Budapest Parliement

48h in Budapest : Ultimate Travel Guide

Want to have a fun city trip? 

The Lisbon of the East… Welcome to Budapest! The city that almost never sleeps and a place where everything is possible. 

Discover the charm of this city, full of monuments, between modernity and antiquity. 

Perfect for history lovers and long walks. 

Trip map created using Wanderlog, a road trip planner app on iOS and Android

Where to stay ?

View of Budapest

The easiest way, especially for a first discovery, would be to stay in the center of the city, in the Pest section.  This would allow you to be close to the main tourist places and to be able to visit on foot mainly.

  • The Hive Party Hostel Budapest

    The dorm bed costs less than 10eur, you will have a kitchen and a terrace. This hostel is great for meeting new people and partying, you got concerts and parties organized every night.

  • Das Nest Budapest 

    Situated next to the Basilica. 7eur a night for your dorm bed, it’s pretty easy to stay on a budget in Budapest. You will also have a kitchen with a coffee machine and some common rooms. Activities are also organized.

  • Maverick City Lodge

    Situated next to the Kazinczy street, a famous street with a lot of bars, you will be well situated. A bit more expensive, you are in the 10-15eur/night range, but breakfast is included.

How to get around ?

The metro of budapest is pretty easy to understand and will help you to get around quickly. I will still recommend to walk in the city and see what the city has to offer. 

Transportation is pretty cheap and you have a nice designed app to keep your tickets. A daily shuttle connects the airport to the city center in 20 minutes. 

Day 1

Budapest is separated in two parts, Buda and Pest (pretty self-explanatory). On day 1, I will recommend to explore the Buda , the majestic part.

Let’s grab some lunch (or brunch, it depends of your arrival time), my go to address that I recommend is Szimply – Breakfast & brunch . My only advice is to come early or to book, since this place is always crowded. 

Jump on public transportation or be ready to walk across the chain bridge (under construction at the moment)  to get to the other side of the Danube.

Budapest Chain Bridge

The first and most famous stop will be the Buda Castle. You can take the funicalur, a nice experience but pricey in my opinion.  I will simply  recommend to walk up to the Castle District (it should take 5-10 mins). The interior of the Castle itself cannot be visited, except the part where the National Gallery and the Budapest History Museum are housed. Don’t hesitate to walk around the interior courtyard. 

From the castle, take the street “Támok utca” to reach the Mathias Church and the Fishermen’s Bastion, the place from which you can best appreciate the grandeur of the parliament. The view is splendid but be ready to wait for you picture’s spot, as it’s always crowded. 

fishermen's bastion budapest

Find your way back  to the Buda Castle, and you walk the Gellert Park, where you can find the Gellert bath and an amazing view of the city. Pass by the bridge to go to the other side,.

You will probably be hungry by this time, so let’s grab some lunch at the Great Market hall, a restored Neo-gothic tunnel. You can find plenty of choices between local foods.

Walk around Váci u, an iconic street, continue  and you will arrive in the center of Pest, where you will find plenty of shops if you are into shopping, to spend the afternoon. On the way I can recommend you Molnár’s kürtőskalács, to taste the sweet hungarian specialty.


Budapest is well known for its nightlife, and the best neighborhood to do that is the Jewish Quarter. There, you will find Szimpla Kert, an open building in a edgy-style with the famous ruins bar. If you want to party all night long, this is the place to do that. Maybe it is your chance to taste Unicom ? 

Szimpla Kert

If you prefer to spend the night on a rooftop, you have a few bars. I have been to the 360 since you can grab some snacks with your drink. The only downside is that you have a little entry fee, so I recommend to bring some cash with you. 

A great adress to eat next to it is the Tereza Mexican Restaurant. This is a open court restaurant, with great Mexican food.

Day 2

For this morning, let’s go to one of the most iconic things to do in Budapest, the Széchenyi Baths. On the way, you can grab some breakfast and coffee to bite bakery café that I recommend.

The spa is situated next to Heroes Square, in the big park where you can go for a walk or go pedaling if that is your thing. 

On the way back, you can find the Terror Museum, a museum that race the history of the fascist and communist regimes in Hungary. 

Since we are exploring the Pest part today, let’s walk to the St Stephen’s Basilica, the largest church of Budapest. You can see the beauty by the exterior, or take your chance in the cupola (yes you can go inside of it).

St Stephen's Basilica

I don’t have any specifics recommendations for lunch, but you will find so many great places in this neighbourhoods. I have put some adresses at the end of the article. 

Continue the way to my favorite part of the trip, the Parliament of Hungary. This is the perfect example of Neo- gothic architecture as well. It is an impressive building since it’s 96 meters high ! Walk around and go inside as well.

Next to it, you will find “The shoes on the Danube”. This is a sculpture made of 60 iron little shoes, a heartbreaking memorial. During the Second World War, more than 3500 people were killed by fascists in Budapest. Some of them were ask to take off their shoes before being shot.

After two days of walking, you must cloture this weekend the best way. The Hnngarian Parliament is a must-see at night, at the best way to see it is by taking a cruise on the Danube, the river of Budapest. 

A few more adresses to eat

  • PIzza slice  at Street Pizza
  • Akvarium Klub 
  • Hummusbar 
  • Blue Agori Bazilika Greek Street Food Bar
  • Budapest Bagel 
  • Tuning Bar & Burger

Bonus Tips

My only tip is to enjoy and always have cash on you. To warn you, in most atms the minimum amount is 70eur equivalent in Hungarian Forent.

Have a nice trip ! 

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