Sunday, 14 June 2009

Budapest

We have just spent the last three days in Budapest and are off now to catch the train to Novi Sad in northern Serbia. Budapest has a comforting familiarity about it and is reminicent of other eastern European cities such as Prague, Krakow, Llubjana and Zagreb that I've been to.
The hightlight was a visit to the Museum of Terror which was a former HQ of the Hungarian secret service. It chronicled the secret police surveillance, interrogation, capture and often execution of those who the state deemed as subversives during the Second World War, when Hungary was allied to the Nazis and then during the communist regime. In the cellars of the museum are cells where captives were held, the ones with a rough wooden bench and a blanked, and the one with padded floor and walls were the most poignent.
The food was heavy although after being given directions on our first night by the hotel staff to a recommended eaterie, we immediately took a wrong turn and ended up in a fantistic little venue set in a courtyard, where we ate evey night.
On Friday we took a bus tour around the city and saw all the major sights and yesterday we just wandered around, spending the early evening sipping some rather fine Czech beer and watching a jazz band in a little park. The local Hungarian beer, Dreher, wasn't bad either.
Anyway off to the train station now.

1 comment:

Fionnchú said...

I was not able to visit the Museum of Terror at 60 Andrassy St, but I wanted to on my short visit. I recommend a hard-to-find book (about which inevitably I penned a very long review on my blog) that's nearly unknown now, George Faludy's "My Happy Days in Hell." It gives you a very long, but unfailingly vivid, first-person account, if somewhat fictionalized in that Francis Stuart fashion perhaps, of the post-war terror in Hungary firsthand. Enjoy the journey and keep us apprised with more reports of your travels!