I have finally found some time to go through my photos and face one of the biggest first world problems I encounter almost daily: what do I Instagram? In this process of deciding how many pictures I should Instagram and what, I have begun to realise that I spent the majority of my 7 days in Hungary either drinking or eating. There was more drinking than eating in all honesty but very little else in between. Anyway, after umming and ahhing, I’ve Instagrammed the lot, and I hope that you’ll check us out here.
I don’t usually sit and watch the world go by let alone spend entire days moving from one bar to another but this time around I couldn’t think of a better way to spend my holiday. It may have been because I have been to Hungary before and did the touristy thing the last time I was there, or it was because perhaps, this time, I had company, and good company at that but in all honesty, it was a week of revelations.
When traveling, especially to fun and vibrant cities like Budapest, the flavour of the place isn’t always where the guidebook suggests. You don’t need to look very hard and in most instances, you don’t need to move very far either. In this case, the taste of Budapest is mint and coconut, and it’s served with crushed ice and a dash (or double) of rum. From the very famous ruin bars to a mates place down the road you are never short of a great place to sit, sip and enjoy.
I first went to Hungary many years ago before the idea of writing about it even occurred to me so instead of visiting the Buda Castle or stopping to awe at the Parliament building, I sat and watched the world go by. I’m not saying that you should give the tourist spots a miss, of course not. Hungary has some of the most beautiful architecture and some of the coolest buildings. The view from the castle alone allows you to soak in the Parliament building and a monstrosity known as the Intercontinental Hotel (just ignore the ugly brown and look for the old school).
Then, of course, there is the market hall and all the side streets and alleyways full of numerous restaurants and souvenir shops. So walk around, throw the map away and get happily lost in a world of architecture porn, Goulash and novelty t-shirts.
As I was dragging Alan along this time around, I thought we’d do things a little differently. I, unfortunately, can’t take all the credit for this; it was Alan’s idea, and I’ll be forever grateful to him for showing me another side of traveling. After catching up with my brother and teaching his kids how to cart-wheel, we thought we deserved many much-needed refreshments.
We visited far too many bars for me to mention them all, but some of my favorites are:
Kiosk Budapest; they do a mean pina colada with a twist.
Bar Pharma for a Gin and Tonic done old school style.
Fellini’s on the other side of the river because there is no better way to spend a day than sipping on lemonade eating langos paddling in the Danube.
And to end things on a high note, it can only be the 360 Bar for some of the most amazing views and incredible cocktails to boot.
Budapest and I are old friends, but I know that every time I pop in, it will show me a little something new to keep me interested because that’s what old friends do.