BUDAPEST: La Vie Bohème, Alive & Strong (Part 2)

December 22, 2014  •  7 Comments

Photos taken / written by JENNIFER MAHON  |  This post was read 1028 times

Turul Statue on the north side of Buda Castle

 

BUDAPEST...CONTINUED 

Continuation of my couple days in Budapest (part 1 here)........

TURUL STATUE
You’ll find this giant bronze eagle-like statue clutching a sword on Castle Hill, north side of the Buda Castle, next to the Hapsburgs steps (shown in the photo above). The Turul is a mythical bird and according to Hungarian mythology, the legend goes that Emese, wife of Ugyek (the descendant of Atilla), had a dream where the Turul appeared to her, impregnated her and told her that her child was going to be the father of a great nation. Hard to get a good look at the front of it because it faces away from the square, but it is pretty impressive.

VIEWS FROM CASTLE HILL 
This place - in Buda - reminded me of Prague. The castle, cobbled streets and general atmosphere is just stunning. The view is amazing - especially of the four bridges and the Parliament building across the Danube.

MATTHIAS CHURCH (Matyas Templom)
This church looks like it popped straight out of a fairy tale. I'm not usually a big fan of churches, but Matthias Church is on another level. It has recently been restored and looks fantastic, both inside and out. Cost is about 1200 HUF (about 4 EUR).

EQUESTRIAN STATUE OF KING ISTVAN (St. Stephen) 
One of the things you can see just outside Matthias Church is the equestrian statue of St. Stephen, founder of the Magyar state and the first King of Hungary (1000-1038). This bronze statue was created by Hungarian sculptor, Alojs Strobl in 1906, it’s quite impressive and adds to the artistic general view of the area.

FISHERMAN'S BASTION (Halazbastya) 
Located above the old fisherman’s village where a fish market was being regularly held beside the church in the 1830s, hence the name Fisherman’s Bastion. It’s understandably one of the most popular sights in Budapest and it offers some of the finest views of the city. It’s usually mobbed with tourists (a pick-pockets dream, so watch your stuff) but it’s totally worth the visit. Nearly all the balconies and cloisters are free of charge, the only admission fee is to one of the towers - if you wish to go higher. I didn't do this as I felt there was no need. If you wish, put your money in the turnstiles (approx. 2 EUR) and you will be able to climb the tower.

HUNGARIAN NATIONAL PARLIAMENT BUILDING (Orszaghaz) 
This building is spectacular, especially from the outside, much like most of Budapest, it is a brick built construction with a decorative façade. This has to be one of the most photogenic buildings in the whole of Budapest. Don't miss the small demonstration of sword play by the guards daily at 11:30 and 12:30.

CHAIN BRIDGE (Szechenyi Lanchid)
The most iconic image of Budapest, the Széchenyi Chain Bridge was the first permanent bridge over the Danube linking Buda to Pest and setting in motion the unification of the two cities. Admire the stunning Adam Clark Square and the tunnel passing under the castle on the Buda side of the bridge. You can’t miss the two stone lion statues guarding the bridge, then as you walk along this beautiful suspension bridge, enjoy the splendid views.

BOHEMIAN GET-TOGETHER 
I don’t know if this is a daily thing, but at the end of the bridge, by the water’s edge, there seemed to be the outdoor, very bohemian-like party going on. People sitting by the Danube, barefoot, chilling, dancing, drinking…..you name it. Looked like fun, and if time permitted, would have loved to join them!

VACI UTCA 
Probably one of the busiest streets in Pest, due to all of the souvenir shops (doll collectors will find all kinds of Hungarian dolls here), fashion stores, restaurants bars and cafes that line the street. Most of the buildings on this pedestrian street date back to the 19th century, the street stretches between Fövám ter and Vörösmarty ter, parallel to the Danube, which basically covers the distance between the Chain Bridge and Liberty Bridge. We had a quick snack in one of the cafes and enjoyed soaking in the atmosphere, which gets much livelier as you get closer to Vorosmary ter.

VOROSMARTY TÉR
Keep walking north on Vaci utca and you will come to Vörösmarty ter. Here you will find a few more stores and the famous Café Gerbeaud (The prices here were astronomical! We sat down, looked at the menu and got up and left). Dominating the square is a massive statue honoring Mihaily Vörösmarty (1800-55) erected in 1908. Vörösmarty was an author and playright and became a fervent patriot. Below him are figures from Hungarian life including students, farmers, and peasants. One of the most popular places in the downtown section of Budapest – it is a hub of activity, with luxury stores, antique shops, famous pastry shops….and at night, an outdoor food market fills the square with a few souvenir stands but mostly you’ll find amazing local food products and hot ready to eat food here.

View of the Danube and Pest from Castle Hill

View of the Danube and Pest from Castle Hill View of the Danube, the Széchenyi Chain Bridge and Pest from Castle Hill

Budapest, Castle Hill, Chain BridgeView of the Danube, the Széchenyi Chain Bridge and Pest from Castle Hill View of the Hungarian National Parliament Building (Orszaghaz) from Castle Hill 

View of the Hungarian National Parliament Building (Orszaghaz) from Castle Hill More views from Castle Hill

More views from Castle Hill Guards at on the castle grounds

Guards at on the castle grounds Exploring the Castle District

Exploring the Castle District Matthias Church (Matyas Templom)

Matthias Church (Matyas Templom) Gorgeous roof at Matthias Church (Matyas Templom)

Gorgeous roof at Matthias Church (Matyas Templom) Equestrian Statue of King Istvan (St. Stephen)

Equestrian Statue of King Istvan (St. Stephen) Parliament Building through a cafe at Fisherman's Bastion

Parliament Building through a cafe at Fisherman's Bastion Cafe at Fisherman's Bastion

Cafe at Fisherman's Bastion Fisherman's Bastion (Halaszbastya)

Fisherman's Bastion (Halaszbastya) Fisherman's Bastion (Halaszbastya)

Fisherman's Bastion (Halaszbastya) Making our way back down the hill

Making our way back down the hill BudapestBudapestBudapest Buda Castle

Buda Castle Stone lion at the entrance of the Széchenyi Chain Bridge

Stone lion at the entrance of the Széchenyi Chain Bridge Adam Clark Square and the tunnel passing under the castle

Adam Clark Square and the tunnel passing under the castle Széchenyi Chain Bridge

Széchenyi Chain Bridge Looking out over the Danube from the Széchenyi Chain Bridge

Looking out over the Danube from the Széchenyi Chain Bridge Széchenyi Chain Bridge

Széchenyi Chain Bridge Buildings of Pest

Buildings of Pest Buda Castle from the Széchenyi Chain Bridge

Buda Castle from the Széchenyi Chain Bridge Checking one of the River Cruise boats

Checking one of the River Cruise boats People chillin' by the Danube on a sunny afternoon

People chillin' by the Danube on a sunny afternoon BudapestBudapestBudapest BudapestBudapestBudapest

BudapestBudapestBudapest A restaurant on VÁCI UTCA

A restaurant on VÁCI UTCA Vörösmarty ter

Vörösmarty ter Traditional dolls for sale

Traditional dolls for sale Food vendors at Vörösmarty ter

Food vendors at Vörösmarty ter Food vendors at Vörösmarty ter Food vendors at Vörösmarty ter Desserts at Vörösmarty ter

Desserts at Vörösmarty ter BudapestBudapestBudapest


Comments

sftastings via Twitter(non-registered)
I really enjoy your site. Thank you for the inspiration.
atravellersfortune via Instagram(non-registered)
Love Budapest, enjoy yourself when you return
Christophe(non-registered)
Budapest is a beautiful city, beautiful photographs, thanks for sharing
@mamoss01 via Twitter(non-registered)
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