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Old 04-10-2006, 02:29 PM   #1
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I will be in Budapest and Prague at the end of June and wanted suggestions about things I must see and do. I have been reading my travel books, but would love some input from others. I will be in Budapest for a little less than a week, and Prague for a week.

Also, this might be a silly question, but what type of transportation should I take back to my hostel at night out relatively late? I am a 20yr old solo female traveler (also going to the Venice region, and Cinque Terra, though I havent heard anything about them being terribly unsafe).

Thanks,
Meg
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Old 04-10-2006, 05:18 PM   #2
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Heh Meg, I have travelled in Budapest on my own after living there. Its an absolutely wonderful city and i would be happy to give you some tips.

First off where are you staying, will it be the Buda side or the Pest area. Personally i would recommend that you stay in the Pest area such as the central backpacking king. This hostel is really close to Deak ter metro station as well as Bajcsy Zs ut. Personally i would not walk in Budapest late (after 11pm) on your own if you dont speak Magyar (Hungarian) However, do not pull a taxi on the street as this will be extremely costly. You can call for a taxi as all of the operators speak English. The metro services finish at about 11.15pm however there is a bus service after this time.

As for things to see what sort of things are you interested in? If it is museums I would recommend The National Museum where you can learn something of Hungary's history and there are some fabulous artefacts in the museum also it is free! The majority of Hungarian museums are free. Another favourite is the art museum in Hosok tere.
Hosok Tere (Heroes Square) would also be somewhere that i would definately recommed. This is really impressive and just a short walk into the park leads you to Szechenyi baths which is the world famous picture of the men playing chess in the pool! there is also the fake castle as well as a large ice rink that you could visit.
St stephen's basilica, just around the corner from the hostel, is also a must see ( I have photos of this on the gallery section)
Next is the houses of Parliament. Both sides are equally the same but the building is really impressive with st stephens crown inside.
On the Buda hills you could walk up to the fishermans bastillion and visit the palace which houses some more museums.
I would also visit the House of Terror museum as well as the Opera house.
If you are after some retail therapy you could try one of Budapest's malls either the westend shopping centre at Nyugati station on the pest side ot you could try mom park on the Buda side. If you fancy a film you could catch one of the films playing at the cinema where the majority of films are in English with hungarian subtitles...you could even take a beer in here.

Day trips could include a visit to Szetendre which takes 45 mins on the train or Godollo

If you need any more help im happy to help
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Old 04-11-2006, 12:52 AM   #3
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In Prague, in addition to all the wonderful sights that are in every guidebook, may I suggest just wandering around the little side and back streets. Pick up a copy of Prague In Your Pocket when you get into town, they have great maps and lots of up to date info about the city, and only cost a few $$. Also, they have transit maps, which is a blessing. In Prague we got the week long metro pass, as our guest house was within walking distance of a station - we took the public transit everywhere. I don't know about late at night, though, since we were home by 8 or 9 to put the kids to bed.

We had an amazing time wandering the little side streets of old town, finding all sorts of out of the way places, little local cafes and charming shops well off the tourist beat. I'd rather pick up some little homemade item at an antique store than some tchotchke at a souvenir stand, so that worked for me.

An area that I found particularly charming was around the Carmelite church which is home to the "Infant of Prague". If you stop by the church, take a few minutes to check out the incredible garments for the statue that are on display - from all over the world, they show the artistry and workmanship unique to each country displayed (they change them out, so you 'll see different ones than we did). There is also some interesting information about the church's social work in Africa, and we ended up having a fascinating chat with one of the priests there. Kind of an off-the-wall experience, but we all remember it rather better than the stunning but impersonal visit to the castle...

Also, for a great behind-the-scenes view of the Jewish Cemetary, go to the museum of Applied Arts, and take a peek out the bathroom window.

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Old 04-11-2006, 02:52 PM   #4
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As of right now I have a reservation at the BackPack hostel, though I'm not sure what side it's on. I just looked on the website and they had this to say about getting there (if it helps)....
TRAIN STATION


KELETI PU.: take bus no.7 or 7A(green numbers).Direction:
BORNEMISSZA TÉR (bus stop in front of
Pizza Hut). Get off at TÉTÉNYI ÚT (5th stop
after the river).Walk back underneath the
rail bridge, turn left and it is the 3rd street
on your right.
NYUGATI PU.: take underground in the direction of K?BÁNYA.
Get off at FERENCIEK TERE. Take bus
no.7 or 7A as above.
DÉLI PU.: take tram no.18 or 61. Get off at
MÓRICZ ZSIGMOND KÖRTÉR.
Take bus no. 7 or 7A, two stops . Get off
at TÉTÉNYI ÚT as above.


I'm always down for changing a reservation, especially if there is a reccomended place. Has anyone stayed at the BackPack hostel? (and can you tell by these directions what side its on??)

I am the kind of person who wants a little taste of everything...I want to see little pieces of the entire city I'm visiting. Museums, parks, shopping (especially market type deals), authentic food, culture, nightlife. You name it I wll try it (mostly, there are probably a few things in Amsterdam I wouldn't try...though I'm down for the "coffee shops").
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Old 04-11-2006, 04:31 PM   #5
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sounds like you are staying over the Buda side to me!
The hostel that i mentioned recently got voted a top 10 hostel on hostel world, i definately would recommend this hostel. If you have only payed for the deposit then it will only be a few pounds/dollars that you are losing.

If you are interestewd in going to a market there are a few chinese markets in Budapest. These guys head over from china weekly and pick up guys from Romania etc who can translate for them. Most of the items you find at the market are the same but its certainly an eye opener and you can get some really good bargains...ha ha its also worth a laugh seeing the Chinese people transfer on puma logos on to their trainers!
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Old 04-12-2006, 10:14 AM   #6
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Hey, thanks for the info about the hostel. I checked it out and it looks like it includes more and is in a better location than the once I saw previously. Now I have to tell the other one that my "travel plans have changed some..."

Thanks again!
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Old 04-12-2006, 10:20 AM   #7
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your welcome!
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