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June 25th: Budapest, Hungary

 

2015-06-25 11.33.12

We arrived in Budapest in the wee hours of the morning, and woke to find ourselves parked alongside several other cruise ships, with a very long gangway to the shore. The wharf was very old, and obviously not designed for the  type of river traffic that it has these days.

Following breakfast, we once again gathered in groups for our 3 hour bus/walking tour of both Buda and Pest.

There is much to see in this beautiful UNESCO World Heritage Site, and I tend to take pictures at every opportunity, but I will just add a few to the mix, with a small photo tour.

First, we did a bus tour of the flat Pest side of the city,

with a stop at Hero’s Square.

Then we crossed the river and climbed up to the Buda village to see the St. Matthais Church, and the Fisherman’s Bastion.

The day, however, was not yet done. In the afternoon I joined an optional tour to see a Hungarian Horse Show.  We drove to the beautiful Equestrian Park of the Lázár brothers, who have won several world championships in carriage riding. Dashing Hungarian horsemen welcomed us, and gave us a piece of bread, and a shot of and the famous Hungarian “pálinka” (brandy).

The horse show featured varied styles of horsemanship – including using the horses as beds! The horses are trained to not flinch at all when whips are repeated cracked. With this, they could go into battle and not be disturbed by guns.

After the show, we visited their small petting zoo, a riding museum, the stables, and then enjoyed a scenic carriage ride through the surrounding area.

Today was the last day for the passengers that were only on the first half of the cruise, so the ship did a repositioning upriver, to allow for easier debarkation.

The captain did the reposition after dark, however, to allow us to see the beautiful night lights of Budapest along the shore.

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