Two days in Budapest + Danube River trip from Budapest to Passau, Germany
  • Day4

    Lazar Equestrian Park, Rural Hungary

    April 1, 2019 in Hungary ⋅ ⛅ 19 °C

    Visit to the Lazar Equestrian Park about 45-60 mins drive outside Budapest near Domony. A carriage dressage demonstration and more on Hungarian horsemanship. Local treats including chimney cake, salamis, cheese, Hungarian wine, and palikna, a Hungarian schnapps-style fruit brandy.Read more

  • Day4

    Jewish Quarter, Budapest

    April 1, 2019 in Hungary ⋅ ☀️ 17 °C

    Monday morning (April Fools) visit to Budapest Jewish Quarter, Dohaney Street Synagogue (Europe’s largest, also known as the Great Synagogue of Budapest) and Museum, and what is essentially Budapest’s Fairfax District with some kosher restaurants, cafes, Judaica shops, other shuls, and more interspersed with a gentlemen’s club and other businesses. This is assimilation. And the glatt kosher restaurants are open on Shabbat. Had great flodini—a traditional Hungarian Jewish layered coffee cake dessert—at Spinoza cafe in the quarter, where we met with a 27-year old local woman to discuss how the younger generation is embracing (or not) their religious and cultural heritage. Despite vastly different histories and contexts, some fundamental issues are not that different than in the American diaspora. A good conversation. And while several nascent efforts at a shiddach with eligible American young men were broached by the aspiring yentes in our group, she left our meeting still unattached.Read more

  • Day3

    Heroes Square, Baths, and Metro

    March 31, 2019 in Hungary ⋅ ☀️ 21 °C

    No soak for us, but we did check out one of Budapest’s most popular public baths. Also Heroes Square and the Metro back to our hotel. Then transfer time (about a three-minute plus walk) to our ship and, like Styx, we will go sail away.

    “I'm sailing away
    set an open course for the virgin [river]
    I've got to be free free to face the life that's ahead of me
    On board I'm the captain so climb aboard
    We'll search for tomorrow on every shore

    . . .

    I look to the [river]
    reflections in the waves spark my memory
    Some happy some sad
    I think of childhood friends and the dreams we had
    We live happily forever so the story goes
    But somehow we missed out on that pot of gold
    But we'll try best that we can to carry on”
    Read more

  • Day3

    Buda Castle District

    March 31, 2019 in Hungary ⋅ ☀️ 19 °C

    Tour of Buda Castle District UNESCO World Heritage site with our private guide Timea, local Hungarian guide and historian, this am. Including Matthias Church, National Archives, and Buda Castle/Royal Palace, now home to three museums.Read more

  • Day2

    Hungarian Parliament--Inside Edition

    March 30, 2019 in Hungary ⋅ ⛅ 20 °C

    Went back this afternoon to see the inside of Parliament building on the 1530 English tour. Quite the structure, and quite the history. What was once designed for a bi-cameral legislature of the Austro-Hungarian Empire now houses a unicameral legislature for just Hungary.

    Also saw our ship (Crystal Ravel) at its berth just about a block down from our hotel. Ready to board tomorrow to see what Captain Stubing and Cruise Director Julie have in store for us on SS Minow substitute.
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  • Day2

    Hungarian Parliament

    March 30, 2019 in Hungary ⋅ ⛅ 18 °C

    Parliament building with Hungarian and Transylvania’s flags flying, changing of the guard, Agriculture Building, and empty shoes memorial along the Danube for 1944-45 Holocaust victims.