As soon as our dinner cruise on the Danube pulled away from the dock, the string quartet began to play, “The Blue Danube” by Johanne Strauss. We enjoyed a very good buffet meal as we cruised by the bright lights of the Chain Bridge, Buda’s Castle Hill, the Parliament and the city monuments that grace the river. It was a delightful evening!
During the day we rode the “hop on hop off” bus and hopped off by the funicular that ascends to the top of the Buda hills. What an unexpected pleasure to find that soon after our arrival, the palace was conducting the changing of the guard and we had an “up front and personal” view!The guards were precise in their movements and gun maneuvers. Rhonda and I thought that it was better in some ways than the changing of the guard at Buckingham Palace in London. The uniforms were not as colorful, nor were there as many guards, but the maneuvers were excellent.
St. Matthias Church on the hill is such a beautifully painted church on the interior. Every surface is painted with bright colors on gold backgrounds. The views outside the church looking out from the “Fisherman’s Bastian” down onto the Danube and across to Pest are stunning. The huge and iconic Parliament building with its copper red roofs and spires and St. Stephen’s Basilica stand out on the horizon. Budapest is simply a stunningly beautiful city.
Our meals on the trip have been excellent; each country is so different in its native meals. We have enjoyed that variety. We have noted that Hungarian food tends to incorporate a rich variety of ingredients. I ordered hot plum soup and “wow.” Duck is common on the menu. Hungarian goulash is not what your mother made–it is a cubed beef base with a few vegetables in a rich paprika broth. Tortes of cherry or poppy seed or creamed cottage cheese are yummy. We walk enough to eat up the calories, thankfully! WEG