The Danube in Eastern Europe!

Trip Start Nov 24, 2010
Trip End Jul 14, 2011

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Where I stayed
K & K Hotel

Flag of Hungary  ,
Thursday, July 7, 2011

How great to see the Graystons knocking at our door after their long flight from Vancouver! After the requisite church steeple climb up St. Stephen's Basilica we immediately headed for the first of many beers, partly due to the heat but more to visit and catch up. Kevin had said in earlier emails it was going to be hot and we thought great as we were pretty cold a couple of days in northern Slovakia. But it is really hot and we were dragging our butts after a short time as we walked around the city enjoying the Danube and many beautiful buildings including the Parliament Buildings.

Budapest is another lovely European city on the wide Danube River with Pest on one side and the castle hill on the Buda side of the river. The city was much larger and more modern than I expected but I haven't been doing my homework lately so I wasn’t as informed as I should be. Somewhat like the end of a school year when you start getting lazy.

We could certainly see the comparisons to Paris on the outside but missing the great attractions that Paris has to offer. We explored Castle Hill the first full day – Royal Palace, Matthias Church as well as the weird Buda Castle underground labyrinth. (It is weird only because of their need to add exhibitions to the large area, its latest a fictional account of prehistoric times followed by a display of old radios.) From internet: The internationally unique calcareous tufa caves of Castle Hill were created as an effect of the hot water springs almost half a million years ago. Later the small caves were connected to each other and also to the cellarage of the houses of the Castle District for economic and military purposes, and the complex thus developed into a veritable labyrinth under the Castle Hill. In the 1930s, as part of the war-time defense program, the complex of cellars was converted into a shelter large enough to accommodate as many as ten thousand people at a time. Disfigured with concrete, it served as a secret military object during the Cold War.

We wandered down historic Andrássy út boulevard to City Park, Heroes Square, and also enjoyed a tour and mini concert in the beautiful Opera House right beside our hotel. The one thing I was disappointed that we missed was the Synagogue and holocaust museum. Without thinking, we planned to go on our last day in Budapest but unfortunately it was Saturday.

Budapest is very beautiful at night with the bridge, castle, St. Vitus church, parliament buildings all lit up.
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Elda on

Have really enjoyed 'all' photos.

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