Budapest, Hungary–our favorite former Austro-Hungarian city

in Eastern Europe

Budapest, Hungary is a city of both historical and modern culture with elaborate architecture built from the 1700s forward. It was the 3rd stop on our May 2017 tour of Eastern Europe, and our favorite “big city” in the former Habsburg or Austro-Hungarian Empire. Budapest consists of 3 merged old cities along the picturesque Danube River: Buda, Pest, and Obuda, with fascinating, historical sites on both sides of the Danube.  This city’s architectural style, for the most part, is similar to Prague and Vienna,

because all were most recently part of the Habsburg Empire prior to World War I. Then they were part of Nazi Germany, and except for Vienna, these cities were in the Soviet Bloc (of which there were still traces of ugly concrete-block buildings). Except for the Budapest Parliament, these former-Habsburg cities blend together in my mind. Again it was the Jewish section of Budapest that we remember most clearly, probably because of our wonderful guide, Gabriella, AND my emotional engagement in its history.

 

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