I am so excited to be sharing with you the first post of my fantastic city break in Budapest, Hungary. Just as a brief overview, Budapest is a city of such cultural richness and history that it was easy to get lost in the wonder of it all. There is so much to share with you guys that I am actually going to start with a really short post about something that Budapest is renowned for – the thermal baths!
Budapest sits on a natural thermal baths site, which is also one of the reasons the Romans decided to settle in this location. They wanted to enjoy the banks of the Danube and now the city is actually called the City of Spas, considering a world heritage site in practically every corner and one of the most beautiful cities in Europe.
With such a huge choice of baths to go to we had the pleasure of visiting two! Let’s focus on Gellert Baths first. hese, along with the Szechenyi Baths, are the most expensive, luxurious and stunning baths. Each of these averages at around 4000 to 5000 FT (forints), but the experience is worth it.
Gellert is a mix gender thermal spa, with several pools that vary in temprature from 20 degrees to 40 degrees! YES 40 and it feels awesome! We started in the coolest exterior baths and slowly worked our way towards the 40 degree water which felt difficult at first but cleansed my skin purifying its pores.
The other incredible aspect of the Gellert baths is simply its architecture. It was said by someone that bathing in the Gellert baths is like bathing in a cathedral. The building itself does not look like something special, a hotel with a rather bleak façade, however the spa inside is truly magnificent. Bright and colourful, it fills you with life to walk between each stunningly decorated pool and get lost in the labyrinth of the building.
I can only encourage you to safely deposit some of the money you are taking with you into going to the baths. There are plenty of options and it is truly worth it. We also had the opportunity to go to the Kiraly Baths, which were much cheaper and they followed the building structure of the original Turkish baths with an octagonal pool in the middle. Unfortunately we were unable to get photos of this one, because the temperature was so high and fumes so much that we were not allowed to wander around with our cameras.
Other baths you can visit are the Szechenyi, which are located on the City Park. Rudas Baths are also in the octagonal shape, so truly wonderful as an ode to the original structure of these buildings. Margaret island has options too, and there are plenty more! Just do your research, but be aware that some are still gentleman only baths.
For now I leave with this! Happy reading, writing and travelling!