10 May The Parts of Budapest That Come Alive in Spring
As the first sunny days of Spring shine down on Budapest, you’ll see a city transformed. Locals emerge from hibernation, tourists descend on the popular hot spots and terrace areas spring up outside of just about every cafe and bar.
If you’re landing here in the spring and you want to indulge the city’s new sun-soaked atmosphere, here are some ideas.
Beers at Erzsébet Square
Formerly a city bus depot, a few years ago Erzsébet Square was transformed into a park and swiftly became one of the coolest hangout spots in the city. Thanks to a popular club called Akvárium, an assortment of trendy bars and cafes lining the park, and a whole lot of green space which happens to sit right in the center of the city, it’s now a place to see or be seen whenever the weather gets good.
Grab a drink and some food from one of these vendors, or bring something from home and find a green spot to call your own. It gets busy, particularly at the weekends, but the atmosphere is relaxed and it’s easy to get talking if you want to meet some new people.
Location: Erzsébet square, V district, Erzsébet square 12.
Wine and Dine on Gozsdu Courtyard
Just a short walk away in the heart of the city’s vibrant Jewish neighborhood is Gozsdu Courtyard, one of the many successes to come out of the area’s ongoing regeneration. It’s a walking street lined with some of Budapest’s best cafes, bars and restaurants offering both local and foreign cuisine favourites.
As well as plenty of alfresco opportunities, there is a skybar for those seeking a drink with a view, and on the weekends a thrift market brings the wares of local creatives to the street.
Location: Gozsdu Courtyard, VII district, Király street 13.
Hiking in Normafa
Normafa is the place where people go to escape the hustle and bustle of downtown Budapest. Nestled in the Buda Hills, it’s a beautiful hiking spot that offers fun for the whole family.
Hike a trail, bring a picnic or even spark up a BBQ if you’re feeling ambitious – it’s one of the few places in the city you’re allowed to have one. There is a huge play park for kids and not far away is the iconic Erzsébet Tower which offers sweeping views of the city, the Danube River and the surrounding countryside.
Location: Normafa, XII district, Eötvös street 59.
Somewhat out the city, along the Buda bank of the Danube River lies a very popular beach bar named Fellini Római. “A beach?” I hear you say. Well, yes, this part of the riverbank does indeed have a small stone strip of beach and access to the water and is indeed very pleasant to visit during the spring and summer time. The bar itself has great food and drink, deck chairs available and regular musical entertainment. It’s also possible to rent a canoe from nearby if you want to take to the water.
It’s popular to cycle there, or you can take the public ferry if you’re not in the mood for any sort of strenuous activity. Finally, nearby is the charming artist town of Szentendre which makes for a great place to start or end your day with dinner and drinks.
Location: Fellini Római, III district, Kossuth Lajos üdülőpart 5.