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My favorite travel partner in the world is my best friend and husband, Super Dave! This blog is a travel diary of both business and pleasure trips; happy reading.

Monday, July 29, 2013

Budapest Day 2

Ugh...vertigo! I awoke to a terrible case of vertigo which had started the previous evening. Dave spoke to the concierge who told us there was an apothecary (drug store to you Americans) just down the road. So after a wobbly walk to the drugstore; we began our day with an anti vert followed and a bus tour. The bus tour was a hop on and hop off style of tour. The bus left the Buda Castle District side of town and stopped at Gellert Hill. Gellert Hill offers one of the best panoramic views of Budapest and overlooks the Danube. Gellert Hill was named after Saint Gerard who was thrown to death from the hill. The are is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site as part of "the Banks of the Danube".
Water spigot at Gellert Hill
From there the tour took us to a selection of tourist focal points to include: crossing the Elizabeth Bridge into Pest, the Hungarian Parliament Building, up Andrassy Blvd. (where there is high end shopping), the Budapest Opera House, Liszt Ferenc Square, Heroes' Square, Keleti Railway Station, (where we arrived from Vienna) the New York Cafe, and finishing with the Hotel Astoria where we got off. We walked to a Tesco for water. After we stopped for Chinese food to use their bathroom and walked over to the market for souvenir shopping.

Various shots from our day tour.

The Great Market Hall or Central Market Hall is the largest and oldest indoor market in Budapest.
A variety of Lángos; a Hungarian food specialty. Basically it’s deep fried dough with a variety of toppings.
Couple in front of the János Arany statue. János Arany, was a Hungarian journalist, writer, poet, and translator
Heroes' Square is one of the world's oldest (opened in 1896) and has been declared a World Heritage Site. It was created at the end of the nineteenth century to commemorate the thousandth anniversary of the Magyar conquest of Hungary in 895.

After lunch and shopping we toured the Parliament Building. 

96 steps going up the stairs. The number 96 refers to the nation's millennium, 1896, and the conquest of the later Kingdom of Hungary in 896.
Lawmakers left their cigars in numbered slots and reclaimed them after exiting the main chamber. The longer the ash on the cigars, the more interesting one could expect the debate taking place to be, according to our guide.

That evening we had booked in advance our anniversary dinner cruise. During the cruise we got to see the backside of the Parliament building in all it's glory. It's gorgeous the stages of natural lighting that hit the building.
That's us!
Our dinner cruise vessel for the evening.

Which is your favorite?
Margit híd or Margaret Bridge connects Buda and Pest across the Danube. It is the second northernmost and second oldest public bridge in Budapest. This bridge leads up to Margaret Island, its two parts enclosing 165 degrees with each other at the embranchment towards the island. The reason for this unusual geometry is the fact the small extension to connect to Margaret Island was hastily inserted into the original design but not built until two decades later due to lack of funds.
 Tomorrow we will walk through the Jewish Quarter and explore more of Budapest on our own.

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