So I've just arrived home from a city break to Budapest and wanted to write a blog to share my experience and recommend my favourite restaurants and activities :)
The trip was a birthday present and the first trip as a new couple (we're all friends here so no point keeping it to myself forever!), so it was important for it to be romantic and chilled yet still fun and insightful. We were there for only 4 days (3 nights) so there was a lot to see in a short space of time.
We stayed at the Buddha Bar Hotel. This is one of the best rated and had within it a lovely spa, 2 great restaurants and a bar. It was absolutely stunning, the staff were so professional and helpful and they kindly upgraded us from a Junior Suite to the Corner Suite at no extra cost which made all the difference. Our room had 3 balconies facing out onto the beautiful buildings and bustling shopping district and the bathroom had heated floors and a giant tub! The obvious feeling went through my mind: 'I could get used to this!'
Even though we had such little time to explore Budapest, it was hard to leave the hotel as it had so much to offer. I'd definitely recommend staying here, or even popping by one evening for a meal in either the Buddha Bar Restaurant or the Baalbek Lebanese Restaurant. The Buddha Bar for a more dressy evening and the Lebenese for a smart-casual vibe with a mixed grill and some sheesha; we enjoyed both!
Unfortunately for us, when we arrived, the first 2 days were very cold and rainy and I regretted not packing a proper coat and gloves. It was a bit gutting, but an excuse to chill at the hotel on the first night and go to one of the outdoor Thermal Baths the following day. I guess there was something quite lovely about looking at the market stalls and running for cover in a nearby café for a hot chocolate in the rain!
On our second day we visited the Széchenyi Thermal Bath which is an outdoor spa heated with natural hot springs. The hotel recommended this bath as it is the largest in Europe and ideal if raining as there are indoor ones as well. I have to be honest and say when we first got there I was a little freaked out. It was so busy and the changing room didn't seem very hygienic to me. Also looking out on the bath itself with all the half naked foreign men, it looked like some weird Hungarian orgy and I really didn't want to go in! Low and behold, taking off your robe and running through 2 degree cold in a bikini into amazing steamy, hot, clean water was the best feeling ever and I didn't want to get out!
TIP: I would definitely say to take your own flip flops, towel and gown as it otherwise costs to hire and you need all three.
NIGHT 1 || Buddha Bar & Restaurant
Where it was a city break and not a warm holiday I was conscious to wear anything too bright or too revealing as it didn't seem fitting to me. I in fact packed one white jumpsuit but I felt a little too exposed in it, so stuck with the black/lace theme I had going on each night!
At the restaurant I ordered a set menu to try a bit of everything and it didn't disappoint.
JEWELLERY: Nikita By Niki
SHOES: Simmi Shoes
NIGHT 2 || Spoon Café & Lounge
So the second night, despite it raining, we jumped in a taxi and headed to a restaurant on a boat that my parents had recommended. There was a live pianist and beautiful views creating a perfect dining ambiance. I'm not usually over enthused by more classic/English style dishes but my duck dish went down well!
CHOKER: Nikita By Niki 'DEMI Choker'
HEELS: Simmi Shoes
NIGHT 3 || BAALBEK Restaurant
It was safe to say I was pretty over dressed for this restaurant however that never bothers me! The food and vibe was dressy however everyone else seemed very casual. Here we ordered the mixed grill as a bit of a safe bet and it was delicious!
JEWELLERY: Nikita By Niki
Heels: Simmi Shoes
Luckily the sun came out on our last day so we crammed in all our sightseeing. We did the 'Hop-on-hop-off' tour bus. It was the best way to see everything and learn about the history. The architecture in this city is breathtaking!
JACKET: New Look
-Visit the Buddha Bar Hotel for the restaurants
-Visit the Spoon Café & Lounge boat restaurant
-Go on the 'Hop-on-hop-off' tour bus to explore the city
-Visit the Thermal Bath but take flip flops, robe and towel with you
-Pack warm clothes for day time exploring - scarf, gloves etc
-Take smart flats with you as the bars are very casual so better to be comfortable
-Visit the shops & market stalls close to the Buddha Bar
-Visit the Da Mario Italian restaurant for lunch
-We took £400 worth of spending money for 4 days which worked well for us
I hope this is a useful blog for you, especially if you are considering to visit Budapest soon!