Okay John, personal experience. The only time we have done the entire Bend is with a private guide and a car. Even with all that efficiency it's a full, full, full day. In my opinion too full to really appreciate. We have gone back on several occasions and done the first city, Szentendre. Szentendre has a great barouque central district full of very pleasant shops and hand crafts. It's just a pretty town and you can easily spend half a day there. Take the M2 Metro line to Batthyány tér metro stop in Buda. You just crossed under the Danube River so you are deep, deep, deep; so the first step is the steep, steep, steep escalator up. At the top is a ticket window. I've bought metro tickets there but I can remember if that is the same window I bought the HEV (commuter train) tickets. Pretty sure yes. If not just keep your eyes open as you follow the HEV signs to the commuter train rails (and there are ticket machines if you want to try and navigate them). Also, if you have a Travel Card make sure you show it as part of the HEV ride is covered by the Card. The train leaves about every 20 to 30 minutes so what time you arrive really doesn't matter much. Once on the commuter train it's about a 30 minute trip to Szentendre. From the train station in Szentendre walk north and take every right until you reach Fo ter. Returning to Budapest before October and after March is really, really great. Right outside of Fo ter on the Danube there is a River Taxi that will take you back to Budapest in about 50 minutes. Entering Budapest by the water is pretty special. The boat leaves Szentendre at 5 pm http://www.mahartpassnave.hu/. A ticket is 2,000 forint (less than $10) This is an excellent half day trip. Leave after lunch and be back by 6pm.