As most avid travellers know Budapest is a pretty cheap place to visit, and that it is! But what, where, what can you do if you're on a really cheap budget? We've got 15 pretty great things you can do to enjoy Budapest all without spending more than €5!
14. Two Shots of Unicum
A Hungarian treasure. Unicum is an example of genuine hard liquor. It's something you'll probably only try once, as its taste is incredibly bitter. But it's what the old men drink, so if you want to get culturally involved then try it! Shots are usually around 500ft - 600ft which is literally €2.
13. Ride the No.2 Tram All The Way Down The Danube
Voted as the most beautiful tram ride in the world, the No. 2 goes from Central Market, passing sights such as The Palace, the Chain Bridge, Parliment all along the Danube. It's just one of the ways to see Budapest's beauty, although that's never really that hard.
12. Have A Boozy Picnic
Head to any of Budapest's beautiful parks with a cheap bottle of wine, some sandwiches and cups and just watch the world go by! Gather the peeps at the hostel, get to know some new people and just chill out. You're on holiday!
11. Check Out The Grand Budapest Markets
You don't need to go on any tour to learn about the markets, they're old, they're beautiful and it's a great way to get an insight into Budapest life! Central Market pictured here is definitely the easiest to find, and the by far the prettiest. But if you want the real experience, without the trimmings check out the market hall at Lehel Tèr for the real deal. Or if you want the more alternative market, Szimpla holds a farmers market every Sunday between 9am and 2pm with live music!
10. Have 2 Glasses of Wine At Fogashaz
Now at Fogashaz you're going to drink a lot more than 2 glasses of wine, but it's a good start. The bar itself is worth checking out, with a mix young locals and international students, several rooms. a club upstairs, techno, rock, alternative music you'll always guaranteed a great time... and probably a new friend to bring back to your hostel.
9. Memento Park
Upon a quick exit from Hungary in 1989, the Soviets didn't have the time to discuss what they wanted to do with their statues. And for some bizarre reasons Hungarians love statues. But they weren't crazy on the Soviet ones so they moved them to what's now known as Memento Park. Located about 40 mins from central Budapest, it's 500ft entrance fee and it's kind of cool to check out. It makes the history of Budapest very real to you, a lot more effective than reading any guide book...
8. Take 3-4 Shots of Palinka at Abszolut Palinka
You can't come to Budapest and not sample the nation's drink, that's just insulting. It's a fruit brandy in case your wondering, I actually didn't ask what it was for about a month or so living here, but if it's alcoholic I'll drink it! It comes in all kind of flavour (and alcohol percentages) peach, apricot, prune, passionfruit but cherry tends to be most people's favourite. Although I love the hazelnut and chocolate, strong but goes down smooth!
7. Line Your Stomach With Kürtőskalács
Or chimney cakes as they're called in English! These delicious stacks of goodness can be found all around Budapest markets, Andràssy utca street stall and Dèak Tèr Metro station! Usually around the €1.50 mark it makes for a great snack in between sightseeing and dinner. Vanilla, Cocoa, Cinnamon, Coconut, there's loads of different flavours which is a great excuse to eat them all!
6. Join the Jager Train At Retox!
Sundays are for relaxing, chilling out, recovering from endless nights of hard liquor and cheap beer. Not at Retox. Get back on it by hopping aboard the jager train! It's free to join, but better yet if a night of complete madness you're after, Retox is the place to go!
5. Try Làngos
Although deep-fried dough, with garlic oil, slathered with sour cream and cheese isn't that healthy for you, it is all good as it sounds. Plus it does wonders for your hangover. Stumble up to any market/street vendor and they're bound to have as it's Hungary's favourite street food dish. But if you're paying over 500ft for it, you're probably being ripped off. As a nightlife advocate, Làngos has saved my life numerous times. One of the best places to pick up some is Retro Büfé at the M3 station, Arany Janos. SO F*CKING GOOD.
4. Have Three 0.5ltr Beers (500ft each) at Szimpla Kert
Szimpla is just a must-drink-at bar when visiting Budapest. It is the ultimate ruin bar. Colourfully lite with random sh*t everywhere you'll find yourself charmed, and then incredibly amused when you're pissed. Although you may not find any Hungarians in the place, you will find an exquisite international selection of people equally amused (and intoxicated) as yourself. If you want to splash on more expensive beer, they have a wonderful selection!
3. Take A Free Walking Tour
Walking tours are the best way to get an insight into any city, so Budapest is no exception! Plus it's for free. Here at NEXT City Tours we're all about free walking tours! In all fairness our tours are pretty good banter, our guides are all local, not to mention they're all lovely. If you want to check out our Budapest walking tours just click here.
2. Buy Pre-Drinks
You'll find plenty of grocery stores or 'Èlelmiszer' as they're called here, sell bottles of wine for under 1000Ft, 250ml's of Vodka for 800ft, beers such as Arany Asòk and Dreher from 200ft. So pre-drinking/pre-gaming is pretty darn cheap here in Budapest!
1. Rent a Bringo cart
If you're interested in checking out Margaret Island (Margit Sziget) then you should definitely rent one these bad boys. The island itself is 2.2km in size, and after a night of heavy drinking you probably won't be in the mood to go for a massive walk. Grab a few new mates from your hostel, see this beautiful park and chase some ducks. You'll have a blast.
Have a blast in Budapest guys!
By Catherine Munnelly