This place deserves all day in your itinerary. Palaces, churches, gardens, museums galore. It has restaurants, bookshops, curio shops, artists, street performers, tourists, locals. It has a lot of what you are looking for ina cultural and historical area.
I spent the better part of two days exploring here. There was a surprise around every corner and a smile on every face. I drank beer at an outdoor pub overlooking the Danube. I bought a painting. I listened to a guitarist sing a sad song in a language I did not understand. I had a wonderful lunch sitting in the grass behind the castle.
I will return here, hopefully with my wife and son. I want them to experience some old world charm that has not been commercialized.
Banks, ATM,Exchange and more...
There are no mandatory minimum amount for currency exchange ....
The majority of banks
have a 24 hour ATM some of which can also exchange foreign currency..
Individual banks and travel agencies are free to set their own rates(base on the Hungarian national bank) but they must be clearly displayed..
Banks hours are usually Mo-Th...8am-4pm.....fri....8am-3 or 4pm
It is advisable to keep records of currency exchange transactions until leaving the country..
Rates offered at BUREAU DE CHANGE
in the city centre and the main railway stations are generally BETTER than those available in the banks , airport and hotel..
While I was there .....june 2006 the rate was between 271-275huf to the euro on vaci u..where I changed most my money.....just walk up and down and there will be some little differences.....
At my hotel the rate was going for 250huf to the euro...
machines are available throughout the city..However, beware of HIGHER service charges for using ATMs that are NOT affiliated with your bank of origin...
Inside the church on Üllői street
Entering you can see 3 naves amongst wich the main nave is reallz imposing. Above the two side naves there are two balconies (not really typical for a catholic church-more evangelical).
The 9 metres tall marble main altar was donated by Franz Joseph. From the sanctuary you can go to a side chapel with a nice altar as well, Zsigmond Kisfaludi Strobl`s work.
The original Miksa Róth windows were destrozed in the wars but thez were reconstructed later, between 1957 and 1960 by József Viktorián Pituk.
The Little Things
When I was in Budapest I found in the city area when I was buying fruit or odd things to take back to the hotel, it wasn't a custom to give you a bag - I started carrying my own little bags - things may have changed by now.
Géllert Chapel Cave
Géllert Chapel Cave
The foot of the Buda side of the Szabadság Bridge is an unlikely place for a Catholic chapel. In the midst of a sticky day and weary from walking down crowded streets, I took a break from sightseeing to stop by the Chapel Cave. Across from the Géllert Hotel, the atmosphere of the calm, cool cave exuded peace. Though the whizzing cars and the occasional scrunching squeak of the stopping trams could still be distantly heard, it was easy to forget they were there.
In March of 1951, the Hungarian Secret Police had ravaged the Chapel on the day after Easter. They expelled the religious order, murdered one of the priests and later walled up the cave. In 1989, the rebuilding began and on August 27, it was finally opened again. By the entrance to the chapel, a replica of the Statue of Our Lady of Lourdes rests on a piece of the one-time wall torn down on 26 February 1992 by people of Budapest.
Inside are three side chapels and the main nave, the area where the Masses are held. A small chapel at the back of the cave commemorates Polish refugees who came here to pray in the war. A half-oval stained glass window depicts Christ as the Way, Truth and Life and another window worth mentioning is the curious ringed window at the back of the cave portraying Patronia Hungariae, or the Blessed Virgin as patron of Hungary.
At the time of my visit, the cave was open daily with weekday Mass at 11:00 a.m., 5:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. To get to the cave, take Tram 47, 49, 18, 19, bus 7 or 7A to Gellert Hill, cross the street and walk up the path around a curve to the iron gate entrance. It is an experience not to be missed!