My husband and I are making our second trip to Budapest, but the first in winter weather. We will have just been on Danube River cruise. Lodging is reserved in the Broadway Quarter. Think, we have sights and eating establishments handled (due to previous trip, RS' book and posts on this forum), but wonder if we need to address the weather other than expecting it to be cold. Also, we are considering a trip outside of the city and found information about Etyek, but have not read anything in RS' book or posts on this forum. Has anyone been there? We find it more appealing than say Eger since it is a short trip (about 40 min). We would prefer to spend more time in an area than getting there. Wine tasting is our goal. Thank you for any suggestions.
I have never been to Etyek but I do know of a number of guides that run wine tours to the village. I might really enjoy that in good weather but it seems a lot less appealing to me in November.
We will be there in December and we have a little side trip scheduled to Sopron. The Christmas markets in most of Hungary open between the 15th of November and the end of the month so we are making a day trip to do some shopping (about 3 hours each way on the train). Much closer and really fascinating if you haven’t seen it is Gyor and the Archabbey at Pannonhalma, which incidentally includes a winery with an opportunity to sample their wares. http://bences.hu/lang/en/ its great year round and if you can hit a concert or a mass even better. It’s a day trip or an overnight trip with a stay in a 18th century monastery converted to a hotel in the baroque center of Gyor. I really enjoy Gyor as well.
The only place I hear “Broadway” quoted is in tourist propaganda, but if you have a place on Nagymező utca very near Andrassy ut then you did pretty well. Better south of Andrassy than north of Andrassy ut.
However, since you have mentioned “Broadway”, then know that for me at least it is the theater and concerts that really makes Budapest shine in the winter. I could be happy sleeping till noon and then eating and going to shows ………….. then clubs, until the wee hours of the night each and every day.
The Hungarian State Opera
The Budapest Operett Theather
The Palace of Art
The Liszt Academy
But you have to purchase the tickets as soon as possible. This isn’t just about the music or the show. Its about being in a theater surrounded by Hungarians celebrating a special night out in a way very traditional and familiar to Hungarians. If you splurge (maybe $50) and get a nice box seat at the Opera you get into the wonderful balcony bar at intermission. At the Operett for a smaller investment in a box seat you get invited into the parlor at intermission where you share a table with the adjacent box and get to discuss you journey with some very confused Hungarians. “You like Hungary?” “Why?”
I've read many of your posts about Budapest so I thank you for your insight. I should have mentioned in my original post that visiting the wineries and wine tasting is the goal of our day trip. We live in southern California and well, it's what we do! I'll research your suggestions especially the Christmas markets, as that would be wonderful.
Feel comfortable with our hotel choice as we stayed in the K+K chain in Vienna and it is listed in the RS book. That's actually where we picked up the term Broadway Quarter. Fortunately, we have never been disappointed with his recommendations.
Should we expect crowds in November? Our last visit to Budapest, a few years ago, was in April. I don't remember making reservations anywhere including the opera. Is the Operett open in November? Haven't been successful at finding performances.
I meant to mention that I have found your day by day itineraries helpful. They allow us to have a focus and if we veer off the beaten track, we know how to get back. Almost like bread crumbs!
Another familiar voice on this forum! Vac is a town that kept appearing in the previous forums that I read so definitely will investigate. Like your thought about the weather. As a teacher, I could only travel in the summer with lots of other tourists. This is going to be a new adventure - rain or shine. Thanks for your input.
Before ruling Etyek off our list, I would love to hear from someone who has been there. I do see there are tours that we can take, but we like to explore on our own. Don't care for the on the bus-off-the bus tours. Coming off the river cruise, we probably will have had enough of that. Anyone???????
@Kermans; I think the vineyards would be great trip……..just not in November for my taste. I want see the actual vineyards (as opposed to snow). Remember that Budapest can be quite cold.
The K&K is stretching reality a bit with the “Broadway” term; even while next door to the Opera it is on the fringes of where the theaters are located. Now that I have bashed the K&K I will add that I think it’s very much among the best places to stay for location, quality and bang for your buck. I’ve stayed there a number of times and it’s generally first on my list unless someone wants some sort of unique experience as the place is a little sterile. But we do like the neighborhood well enough to have purchased our vacation residence very nearby. I think you chose wisely. Feel free to write if you would like some information on the immediate neighborhood.
Vac is certainly among the easiest locations to reach and @worldinbetween tells me its great even in the winter. Someday we will make it there.
Budapest is so open and spread out it is never really crowded.
The Operett will have performances in November they just haven’t put the schedule up yet. The cheap seats are generally available to either the Opera or the Operett, but the good seats go very quickly. The Opera we are going to in December has about 200 of its 1200 seats still available and 95% of those are in the upper balcony.
@worlinbetween. Looks like we will be in Sopron maybe on the 27th of December.