Walking tours in Budapest

Heroes’ Square, in 1896. It was designed by Ignác Alpár (1855-1928), you will see his statue next to the entrance of the Vajdahunyad Castle he is dressed like an old guild-master and proudly looking at his masterpiece was designed as a temporary structure for the Millenary Exhibition which opened in the Park in May 1896. The idea was to present in one building the different architectural styles which could be found and were used in Hungary. Due to its popularity, Alpár was later commissioned to rebuild the structure in a permanent form: the present building act dates from 1907 Different parts of the building are copies of different Hungarian castle palaces, churches, monasteries. This section facing the lake is a copy of part of the original Vajdahunyad Castle in Transylvania (today Huňedoara Romania) from which the whole complex takes its name.

That castle was built in the 15th century by the mother of King Matthia To the left of the main gate are copies of towers of former castles in Upper Hungary (today Slovakia) while to the right is a copy of a tower in Segesvár (Sighisoara, Romania today) In the courtyard on the other side is the “Palace-section”, containing a mixture of Romanesque and Gothic styles (still a copy of the Transylvanian part). Further, on to the left, a small building is to be seen with a balcony copied from Sárospatak Castle in eastern Hungary Next to it to the right appears the large “Baroque” building, based on details of various 18C mansions This Baroque part houses the Museum of Agriculture (Mezőgazdasági Múzeum), including the development of tools and machines, such as horses, sheep- and cattle breeding, hunting, and fishing, and wine-making.

We can see a statue on the opposite side of the entrance of the museum. He was a chronicler in the 12th century or early 13th century of the Magyars probably worked for King Béla III. The sculptor was Miklós Ligeti, in 1903, the name of the statue: Anonymus. He was the “nameless chronicler”. It is remarkable that we don’t know his real name – Anonymus – so we can’t see his face. He wrote the first history book of the life ors, based mainly on legends and tales. It was very rare that the sculptor was able to choose a perfect place for his statue but this time

Walking tours in Budapest

Next to the Zoo is the Municipal Circus (Fővárosi Nagycirkusz). The first circus in Pest, the Hetz Theater, was opened in 1783 on the site of today’s Lutheran church in downtown, but because of fire danger, it moved several times. The first permanent circus was built on the present site by Ede Wulff, German entrepreneur, in 1891 (Open throughout the year, tickets available on the spot, but booking recommended). On the opposite side of the circus, you see a theater-looking building which is, in fact, a swimming pool and thermal bat This is the Széchenyi Thermal Bath, designed by Gy6z6 Cziegler and Ede Dvorzsák, built in 1909-13, extended in 1926. The spa has open-air and covered swimming pools I mean open-air in winter as well. It is considered as the hottest spa in Europe supported by a spring nearby. The temperature of the spring is 74 degrees Celsius (almost boiling water). It must be cooled down in order to use it in the spa and in On your left again you see the Fun Fair (Vidám Park).

Its first part is the small children’s fairground. Before the war, it was called the English (Angol) Park. (Open all year round with limited operation in winter) Soon we turn to the right, but in the corner near the junction stands the large Transport Museum (Közlekedési Múzeum). The exhibitions cover the history of shipping, road and rail transport. There are many models on display, both large and small, as well as veteran vehicles. Some of these are actually right-hand drive, prior to World War II (1941) Hungarians drove on the left!
The building on the right is the theater called the Round Theater, which works as a theater in summer only when all the other regular theaters are closed. We’ve got some more summer theaters, some of them are to be found in the courtyards of some nicely restored palaces, but the most beautiful one is definitely the open-air theater of the Margaret Island On the right this is the back of the spa again, you can see the hot water steaming nearby here. The building which appears on our far left behind the trees is the castle built for the same anniversary as all the other monuments and sights on.


On our right, we see a restaurant on the lake – which is actually a man-made lake, as is the island an artificial island. It is a small, decent, deluxe restaurant, called Robinson The one on your left is probably the most famous Hungarian restaurant ever built: this is the Gundel Restaurant. You’ll find its name in all guide-books. As “Gundel” it has been open since 1894 and became world famous for its excellent meals, like Gundel pancakes with nut cream and chocolate sauce and all kinds of low-calorie stuff! The founder of the Gundel-dynasty came to Hungary in the ’50s of the 19th century. He was Johann Gundel, the most talented inn-keeper of his age, and one of his sons, Charles, became the famous Gundel, who ran this restaurant for many decades This is one of the most exclusive restaurants in town and you had better make a reservation before you come here. If you want to take a nice gift back home with special Hungarian recipes you’d better buy Gundel’s Cook Book which has been published in English as well.
The next sight is the Zoo. The Municipal Zoological and Botanical Gardens opened in 1866 on the initiative of the Academy of Sciences and in particular of János Xantus (1825-94), a natural scientist who spent much of his life in the United States Taken over by the City Council in 1907 it has been modernized several times. Some of the architecture of the Zoo represents significant examples of Hungarian Art Nouveau, such as the main gate from 1912, and the elephant house from 1910. All zoo regulars are found here – elephants, giraffes, hippos, bears, tigers, lions, monkeys, etc. The palm house (a product of the Eiffel workshop) has snakes and crocodiles. The Budapest Zoo is the second oldest in Europe and has been badly damaged during World War II. Just 12 animals survived the war. Now there are more than 5,000 animals and 15,000 different species of plants here.

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