Budapest visit : 2nd district

Budapest visit : 2nd district

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Budapest 2nd district
Budapest 2nd district

When I decided to start this blog, the original idea was to have a local guide for each district. Then I decided to visit at least some budapest districts alone, partly because I wanted to get started and didn’t have a guide for the first district, but mainly thinking it would actually be better to go alone, since that’s when crazy and weird things tend to happen. I wanted some interesting stories to write about, but if you read my first post, you’ll see that I was alone and had nothing unusual to report. After that sightseeing tour, I went to a concert and met an exchange student who was very interested in the idea of exploring Budapest. She joined me in this second budapest district tour, which made exploring a lot more interesting.

Rózsadomb (Rose Hill)
Rózsadomb (Rose Hill)

Much bigger than the first budapest district, Budapest’s second district is divided into many more neighborhoods. The best known of them is Rózsadomb (Rose Hill), an exclusive residential area which got its name from the legend that Gül Baba, who lived in the area, introduced roses to Budapest. His tomb, a place of pilgrimage for Muslims, is located in Rózsadomb, on Mecset utca (Mosque street).

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Statue of Péter Mansfeld
Statue of Péter Mansfeld
On our way to Gül Baba’s tomb, we got lost and found the Mansfeld Péter Park, learning the tragic story of the boy who was involved in the 1956 Revolution against Soviet rule and was later executed.
Komjádi market
Komjádi market
Not far from there, in front of the Császár-Komjádi Swimming Pool, is the Komjádi Market, which opens on Saturdays. It was created by the MDF (Hungarian Democratic Forum) as a solution to higher food prices after the fall of Communism, by allowing consumers to buy directly from farmers. There used to be many of these MDF markets all over Budapest, but they have been closed.
Komjádi market
Komjádi market

A more popular market in the second budapest district is the Fény Utcai Piac, the best place to get lángosRight outside the market we found Fusion, a nice little coffee shop with cheap sushi and delicious miso soup. The Fény Street Market is located behind the Mammut shopping mall, which consists of two buildings, Mammut I and Mammut II, connected to each other by a glass walkway and housing over 300 stores, restaurants and bars.
Lángos with cheese and sour cream
Lángos with cheese and sour cream
Mammut I and Mammut II
Mammut I and Mammut II
Millenáris Park Entrance
Millenáris Park Entrance

Also behind the Mammut is the Millenáris Park, which was built on a site formerly used as a factory. It opened in 2001, celebrating the millennium of the founding of the Hungarian State, when Hungary’s first king, St. Stephen (István), was crowned. Preserving some of the original factory buildings, this unusual and modern park is now home to a theater, exhibition halls, and many interactive activities for children.

Zöld Péter playground, wherechildren are part of a folk tale
Zöld Péter playground, wherechildren are part of a folk tale
Easter egg etching
Easter egg etching

During our visit there was a crafts fair and interesting Easter craft workshops. Unfortunately we had no time to participate, because we had a cave tour waiting for us!

I chose the Szemlő-hegyi cave over the Pálvölgyi cave because I read that the latter involves some hiking and climbing, and it is much bigger, so I thought the Szemlő-hegyi would blend better with the rest of the activities planned for the day. When you buy an entrance ticket, you can get a discounted combined ticket for both caves, so I’m planning to make a special trip to Pálvölgyi later this year.
The Szemlő-hegyi cave is made up of pea stones, which are formed when hot springs come into contact with limestone rock. The cave’s fresh air is said to have medicinal properties, and the cave is used to treat respiratory problems. Our guide also mentioned the cave’s great acoustics, and at that point, speakers started playing ethereal music, which added to the whole atmosphere. In the reception area there is an interactive exhibition about caves in Buda, and a projection room showing films in Hungarian only, without subtitles.

After a long day of sightseeing and walking around the Buda hills, relaxing in a thermal bath was just what we needed. The Lukács Thermal Bath was perfect! It has indoor and outdoor pools with different temperatures, dry and steam saunas and a drinking water fountain good for many health problems. We couldn’t have ended the tour in a better way.
Plaques from visitors cured bythe bath's healing water
Plaques from visitors cured bythe bath’s healing water
Lukács Bath Entrance
Lukács Bath Entrance
We had a great day in the second budapest district, but there’s so much left to see! I’m already looking forward to my next visit to the district. Do you have a favorite place there?

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