Sunday, August 29, 2010

Settling in to Hungary - the Danube Bend

Upon entering Hungary we stopped at Lake Balaton for some sunshine and fresh air. The Balaton Pier was fun. I could tell how in warmer weather it is definitely the place to be. Affectionately called the "Hungarian Sea," Lake Balaton is the largest lake in Central Europe.From there we settled in to our Budapest hotel and immediately headed right back out of town the next morning. What can I say, we were a family on the go!?! Now I know why Connor just can't sit still. Look at her parents and the example we provided through our manic travel pace!The "Danube Bend," a string of riverside towns just north of Budapest, is a popular destination for both Hungarians and international travelers. This first stop was in the charming town of Szentendre. We arrived just as shops were opening and before the busloads of tourists. It was clear this was a "tourist town" with all the souvenir stock dotting the quaint cobblestone streets.I fell for these plush nativity ornaments. They were perfectly authentic and sweet. A little bit of Szentendre will decorate our Christmas tree this year forward.Toodling down the Danube we soon reached the town of Visegrad and explored the Visegrad Castle high up on a hill. The views from above were beautiful.The castle was pretty touristy, but we had fun nevertheless. We each took our turn in lock-up!Esztergom was the final stop on our tour of the Danube Bend. This town was a previous capital of Hungary and the seat of the Roman Catholic Church in Hungary.The Esztergom Basilica is the largest church in Hungary. Mighty impressive. We took it all in and of course had to light candles inside!The Danube Bend made for a low key day with "high key" sites. From here we went back to Budapest for a more urban beat. Yet the country air nourished our weary traveling bones and spirit.

No comments: