Before the coronavirus epidemic, Budapest was one of the hubs of European tourism attracting many people from all over the world with its architecture, natural beauty, thermal baths, party district, etc. In the last few months, tourists disappeared, but thanks to the end of the lockdown, they might slowly return, and The Telegraph says it is still worth visiting the Hungarian capital for the following reasons.
According to The Telegraph, before the Covid-19 pandemic, “Budapest was long an Eden for carefree wee-hours revellers.” The Hungarian capital was under a strict lockdown in the last two months, so people went outside for only a walk or to buy the necessities. That was extremely important because global experiences showed that the virus spreads quicker in big cities. However,
the city now opens again.
“Shopping at supermarkets and drugstores between the hours of 9 am and noon remains the domain of those 65 and over, but terraces, a lively staple of Budapest summers, beckon to the rest of the city residents once again. Even indoor dining and imbibing is now possible at restaurants and bars,” wrote Alia Akkam, a travel journalist.
She says that it was strange to arrive in the 7th district (part of the party district) in June and to see that there were no tourists. That is because, currently, Hungarian citizens, permanent resident card holders of the European Economic Area, those who have close Hungarian relatives, and diplomats with resident cards are the only ones allowed to enter Hungary,
followed by a 14-day quarantine.
Ms Akkam says that she headed to Szimpla Kert, the most famous ruin bar of Budapest, the first time she could.
“The most colourful and famed of its kind, it always translates to curious throngs of folks from around the world, often queuing behind ropes for a drink or two,” she says about the place. “I ordered a fröccs, the Hungarian go-to quencher of the season that pairs carbonated water with white wine – although rosé is an equally common request – from one of the masked bartenders and sat down on one of the wobbly stools,” she added.
Then, she went to Kőleves Kert for a second drink.
Palatinus Strand was one of the first thermal baths to reopen in Budapest. “Relaxing in these gurgling pools alongside strangers is another beloved Budapest ritual, but all the vaunted historic ones, including Széchenyi, Gellért, and the Ottoman-style Rudas, are still shuttered for the time being. However, this pastime can once again be relished, albeit on a different scale, amid the open-air pools of modern Paskál in the residential Zugló neighbourhood, or better yet, at Palatinus Strand. Both reopened on May 30,” she said.