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WHY TO VISIT HUNGARY?

Budapest, one of the most beautiful towns in the World

Budapest, capital of Hungary

Why to visit Budapest? Simply just because the capital of Hungary - "Paris of the East", "The Queen of the Danube" or "The Perle of the Danube", as called it the great travellers of the past centuries - is without doubt one of the most beautiful capitals of the World: thanks to its picturesque geographic situation on the two banks of the Danube, the capital can be an ideal place for unforgettable travels.

The unique charm of the town deserved the protection of UNESCO: in 1987, in Paris, the Committee of World Heritage Sights has admitted on its protection list the Buda Castle Quarter and the Panorama of the banks of the Danube.  Later, in 2002, the Committee held its meeting in Budapest, and continued to increase the light of the Hungarian capital adding 2 more world heritage sights on the list: Andrássy avenue with its historical environment, one of the most beautiful 19th century avenues of Europe and the Synagogue quarter of Pest.

Budapest is very rich in thermal sources, which based the most developped thermal tourism in whole Europe: you can find in Budapest several famous spas, like Gellért, Széchenyi, Rudas, Rácz, Lukács, .. which attract every year a continuously increasing number of foreign tourists.

Budapest is also an important cultural center of Hungary: we organize a great number of cultural and musical events, during whole year; plus there are a lot of beautiful museums and galleries waiting the clients with unique expositions.

And we did not still speak about the world-famous Hungarian hospitality: it would be very long to enumerate all restaurants and cafes of the city which have a European and world reputation; allow us to mention you only the famous confectionery Gerbeaud, where you can eat the most delicious cakes in Central Europe and the Gundel restaurant, the high gastronomy of whichone was already "tested" by numerous famous persons of the international life (kings, queens, presidents, prime ministers, etc.).

Budapest, capital of Hungary, the town of unforgettable travels - Click on to see YouTube Video!Budapest, the town of UNESCO World heritage sights  - Click on to see YouTube Video!Budapest, the capital of thermal baths - Click on to see YouTube Video!Budapest, the capital of the culture - Click on to see YouTube Video!Budapest, the capital of the world famous Hungarian gastronomy and hospitality  - Click on to see Hungarian folklore dance on YouTube Video!
Budapest, destination of your next trip

It is not accidental that Hungary and Budapest are inseparable notions: almost the fifth part of the population (approx 1,9 million inhabitants) lives in Budapest, in this more than 2000 years old settlement. And this great capital directly influences also the life of its immediate agglomeration zone, so we can say that the fourth of the complete population of Hungary has close connections with Budapest.

The city is not only the commercial, financial and cultural center of Hungary, but it is of Europe, too: it is situated at the same distance from Kiev and Paris, from Moscow and London, and from Stockholm and Istanbul.  Although the current territory of Budapest was populated already in the fourth millennium before J.C., the metropolis, under the name of Budapest is rather recent: the three main parts of actual Budapest, Buda, Pest and Óbuda have been fused in 1873. 

The capital extends on a surface of 525 square km and consists of 23 districts,  16 lie on PEST ( left side of the Danube ), 6 on BUDA ( right side of the Danube ) and 1 district lies on Csepel-island, on the Southern part. The reliefs of these city sides are completely different: Buda is located on a hilly territory, while Pest side is plane. Otherwise, the capital is situated at a haltitude of 100 metres above sea level.

BUDAPEST is a water town: the Danube river, second longest river of Europe after Volga, flows 30 km long through the capital and gives a picturesque and romantic character to the city. 9 bridges  connect the hilly historic Buda side and the plane Pest side. The Danube formed three smaller islands on the territory of Budapest: Óbuda island on the north part, Margaret island near the center, and Csepel island on the south part.  The general width of the river is 300-400 metres, but at Gellért hill only 285 metres.

Budapest - Destination of your next trip! - Click on to see YouTube Video!Coat of arms of Budapest - Click on to see YouTube Video!Districts of Budapest - Click on to see YouTube Video!Metro system of Budapest - Click on to see YouTube Video!
Buda

BUDA, the historic side of the Hungarian capital is located on a territory of 173 square kms on the right side of the Danube. This part of the town is famous for its beautiful Castle district,  the Gellért Hill with Citadel and also for the fact, that the richest people of Hungary live in this party of the town. The Castle district heightens approx 50-60 metres above the Danube, so from here a picturesque panorama opens for whole town.

The Castle district is the part of the 1st district and lies lenghtwise 1,5 kms in a form of acute angle. The peak of this triangle on the Southern side, at the Royal Palace, is almost at the Danube bank, but on the upper Northern side, this acute angle flares out to 400 metres wide, and shoves 1 kilometre out from the Danube.  

This hilly part of the Castle district was always a strategic, and well defensible point alongside the Danube, for that reason this territory was populated continuously already from the bronze age. But the first great constructions began only after the invasion of the Mongols in 1241-42, when King Béla IV.  transposed the royal court residence from Esztergom to Buda. He set up a castle on this hill and high defense walls around it, and placed here even the remaining population of Pest, who survived the invasion of Mongols. 

After 1301, the extinction of Árpád dynasty, it was Charles Robert who got the Hungarian trone. But as he had a lot of enemies amoung the German immigrants who became leaders in the meantime in Buda, Charles Robert placed the royal residence to Visegrád, and Buda  did not develop.

It was his son, Louis The Great ( Louis I. ) who returned to Buda and organized a double royal residence in Visegrád and in Buda, and this settlement rebegan to intensively develop. We can say without exaggeration that the ruling of three great kings in 14th and 15th centuries: Louis the Great, Sigismund and Mathias, has brought the brightest increase period into the life of Buda. These three rulers had constructed the Castle district and the Royal palace in the actual form.

After the death of King Mathias in 1490, this settlement of about 8000 inhabitants began to retrograde intensively, the Ottomans occupied it in August 1541, and they were ruling on Buda almost 150 years. They developed only the fortress lines and they disregarded all other buildings which were not important for them. They turned several buildings into djamis. The united christian troopes could retake Buda and the Castle only on September 2nd 1686, after a strong 75 day assault. The great party of the buildiings were demolished, even the Royal Palace. The population number fell down to 616 persons. After the Ottoman ruling the Palace was rebuilt in Baroque style.

In 1703, Buda had been a free royal town, but was under the control of royal resident committee, located at Pozsony ( actually Bratislava ) ( the Hungarian Parliament had its seats in Pozsony upto 1790 ). During the War of Independence of 1848-49, the Hungarian soldiers got back the Castle district from the emperor's troops in May 1849, but after the fall of the war, the Austrian oppressive army had returned to Buda.

In 1873, the 3 great neighbouring settlements, Buda, Pest and Óbuda have been fused under the name of Budapest. From this moment, BUDA, as the other parts of the new world town met a hyper development period, which lost out upto the Second World War, even Trianon's horrible tragedy of 1920 could not stop this process. During the intensive bombardments of 1944-45, fifth of the houses was completely destructed, but also the other buildings became uninhabitable. The Royal Palace burned out. After the Second World War all the Castle district was restaured in its actual form with a careful work of monument defense.

SIGHTS OF BUDA:

In the Castle district:

On the Gellért hill:

BudaSpecial vue from Castle district - Click on to see YouTube video!Mathias Church ( Mátyás templom ) - Click on to see YouTube video!Equestrian statue of St StephenFishermen's Bastion ( Halászbástya ) - Click on to see YouTube video!Horses at the Castle District of BudaTypical street in Buda CastleLabyrinth of caves under Castle districtAlexander Palace - Residence of the President of the RepublicRoyal Palace of BudaThe Castle District walls with corner bastionBuda - by night
Pest

 

PestBudapest ( Pest side ) - Heroes' SquareHeroes' Square ( or Millenary Square )Vajdahunyad CastleSaint Stephen Basilica
Óbuda ( Old Buda )

 

Óbuda ( Old Buda )Acquincum in Óbuda ( Old Buda )
Margaret island ( Margit-sziget )

Margaret island

Margaret island ( Margit-sziget )Margaret island ( Margit-sziget )
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