First time to Vienna and Budapest

Old Sep 28th, 1999, 04:49 PM
  #1  
Geoff
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First time to Vienna and Budapest

I am travelling in early November to Budapest and Vienna. Any suggestions on places as a must see...or how to be with the locals in their setting would be appreciated. As well, what is each country known for as far as national product. Example, Spain and Turkey for leathers, Israel for diamonds..... <BR> <BR>Anything at all is much appreciated. Thanks
 
Old Sep 28th, 1999, 05:05 PM
  #2  
Linda
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Budapest is a beautiful city. We found crystal, dolls, hand-made caps, of course paprika. If you wish to be with natives, stay with Dr. Walter Fleps & his wife. He is a retired English-speaking attorney & they live on a hill overlooking the city--nice view from bedroom terrace. It has been a couple of years but it was $40 for 2 per night, including big breakfast. His address is Bogar utca 20b, 1022 Budapest, Hungary. His phone number is 36-1-326-8170. We were there in November & it rained one morning, otherwise in the 40's & 50's & nice. Very good bargains. We ate a nice dinner, with bottle of wine, for less than $20. St. Matthias Church & surrounding area--old palace, all around the hill--is very nice. The Opera/Symphony Hall is nice and the tickets were $13 for best seats & $1.50 for upper balcony! I don't know if the spas were open because we just didn't have time, but from other reports they are worth it.
 
Old Sep 28th, 1999, 05:06 PM
  #3  
Linda
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Budapest is a beautiful city. We found crystal, dolls, hand-made caps, of course paprika. If you wish to be with natives, stay with Dr. Walter Fleps & his wife. He is a retired English-speaking attorney & they live on a hill overlooking the city--nice view from bedroom terrace. It has been a couple of years but it was $40 for 2 per night, including big breakfast. His address is Bogar utca 20b, 1022 Budapest, Hungary. His phone number is 36-1-326-8170. We were there in November & it rained one morning, otherwise in the 40's & 50's & nice. Very good bargains. We ate a nice dinner, with bottle of wine, for less than $20. St. Matthias Church & surrounding area--old palace, all around the hill--is very nice. The Opera/Symphony Hall is nice and the tickets were $13 for best seats & $1.50 for upper balcony! I don't know if the spas were open because we just didn't have time, but from other reports they are worth it.
 
Old Sep 29th, 1999, 05:40 AM
  #4  
dan woodlief
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You will also find lots of lace and porcelain in Budapest.
 
Old Sep 29th, 1999, 08:05 AM
  #5  
s.fowler
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Do a search for these cities. I know a number of us have written long informative posts in the past.
 
Old Oct 2nd, 1999, 05:44 PM
  #6  
Art Hussey
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I agree about staying with Dr Fleps. I just spent a week there and it really enhanced my time there. He has put together a series of walks (12) that kept me busy and walking the whole time that I was there except for a day trip to Lake Balaton. He is very knowledgable about the history of Hungary(Magyar) and will willingly share it. We had great discussions at breakfast. I think that Budapest is certainly one if not the most beautiful cities in Euerope. If you are there for several days get a 7 day Metro ticked for about $7.50. It is very worth wile as you can get anywhare with one. One of the out of the way visits I had was the Semelwise Musiam on the Buda side. It is in the house that Dr Semelwise was born. If you have never heard of him read the book 'The cry and the covenent'. There are so many musiums it is impossible to hit them all, but I did not find one that was not worth visiting. In Dr Fleps walks are several suggestions for very good resturants at very reasonable prices. I tried several of them and was not disapointed at any of them. His papers are in the process of being published and I asked him to send me a copy when they come out. They not only tell you where to go and how to get there but for each point there is a section on the background history. By the way he was only an attorney until the communists came and then studied to be a chemist (where his DR comes from) and spent most of his working life doing that. His wife also has some newspaper clipings of an experiance when the communists came to their flat and took here away for questining. The first thing that they did was to turn on the radio to see if it was tuned to 'Radio Free Europe'. Have a great trip and if you stay with the Flep's give them greetings from me. <BR> <BR>Art <BR>
 
Old Oct 3rd, 1999, 08:02 AM
  #7  
Zoe
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I spent a weekend in Budapest last April. It really is a beautiful and fascinating city. Buda (the old part) sits atop a hill and overlooks the Danube below--you reach it by taking a funicular. If you like wine, be sure to visit the Wine Museum, which is easy to miss unless you know about it. For about 6 you are given a glass and a packet of biscuits and are able to wander through the cellars at will, tasting wines from all over Hungary. Be warned--some are like rocket fuel! I can't remember the exact address, but basically you turn right after coming out of the funicular and walk past St Matthias church and the Hilton Hotel for about 5 mins till you come to a large square. The wine museeum is in the cellar of the large building facing you on the far side of the square. If you want more precise directions, e-mail me and I'll dig up the address. This was one of the highlights of our trip! <BR> <BR>Other must-sees are the National Museum, which chronicles the history of the Magyar people, the Franz Liszt Museum and Heroes Square (all on the Pest side of the river). <BR> <BR>Restaurants worth a visit are: Cyrano (fashionable bistro in the pedestrian zone), Bohemtanya (very local--good hearty food!) and Gerbeaud, the coffee house in Vorosmarty Utca. <BR> <BR>We stayed at the Kempinski (got a good discount) which is an amazing hotel in Pest. Others worth looking into are the Victoria and the Geller.
 
Old Oct 3rd, 1999, 10:08 AM
  #8  
lindi
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Before you go to a restaurant on the main street and eat for "less than 20 dollars", why don't you go to one of the less elite ones and eat a complete meal with drinks and dessert for less than 5 dollars! The three of us when we were in Szolnok, Hungary, paid around 10 bucks for three meals, four drinks, (and no dessert- we couldn't eat any more!) It was very good, nice waiter etc. We ate at Dreher's and at Grosser's (these are beer names as well as the names of the restaurants) and couple of other places. Very Hungarian things would be: Hungarian salami (szalami), paprika, embroidery, (himzes in hungarian; look for "kalocsai"), goose liver pate, marcipan, Tokaji wine, and other kinds of wines, Unicum, (alcohol. my parents love it!! it's made of many different herbsomething like 71) Don't miss: Hungarian cakes and pastries. Some examples: kremes, isler, retes, langos, dobostorta, mignon, feketeerdo torta etc. and gesztenyepure which is mashed chesnuts with whipped cream. Anyway these are my favourites. Yummy. All of these are less than one dollar! Young people generally learn English (as well as most older ones), and like foreigners. <BR>Nothing else comes to mind right now. <BR>lindi
 
Old Oct 4th, 1999, 12:50 PM
  #9  
Geoff
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What about the baths I keep hearing about? Are they like Turkeys? And the massage...I think we will be in the Hilton area...but don't need to pay Hilton prices. Any further suggestions? <BR> <BR>And thanks...the info is perfect. <BR>Geoff
 
Old Oct 4th, 1999, 08:47 PM
  #10  
Art
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The hotel Gellert is at the bottom of Gellert hill and has hot springs fed baths, massages etc. I paid (if I remember correctly) about 2000 florents (approx $8) for a bath and massage. After walking for 3 days solid my legs were killing me and that really re vitalized me. <BR>
 
Old Nov 11th, 1999, 11:04 AM
  #11  
Tom
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Geoff, <BR>Not sure if you have left yet, but I have been to the Gellert Baths. It is a trip. They give you little loin clothes and then send you into the baths. No one speaks English. Be sure to get a token at the front office to get a massage. (The big guys hit you on the behind when they want you to turn over!). <BR>After the baths, you can barely move. It is incredibly relaxing and I would make sure you go there after a full day of touring, as you will just want to sleep. <BR>Tom <BR>
 
Old Nov 12th, 1999, 08:33 AM
  #12  
the turnip
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I'm not sure if they're open in November so you may want to check into this before hand. In Vienna the "Heuriger" or wine gardens are a great way to spend a night eating and drinking with the locals. We loved our visit to one and it was very memorable. They are on the outskirts of the city but still easily reachable by bus. <BR> <BR>Let me know if you need more information.
 

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