- 23 Dec 2016 9:00 AM
Those who are not put off by the cold can enjoy an unparalleled view of downtown Budapest in the evening. Many buildings, squares and avenues put on their formal attire, but Andrássy Avenue’s atmosphere tops them all.
Following the avenue all the way, we reach one of the centres of Hungarian skating, the City Park Open Ice Skating Rink, operating since 1870. If you would like to get a little warmer, it’s time to visit Rudas, the bath with the most beautiful view in the city.
Bathing culture is part of the Budapest lifestyle; it is almost natural for us, yet even the most famous metropolises lack this luxury. Enjoy the Pest side panorama from a jacuzzi on top of the thermal bath, but if you wish for something even more animated, check out the street view from Budapest’s wood-burning sauna bus!
Another rather extreme experience is the latest service at Széchenyi Baths, called a Beer Spa, which in practice means adding beer ingredients – malt, hops and yeast – to a wooden bath full of 36 °C thermal water, which is extremely beneficial to the bathers’ skin and system. After these refreshing programmes, let us return to the Pest-side Danube bank, more specifically tram line 2, in the top ten on the list in National Geographic’s book Journeys of a Lifetime.
This uniquely atmospheric ride takes on a special dress during Advent, made of 3500 metres of light wire with 40 thousand shining cold white and blue LEDs, and with festive ornamentation inside the car. After the holiday joyride, visit one of the Advent fairs. Besides getting presents for under the Christmas tree, you can also sate your appetite with specialities from hot mulled wine to roasted chestnuts.
The most popular Budapest fair is the one on Vörösmarty tér, which attracts 3-400,000 tourists per year. It has long been rated as among the top ten in Europe, and has 160 cultural and family events to offer this year.