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Postcards from Budapest

It might sound foolhardy, but on a recent holiday trip to Budapest, Hungary, I found myself splashing away outside in the Szechenyi Spa, the largest thermal bath in Europe.

I say “foolhardy,” because it was 20 degrees that day, but the waters, which originate from the artesian springs of Budapest’s City Park, were luxuriously warm and therapeutic. It was quite pleasant — and steamy.

As you might remember from last week, my family took a vacation over the recent holidays to Munich, Germany; Budapest, Hungary; and Vienna, Austria. This week, I’m sharing a few of our photographs from Budapest, the Hungarian capital city.

You probably know this, but the Danube River separates the Buda and Pest sides of the city. We spent most of our time on the Pest side, where things such as the Parliament building, St. Stephen’s Basilica, Opera House and Great Market Hall are located.

From the Buda Castle District side are incredible views across the river. In our two-and-a-half days in Budapest, we hardly made a dent in the things to see. Some of our stops included the Buda Castle District, including Matthias Church, the Hungarian National Gallery and Fishermen’s Bastion; Great Market Hall; the Basilica; Heroes’ Square; the spa; the Terror Museum; and some great places to eat goulash and drink palinka, a pretty strong Hungarian fruit brandy.

The subway system and trams were efficient and dependable, and I experienced another first for me when we took an overnight train, complete with sleeper compartment, from Munich to Budapest. I slept like a baby.

Sorry, the steam scared me away from taking pictures in the spa. Next week: some pictures from Vienna.

— Mark Wineka, Salisbury Post

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