour. Ours came with our bus tour but it is so worth it to do either way. The whole city along the canal is lit up and you get a bit more of the history of the two places.
We ended our night at an American favorite of mine but not a Hungarian favorite of mine. It was just a reminder that what I love in America should stay in America. We had dinner at TGIFridays and it was my least favorite meal of the city. I must admit that we had a late lunch so that could account for the feeling but still. Mehhh. It was also our most expensive meal of the city and that did not help with my feelings toward the restaurant.
Overall the city was the perfect place to bring in my 30s. I cannot wait to visit again, this time in the summer, spring, fall anything but the winter. Thank you, Budapest, Until next time.