What will you see during the Danube dinner cruise in Budapest?
Danube cruise sights on the Pest side in Budapest
The riverfront sights are as follows (from north to south along the Pest side of Budapest)
the Margaret Island (Margitsziget), a recreational island park in the middle of the river Danube
the Margaret Bridge (19th century bridge at the southern edge of the Margaret Island)
the Hungarian Parliament (Orszaghaz)
the Chain Bridge (Szechenyi Lanchid, the first bridge over the river Danube connecting Buda and Pest, which later united as Budapest)
the Gresham Palace (Four Seasons Hotel Budapest) and a series of architecturally less distinct luxury five star hotels in Budapest, like the Hotel Sofitel, Hotel Marriott, Hotel Intercontinental
the domes of St Stephen’s Cathedral (aka the Basilica in Budapest, which along with the Parliament building are the highest points on the Pest side, which is on a flat plain)
the Liberty Bridge (Szabadsaghid is the elegant historical green metal bridge with prey birds from the 19th century, probably the most beautiful bridge over the river in Budapest)
the Central Budapest Market Hall, the impressive historical Budapest market hall, and the most outstanding one amongst the series of market halls built at the end of the 19th century. Also known as the Great Market Hall with hundreds of market stalls and a monthly fair for showcasing the goods and produces of various countries in the world, also offering Guided Market Hall Tours. Busy, colorful, one of the top ten things to do in Budapest.
the Corvinus University, Department of Economics – historical building, and probably the most prestigious Hungarian university for MBA trainings and general economist trainings
the National Theater (Nemzeti Szinhaz) – contemporary architecture, the building has the shape of a huge ship
the Palace of Arts, including the Ludwig Museum in Budapest (Muveszetek Palotaja has a fantastic contemporary design, beautiful concert hall with a museum)
the Rakoczi Bridge (formerly called Lagymanyosi bridge), a modern metal construction
Danube cruise sights on the Buda side in Budapest
the attractions along the river Danube on the Buda side from south to north (as if flowing back)
the Technical University (Budapest BME), an enormous and beautiful building over 200 years old
the Hotel Gellert – spa resort by the foot of Gellert Hill
the Gellert Spa – the palace hosts about 15 pools, and is one of the most wonderful Art Nouveau interiors in the world
Gellert Hill – green and rocky slopes of the Gellert Hill. Climb atop and you will enjoy one of the most beautiful panoramic views in your life. Breathtakingly beautiful Budapest views, walk their around sunset with a bottle of wine and enjoy the sights.
the Statue of Liberty (Szabadsagszobor) – standing on top of the Gellert Hill, a working woman is holding up a huge leaf (built in the Communist era, but somehow spared from the great cleaning of Communist statues in 1989)
the Citadel – a 19th century fortification to keep a hawk eye on Hungarian rebels – built right after the 1848 Hungarian freedom fight against the Austrians, built by the Austrians of course
Elisabeth Bridge – built well after the WW2, when the old and graceful Elisabeth bridge was blown up by the Nazi soldiers. We definitely preferred the old Erzsebet hid, but grew to accept the white metal bridge as a modern replacement
St Gellert Monument and Waterfall – the dramatic waterfall of St Gerhard, the first bishop of Hungary in the 1030’s who was brutally killed by the pagan Hungarians who did not want to convert to Christianity like their king (our first king, St Stephen who is celebrated today as the keeper and founding father of our nation, recognizing the need to leave behind the tribal hordes, the old beliefs and find our place amongst the settled, Christian nations). There is a footpath with stairs leading up to the monument
Buda Castle Budapest – also known as the Royal Palace, which has not been a home for the royal family in the last 3-4 centuries, but has been kept ready for the Austrian emperor. Then in WW2, the Nazis and the Russians totally ruined it in the Budapest battle, and all treasures were looted. Today, mostly the home of the Hungarian National Art Gallery and its fine art exhibitions, and the Budapest History Museum (both museums are free to visit with Budapest Card). The castle district has a very nice 18th century atmosphere, with the best views in the city of Budapest from the Fisherman’s Bastion.
The Tunnel – the tunnel under the Buda Castle Hill is next to the Chain Bridge. Hungarians in the 19th century (when the tunnel and the bridge were built) had the standing joke of pushing the Chain Bridge into the Tunnel if it rains. There is a little balcony right above the tunnel, which many lovers enjoy.
Fisherman’s Bastion is the most well known lookout tower (and mock fortification) in Budapest, built in 1903. Fantastic views from the towers and the balconies.
Matthias Church (Matyas Templom) – enjoy the colourful tiles of the Matthias Church by day during the river cruise, or appreciate the slender neo-Gothic towers by night, if you are taking a dinner cruise on the Danube in Budapest. The interior of the church is wonderful with painted walls and a little treasury. Occasionally you can visit church concerts too.
Church on Szilagyi Dezso Square – almost below the Matthias Church you will see another church, which is usually just called the Church on Szilagyi Dezso Square by Hungarians. Characteristic brick walls and colors.
Buda Market Hall on Batthyany Square – built in the same years as the Great Market Hall of Budapest, it is now the home of a few shops and a supermarket. 19th century architecture, characteristic of the market halls, but does not compete with the beauty of the Great Market Hall (aka Central Market Hall = Vasarcsarnok)
Many of the houses, residential buildings and complexes are from the 19th century. The biggest contrast is provided by the modern hotel complexes, like the Hilton Hotel Castle in the Buda Castle, or the Hotel Marriott and Hotel Intercontinental. While these buildings unfortunately do not add to the beauty of the river cruise, they have excellent hotel facilities with wonderful river view hotel rooms. If you are on a romantic holiday in Budapest, make sure you book a hotel room with a view over the Danube and its majestic night sights. These rooms are more expensive. Otherwise, come and enjoy one of our river cruises (or maybe mix and match a cheap day cruise with a more elegant and stylish dinner cruise in Budapest).