Saturday, 1 October 2011
Back to Budapest 4 - Parklife!
Budapest's City Park is one of those delightful places to wander through on a lazy Sunday morning. Or in my case, before I was going to jump out of the city and head back to Poland, continuing my grand road trip. So after a quick rinse and wash, it was time to jump up and head to the park. Onto the metro I went and a few stop s later, I arrived at one of Budapest's prettiest sights. As I did not spend much time here last year, it was good to actually take a proper bit of time out in the park before I headed out of the city.
Its main entrance in Heroes' Square which is a world heritage site, famed tourist magnet and the setting of my Gravatar. Beautiful, huge in its expanse and green! In any city parks are welcome, but in a city as pretty as Budapest, it is simply the icing on the cake! It makes the city really stunning and it the place to head to anytime, but when the sun is shining, the make it so!
Now, City Park is considered to be the world's first public urban park. While is shares a history with many other European parks of being a hunting ground for the local Sovereign, the area today known as City Park was actually opened up in the 18th Century to be used for relaxation purposes. By order of the Emperor! And while the park has been heavily modified since then, the concept of a green public space, free for all to utilise began here. And utilised it is! A wonderful lung in the middle of the city, this breath of fresh air has a boating lake (or ice rink in the winter), an underground station and its own bathhouse! The famed Széchenyi Baths.
Being located so close to the Park, Heroes' Square deserves a mention. It perfectly compliments the park. This wide open space, (a bit of a traffic eyesore however). A world heritage sight, the Square itself houses museums and art galleries galore, plus being at the end of the iconic Andrassy Avenue (akin to Kensington Gore in London) marks a great focal point of the city.
So that was that, my trip to Budapest was over. Far too quickly too, this time I only spent a weekend here, but what a great weekend. The destination of my first road trip, it was great to meet up with old friends in the city and to see even more of this incredible European Capital. But for me, Sunday had arrived, and that meant it was time to head back onto the road. Time to head back to Mother Poland and time to head back on the road. I had barely recovered from the last drive, but it was time to head north on my road trip. This time I would be spending a lot longer through SLovakia, instead of flooring through on highways, taking in some of the scenery of this new country. But of course, that has to wait for another blog post...