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One evening/few hours in Budapest prior to a Viking tour

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Allen, Texas
posts: 122
One evening/few hours in Budapest prior to a Viking tour

We're an early 40's "drinking in culture and alcohol" group of 4 coming to Budapest for a Viking River Cruise.

We arrive at the ship around 4:00pm and have dinner available & the evening to ourselves. The following morning we will get a bus/walking guided tour of the main attrations/sights, and my wife doesn't usually do well with jet lag upon arrival from the States, so I'm not thinking a nice place or two while strolling along the river to stop for a drink & a bite of local flavor with a nice view for hanging out.

-Duhg

12 replies to this topic
Chicago, Illinois
Destination Expert
for Food and Travel
posts: 2,297
reviews: 153
1. Re: One evening/few hours in Budapest prior to a Viking tour

Hello duhgbert

How is everything in Allen I have family there, boy oh boy you have had a tough winter already lots of ice

You may want to consider Spoon Cafe & Lounge which will give you great views of the Danube and Chain Bridge tripadvisor.com/Restaurant_Review-g274887-d7…

Also nearby is Columbus Pub very nice some great views of the Buda side of the city. Good beer and wine selection also with a pretty nice atmosphere with all age groups in attendance. tripadvisor.com/Restaurant_Review-g274887-d2…

Also nearby without the views but a solid wine selection right near the Marriot is Divin Porcello an off shoot of Divino Wine Bar very nice small tapas selections of some very good Jamon should you get a little hungry tripadvisor.com/Restaurant_Review-g274887-d3…

This should get you started looking am sure others will chime in to give you some others to consider.

Have a nice trip

SEBESZ

Budapest, Hungary
posts: 1,683
2. Re: One evening/few hours in Budapest prior to a Viking tour

Depending on your arrival date, you could visit some national day celebrations, see fireworks, ride trams made of light.

Allen, Texas
posts: 122
3. Re: One evening/few hours in Budapest prior to a Viking tour

Ahh...we arrive Saturday Dec 28th @ 2:00 at the airport if all is on time...through Chicago...and Zurich...

Allen, Texas
posts: 122
4. Re: One evening/few hours in Budapest prior to a Viking tour

Thank you for the ideas, they are the sort of thing I was hoping for. Usually TA rated restaurants have served us well, but sometimes you just never know what people do and don't like.

The winters here in Allen, TX have been interesting, and last week's ice was pretty heavy duty. I grew up in Allentown, PA and was trying to get away from snow & ice! It's been worse in TX than PA the last couple of winters. Oh well...looks like our river cruise will be rainy & snowy as well, but visiting snow is MUCH better than living in it, right? lol

Chicago, Illinois
Destination Expert
for Food and Travel
posts: 2,297
reviews: 153
5. Re: One evening/few hours in Budapest prior to a Viking tour

Hello duhg

then yes you can certainly grab a ride on the #2 Christmas tram which will take you along the Danube sort of nice. www.microsofttranslator.com/bv.aspx…

Or you can make your way over to the Christmas markets with the main one at Vorosmarty ter and another over by the Basilica. While there you can stop in and have a nice glass of wine at DiVino wine bar. tripadvisor.com/Restaurant_Review-g274887-d2…

Also we are in the same age group as you guys and my wife also does not fair well after a long flight and time zone changes you may want to grab a ride on the M1 metro (the oldest metro in continental Europe ) up to the Szechenyi baths and sit and soak up some of Budapest great thermal waters, quite nice and even more special in the winter as the steam rises around you like an earthbound cloud.

Enjoy your trip

SEBESZ

Allen, Texas
posts: 122
6. Re: One evening/few hours in Budapest prior to a Viking tour

Nice looking places...we're already on a ship docked right there on the river. Any other thoughts or ideas near those? Keep 'em coming, if you have any favorites! : )

-Duhg

Denver, Colorado
Destination Expert
for Pecs, Budapest
posts: 4,044
reviews: 6
7. Re: One evening/few hours in Budapest prior to a Viking tour

Do you know which side of the river your boat will be docked at?

I'd suggest that you see if you can get a 24 hr group travel card (3300 HUF) at the airport before taking your transport to your boat. This would give you and your wife unlimited travel on the buses, trams and Metro for 24 hours. (With 2 of you, it would be easy to use up a 10-ticket book - 3000HUF) and the travel card would avoid any problems with validating tickets. (Also, depending on where your boat is docked, the trouble with trying to buy a ticket from the tram or bus driver at the nearest bus or tram stop.)

When does your boat depart from Budapest? Take that into account when getting the travel card. I'd guess that if your plane is scheduled to arrive at 2 PM, that it would be at least 4 PM by the time you've settled yourselves in the boat and are thinking about 'what to do now.' By that time it will be dark (or close to it). So ask that the travel card be 'set' from at least 4 PM for 24 hrs.

On a Saturday night and close to Xmas and NYE, dinner reservations may be needed at many of even very moderate restaurants.

I too have jet lag problems, but I usually arrive around 6-7 PM. It's 'get to the hotel, unpack, and collapse.' 'Dinner' is some sandwiches I packed to take with me. Frankly, I'm good for nothing at all upon arrival. Lucky to be in a state to get to my hotel.

Allen, Texas
posts: 122
8. Re: One evening/few hours in Budapest prior to a Viking tour

The Viking dock is on the East side of the river, or the left bank (as classified by looking downstream), right by the Chain Bridge. We are probably going to stroll up and down the banks and stop in someplace that looks or smells good.

The transit card would be nice to need, but unfortunately our itinerary seems to give us a bus/walking tour and then meet up with the ship in Visegrad. (20 miles upstream?!?) That Saturday evening appears to be our only "free time" in Budapest, and it probably means nothing more than soaking in the ambiance of the riverside walk.

-Duhg

Chicago, Illinois
Destination Expert
for Food and Travel
posts: 2,297
reviews: 153
9. Re: One evening/few hours in Budapest prior to a Viking tour

Hello Duhg

Well not sure if you are really looking to get some food since you mentioned dinner would be available to you but if it were me after a long day of travel and some travel ahead i would just want to get my sea legs under me (excuse the pun)

With only one night and such limited time I would make way over to the Basilica area just a short 10-15ish minute walk and see the Christmas markets and maybe just snack on some good offerings available there or possibly consider eating a meal nearby.

Borkonyha WineKitchen it is rated the highest here on TA and many seem to be fans of it although I am not ... yes i am in the minority on that. Another dining option in the area is Evidens Bistro which has become one of my favorite dining options in the city it is a modern Hungarian restaurant with a very good solid kitchen in my book, nice dining room and fairly decent wine selection... highly recommend it. Great value to price ratio too never hurts.

After a meal maybe walk it off a little and stop at the other Christmas market on Vorosmarty ter and have look see around. From there make you way to the river just a short 5 minute walk and stroll along the river making your way back to the ship calling it a night

Its a shame you will only have such a short time in Budapest it is a very remarkable city filled with great people and wonderful sights, sounds and of course my favorites tastes and smells especially when you have the time to give it .... that it so richly deserves.

Enjoy your trip

SEBESZ

Scottsdale, Arizona
posts: 4,996
10. Re: One evening/few hours in Budapest prior to a Viking tour

If you feel up to it after a dinner and a stroll, I suggest you grab a taxi up to Castle Hill for this view. You can see all the cruise boats down below. With such limited time it would be a shame to miss this view!

gillesvidal.com/sziget2008/budapestchateau.h…

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