Sunday was the big sightseeing day for us. We started off with Momento Park, the outdoor museum where all the statues from the communist era are kept. I have to be honest and say that I didn’t really enjoy Momento Park. Their website made it look far more interesting than it really was. I’m not one for dwelling on the past (more of a move on and let it go kind of person) and I’m certainly not a history buff so maybe that’s why it didn’t really appeal. In fact, the huge Republic of Councils monument (the one of the man running with the flag) actually upset me a little. It had a negative vibe around it and made me feel uncomfortable being close it – not the other statues though, just that one….
The photo collage shows the Republic of Council’s monument (based on a 1919 revolutionary poster), Stalin’s boots (all that is left of the Stalin statue after Hungarian revolutionaries demolished it in 1956), The Béla Kun Memorial and Ostapenko & Captain Steinmetz statues
On our way back from Momento park (which we had to reach by tram and bus) we stopped at the Gellert hotel with it’s amazing spa. Aaah, this was so so so much better than Momento Park! We couldn’t see the thermal baths, but the foyer of the spa complex was so beautiful. Everything is so rich and luxurious without being tacky or over the top. Despite the tourists standing around it still had a sense of calm and relaxation – and that was just foyer!
Our last stop for the day was at the Castle District of Buda which is a UNESCO World Cultural Heritage site. The Castle District consists of the Royal Palace (which we didn’t visit), Matthias church (with it’s pretty roof tiles) and Fisherman’s Bastion (that looks like something from a fairytale). Obviously there are other buildings as well, but these are the main ones.
We really enjoyed our time here amongst the old medieval buildings, away from the grey and depressing buildings on the Pest side. On our way back to the hotel we stopped at a little touristy shop where the shopkeeper told us all about the traditional Hungarian food. He was a lovely man and so interesting to listen to. His food knowledge came in very handy later that evening.
Here I am putting my newly found knowledge of Hungarian cuisine to the test: Goulash as a starter, Chicken Paprikash or “paprika chicken” with sour cream and dumplings as main and crepes filled with cream cheese with a lemon-vanilla sauce. Hubby had the same starter, veal stew with sour cream and rice, and for dessert Arany Galuska or “golden dumplings” with a thin custard. Apart from hubby’s dessert which was a bit dry the food was really good and there are lots of it. A very good way to spend our last evening in Budapest.