There’s nothing I like more than an excuse to take a little annual leave from the full time job. Working through Christmas is always an exasperating task, so knowing I had a short city break the other side made it all that much more bearable. *I love my job, I love my job, I love my job.”
January seemed to be the cheapest month to visit Budapest and i’m all about that bargain life. So, it was really a no-brainer when the flights only cost £50 return!
I decided against a hotel and managed to find an amazing apartment off Airbnb for only £30 a night. (FYI, I’m totally obsessing with Airbnb at the moment! I’m still overly cautious of how likely getting murdered is, I mean you are staying in someone’s house you don’t know for Christ’s sake! But I thought I’d take my chances for a price that cheap!)
Here’s what we got up to..
We began our first day discovering the sights of Budapest city center. Aside from the airport transfers, we walked everywhere on foot. I’m sure my Iphone step counter thought my phone had been stolen. It’s honestly never seen so much physical activity from me in it’s life.
Walking around the city, we happened to stumble across The Great Market Hall which was pretty damn amazing. Thankfully many of the places in the city including this one, still had that festive vibe to it! It was the biggest indoor market I’ve seen, filled with gifts, bakeries, sweets & other Hungarian delicacies. The food court seemed quite pricey but the portions were absolutely huge!
Aside from general sight-seeing and having a casual Italian pizza dinner, I was tucked up in bed by 9pm. Our flights were early am and having to travel to the airport at 2am with no sleep did not make for a happy tourist.
After my much needed sleep, I was mostly excited about our second day in Budapest as we headed over to Szechenyi Thermal Baths for the morning. I mean who doesn’t love a bath! These particular baths were the first of the their kind in Budapest and one of the biggest in Europe.
Tickets were around £15 each with locker usage and you have full run of around 15 pools. Each pool varies in temperature, some indoors and the biggest one outdoors. I have to say the outdoors one was amazing in the cold fresh air. It was painful walking outdoors at first so a robe would of helped! There was also a huge outdoor swimming pool but you must wear a swimming hat. I passed on the egg head look and stuck to the bathing! We easily spent a couple of hours here just relaxing in the pools!
We had a little wonder around the thermal bath area spotting a few interesting sights, so we decided to just roll with it. Sometimes the grey skies do make for interesting photography.
After breakfast on day 3, we made our way to the Jewish Quarter for our first Hungarian Escape Room, Claustrophilia! If you haven’t been to an escape room yet then where the hell have you been. I totally recommend it for ANY occasion or just because! I was a little concerned there may be a language barrier, being in another country but we needn’t of worried.
We arrived dead on 1pm, pressing the buzzer for number 18. The door opened and we followed up the main stairs as my booking email instructed. We opened the door entitled Claustrophilia and suddenly the game had begun!
I’ve completed 2 escape rooms in my time within the allocated time but this one we embarrassingly really struggled with! There were hints and tips if you pressed the help buzzer but we didn’t want to keep asking! In total there were 4 rooms full of challenges to solve in order to move onto the next.
It was my boyfriends first escape room and I half expected us to have an argument and throw the towel in 5 minutes in but thankfully we were behaved. He absolutely loved it even though we left a little deflated and frustrated that we couldn’t finish it in time! At only £12 each it’s such an affordable activity and half the price of the London ones! Definitely a must do in Budapest!
In the evening, we ventured north of the city center in search of the Pinball Museum (Flipper Muzeum). I had found on Trip Advisor that it was one of the top things to do whilst in Budapest and they weren’t far wrong! Don’t let the word museum put you off! It’s an underground bunker of rooms filled with old school pin ball machines and other vintage arcade games enough to make any 70s-90s kids nostalgic!
Be careful not to miss the entrance on this one. It’s nestled in one of the dark Budapest backstreets with an entrance door that looks like a fire escape. Entrance fee is only £9 each which is an absolute bargain considering you have free run of the machines as many times as you like.
I feel like we barely scratched the surface with how much Budapest had to offer! I certainty want to go back in the not so distance future. There’s still so much we didn’t get to see and do, not to mention go back to my favourite new bakery (i’ll do a separate blog, just because it deserves the world and more). Those macaroons changed my life.