Morning Walk in Budapest
I’d like to give a pictorial walking tour recommendation for a few Budapest locations. I walked and photographed in the area in early July of 2016. I really like beating the tourist rush in these locations, therefore I usually take my walks early in the morning, not long after sunrise. If you’d rather sleep in a bit, expect to see a lot more people at the photographed locations. Some enjoy the crowds, I prefer to be by myself.
My walk started from the Deak Square subway station; this is a major public transportation center, where 3 of the subway lines meet in addition to some bus and tram lines. In case you are not familiar with the public transportation in Budapest, I’m including some information on it at the end of this post. My walk started towards the Danube River. There are a few options to get down there; have a Budapest downtown map handy. Deak Ferenc Street is one your options, on which you will see many renovated older buildings, as well as the modern Kempinski Hotel. You will reach Vorosmarty Square, which is the northern end of the pedestrian shopping street Vaci Street. When you walk through this street, you will end up at the gorgeous Central Market. If you visit Budapest, you cannot skip this destination. It’s open every day except for Sunday.
I continued towards the river, and soon reached my first quick architectural stop, The Pesti Vigado.
The Vigado is a beautiful concert hall in Budapest, located along the Danube Promenade in Pest. It was completed in 1865, replacing an earlier concert hall (designed by Mihály Pollack) destroyed in the Hungarian War of Independence in 1848-1849.
After walking through the pretty square, you are standing at the Danube Promenade. The very first thing you will see – after the awe-taking view of the Buda side -, is a small bronze statue sitting on the fence of the tram.
The Little Princess (Kiskirálylány) statue located on the Danube Promenade is one of the iconic images of Budapest. This small statue of a young girl, playfully sitting on the Promenade railings, wearing a princess outfit and crown is the creation of Hungarian sculptor, László Marton, who gave this statue to the city in 1972. I have to say, that without reading the title of the statue I would not have guessed that it portrayed a girl.
Taking tram #2 is one of the best city viewing options; if you have the time, travel on it from one end to the other (Kozvagohid to Margaret Bridge). Make sure that you sit or stand on the Danube side.
I walked in front of Hotel Intercontinental Budapest, and reached Chain Bridge in a few minutes.
The Chain Bridge was the first permanent stone bridge connecting Pest and Buda, and only the second permanent crossing on the whole length of the Danube River. It is one of the symbolic buildings of Budapest, the most widely known bridge of the Hungarian capital.
At the Buda end of the bridge you will find the newly renovated Adam Clark Square. This is the official point of origin of Hungary’s road network, represented with a “Zero Kilometer Stone”statue (seen between the two flags in the middle of the picture). The so called “connecting tram line” goes under the square, allowing tram #19 run from Obuda to Rudas Bath. The 350 meter long Buda Castle Tunnel (right side in the background) was designed by Adam Clark; it was completed in 1857.
If you continue to walk towards the Tunnel, you can start walking up to the Castle District behind the yellow building shown on the right side of the image. This time I took a shortcut and climbed the steps starting at Donati Street, and ended up at Matthias Church and Fisherman’s Bastion. If you walk up to this area early enough, you can also enjoy the view of the Danube and the Pest side from the Bastion for free. Later, the only way to see this view is if you pay an entrance fee or if you sit in one of the two restaurants.
I walked alongside the wall quite a while looking for a spot from where the Parliament looked nice, and I found this view. Not far from it I also spotted a beautiful iron gate that lead into a courtyard. I’ve never been to this little gem, I’m not sure if the gate is always open or not.
I was able to shoot a different point of view of the Fisherman’s Bastion from here.
Lastly, prior to getting on bus #16, I admired the amazing Matthias Church and froze it and the Holy Trinity Square in time on this photograph:
If you are interested in purchasing prints of the images shown in this post, please visit my print store by clicking on any of the images. I really appreciate your interest.
Some advice about public transportation tickets in Budapest:
It is rather easy to get around in the Hungarian capital city (and in its vicinity) by using pub. transportation. I personally mostly use buses, trams and the subway, but there are also trollies (electrical buses) and trains that connect the capital with nearby towns (HÉV).
In Budapest you need to use paper tickets and validate them on the buses, etc. as soon as you get on them. You also need to hold onto these tickets until the end of your trip, and show the ticket to an official in case they ask for it. When you take the subway, you need to show your ticket both at the entrance and at the exit – most of the time.
You can now buy tickets from automats. Unfortunately, they don’t always work. Also, there is a huge variety of tickets available. Out of all of them, I would recommend the following ones for tourists:
1. A single ticket is valid for one piece of transportation, although you may use it to transfer from one subway line to another one one time. This costs 350Ft in 2016. If you buy the ticket from the bus driver, it costs 450Ft.
2. If you want to take two pieces of transportation, buy a transfer ticket kit; it consists of two tickets. Do not discard the first ticket, the second one is only valid with the first one. The cost is 530Ft.
3. If you know that you would use at least 10 pieces of transportation during a few days of period, buy a book of 10 tickets (I received them individually last, not in a booklet). The 10 tickets cost 3000Ft.
4. For short stays the best deals are the day tickets. The 24 hour pass costs 1650Ft, and it is good for one person for 24 hours for any number of transfers. The 72 hour pass is 4150Ft.
5. Finally, if you are traveling with a group of people, the group daily pass is a great deal. For 3300Ft up to 5 people can travel with it for 24 hours.
There are MANY other options, which you can read about on this page: http://www.bkk.hu/en/tickets-and-passes/prices/.