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Budapest Summer Break: From Leafy Buda To Trendy Pest

12th August 2015

Budapest is one of Europe's most captivating cities, with World Heritage Sites, fine concert halls, first-rate galleries, Michelin-starred restaurants and a buzzing nightlife. Add to that the Danube river, which is perfect for cruising and a natural dividing line between the leafy Buda area and trendy Pest.

There are plenty of ways to spend a break in the city. Here are just a few:

Hit The Right Notes

Classical music lovers can trace the haunts of the Hungarian composer Franz Liszt on Curious Miles' Lisztomania tour. It starts at the Opera House and takes in the Music Academy as well as the Liszt Memorial Museum, a reconstruction of the composer's flat, which houses his original furniture, personal effects, scores and instruments. End the day at the newly built Mupa Budapest, home to one of the world's finest concert halls.

 Inside the lavish Opera House in Budapest (All images: Getty)

Paint The Town Red

Get the inside track on Budapest's contemporary art scene. An expert from Underguide can help you navigate some of the city's hard-to-find galleries and artists' studios on an Art Pulse tour.

Make your way to Balna, a spectacular building designed by the Dutch architect Kas Oosterhuis where you'll find the New Budapest Gallery as well as quirky design shops. Then wind your way to more galleries, a silkscreen studio and a fruit shop-cum-art space.

Tuck In

You might think of Hungarian cuisine as an acquired taste, but there's more to it than hearty goulash. On a Culinary Walk with Taste Hungary you'll start at the Central Market Hall, where you'll spy local favourites such as paprika, pork fat and goose liver, before exploring further.

En route there are plenty of opportunities for tastings: sample horse sausage at a butcher's shop; dobos torte at a traditional patisserie; and parenica (smoked cow's cheese) at a deli. End the day with a wine tasting, which includes tokaji, a sweet wine.


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 Browse for traditional food at the Central Market Hall

Building Works

For an insight into some of the city's most imaginative buildings, sign up to Context Travel's Belle Epoque Walk. Led by an art historian, the tour takes in an eclectic mix of Neo-Renaissance and Art Nouveau buildings.

Take a leisurely stroll along Andrassy Avenue, a Unesco World Heritage Site lined with grand mansions and town houses. Then wander down to the Opera House and the Academy of Music before making a pit stop at the Paris Department Store, an Art Nouveau masterpiece famous for its decorated cafe.

Bike In Time

Take a retro ride with BudaBike. As you skirt along the Danube river, you'll learn more about the city's past from the Roman era through to Communist rule. Whizz past Margaret Island, across the Arpad bridge, before stopping at a baroque square in Obuda.

After a break at the Roman banks, a promenade along the river, you'll spot socialist-style buildings, Roman ruins and an old gas power plant.

 A cycling tour is a great way to take in the sights of Budapest

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This article was written by Trisha Andres from The Independent and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.