OUR SECOND DAY IN BUDAPEST

Our second day in Budapest dawned bright and early.

(OK maybe not early. But it was definitely bright.)

We wandered back down to the Danube, and strolled along the river bank, snapping aaaaall the photos along the way.

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One of the few things I had read about Budapest that I really wanted to see was the Danube Shoe Memorial.

It’s a monument to the 3,500 Hungarians who died on the river bank during World War II. Men, women and children lined up along the river bank, and told to remove their shoes and valuables, before being shot right into the Danube.

In remembrance, the artist has created sixty pairs of shoes out of iron, and stuck them to the river bank. The shoes are usually surrounded by tealights and flowers, and it’s a really touching and heartbreaking landmark.

I especially got choked up over the tiny baby booties…

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We then strolled along past the stunning Parliament building which is SO BEAUTIFUL.

My inner architecture geek was having a little freak out cos of all the pretty detailing. You can book tours to see the inside, but once again, we decided we’d rather wander around outside.

It looks stunning from the photos I’ve seen though, so it’s definitely on our list of things to do on our next trip to Budapest!

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We walked past Parliament, and carried on until we found the bridge that crosses to Margaret Island.

Plopped right in the centre of the Danube, the island has been used as everything, from a hunting ground to a health resort. It’s now a popular recreational spot with both locals and tourists.

Our main reason for visiting was the Musical Fountain. A few people had recommended it to us, and it definitely didn’t disappoint!

It’s a decorative fountain on the south side of the island, and true to it’s name, it “dances”. Sort of.

Every hour on the hour, it shoots water into the air, forming shapes and patterns in time to the music.

We heard Swan Lake, Vivaldi’s Four Seasons and traditional Hungarian folk songs, and I just sat there with the biggest grin on my face. It was utterly magical and definitely my favourite thing about the island.

In fact I’d say it was one of the highlights of the whole trip!

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We spent the rest of the morning exploring Margaret Island.

There’s a jogging path, which is very popular with the locals, that runs around the entire perimeter. We followed that for a little while, then twisted off, on to a muddy forest trail.

We crossed a beautiful clearing, lined with trees slowly turning orange. We admired all the carefully maintained flowerbeds, explored the ruins of the old nunnery, and even stopped by the duck pond to watch the children feeding the ducks.

The whole island is interesting and beautiful, and I’m so glad we had the time to explore it properly!

We walked for hours and, by the time we reached the very northern tip of the island, our tummies were beginning to rumble. So we crossed the bridge to the mainland, and headed off in search of lunch.

And here, hidden down one of the backstreets of the Buda bank, we discovered Kéhli Vendéglő.

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Kéhli is a local family restaurant, quiet and unassuming, with friendly staff and INSANELY good food.

We started with a Hungarian peasant plate to share: home-made bacon, ham and paprika sausage, with pickles, red cabbage and (bizarrely) half a yellow pepper.

Gary had local beer and I went for a glass of the spectacularly good local red wine (which only costs about £1.50 per glass!)

Then, for mains, we both ordered the beef goulash with potato dumplings and sheep’s cottage cheese.

HOLY MOTHER OF HUNGARY.

The beef was rich, deep and full of paprika-y goodness. The pasta-shaped dumplings were soft and doughy, and the cottage cheese added an indulgent touch of creaminess.

Honestly, it was the best meal we had in Budapest.

I’m determined to find a way to recreate it in my slow-cooker at home!

The bill only came to about £27 between the two of us too. If that’s not a bargain, I don’t know what is!

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After lunch, we walked down the Buda river bank, back towards Budapest city centre.

However we hadn’t quite realised just how far we’d gone!

It took us about ninety minutes to get back to our hotel, and by the time we did, we were shattered…

We were just in time for the wine and cheese though, so all’s well that ends well!

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  • The photos you took look stunning!

    franalibi.blogspot.co.uk

  • I’ve never really thought of going to Budapest before but now I’m completely converted. It looks absolutely beautiful and so rich with culture and history. Those fountains are so beautiful too!!

    Gorgeous photos as always Katy!

    The Makeup Directory

  • ninegrandstudent

    All of your photos from this trip are so, so pretty! x

    NINEGRANDSTUDENT: A Lifestyle Blog

  • Budapest is so so beautiful, I can’t believe how clever people are to have designed and actually made those buildings! Such a touching memorial, seeing it like that really brings it home, even in a photo. Talking of photos, which camera do you use? I’m in the market for a new one :) xxx
    Lucy @ La Lingua | Life, Travel, Italy

  • Brooklyn

    Gorgeous photos. I especially loved the brick building with the green door!

    http://www.justbeingbrooklyn.com

  • Joanne

    Stunning photos, as always! Budapest is gorgeous. That Parliament Building is amazing, and the food DOES look really good! Sounds like a great time there <3
    Have a nice weekend!

    Joanne | Life in Blue Skies

  • Budapest looks absolutely amazing! My parents visited around this time last year and have never stopped going on about how nice it was! They loved the goulash too, and actually brought me back tins of hungarian paprika (they know I like my food)! It sounds like you had a great time!
    xo April | April Everyday

  • Zara

    So glad I just stumbled across your blog, your photographs are beautiful! Budapest looks incredible, it is definitely near the top of my travel list at the moment. The shoe memorial looks especially emotive. X
    misszarabelle.blogspot.co.uk

  • Laura Torninoja

    Budapest is so beautiful, isn’t it? It’s the first place I ever travelled to with my boyfriend after only dating for about 2 months! So it will always hold a special place in my heart. :) Looking at your pictures is making me want to go back SO MUCH – it’s just reminding me how nice the city is and how many lovely eateries there are too (very important when travelling..!). x

    Laura // Middle of Adventure

  • What beautiful photos! That memorial is so touching. Budapest looks gorgeous and I really want to visit now! Thanks for sharing :) xx
    Nicole | Nikki Bays

  • What a sad and touching memorial, I had no idea it existed. Budapest looks beautiful, like something out of a fairytale! x

    Josie | Sick Chick Chic