Our Alaskan Summer Vacation

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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.

Sunday, July 28, 2013


Budapest yokes together two formerly separate cities: Buda and Pest, on opposite sides of the Danube. Buda, on the West side of the river is hilly and semi-suburban, and has winding, narrow streets wending their way up into the hills. It is greener, more residential, and far harder to navigate by public transportation.  Because there are hills everywhere, and they are steep, and because the city is very old, most streets are really unable to support modern automobiles.  There’s a lot of greenery and trees, and, because the side streets are bad, people don’t easily hop into their cars to go shopping.  [Oddly, people complain constantly about the traffic in Pest, but no one seems to complain about the streets in Buda.] Pest is the urban center of the city, on the east side of the river. 

We arrived via train from Vienna at Noon to the Budapest-Keleti Railway Terminal. Immediately off the train we were greeted by a very good English speaking cab driver who insisted he help us and took our bags and transported us to the hotel. He was Hungarian but named Julio Igelesias.  He has been a driver for 35 years, no accidents and travels to Spain yearly and spoke Spanish with Dave. He was pretty aggressive and grabbed our bags and walked off to his car. We later found out from our concierge that he overcharged us; basically doubled the fare so I guess we contributed to his next trip to Spain. #LessonLearned
Inside the beautiful rail station in Budapest
Our room wasn't ready yet for us to check in so once again we waited in the Lounge and visited with our concierge who gave us many fine ideas for touring, shopping and eating.

After we arrived to our room and settled in we decided to walk the area in which we were and down a few blocks to the castle area. 
The streets are narrow and unstable with all the cobblestone
Buda Castle

Being a Sunday it was very quiet and not many tourists at all. We saw the changing of the guard at the Presidential offices, walked along the castle area (now museums) and walked back. 
Changing of the guard
 Our hotel is literally next door to St. Mattias Church which as you can see is having renovation work done on it.
Again another evening dinner in the hotel lounge and called it a night.
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