Viking River Cruise, Day 3, Sunday, June 26, 2016

Maybe it was because today involved no airlines, but today was a good day. I woke at 6am, dressed and went to breakfast at 7am. Even after Babs foregoing breakfast, I had to pry her out of bed at 8:00am so she could get ready before leaving on our Budapest city tour at 9:15am. At 9:15 sharp we boarded our motor coach and began our riding tour of Budapest. Our tour began on the Pest side of Budapest, a modern city with lots of high end shops, parks, and memorials.

The first attraction was Heroes Square anchored by a large memorial commemorating the Magyar state. 

The area around Hero’s Square is surrounded by museums, various war memorials, parks, and historic public baths. 

 

We then left Pest and crossed over to the Buda side of Budapest. Buda is a more traditional city with more antiquities than Pest. The real estate prices are higher than Pest. It is where the “upper crust” of Budapest lives. 

We crossed the Danube driving across the Chain Bridge a suspension bridge, which was constructed in 1849, destroyed by the Nazi’s and was rebuilt in 1949.

The area went to is known as the Castle District. Here are located some of the oldest structures in Budapest, as well as, many monuments to Budapests heros.

 

The area is full of shops and eating establishments, some of which especially cater to the tourist trade.

The central figure of the district is the magnificent structure of Saint Matthias Church. The construction of Saint Matthias began in 1851 and wasn’t completed until 1905. It began as a Roman Catholic church , has been a Jewish Synagogue, a Protestant church, and today has reverted back and is again a Roman Catholic church.

One of the turrets of the church is topped by a raven with a gold ring in it’s beak. That was the symbol of king Matthias a favored mid-evil king. 

Between the church and the Danube river is the Fishermen Bastion a walled structure that has no purpose but aesthetics. From the Bastion one can see across the Danube and the many beautiful structures of Budapest. 

The earliest antiquities in Buda are located in the Hilton hotel whee they were uncovered during the hotels construction. They are the only surviving pieces of the original wall surrounding the city.

Our group met at the public bathroom before boarding the bus to return to the ship. Here for the sum of one Euro, you could use the facilities.

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Returning to the ship, we passed the Siklo Funicular which is a cable railway that runs from the foot of Castle Hills to the top of the Castle District.

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At the same place as the ship was docked was this memorial to the Jews killed in World War II. It is bronze shoes representing the men, women, and children who perished under the Nazi’s.

When we got back to the ship, I took a nap and Babs took a walk all the way across the Chain Bridge and took these photos. She got some great shots of Saint Stevens Basilica.

Babs captured some of the out of the ordinary subjects!

She also took these photos of our ship, the Viking BESTLA form the Chain Bridge. Our cabin iin the center.

We ate dinner and then Babs wanted to go up to the sun deck. Manhattan cocktail in hand, up we went to see if we could get some photos of some castles and watch the sun set.

Tomorrow, Vienna where we’ll dock around 5pm.

Babs Says: The need for sleep overcame the need for food. No breakfast for me. Budapest is a fascinating city and would love more time here

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