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A Return to the Continent--part 2, Budapest for the 6th time

I booked this trip in late December when I saw that the hotel I like, the Medosz on Jokai ter just off Andrassy ut, had the panoramic terrace room available...done! I arrived around 3 pm on Tuesday 5/2 and honestly, when I saw the Danube from the plane I almost cried, I had missed going there something fierce...and this visit was everything I needed it to be. I pondered day trips to other towns, even to Vienna and Bratislava, and decided to let Budapest tell me what I needed to do--and that was stay put and just wander happily to all the places I love. No new ground was covered this time, and that was perfectly perfect for me.

Taxi was 11,040 HUF on arrival, 10,740 HUF at departure. I brought 150,000 HUF in cash as I planned to go to the Ecseri flea market--came home with about 12,000 HUF.

I researched and the lady in the BKK booth at the airport confirmed the 15 day transit pass was my best option at 6600 HUF. I made great use of it, and this trip I used their app and made better use of tram 4 which stopped near my hotel. It took me to see my storks on Margit sziget 4 times, to the stop for the HEV 5 and then to Boraros ter for the bus to Ecseri.

Margit sziget was serene on a Wednesday morning, 3 pairs of storks sitting on 14 eggs total and I never did see them hatch. From there I went to Castle Hill, also very peaceful. Lots of construction going on. Ate a fabulous burger at Jamie Oliver's.

Thursday I spent time in the Varosliget, the moats and ponds are drained at present but nice to walk the paths. I loved the Neprajzi museum when it was in the wonderfully atmospheric building across from Parliament, so visited their new building; while it's architecturally intriguing, there's either an incredible waste of space inside or they are not done filling it up. Still, I enjoyed the displays, especially the ceramics. Dinner that night was my second visit to Belvarosi Lugacs--never enough toltott kaposzta for me!

Friday was Szentendre day--tram 4 to Margit hid Budai station, purchased additional fare and off I went. Wandered a couple of hours and had lunch at Gorog Kancso--excellent Greek food overlooking the Danube.

At last it was Saturday and time for Ecseri piac! My most favorite place to visit, and it's as ramshackle and crazy as ever. I love to poke through the stalls and little shops, and I did find 4 delightful pieces of 1930s Hungarian pottery, 2 from people I had bought from previously. How they make money there is a mystery to me! Sat down for a bit to watch the Coronation on my phone. After that I dropped things at the hotel and made a final visit to the storks. Epic packing then commenced--I had Hungarian candy, a lot of paprika, 12 bottles of palinka and 20 lbs of pottery to deal with--and I did, it all made it home safely. I even snuck 2 Pick salamis in my carryon from the Duty Free at the airport. My carryon weighed at least 30 lbs and my checked hardside luggage was 35 lbs at the airport. My flight departed at 6:30 am on Sunday, so I had City Taxi pick me up at 4 am, perfect timing to allow for breakfast. I called them myself as the hotel had a high surcharge on it.

As for packing:
2 pairs Hudson jeans, black and dark blue
Black/white Ecco Street 720 sneakers, super comfy!! New favorites.
Black Fluevog Collette ankle boots
4 pairs each socks and undies, nightly sink washing
Nightie and light slippers
A light jacket I never wore
2 each short sleeve and sleeveless tops, 3 3/4 sleeved
I used a new 24" hardside 4 spinner CalPak suitcase and I really like it, carryon was a Rick Steves shoulder tote

I am hoping I can continue the annual trips to Budapest next year as it's really come to be a city I can just spend time in without a hectic agenda and I love that about it, though I do have a list of towns I want to visit for day trips, possibly a return to Tata, the town my Hungarian grandmother came from.

Posted by
884 posts

While in Szentendre, did you visit the open air museum (Skanzen)?

Posted by
18477 posts

Christa, so you understand what happened to me? When you get ready to move to the dark side, you let me know and I will help you find a home.

Tata is worth the trip. Even if just for the day. The lake, the "castle".

The open air museum is "nice" I finally went a few years ago for some Saint holiday that had something to do with geese. Enjoyed it because of the festival.

Posted by
2616 posts

Blue439–I did visit the Skanzen museum in 2019 and it was quite interesting, very spread out so be prepared to walk a lot, and it gave a solid feeling of village life in centuries past. The bus from Szentendre takes maybe 25 minutes and there’s a stop near the entrance.

Posted by
2616 posts

James—the closer I get to retirement the more appealing a place in Budapest seems!

Posted by
755 posts

I enjoyed reading both your trip reports, christa. Thanks for posting your packing list, too...very impressive! I'd love to go back to Budapest again and just soak it all up.

Posted by
4278 posts

Sounds like a wonderful week! I am adding the Neprajzi to my list instead of just walking past the outside. I will be back in October, but I keep hoping to make myself leave the city…..

Posted by
18477 posts

Christa, surprisingly affordable. I think it's TexasTravelMommy's 3rd or 4th visit. Go in together with her. I bet the car you drive costs more.

Posted by
7958 posts

Thanks for your trip report.
I am curious which airport you flew from and did you feel jet lag. I just flew from LAX to Vienna via Frankfurt a few days ago.

Posted by
2616 posts

I fly out of San Francisco, and maybe felt a little tired my first day in Rome but fine after that, and then coming home—arrived at 1 pm—I stayed up til 9, work the next day and it took me all week to get my sleep pattern straightened out.

Posted by
2445 posts

Thanks for sharing. I've made of that hotel - looks nice.

Posted by
2616 posts

Roubrat--The hotel lobby is right out of the cold war era, but the rooms are very nice, and quiet, good housekeeping, and a great varied breakfast spread is included. Depending on the type of room you choose they are quite spacious. Imagine my delight when I opened the door to my enormous room and it had new carpet as when I had stayed in it in 2018 it was a disturbingly bright shade of green. Ice cream shop on the corner, one block to M1 Oktagon or over to Terez korut for the trams 4 & 6 and several restaurants, OTP bank kitty corner at the Oktagon. During the 4 years I was away they made a lovely park in the ter in front of the building, much nicer than it was before.