Tuesday, June 15, 2004
|We start the day with the ubiquitous buffet breakfast. A waiter asks about working in London or Dublin. We warn
him about being exploited, but wish him well.
There's a spa in the town. My advice is to not taste the water:
it's metallic and disgusting!
We take a mid-morning boat trip on
Lake Balaton. Only four passengers book up. All very pleasant and
un-crowded. The captain refunds us half the charge - he will make
this a quick trip and return early to catch more punters. (We each got a glass
of Hungarian Champagne on the boat too.)
The sun's out - I buy some sun tan lotion. Real travellers do
afternoon we're on the train to
is a sprawling city bisected by the river Danube, with Buda on the hills
to the west, and Pest on the plain to the east.
From the main railway station we walk though a park; then along a fume laden
tunnel under the castle; finally we see the Danube and the splendid city.
We walk across the Chain Bridge, one of the three major bridges crossing the
Marriott and other large tourist hotels were full. A tourist information
office finds us the
Hotel Pest that has rooms available. (After charging us a referral
A 15 minute walk finds us at Hotel Pest, which despite its name, turned
out to be remarkably salubrious.
hydrofoil boat journey
to Bratislava. There's only one boat a day at this time of year, and
that means getting to the boat at 07:00. Ridiculously early!
We buy the tickets and, mindful of our early start, attempt to "do"
Budapest in five hours. (What a daft thing to attempt: we'll do it properly next
We walk across the Danube via the Elizabeth Bridge, reaching the Buda
Palace by using the funicular railway.
Our evening meal involves goats cheese and dead cow, very good potato
and paprika soup, all washed down with mighty fine beer!
All images © N G Hubbard June 2004