My stay in Budapest was a little strange, and I am sorry to say that I do not think I really took advantage of being here. I took an extremely uncomfortable 14-hour, overnight train from Brasov into Budapest. I got into town at about 10AM, thinking that I could hit the ground running, when in reality it felt like the ground hit me. I was exhausted, aching in my back and shoulders from being hunched over in a non-reclinable seat all night, and nearly comatose as I made my way to my hostel, and I quite literally crashed as soon as I got there. Even after a nap I could hardly bring myself to move further than the hostel common room, and so I watched the sun set on my first wasted day in Budapest. It was a Sunday night and I realized that there was an American sports bar less then a block away, so I did drag myself out to watch one of the early games, but I was still beat and didn't last long. I think I was in bed by about 10:30.
The next day I woke up around 10AM feeling recharged. I guess my body really needed the rest. Unfortunately the weather was not on the same page as my sunny mood. It poured for a good part of the day, so I ended up curling up on a couch in the common room and swapping between writing and reading. By around 5PM the rain had stopped, but I was engrossed in my book and again did not venture far from the hostel, so thats 2 out of 3 days wasted (in a sense).
On day 3, my final day, I was resolved to get out of the hostel and actually see the city that I had heard so many good things about. The weather was overcastt and threatening, but the rain held off. I really wanted to check out one of the famed bath houses, which I could have gotten to easily on public transport, which is excellent, I would say right on par with NYC, but I decided to walk the distance instead and hit as many of the sights as I could. The city really surprised me. Architecturally and artistically, the buildings were stunning. The walk to the bath house seemed like it passed by in a flash because there was always something new for me to gawk at like the annoying tourist that I am.
I finally got to the bath house at around 12:30, after nearly 3 hours of wandering around and seeing most of the main sights around the city. The weather still wasn't great, overcast and a little chilly, so I wasn't sure how I was going to like the bath house considering a good portion of the pools were open aired. I should remember though never to waste my energies on worrying. The pools were fantasic. The outside had two half-mooon shapped pools separated by a long lap pool. The smaller pools on the end felt like bath water and felt fantastic. There were fountains and a whirl pool and jets and it was just fabulous. There were two different inside sections that each had a dary sauna room, several smaller lounging pools, and a few small lap pools. The decore was such that you felt like you were stepping back in time into a Roman bath house. I sayed in the facility for nearly 4 hours switching from pool tp pool to sauna, from inside to outside and back again until I was properly pruney. The sun even decided to shine during my last hour or so there, which was a welcomed sight.
On my way back to the hostel I walked another path through the city and saw some of the few attractions I had missed before. So, pretty productive, yet relaxing, day. The only thing that I am upset about missing really is caving under the city. Really wish I would have gotten off my butt to make that happen. Oh well next time I guess.
Now off to Prague!