Context Travel. Context is a trusted international brand, and the company's Budapest tours are known to be well curated and well informed. Specializing in walking tours that are focused on historical and architectural topics including the Jewish Quarter, belle époque Budapest, and communist Budapest, the tours are led by local scholars and get high marks for the quality of their local guides. Budapest, Budapest. 800/691–6036; www.contexttravel.com/city/budapest.
Fungarian. With a unique mix of 1–3 hour-starter classes in Hungarian language and culture, as well as thematic walking tours such as using the public transport system or learning about life under communism, Fungarian offers an experience, and orientation, you can't get elsewhere. Tours are not cheap and are limited to three people or less but accommodations can be made for larger groups. Budapest, Budapest. 1/333–4742; www.fungarian.hu. From €60.
Legenda Sightseeing Boats. Take the one-hour "Danube Legend" cruise after nightfall to enjoy the spectacularly lit waterfront while learning about the history (and seeing video of the interiors) of some of the prominent buildings you're sailing past. Legenda also offers daytime and evening boat cruises in 30 languages, as well as candlelit dinner cruises. You can buy your ticket when you show up at the pier, but you might want to buy it in advance to ensure availability. District V, Jane Haining rakpart 7, Budapest, Budapest, 1052. 1/266–4190; www.legenda.hu. From 3900 Ft.
Taste Hungary. Taste Hungary is quickly becoming the most respected boutique company for walking tours in Budapest and day trips around Hungary. The company started out in wine tourism, and their expert tours of nearby wine regions like Etyek and Eger are a great way to see some of the countryside. Budapest options include specialized walking tours focusing on such varied subjects as the culinary scene, Jewish Budapest, or craft beers. Owned by a Hungarian and American couple, Taste Hungary has a lot to offer. 36/30–551–9932; www.tastehungary.com.