We caught up on some sleep this morning as Nerrille had to work, so we walked down to the river to get a bit of a sense of how the city looks and is laid out. The Danube river splits the two sides of the city, Buda and Pest (pronounced Pesht). On the Pest side are parliament buildings, basilicas, hotels, shops and more bars than you can poke a stick at. I don't know what it is about Central Europe but every bar is so cool, unpretentious and a place you can hang out in peace in the afternoon having a beer or food. And the majority of them have wifi. At night they fill up and kick off, but not until about 9-10.
We walked both sides of the river, it's quite a nice city with lots of big old buildings. It's also the middle of autumn so the leaves are nice shades of brown, yellow and red. I think it's my first ever taste of a proper autumn, walking along the river and through parks amongst the leaves while with each gust of wind another bunch fall off and float to the ground. During the day it's a very quiet city for the most part, the population is only about 2 million I think.
After a lunch in the sun beside the basilica we walked down the main shopping street which is pedestrians only. Like Pitt St mall but about 20 times longer and nicer. It's called Vaci Utca (c is pronounced 'ts'. There are heaps of restaurants and shops but we walked all the way down to the end where it meets the Green Market.
The Green Market is a big shed-like building with lots of fresh food markets, butchers etc on the bottom floor and lots of craft/textile and a few bars on the top floor. We had a look around for a while before walking around the streets with Nerrille looking at buildings, synagogues and ended up in a bar called Szimpla. This is the little brother to a bigger bar of the same name in another part of Budapest.
We sat around for a while drinking beers and using wifi escaping the cold. Dinner was at a traditional Hungarian restaurant which which I can't remember the name of, but it was tiny with really nice staff and amazing but simple food. Had grilled chicken with cheese and mushrooms.