The fairytale castle-like lookout terrace built to replace the medieval town walls of Buda overlooks the Pest side and the Parliament building in particular. Famous of its panoramic views and the 7, richly ornate towers symbolizing the seven Hungarian tribes who conquered the actual territories of Hungary in 896.

Named after the Fishermen of Buda, who had the task to protect this segment of the town walls in the Middle Ages, it really is one of the most beautiful highlights of any Budapest driving or walking tour.

It doesn’t belong neither to Buda nor to Pest, still, it’s one of the locals’ favorite hangout places in the heart of the city.

Named after St. Margaret, daughter of our great king Bela IV, Margaret Island is like our own Central Park, the green oasis of Budapest.

You can hire a special bike for up to 6 people or a small electric car to see the beautiful parks, botanical gardens, the small zoo or the ruins of the monastery where our princess lived and helped the poor and the sick throughout her life in the 13th century.

Don’t miss the musical fountain in the summer months, it’s such a cool experience! The islan is accessible from both the Margaret and Arpad bridges and I’d be happy to include the visit in our city tours or walking tours!

The second largest park of Budapest, the locals’ favorite, a beautiful green oasis in the middle of Pest. There are so many things to do and to see in the City Park. You can visit the 150-year-old Budapest Zoo, the City Circus, enjoy the truly relaxing warm water of Széchenyi bathhouse, admire the various architectures of Vajdahunyad Castle or simply have a picnic topped with a boat ride on the lake.

 

Although Füvészkert seems to be hard to pronounce but it’s surely woth a try, as it’s a true hidden gem in  the 8th district of Budapest. The oldest and largest botanical garden of the city is from the 1770’s and is home to more than 7.000 plant species on a 3-acre-area. The 150-year-old Chinese gingko is the oldest tree in the park. You can admire the tropical and subtropical plants in the Palm House, Amazonas water lily in the Victoria glass house and the rich collection of palms, cactuses, bromelias and orchids. It’s one of the major locations in Ferenc Molnár’s ‘Paul Street Boys’, a famous Hungarian novel.

 

 

To show how much local people love the Széchenyi baths, I can tell you that we also have a nickname for it and call it simply ‘Szecska’. It opened in 1913 and has a total of 18 indoor and outdoor swimming pools. It’s one of the most richly ornate buildings of the city with an architecture combining Neo-Renaissance and Classicist elements. One really has to see the main foyer where both the statues and mosaics are all realted to water and bathing culture.

I only recommend going to the Szecska in the summer for those who don’t mind crowds but it’s really quiet and enjoyable in the winter. I can take you to the Széchenyi if you book the Baths of Budapest  walking tour with me.

More information about prices and opening hours.

 

I’m not exactly the person who gets invited to the Presidential Palace very often but we were very lucky with my guests last weekend when the doors of the Sándor Palace were open and the public could walk around the beautifully designed interior.

Compared to the relatively simple outside the interior is surprisingly richly ornate, at times I felt like walking around the Versailles Palace. The building is from 1806 and was the residence of the country’s prime minister from 1867. That’s where Queen Elisabeth or Sisi visited the handsome count Andrássy several times after enjoying a performance at the Castle Theatre next door.

The building was restored and became the seat of the offices of the President in 2003, the actual furnitures are reproductions of the originals. The entire restoration was conducted in accordance with the original blueprints. The garden is absolutely stunning with a great view over the Pest side. There is no guarantee we can tour the interior when you book a tour in the Buda Castle district but I’ll find a way to show you something just as beautiful as the Sándor Palace.

 

We toured the Memento Park today, an amazing exhibition “in the shadow of Stalin’s boots”.

All the Communist monuments of Budapest were taken from our streets after the political changes as they reminded our people of the dictatorship, of the despotism of the Communist leaders. Instead of destroying them all – which idea was by the way supported by many of the Budapesters – some of these statues were installed in a thematical statue park in the 22nd district of Budapest. According to the conceptual designer, the “park is not about the statues or the sculptors but a critique of the ideology that used these statues as symbold of authority”.

I remember very well many os these statues standing on our streets, most of them had special nicknames and funny stories were also created about them. I’m happy to share these stories with you and tell you about the monumentality of the arts during the Communist era where the main objective was to create new idols to be adored by the proletariat. I’ll also tell you why you can see only the boots of Stalin, and I’ll introduce you to the ideology of the era which ended recently, some 28 years ago.

 

The Great Synagogue is one of the most beautiful buildings of Budapest with unique architecture. It looks like a Mosque from the outside, the interior is very similar to the interior of a Christian church, still, it’s the most important cultic and cultural center of the Budapest Jewish community. Don’t miss to visit the interior and the Jewish Museum together with the garden and the park of the Synagogue with moving Holocaust monuments. I’m happy to show you around the building and the neighborhood as part of the “Jewish Quarter Walk“.