We didn't have a lot of expectations before coming to Budapest but since we were in Serbia and had to make our way up to Sweden we decided to stop in Budapest for a few days. We arrived early in the morning and spent the day finding somewhere to stay, everything was fully booked and as we were walking around the city we soon understood why.
Budapest is AMAZING!
Why have we never heard more about this city? The city itself is beautiful with lots of historic buildings, instagram spots and beautiful scenery. There's other backpackers and travelers EVERYWHERE (definitely one of our top priorities when we travel since we love meeting new friends) and the vibe is just awesome. Budapest left us with big smiles on our faces even after we left and we ended up staying for more than a week!
WHERE TO STAY
We're sure it's a lot easier to find accommodation if you book a little bit in advance. We booked the same day as usual and since it was the middle of summer combined with two big festivals happening the same week, most places were fully booked. The best area to go out is around District 5, 6 and 7, so staying there makes it easier and cheaper to go home after a night out. Everything in the city is pretty close by so walking everywhere is not an issue (perfect for sightseeing on the way) but no matter where you stay there's always public transport and it's super cheap! Only 1 euro to go across town.
360 bar, as the name might give away, has 360 views over the city and the perfect place to enjoy the sunset. Drinks are pretty cheap as well, just a bit over 2 euro for a beer!
Retox is our favourite place to predrink before hitting town! This is the best place to meet other travelers, drinks are super cheap and they host different games and activities every day!
Szimpla Kert is an abandoned factory building turned in to a massive bar, with lots of different rooms and the decor is epic. You definitely won't get bored in this bar!
Instant is another one of Budapest's famous ruin bars and our personal favourite. Busy any night of the week and different kind of music in every room.
Without a doubt, the most beautiful place in Budapest is the Buda Castle, located in District 1. This is home to the famous monument Fisherman's Bastion which is the most instagrammable spot in the city. We do recommend to go early in the morning to avoid the crowds. Also, once you've crossed the bridge from the eastern side of the city, to the west side, people will try to sell tickets to take the train or a bus up to the Buda Castle. BUT if you just take a few steps to the left of the train track there is a staircase that takes you up to the castle in just ten minutes and it's completely free!
Budapest is known for it's big outdoor baths and spas, and little did we know there was a MEGA spa party ,SPARTY, held at Szechenyi Spa the day after our arrival. This is also known as the biggest pool party in Europe. There was no way we would miss out on this event! Super excited we jumped on their website to get tickets only to find the tickets they had left was 80 euro (?!). There was no way we could pay that much for just a one night event, however we were determined we'd find cheaper tickets one way or another. The guy we were staying with was also super excited to go to the pool party and it was one of the reasons he had come to Budapest this weekend. And guess what haha, he wanted us to come so bad he surprised us last minute with buying one of our tickets so we only had to pay half. what a LEGEND! We got in our swimsuit and soon we were on our way.
We found some other travelers, gathered a crew and had pre drinks as we were walking to the baths. If you ever go to Budapest do NOT miss out on the Sparty. It's such a cool event and so well set up and OMG it was so much fun! We drank beers, danced and swam around the hot baths until the early morning and it's definitely something we'll go back to next time we're in Budapest!
The best thing about traveling for us is without a doubt all the people we meet along the way and by now we have friends all over the world. We checked out of our disgusting hostel and tried to find somewhere else to stay, but everything was fully booked. We got so surprised and happy when an old friend messaged us on instagram saying he's seen on our stories we didn't have anywhere to stay and that he had a friend in Budapest who might want to hang out. A few minutes later Tyson (the friend of our friend) sent us a message, and can you believe this, his friends had his passport stolen just before their flight to Budapest so now Tyson was alone in Budapest in a big airBnB. We had never met Tyson before but he said he had a spare room and we were welcome to crash. YES PLEASE! Such a lucky coincidence. We spent three days with Tyson and instantly became really good friends. This is an example of exactly why we love traveling SO much!
After almost a week in Budapest we decided it was time to make our way back to Sweden before we completely ran out of money. We went with the cheapest option we could find which was a 30h long bus from Budapest to Gothenburg, Sweden. We booked the bus and went out to meet our two new Aussie friends to explore the city one last time. They told us straight away about the epic festival they were going to the next day and they were amazed we wanted to leave the day before it started. So were we :). We are not ones to miss out on a big festival (actually the third biggest in Europe) so after a bit of convincing from the boys, we decided to be stupid and irresponsible we changed our bus tickets and got two tickets to the festival. The next day at Sziget was just awesome and we had an incredible day and met heaps of new friends. We even saw Ed Sheeran play and it was a day we'll never forget. With about zero dollars in our bank accounts we jumped on the bus and arrived back in Sweden a few days later than planned. SO worth it!
One of the biggest festivals in Europe and luckily we changed
our bus tickets to attend the first day. Sziget is just crazy and we can't wait to go
back next year for a full week of
beautiful madness and euphoric moments.
I S L A N D O F F R E E D O M
Even if tickets sell out you can still get your festival pass at Ticketswap! We got ours just a few hours before it started
The camping is free with the ticket so you don't really have to book accommodation
--> You can predrink at the camp ground even if you don't stay there
The festival area has 60(?!) stages with a lot of different music so plenty of space to party!
There are party buses to the festival from Retox hostel every hour, but if you order a Bolt (Budapest version of Uber) and get a few people that turns out a lot cheaper
We probably shouldn't recommend this but oh well! Security is not strict at all, one of our friends walked straight in to the festival with a bag of wine in his hand and we with a bottle of Jäger, although we stuffed ours in our tops ;)
GOOD TO KNOW
OF COURSE WE WANTED TO GET SOME BEAUTIFUL AND COOL FESTIVAL PICS... WE THOUGHT WE NAILED IT UNTIL WE LOOKED THROUGH TO PHOTOS THE NEXT DAY...