Sliced in two by Europe’s second longest river, Budapest is home to an impressive collection of UNESCO World Heritage Sites, museums and art galleries. Watch the world go by from historic cafes, the former hangouts of artists, poets and philosophers, and explore unique boutiques and design stores. After a scenic riverside bike ride, enjoy a muscle-soothing soak in one of the city’s famous thermal baths. Or dig deeper, to discover a network of stalactite-covered caves.
Things to do
Visiting the palace, parliament and churches should be top of any list of things to do in Budapest. By boat or bike, make sure you explore the lush banks of the mighty Danube. We’ve picked out our top recommendations for your Budapest bucket list, to help you plan your trip.
Great for exploring
If you love to explore then Budapest is the perfect city for you. Hire a bike and cycle along the river between the best of the sights, or take a walking tour of the iconic Castle Hill. This is where you’ll find the Royal Palace with its wonderful museum, gallery and library, and some excellent opportunities for getting great pictures. Walk over the famous Chain Bridge to Széchenyi Square on the Pest side, stopping to take in the view back to Castle Hill.
Just as impressive as the Royal Palace is the Hungarian Parliament Building, which is the largest building in the country and the tallest in Budapest. Go on a tour and wander through the grand interior, before heading to Heroes’ Square or St. Stephen’s Basilica. If your legs start to feel a bit weary from all the sightseeing then head to one of Budapest’s thermal baths for a spot of relaxation, or sit back and enjoy a dinner cruise down the river as the evening draws in.
Make sure you also try a traditional goulash while you’re in Budapest, and see what’s cooking at the city’s street stalls. You should also go for a few drinks at one of the many ruin bars, which are a great feature of Budapest life. Cheap, cheerful and quirky, you can have a great night out to round off a day full of interesting sights.