Some Information About The Danube:
Useless to say that this long and charming river has modeled history of many European cities and capitals throughout the centuries.
Not by chance the Danube flows through countless capitals like Budapest, Bucharest (not exactly through but near), Bratislava, Vienna and cities such as Passau, Regensburg, Svistov etc
It also has 10 different names since it touches 10 different european countries; I guess the most famous is Donau in German, then Duna Hungarian, Dunaj in Slovak and Polish, etc
What are its origins? It originates from the Schwarzwald – the black forest – in the south of Germany, passes through Austria, Slovakia, Hungary, Poland, etc and emerges into the Black Sea.
The river was also an important development factor for these landlocked or almost landlocked European countries that have no access to the sea and thus had harder time to transport goods around. The danube is, indeed, the longest navigable river in Europe behind Volga and still used nowadays.
Many cities, villages, towns, capitals, were born along its banks. They chose it on purpose in order to have access to fresh water, to use it for commercial purposes or tourist purposes and historical events took place along its banks. The locals caln also bathe there as they have no sea here to refresh themselves during the hot summers. You can see how much a simple river can model the history of a country and the lives of people.
How To Enjoy The Danube In Budapest:
The Buda Side Of The Danube At Night
The danube in Budapest is marvellous, it gives its best, especially at night. The first thing you should do once in Budapest is a refreshing stroll along the Danube at night.
I advise you to take the bus to Clark Adam Ter (you will pass on the bridge), located at the feet of the hill where Buda castle is situated, and proceed always straight along the Danube, until you reach Batthyany Ter metro station.
You will come across a charming lighted up chain bridge, some nice churches on the way and of course the illuminated parliament, which always takes your breath away. When I visited Budapest, there were not many people, mainly locals jogging, so I enjoyed even more.
Shoes On The Danube
Another landmark of Budapest not to miss is this sort of art installation along the Pest bank of the Danube.
Some ultra realistic shoes are scattered around to point out the place where during the IIWW many Hungarian Jews were forced to jump into the Danube leaving their shoes behind.
Of course, most of them died in the river drowning or freezing to death. They wanted to pay honour to these people who lost their lives for a futile cause and I must say they managed. These “shoes” are now famous everywhere in the world.
Navigate The Danube
Budapest also offers many cruises on the Danube. I actually do not know much because I did not try but I am sure it will be enjoyable.
For those who can stay many days in Budapest and have more money than a poor university student can check this out.
I think some are cruises associated with bigger cruises on the sea but I am sure you also find shortnad indipendent ones. As for me, I managed to see the river from a boat, which was the metro replacement for the metro stop Kossuth Lajos.
It was really a great idea to replace it with a boat. Of course, it was a bit more expensive than a normal ticket but totally worth it ahah
Daylight Stroll Along The Pest Side Of The Danube
At night the Danube is magic, it catapults you back to the time when Hungary was still a part of the huge Austro-Hungarian Empire with its atmosphere but during the day, it shows how modern and eclectic this city is.
There are many locals strolling along the Danube, couples kissing on the benches, tourists beholding the magic sight of the Buda Castle from the Pest Side, trams and cars darting…it is the portrait of a living city.
To enjoy the Danube I highly recommend to start your stroll near the Chain Bridge and go up along the banks of the river until the Parliament.
I think it takes more or less 40 minutes but it is not tiring at all and totally worth it. If you want you can also start from the central market near the Liberty Bridge but it will be much longer.
I visited around that area when I went to the central market so I exploited the moment to have a look at the bridge and at the Danube.
Have you ever visited a capital or a city on the Danube? Have you ever bewn to Budapest? If so, what place did you like the most? Let me know in the comments below 😉