Hiking near the village of Shipska, Albania.
Where are Kevin and Ruth now? Korca, Albania.

Where are Kevin and Ruth going next? Pogradec, Albania on May 12th!

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Exploring Budapest

Budapest is a fairly large city, in fact the seventh largest in Europe with a population of 1.7 million people. The city is separated by the Danube River which runs from North to South through the city. On the west side of the river is the area known as Buda, and on the east side of the river is the area known as Pest.

The divided cities of Buda and Pest were brought together as one in the year 1873, and the combined cities of Budapest were established as the capital city of Hungary.

The city of Budapest.

First thing on the agenda yesterday was the delicious full breakfast that is included with our room at the Casati Budapest Hotel

Breakfast at the hotel. Might not need any lunch!

On a full stomach, we walked the 2 kms or so over to the Great Market Hall. We love visiting the markets of the world, and the Great Market Hall of Budapest is a good one. Unfortunately, on this particular day we weren't hungry enough to try and eat anything. Oh wait, yes we did...we saw one fruit stand that had these huge ripe looking peaches and we bought two of them. Meant to get a picture, but they looked perfect. Now, sometimes with fruit you never know how good it's going to be until you sink your teeth into it. Well these two peaches were perfect. Sweet, and dripping with juice! They were 114 forints ($0.49) each.

The Great Market Hall.

Lots of people exploring the market.

Spices and peppers anyone?

Lots of people buying deli meats and cheeses.

Many different types of sausage for sale!

The Great Market Hall is located very close to the Danube River. The Danube is a busy river with a lot of sightseeing boats and river cruise boats. We stood and watched the boats for a while and then we crossed over the bridge and headed for a viewpoint. To get to a viewpoint usually means an uphill hike, and it was a warm muggy day. But, we wanted a view of the city, so up we went!

Cruise boats on the Danube River. We are headed for that monument on the hill near the upper left.

We walked across the Liberty Bridge. 

The Liberty Bridge was built between 1894 and 1896 but it was partially destroyed during WW II (as were all Budapest bridges!) and then rebuilt right after the war, and then had a complete reconstruction between 2007-2009.

"Love Locks" on the Liberty Bridge.

This "love locks" thing is fairly recent. Apparently couples attached padlocks to the bridge to symbolize their ever lasting love for one another. Learn something new every day!

Looking back on the Pest side of the river.

Starting to get a nice view. Too bad it was a bit of a hazy day.

Beautiful view from the top!

But there were a lot of other tourists around enjoying the same view! You can actually drive up here, and the tour buses come up as well. It was pretty busy.

The Liberty Statue at the top.

We walked down the other side of the hill and headed back to the hotel. We figured that would be enough for the day and would head back out in the evening when it was a little cooler.

One of the many cruise boats on the Danube. We stood on the bridge and watched this one docking.

We headed back on the very touristy Vaci Street. Interesting, but don't get sucked into buying anything!

We've seen several of these wells already in Budapest. The water runs constantly. Not sure if it's city water or well water, but it's good for drinking. We've noticed that not many people buy bottled water in the places we've been in Europe. The tap water is fine to drink and the bottled water craze that we've seen in the U.S. and Canada hasn't taken off quite as much here.

We went back to the hotel and rested for the balance of the day. But we went out again at night, so we'll post those pics later on today. Stay tuned, because Budapest at night is absolutely beautiful!


  1. Interesting looking cruise boats on the river. Sounds like you had a great day.

  2. Your post sure gives us the feel of being there - I'm not a city person but enjoyed the day with you - so interesting to read and see how other people live around the world!

    1. We are not real city people either but some cities need to be explored and this is definitely one of them. There is a lot of history here.

  3. Just a little FYI.......Buda is on the West side of the Danube with Pest on the East. :)

    1. Thanks Lyn...correction noted! I knew that, but just got them mixed up!

  4. I never knew about the Buda and Pest. Looks like an interesting city, love the market!

    1. We love the markets too. This one reminded me a bit of the one in Leeds, England in the City Market building there.

  5. Enjoying your travels in Europe. I was born in Germany and when I was little we visited my grandparents several times. My grandmother would never drink tap water. I don't remember why. I didn't know about the Buda and Pest think, very interesting!

    1. Maybe back then the tap water wasn't good back then. My Dad had mentioned to me that he drinks very little water period, so maybe it is a generation thing. I don't think as many people drank water back then like we do now.

  6. It's been so fun following you to different countries. It's great you're able to travel like you do. Thanks for blogging so we can go with you.

  7. What a neat looking building for the market. But a whole lot of people around.

    1. Yes, it is pretty busy with tourists but it does seem to be fairly spread out so it isn't totally congested.

  8. Those long cruise boats must take some interesting time moving around. Wonder if they have bow thrusters to ease in docking?

    1. Funny you should say this, yesterday we were watching one maneuver into a spot while another one was vacating it's spot. Yes, they do have bow thrusters as the one moving out looked like it was moving sideways and then the other one backed into the spot almost like parallel parking. Glad I didn't have to do it!

  9. Do they make 'love locks' for bank accounts?


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