Budapest, situated on the Danube River, is one of Europe’s greatest cities with about two million people. This magnificent capital has to be ranked as one of the best holiday and weekend breaks destinations in the Europe.
The majestic Danube River divides the capital into two distinct halves, Buda & Pest, which until 1873 were two independent cities.
Buda, which is largely hilly, is full of old cobbled streets and an interesting mix of neo-classical and medieval buildings. Whereas Pest is mostly flat and is home to wide business boulevards, Art Deco styles and the famous Roman Baths. Whichever side of the city you find yourself in, you will not be far from one of Budapest’s many museums, galleries, palaces or other historical buildings. Budapest is a treasure trove filled with more than, 2,000 years of history. Its multi-layered history, artistic heritage and living folklore, presents endless opportunities to Budapest city break adventurers.
There are nine bridges in Budapest. These are the North Railway Bridge, Árpád Bridge (this is the longest one, almost a mile long), Margit Bridge, Chain Bridge, Elizabeth (Erzsébet) Bridge, Liberty (Szabadság) Bridge, PetĹ‘fi Bridge, Lágymányosi Bridge and the South Railway Bridge.
Without a doubt, Budapest has to be one of the most dynamic and beautiful capitals of Europe, that has grown into a modern metropolis without losing its hometown charm or forgetting its illustrious past. Whatever you are looking for during your holiday in Hungary, be it art, culture, nature, or a lively nightlife, the chances are you will find it in Budapest.
Of the capital cities of the world Budapest is the richest in thermal springs, and therefore the bath culture has been thriving since the Roman times (who left the territory of today's Hungary half a millenium before the Hungarians arrived from the Ural mountains). The Turks, while occupying Hungary for over a century and a half, have built thermal bath-houses, some of which are still in use (such as the Rudas Bath).
Budapest provides maximum relaxation with its parks, esplanades, the promenade on the Danube Embankment - and it offers maximum refreshment with its medicinal baths - including Europe's oldest indoor thermal-water swimming-pool, its lidos and sporting facilities. Budapest is a venue of World Cup competitions, European and world championships, and at the Hungaroring, near Budapest, the Hungarian Grand Prix Formula One race is held. In Budapest, you have the opportunity for horseback riding and, in winter, for skiing. You can angle and practise karate, play tennis and bowling. Time is something that is always in short supply. But, as testified by international analyses, prices in Budapest, as against other large cities, are very reasonable indeed.
As a sign of maximum recognition of all this, UNESCO has added the Danube panorama, with the Castle of Buda, to the World Cultural Heritage List.
It is a meeting point of North and South, East and West. The intercrossing cultures are blended into a unique synthesis, while remaining characteristically Hungarian. You may acquire maximum firsthand experience of this every March, at the Budapest Spring Festival where in 100 venues, there are 1000 events to be seen and heard, from concert to traditional fairs, from exhibitions to mime shows, from computer competitions to folkdancing parties.
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