My wife and I recently visited Budapest at the end of our Viking river cruise and four days afterward. It was nice to remain in one spot for a few days and experience these and other Budapest sights.

Following are some Budapest sights we enjoyed — certainly not everything we saw, nor everything Budapest has to offer, nor the “best” Budapest sights.

Please enjoy and let me know what are some of your favorite Budapest sights.

8 Great Budapest Sights

Chain Bridge

8 Great Budapest SightsOur Viking River cruise docked next to Chain Bridge, connecting Buda with Pest over the Danube River. When we left the boat, the first thing we did was walk across the Chain Bridge. Our local tour guide, Rita, told us that it is a mystery whether or not the lion statues have tongues. Across the Danube River is the Buda Castle, also called the Royal Palace, housing the National Gallery museum.

Little Princess Statue

8 Great Budapest Sights

The Little Princess statue is a short stroll from Chain Bridge. Yes, it looks like a boy. Rita told us that it is definitely a princess but the model was a boy. Rubbing the legs is said to bring good luck. Another legend is that speaking your wish between her legs will make it come true, so you are likely to see some odd situations if you wait long enough.

Budapest SightsView From Buda

From the viewpoint on Castle Hill, at the top of the funicular, the view is magnificent. We could see our ship, Viking Freya, docked next to Chain Bridge. The tallest building in view is St. Stephen’s Cathedral (more about that place later).

In spite of the Budapest Parliament building being so massive, it is possible to get unobstructed views, although I do like this view with some greenery.

Margaret Island

Margaret Island, Margitsziget, is a public park on an island (of course) in the middle of the Danube River. Rent a bike or other vehicle, run on the perimeter track, or visit historic ruins, botanic gardens, or a zoo. Did you see my video of the musical water fountain? This gorgeous massive tree is in the middle of Margaret Island.

8 Great Budapest SightsGreat Market Hall

The Great Market Hall in Budapest is a gathering place for residents to buy fresh food and other household items. For visitors, it is a wonderful place to mingle with locals, eat some Hungarian food, buy some souvenirs, and just people watch. Make sure you go down to the lower level to visit the fish market; it smells like fish and pickles.

8 Great Budapest Sights    Shoes on the Danube Memorial

Between Chain Bridge and the Parliament Building is a solemn memorial to Jewish residents of Budapest in the 1940s. They were ordered to line up along the Danube River, remove their shoes, and were then murdered by militia gunfire.

8 Great Budapest SightsEvening Danube River Cruise

Be sure to take a boat ride at night. Budapest looks so glorious after sunset.

 

Budapest Quirkiness

Budapest has its fair share of quirkiness and I cannot possibly cover it all in this article. Here are a few quirky Budapest sights.

8 Great Budapest SightsSee the two glasses of beer on the table (to the left)? My wife and I sat in this dilapidated car one afternoon. This place, Szimpla Kert, is one of the first Ruin Bars of Budapest and has fun, kitschy decor all around.

 

Budapest Sights

Old German car, Trabant, in Budapest (right)

Remnants and relics of Hungary’s relatively recent Communist past are somewhat celebrated around Budapest. This East German-made vehicle is permanently parked on the main street on the Buda side.

Budapest Sights

Budapest mosaic art

I found this coolness along Dob Utca in the Jewish district of Budapest.

Budapest Sights

Certainly not a great photo —sorry. Perhaps you can see that there is a hand in there? This is said to be the right hand of St. Stephen, the first Hungarian king—though not everyone is a believer.

Can you believe I wrote an entire post without mentioning food? What is your favorite food from Budapest?

Have you been to Budapest? What were some of your favorite Budapest sights?


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