Central Europe: Hungary - Things to See/Do in Budapest Part 2

By Cubie - December 18, 2014

Since we have done the Buda side, here's some on Pest side or rather, the balance of it.

1. Chain Bridge (Széchenyi Chain Bridge)
This iconic bridge connects Buda and Pest, and in my humble opinion the most beautiful and mesmerizing bridge in all the ones I saw in Central Europe. It is guarded by lions which symbolises power.

2. Hungarian Parliament Building (Országház)
I wish I could say I have also visited the interior of this magnificent building but the English tour was sold out and my knowledge of the rest of language on offer was nil. We followed the walking trail in Rick Steve's Eastern Europe book but have missed out the entrance to the Hungarian Parliament.

Also in the complex are some monuments, including one on Lajos Kossuth, who led the 1848 Revolution against the Habsburgs.

Mr Kossuth looking down at me....

3. Holocaust Monument
Along the Pest riverbank to the left, from afar you would be able to see several dots lining the embankment. It is unlikely that one would miss it because likely there would be people taking shots of it. This monument consisted of 50 pairs of bronze shoes, commemorating the Jews who where killed when the Nazis' puppet government, the Arrow Cross came to power in Hungary in 1944. This was were some of the Jews were shot and their bodies were let to fall into the Danube.

4. Liberty Square (Szabadság tér)
This obelisk is a Soviet War memorial is to commemorate "Liberation Day". By this time, I was getting quite sick but it was a Sunday and it was rather difficult to find a pharmacy that was opened.

5. St. Istvan's Basillica (Szent Istvan Bazilika)
Entrance is free but one is expected to give a 'donation'. The church's main claim is the "holy right hand" of St. Istvan. Here's a link to the story, but I've also included a photo of the explanation taken from the church. This 1,000 year old right hand was kept inside a jeweled box in the chapel. This jeweled box is usually dark, so you can't see the hand. If you pop in a 200 HUF, it will be lighted up for two minutes. If you sit around long enough, you would probably be lucky to catch it in light. ;)

Ego Sum Via Veritas Et Vita

6. German Occupation Memorial
We stumbled upon this memorial, it is built in memory of victims during the German occupation. At this memorial, there's a fountain that respond to motion.

7. Hungarian State Opera House (Magyar Állami Operaház)
The hostel we stayed in was at the other end of this Andrassy Ut, we walked passed this opera house on the way back to Oktogon to have a rest. More so for me who is shivering despite layered myself in a down feather jacket as well as wind breaker.

This opera house dates from 1890s, not long after Budapest had become co-capital of the Habsburg Empire.

7. Central Market Hall (Nagy Vasarcsarnok)
I love this place, full of food goodness - from goose liver, Tokaji Aszu wine, smiley face pickled peppers, cakes, alcohol, and not forgetting paprika ;)
One can also find souvenirs in the form of magnets, t-shirts, matryoshka dolls (nesting dolls), embroidered tablecloths. We had our lunch here too - nothing like having a goulash in a market hall :D

The Langos stand here was said to be one of the best, we were not that hungry at that time, so we tried langos at another store, at the recommendation of a friendly staff from the hostel.

8. Szechenyi thermal bath
Of the few famous thermal bath, our pick was this Szechenyi bath. We took the full day bath ticket with locker usage. Ticket with cabin is more expensive because there is much more privacy. Please be warned that there is no changing room in Szechenyi bath. Even bathrooms for shower are doorless. :|
I was quite shock because I didn't expect that. Oh and please bring your own towel, toiletries and slippers. We bought our tickets at the hostel and they have provided us with towel to bring there.

This place is huge. It took me awhile to find K after she went inside to try the pools before me. No photos as we were not comfortable to leave our cameras lying around. I didn't ditch her, but was being polite as some sleazy (according to K) French vet was talking to me at that time. It was obvious he was just trying to find a quick date for the night as his friend ditched him.

Side note: If you are interested in the ending of the story, no - I didn't meet the French man that day.

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  1. Curious ... what does Langos taste like? We never tried it.

    1. Have you eaten the chinese donut before? (link: http://www.recipies.50webs.com/Ham%20Chin%20Peng.htm)
      The base is fairly similar to that.

  2. Nope I've never tried the type of Chinese donuts in the link. Looks somewhat denser than regular Youtiao?

    1. Yup, it is a deep fried dough but denser than Youtiao, taste wise has some similarity though.