Today we are sharing our Guide To What To Do In Budapest Port, if you haven’t visited Budapest then it’s a city you must add to your travel wish list. We have fallen in love with River Cruising, it offers a much more intimate cruise experience and is also a wonderful way to travel and take in many cities in one trip.
If you are planning a river cruise you will be aware that many cruise lines offer the option included excursions. These are often a couple of hours long and you are able to return to the ship for lunch before heading off on another trip in the afternoon.
However you can also explore on your own or head off after your morning excursion. Its important to remember the included tours are run by local experts so are a wonderful ways to discover a city. But its also great to have a plan of what you want to visit in any free time you get. So grab a cuppa and enjoy setting your Budapest Cruise Port plan for your next trip.
Guide To What To Do In Budapest Port
Can You Get Into Budapest On Foot From The Dock?
Yes and depending on where you dock along the river, getting into town from Budapest Port is super easy. Ships dock along the Danube on the Pest side of the river. All the docks are centrally located and easy walking distance to all the sights of Budapest and as River Cruise Ships are able to stack, they also dock along aside each other. Thus meaning more ships are able to get close to the dock.
Budapest Is Split By The Danube River?
In 1873 Buda and Pest, 2 cities directly opposite each other on the Danube River were united, thus becoming Budapest. Buda is the side of the river where you will find the Palace and Funicular. The Parliament Building, shopping district and St Stephens Basilica are all on the Pest side.
Tips For Sailing Into Budapest Port
No matter what time you either sail in or out of Budapest port make sure you have a good view, sailing past the Parliament Building is breathtaking. Admittedly more beautiful by night, or very early morning. But any time of day is quite beautiful.
The only way to see this stunning region is by river boat. And sailing into Budapest on the our balcony of AmaMagna, a coffee in hand, as the morning sun was rising over the Parliament building is something I will never forget.
What To Do In Budapest Port?
Although there is a hop on hop off bus, we decided to set a plan and walk. We covered 6 glorious miles, wandered historic streets, explored bustling shopping areas. Enjoying the odd glass of wine along the way, as we sat in street cafes and people watched.
I have compiled a list of wonderful things to see and do in Budapest. Places of interest or just quirky little things that made me smile, such as spectacular doors and people watching.
What Is On The Buda Side Of The Danube?
Here’s a quick overview of some of the things to see on the Buda Side of the river. The beauty of Budapest is the whole atmosphere, its a little overwhelming at first, for no other reason than you want to do it all, and everything looks so grand and inviting.
- The Funicular Up To Buda Castle
- Buda Castle
- The Fisherman’s Bastion
- Gellért Thermal Baths
- Walk Across The Chain Bridge
Ride The Funicular Up To Buda Castle
The walk to the Castle is STEEP, yet it is worth getting to the top for the breathtaking views over Budapest. We decided to take the Funicular to the top. Firstly because it was a hot day, but also for novelty value and just look at those views. You can’t visit Budapest and not ride the Funicular? The Funicular connects the banks of River Danube to the Buda Castle and has been in service since 1870 and was admitted to the list of UNESCO World Heritage sites in 1987.
We queued for no more that 10 minuets the queue moves pretty quickly and the ride to the top last minutes.
How Much Is The Funicular Up To Buda Castle?
Adult: HUF 3000 return (around £6.50)
Children aged between 3-14: 2000 return (arounds £4.30)
Free for children under 3
Visit Buda Castle
Buda Castles sits high on the hills of the Buda side of the river, the first fort was constructed in the 13th century, which over the years and under instruction of presiding Kings evolved into a magnificent Gothic-style palace. However the Ottoman invasion in1686 ravaged the entire Gothic and Renaissance complex and fighting and fire destroyed the palace.
The Palace complex was rebuilt and completed by Franz Joseph in 1904, alas the Castle was again substantially damaged in World War II. Further renovations were finally finished in 1980. The Buda Castle District is also the home to the Hungarian National Gallery, the Budapest History Museum, National Széchényi Library and also has a cafe with spectacular views over the Danube.
Visit The Fishermans Bastion
The Fishermans Bastion construction started in 1895 and took until 1902 to complete to celebrate the Millennium of the Hungarian state. It consists of 7 turrets which represent the 7 Hungarian tribes who formed a blood brotherhood and swore allegiance to became one nation, Hungary. The seven tribes are…
Walk Across The Chain Bridge (Széchenyi Lánchíd)
The chain bridge offers spectacular views over the Danube and is a landmark in itself. All the way along the bridge people were trying their best to get uninterrupted selfies.
Construction started in 1842 by Count István Széchenyi in a bid to make getting from Pest to Buda easier. Thus Londons’ Hammersmith Bridge engineer William Tierney Clark was hired to design and build the Chain Bridge.
The bridge was completed and had its first foot passengers in 1849, as the Hungarian Army of Independence retreated across away from the Austrian troops. But the bridge was destroyed during a German siege 1945, and reconstruction to again bring it to its former glory was completed in 1949.
Cross The Liberty Bridge
Liberty Bridge connects Vámház Square and Szent Gellért Square and was opened on 4th October 1896. During the opening Franz Joseph pressed a button which hammered the last silver rivet into the bridge. These rivets were engraved with the king’s monogram.
Today the bridge is closed to traffic and it really is a work of art, the perfect place to grab a selfie and check out the view back over Budapest
Located On The Pest Side Of The River.
- Shoes Of The Danube
- The Great Market Hall
- Parliament House
- The Shopping District
- The Budapest Ferris Wheel
- St Stephen’s Basilica
- Szimpla Kert Bar
- Karavan Food Court
Visit The Shoes Of The Danube
Created by Sculptors Gyula Pauer and Can Togay. This moving memorial consisting of 60 pairs of shoes, represents the Jewish Men, Women and Children rounded up in the winter of 1944. Mums, dads, sons and daughters who were brutally stripped and forced to face a firing squad and murdered.
Initially I had mixed feelings about visiting and it does make you shed a tear. However it’s also so important to remember. There is beauty and eeriness surrounding the memorial, I am glad we went along to pay our respects.
Next Admire The Gothic Architecture Of Parliament House
The Parliament building is steps away from the shoe memorial. This colosal Neo-Gothic structure finish in 1902 took 1000 workers 13 years to complete.
Here you can take a tour of parliament as long as the national assembly is not in session. The tour will allow you to see the main hall, several of the lobbies and the Crown Jewels. However it is also worth visiting to admire the architecture which is truly stunning.
Visit The Shopping District In Budapest Port
And If you love shopping you can’t visit Budapest and miss out the main shopping district. Together with many favourite high street brands, you will also find boutique and individual stores, including souvenir shops.
The Famous Central Market In Budapest
The Central Market Hall is a short walk from the shopping district. Here you will find 2 floors. The ground floor being a food market selling spices, meats, sausages, fruit and veg in every colour you could imagine.
Additionally the first floor packed full of textiles and homewares. Together with a street food area, packed full of Hungarian delights, although you must time your visit right. We visited at lunch time and the market was packed with hardly room to walk.
Visit Szimpla Kert Bar In Budapest
Szimpla Kert is one of the best bustling bars in Budapest. It’s a labyrinth of quirky rooms which each funky and unique which is created and decorated purely from recycled materials! It holds a farmers market on a Sunday and serves food and cocktails.
You can find this extraordinary bar in the cultural Kazinczy street, however be warned you wont know where to look first its the most wonderfully crazy bar we have ever visited.
Karavan Food Court
Just around the corner to Szimpla Kert, is the Karavan street food and food court. This is the best place to grab some traditional Langos or a Chimey cake! You can find it in the centre of town 1075 Budapest, Kazinczy utca 18. This is about a 15-20 minute walk for Budapest port, however its so worth taking time to find it.
Gozsdu Udvar Courtyard
Whilst on a Budapest street food tour with A-Rosa River Cruises we happened upon Gozsdu Udvar. Gozsdu Courtyard can be found in downtown Budapest. It is has a combination of entertainment places, restaurants and bars within its walls. It’s a buzzing vibrant place that’s quirky and totally unique!
Gozsdu Courtyard also has an adventurous past. During World War Il the Gozsdu Courtyard was a part of the Budapest ghetto! And has since been declared to be part of UNESCO world heritage.
To Get A Great View Of The River And Ride The Budapest Ferris Wheel
Although Ferris wheels are not everybody’s idea of fun, this is a great way to get a birds eye view of Budapest. Particularly on a bright sunny day.
Visit St Stephen’s Basilica
Aproach via Szent István ter for the most stunning approach to the Basilica. And trust me it really is worth planning this as it took my breath away. The Basilica is the largest church in Budapest, the planning and construction took a whopping 54 years. And involving three chief architects and the collapse of the entire dome nearly two decades into the project.
Although there is no charge to get into the church. There is a small fee of suggesting 500 huff per person to go to the observation deck and see the bell tower which houses Hungarys biggest bell.
Look For Statues In Budapest Cruise Port
Budapest has statues everywhere. A statue trail is great idea to entertain kids and teens, with the promise of a new statue round almost every corner of the city.
Fat Policeman on Szent István ter
Check out the Fat Policeman on Szent István ter, he stands overlooking St Stephens Basilica. And is said to bring you luck in love if you rub his belly.
The Statue of Attila József
Also check out the statue of Attila József a Hungarian poet who is said to be one of the most prominent figures in Hungarian literature. As such his poems are taught in every Hungarian school.
Ignac Roskovics Statue along the Danube
Check out some of the statues along the waters edge in Budapest they are just a few minutes along from where the river cruise ships dock.
This is the artist Ignac Roskovics painting with a cigarette in his hand. Roskovics, born 1854 in Slovakia attended Hungarian Royal Drawing School in 1875. He became known as the painter of Saints and Kings. You can see an example of his work in St. Stephen’s Basilica.
The Girl With Her Dog Statue
This Girl With Her Dog Statue is along by the cruise port with the other stunning bronze statues along the water. Tourist attraction in Budapest, Hungary. Life-size bronze sculpture of a girl playing ball with her dog by sculptor Raffay Dávid.
The Little Princess Statue
The little Princess statue on the Danube river in Budapest. The artist was inspired by his eldest daughter born from his first marriage. She often played in the Taban wearing a princess costume and a crown made out of newspaper by her father, and at home as well, pretending her bathrobes were a mantle. This image prompted her father, the artist in the creation of this little statue.
Statue Of William Shakespeare In Pest
This glorious statue of William Shakespeare taking a bow, located near the Danube Pest bank, just next to a Starbucks and the Marriot.
Useful Information When Visiting Budapest Port
Take A Budapest City Bike Tour
You can hire Mol Bubi bikes at many locations across the city. You simply pre register and pay a registration fee, then book a ticket for however long you would like access to a city bike.
The bikes can be collected and returned from any station with an active pin code. For more info on hiring a bike in Budapest CLICK HERE.
What Currency Do You Need In Budapest.
The currency is Hungarian Forint, we read so many horror stories about the locals being unhelpful when it came to paying. Thus resulting in us having a panic and finding an atm to ensure we had plenty of Forints.
This was not the case, we were offered the option to pay cash or card almost everywhere we shopped and dined. We found the locals to be friendly and helpful. We were advised to use Exclusive Change, they have atm’s and change booths all over the city. Where you will roughly get 480 Forints to the pound depending on exchange rates.
What Is The Weather In Budapest?
Budapest is a pretty unpredictable part of the world weather wise. We have visited Budapest in March and June and expected the weather to be on the cooler side. March was so warm, far higher temperatures than predicted.
June again was much hotter, whilst this is indeed wonderful to be blessed with such weather, it leaves you the what to pack dilemma. Air on the side of caution and pack for all eventualities. Have options to layer up and a waterproof just in case.