During the afternoon on Friday I arrived in Budapest after a 7 hour train ride. It dragged until someone saw me writing in a journal and showed me his. He was doing trip from Riga in Latvia to Budapest before going back home to Australia, he is 80 and seems to be doing trips like that for a very long time, and I hope that I can do the same. We compared travelling like I am doing now and from before I was born and he was interested to hear how easily I can book everything as it has not always been as easy as booking a hostel online and using Google maps to find it.
It seems like once again I have done a great job of choosing a hostel – someone reccommended it to me as I was having a hard time finding one that doesn’t seem too much like a party hostel and one that doesn’t look like a prison cell. As soon as I arrived in Budapest Bubble I had a really friendly welcome and got given a map with a lot recommendations. This is the best hostel I’ve stayed in, thanks to their staff. Here, I met two people who I shared a room with in Prague which was a nice surprise.
I went out to eat at one of the places, having been warned that they could feed at least two people – I thought I’d be able to do it but it was a struggle to eat two thirds of a portion. After I went for a bit of a walk and came back in. I was chilling on my bed and heard a couple of British guys making a cup of tea and ended up getting one made for me, then we started chatting. They invited me to watch a movie with them so they took some matresses off the beds onto the floor and watched the film In Bruges together.
The next day I went to a cafe for breakfast and had pancakes – Leslie Knope style, before heading off to the Roman Baths. It was a beautiful day, reaching 25 degrees, and my shoulders are a new shade of red. I think what I liked most about it is that I could justify staying inside the pool and doing absolutely nothing because it was cultural. Overall, I stayed there for two hours, it started to dehydrate me as it was hot outside, the water was hot and there was salt in the water but definitely worth doing.
I headed back into the city center, by this point it was 3.30pm and I still needed lunch so I went to a soup kitchen, then next door was a food truck area where I had deep fried bread, topped with sour cream, garlic and cheese – a Hungarian speciality. Whilst I was eating, a couple of girls sat opposite me were having a conversation and one said “have you seen a 25 year old lay themselves down in the middle of the street cos their hangover is too much?” – referring to a friend, I couldn’t help but laugh. We started chatting and they invited me for a beer with them which was pretty cool. I don’t know how ruin bars were established but they look great inside. After the drink, I went to the top of the hill overlooking the city and watched it light up as the sun was setting.
Sunday, I saw Agi who I used to work with, it was nice to hear that she’s doing well. We had a pasta dish that was better than quite a few that I had in Italy, had quite a bit of a chat, went up the castle, and a bit of a tour around the city. I went for a walk after then came in to chill – one of the people who works in the hostel said that it seems like all I seem to have done in Budapest so far has been chilling out.
I extended my stay in Budapest for another four nights, the hostel was great to chill in as well as the city. Over those days I went to the Museum of Terror which was quite depressing, yet important to understand. There was one prison cell in there that was just about big enough to stand up in. I also went to Margrit Island, another thermal bath, a hostel bar crawl and I ate a lot of good food in the city.
After this came an 8 hour train ride to Zagreb and I still need to decide where I’m going to travel to tomorrow. I loved Budapest as much as Barcelona – it shows that a good hostel can really help you enjoy a city so much.