Monday, July 4, 2011


As soon as you step into the thermal baths in Budapest, you'll realize that your trip across the Atlantic was already well worth it
Some Hungarians around you are aware that you're a visitor, but they pay you no mind, leaving you to soak and unwind however you please. You see an elderly man playing chess with a teenager a few feet away, and you realize that the baths are all about community and inclusivity, everyone sharing the common objective of relaxation. And for today, you are part of it -- but make sure to rest up; if you're planning on participating in Budapest's nightlife scene, you're sure to be in for a very long evening. So long, in fact, that you may be due for another dip into the baths the very next day…
Welcome to Budapest. To put it simply, if you haven't been here, it's time you make plans to do so. This city appeals to many; those who aren't feeling thermal baths and nightclubs will enjoy the culture, history and natural beauty. It's more than just the political capital of Hungary -- it's also the commercial and cultural nexus. Split by the Danube River and comprised of three main regions (Pest, Buda and Óbuda), Budapest is meshed together with old architecture and grassy parks. Don't fret about limited dining options: Almost every cuisine imaginable is here and the prices are fair enough that you can sample most of them. Every variation of shopping awaits you, and the museums will enliven your afternoons if you give them some of your time. In fact, you will find that time is precisely the main issue, as there's never enough of it to enjoy all the sights. And it's oh so easy to spend an entire afternoon at the baths or inside a cozy coffeehouse.

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