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Jennifer Walker

Jennifer Walker

Contributing journalist, Hungary

Articles (8)

The 13 best attractions in Budapest

The 13 best attractions in Budapest

Budapest is a darling of a city, one of the most picturesque capitals in Europe and objectively one of its best nights out. Tourists, travellers, nomads and explorers alike have been wandering the streets of Buda and Pest for centuries, looking for excitement and experience in equal measure. The Hungarian capital doesn’t let the side down, and those serene thermal baths and spas are always on hand to provide a little rejuvenation.The best attractions in Budapest are the greatest hits of sorts, showcasing the capital’s fascinating history, architectural majesty and fiery creative side. Looking for your Budapest bucket list? Look no further. Recommended: 📍 The best things to do in Budapest😋 The best restaurants in BudapestđŸ» The best ruin bars in Budapest🏡 The best Airbnbs in Budapest🛏 The best hotels in Budapest

The 9 best spas and baths in Budapest

The 9 best spas and baths in Budapest

No trip to Budapest is complete without spending some quality time in the magical healing waters of its spas and baths. The Hungarian capital is famous for its wondrous relaxation centres, and you’ll find them across the city.  Soaking up pure serenity in the best spas and baths is the ideal way to recuperate after a night out in one of Europe’s finest out-out cities. Each bath in Budapest is unique in its own way, offering something different and special all at once. Here’s our lowdown of the city’s best spas and baths. RECOMMENDED:📍 The best things to do in Budapest😋 The best restaurants in BudapestđŸ» The best ruin bars in Budapest🏡 The best Airbnbs in Budapest🛏 The best hotels in Budapest

The 10 best hotels in Budapest

The 10 best hotels in Budapest

From its continentally-renowned clubbing scene and captivatingly quirky ruin bars to its dazzling selection of museums and, of course, its magnificent bathhouses, Budapest is a city packed with stuff to see and do – at all times of day and night. But no matter how hard you hit the Hungarian capital, one thing’s for sure: you’re going to need a good night’s sleep. Fittingly, Budapest has plenty of hotel options that offer something for everyone. Whether you’re looking for a cheap and cheerful hostel or a lavish five-star spa resort, the city is full of top-notch accom. Budapest will no doubt keep you up all day and night, but here’s how to make sure you don’t burn out – these are the city’s top 10 hotels. This article includes affiliate links. These links have no influence on our editorial content. For more information, click here. RECOMMENDED:🏡 The best Airbnbs in Budapest📍 The best things to do in Budapest

The 12 best places to go shopping in Budapest

The 12 best places to go shopping in Budapest

Souvenir shopping might not be as fashionable as it once was, but more fool those who turn their noses up at mementoes. Memories are great, and memories in nicely packaged form are even better. No holiday is complete without a quality souvenir or two, but the days of the humble postcard and fridge magnet are numbered. These days, souvenir shopping is about boutique design and traditional crafts, and that is just the tip of the iceberg.Budapest is a fantastic destination for splashing the cash, and not just because of the fun of trying to work out the prices of things. ‘Fun’ is the operative word for the Hungarian capital, a city of thrilling ruin bars and incredible attractions, and the best shopping in Budapest is another darling aspect. RECOMMENDED: the best hotels in BudapestRECOMMENDED: the best Airbnbs in Budapest 

The 13 best museums in Budapest

The 13 best museums in Budapest

The best museums in Budapest cover plenty of ground. That seems like something said about every city, but just think about this for a moment; the Hungarian capital has a museum dedicated to terror and another to retro pinball. It doesn’t get more opposite ends of the scale than that. Throw in some art, history and literature, and culture vultures are in for a treat.Budapest is a city on the move. The nightlife is as good as anything found across Europe, while the blossoming restaurant scene is luring foodies from across the globe. Learn about the history and culture of this marvellous place by checking out the best museums in the city. RECOMMENDED: the best hotels in BudapestRECOMMENDED: the best Airbnbs in Budapest  

The 9 best bars in Budapest

The 9 best bars in Budapest

There is a lot to love about Budapest. The conveyor belt of things to do, for a start. How about the blossoming restaurant scene? That is delicious, to say the least. The Hungarian capital has an underrated collection of museums, but the city’s major pull remains its chaotic nightlife scene. Looking for a big night out? Get yourself to Budapest. The best bars in Budapest run the gauntlet of style and approach, from the famous (but touristy) ruin bars to more refined cocktail joints and spots that draw a local crowd. But everywhere has an underlying understanding that there is a reputation to uphold here. If ever there was a city that feels built for boozing, Budapest is it.

Los barrios mĂĄs cool del mundo de 2021

Los barrios mĂĄs cool del mundo de 2021

Nueva normalidad. Probablemente hayas escuchado mucho esa frase durante los Ășltimos 18 meses. Cuando la pandemia golpeĂł el año pasado, la humanidad entrĂł en una nueva era. Y la vida cotidiana de los habitantes de la ciudad, tan acostumbrados al aspecto social de la vida urbana, cambiĂł con ella. Pero ahora, muchos de nosotros hemos logrado deshacernos de esos grilletes. Las restricciones fronterizas se estĂĄn aflojando. Se reabren bares, restaurantes e incluso clubes. Y mientras la pandemia aĂșn continĂșa, todos estamos tratando de llegar tentativamente a algo que se asemeja a una mejor normalidad. Entonces, ÂżquĂ© es eso exactamente? Para averiguarlo, debes mirar lo que sucede a tu alrededor, en la calle, en el parque, en tu patio trasero. A lo largo de 2020 y 2021, nuestras ciudades han prosperado. Contra todo pronĂłstico, las comunidades se unieron, pasaron el rato, hicieron cosas. Mostraron la misma energĂ­a, resistencia e ingenio de base que les permitiĂł surgir en primer lugar. Ellos sobrevivieron. Y ahora llegamos a nuestra clasificaciĂłn anual de los vecindarios mĂĄs geniales del mundo. Este año, no pudimos evitar cambiar nuestras prioridades. Comida, bebida, vida nocturna, cultura: importante. EspĂ­ritu de comunidad, resiliencia, sostenibilidad; igual de importante, especialmente si vamos a salir de esta pandemia con cosas de las que podemos estar orgullosos y contarle al resto del mundo. Al igual que lo hemos hecho durante los Ășltimos tres años, llevamos los resultados de nue

How to navigate Budapest public transport

How to navigate Budapest public transport

Budapest is a compact city that’s relatively easy to get around. Most public transport links run from 4.30am to 11.30am, but with a complex night bus system, plus the 24-hour tram 6 on the Grand Boulevard, you should have no problem getting home at any hour. The city’s transport network is managed by the BKK (Budapesti KözlekedĂ©si Közpönt). You can either buy a single ticket for 350 HUF (no transfers, unless you are on the metro) or a 24-hour (1650 HUF), 72-hour (4150 HUF), weekly (4950 HUF) or monthly (9500 HUF) pass. If you have a single ticket, make sure to validate it at one of the machines on the tram or bus, or at the entrance to the metro. Both tickets and passes are available from the purple machines on platforms in metro stations, or at dedicated kiosks in larger transport hubs. Budapest’s public transport system runs on a ‘trust’ system, so there usually aren’t ticket checks when you get on, but occasionally an inspector who checks at random. If you don’t have a pass or valid ticket, fines are harsh, and no matter how many excellent sights and attractions you tick off, that interaction could basically ruin your holiday. Our essential tip? Download the BKK app on your phone for live timetables, so you’ll know exactly when (and where) the next tram, bus or metro will arrive. RECOMMENDED: Full guide to the best things to do in Budapest

Listings and reviews (8)

Buda Castle

Buda Castle

Crowning the city atop Castle Hill, Buda Castle is one of the city’s most recognisable monuments. It dominates the cityscape with its neoclassical Habsburg-era grandeur and reconstructed copper-green dome (the original was damaged during the Second World War). Fittingly for such a grandiose landmark, the castle terrace boasts sweeping views over the Chain Bridge, Hungarian Parliament and the rooftops of Pest.  After being razed and rebuilt over the centuries, you can see history written in Buda Castle’s walls and rooms with traces of its Renaissance, Ottoman, Habsburg and Communist past. The complex is now split up into a handful of excellent museums. The Hungarian National Gallery occupies the main wings facing the river and displays an extensive collection of Hungarian art from Medieval triptychs to avant-garde 20th-century works. The southern wing is home to the Budapest History Museum which charts the city’s tempestuous past from prehistory to communism, while the western wing encloses the National SzĂ©chĂ©nyi Library.

Gellért Thermal Bath

Gellért Thermal Bath

Tucked behind the GellĂ©rt Hotel, the GellĂ©rt Thermal Bath is one of Budapest’s most renowned (and beautiful) bathing spots. There are 12 pools in total, including swimming pools and thermal water baths ranging from 21C to 40C, plus an array of saunas. The art nouveau thermal steam baths comprise four pools spread across two chambers. Each room is clad in turquoise and marine-green Zsolnay mosaics and ceramics, punctuated by neoclassical cherub statues and striking botanical friezes. The large swimming pool outside is famous for its 1920s wave machine that shakes things up on the hour. You could easily spend a day at GellĂ©rt – just get your wristband at the entrance, enter, change, shower, and plunge.

House of Terror

House of Terror

It’s pretty much impossible to miss the House of Terror. Look up as you stroll down Andrássy Avenue and you’re immediately struck by its metallic panels with the word ‘terror’ cut out in huge letters. On ground level, meanwhile, portrait photographs in frames stare back at passersby from the drab stone walls. Number 60, Andrássy Avenue once inspired fear as the headquarters of the secret police, but since 2002 this ominous townhouse has housed a poignant museum commemorating the victims of the fascist and communist regimes. The museum spans four floors and contains a curious collection that blends installations with interactive screens that allow you to listen to first-hand accounts from survivors. The exhibition on the second floor takes you on an immersive, chronological journey from the Nazi era through communist rule. The most fascinating part of this museum is the basement, where the fascist Arrow Cross Party once interned political prisoners.

DohĂĄny Street Synagogue

DohĂĄny Street Synagogue

The second-largest synagogue in the world, the Nagy Zsinagóga on Dohány Street is easily one of Budapest’s most spectacular sites. Blending cathedral-esque proportions with neo-orientalist features, the 1,200-square-metre hall is a kaleidoscope of coral reds and gold leaf split into sections with 1,472 seats for women in the galleries and 1,497 for men downstairs. The large rose window with the Star of David motif is the interior’s centrepiece, while outside a mass grave commemorates the 2,000 Jews killed here during the Holocaust. Next to it, the smaller, simpler Winter Temple looms in grey, and behind it you’ll find the Raoul Wallenberg Park with its metal Memorial Tree bearing the name or number of a Holocaust victim on each leaf. You can only visit the synagogue on a guided tour, and it’s closed on Saturdays and Jewish holidays.

Budapest Jazz Club

Budapest Jazz Club

Just off the Grand Boulevard in the Újlipót neighbourhood, Budapest Jazz Club brings the best in local and international jazz to the Hungarian capital. You enter this converted cinema space through a cosy bar and bistro area with art deco accents and a warm red hue (plus a very decent menu). Inside, the auditorium draws big jazz, blues and world music names, with gigs from Tuesday to Sunday covering everything from bossa nova to big band. Come on Wednesdays, Fridays or Saturdays after the main event for free jam sessions featuring up-and-coming musicians from around Budapest.

Budapest Keleti Station

Budapest Keleti Station

Keleti Train Station is one of Budapest’s busiest transport hubs, offering regular connections to destinations in Austria, Serbia, Romania, Slovakia and the Czech Republic. The grand 1890s building is flooded with light thanks to the enormous arched window at the entrance. Though a little run-down in places, the station boasts an exquisite old-world restaurant with corinthian columns, chandeliers and marble tables, plus a main hall lined with refined embellishments. It may not be a conventional tourist attraction, but next time you’re passing through, do take the time to admire this most magnificent of layovers.

Budapest Park

Budapest Park

Set in the southern part of the city, in a formerly industrial area just next to the Millennium Cultural Quarter, Budapest Park is one of the capital’s most happening open-air venues. Take the tram 2 to the end of the line in the southern direction, and you’ll find it just across the road. The venue stretches out over 11,000 square metres and can hold up to 10,000, with headliners a mix of big-name Hungarian and international artists. Get there before the show, and you may have time to check out a seasonal exhibition or play. If you want to avoid the crowds (and have plenty of cash to spare), you can book the raised Sky Box which fits up to 30. It has AC, a bathroom, comfy couches, and even comes with its own bar.

Budapest Zoo

Budapest Zoo

This 150-year-old zoo on the fringes of City Park is hard to miss. Its striking art nouveau entrance with elephants flanking the gate and polar bears climbing over the arch is a visit-worthy attraction in itself. Once you’re inside, get ready to immerse yourself in a wonderland that’s home to 500 animal and 4,000 plant species. You could spend a good two or three hours exploring enclosures like the 19th-century greenhouses designed by Gustave Eiffel, currently filled with tropical plants and birds, the butterfly house that flutters with a colourful cast of characters, or the ’Australia area’ where boinging wallabies cause havoc. But the real highlight – both inside and out – is the beautiful, temple-like elephant house. 

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