Facts about Hungary
- Capitol: Budapest
- Language: Hungarian (Magyar)
- Currency: Forint (HUF)
- Lake Balaton lives here and is the largest lake in Central Europe
- Hungary is about the same size as Wisconsin
- I have Hungarian ancestry
The beginning of my first solo trip to Europe began in Budapest, Hungary. I arrived on a Friday evening, around 7 p.m. on May 4, 2018.
I chose to visit Hungary on this trip because I am of Hungarian ancestry and have been doing some genealogy research. While there, I met up with a couple of persons that assisted me with my research and helped to provide me with my great-grandfather’s birth certificate. If things work out, I hope to apply for Hungarian citizenship.
Most of my stays in Hungary were with Couchsurfing hosts, my first real Couchsurfing experience, and it was really wonderful. I have made forever friends with the hosts that I stayed with. All were kind, generous, caring and anxious to show me their cities and surrounding areas of interest. I learned and saw a lot with them.
Upon my arrival, I took a bus from the airport to a designated spot for my first host to pick me up. This spot was directly across from the Budapest Eye, a ferris wheel located in Erzsébet Tér right smack dap in the middle of the city. Now, I drive my own car at home in Wisconsin and have really never had any experience with public transportation. As the bus stopped, a young couple assisted me with removing my bags. Apparently, there isn’t a lot of time to get yourself off the bus, four bags is a bit much and the bus driver had helped me to strap them in. Once off the bus and out of everyone’s way, I tried to call my host to let her know I had arrived; I had contacted her from the airport, but now I was without wifi. A real travel novice, lost in Budapest, not knowing the language, I was a little concerned about what to do. I am quite certain that I had a big sign over my head with “tourist” and an arrow pointing right at me. There were a lot of people around and I finally got up the nerve to ask two gentleman that were nearby if they could assist me. They spoke English and happen to be visiting from Austria. We talked a bit, they let me use their phone and then told me how awesome Austria was and that I should consider visiting there during my travels if I had the time.
Budapest was my entry into Europe, with a round trip ticket, I would be returning for my flight home after another 9 weeks or so.
At the end of my journey, I returned to Budapest via train from the Czech Republic at the end of July. I stayed with Erzsi again, Gábor delivered my suitcase to Erzsi’s and Erzsi delivered me the next morning to the same bus stop I arrived at 3 months earlier on that Friday evening, full circle.
Arrive in Budapest Friday, May 4, 2018
Budapest – Friday, May 4 through Friday, May 12
Veszprém – Saturday, May 12 through Tuesday, May 15
Keszthely – Tuesday, May 15 through Friday, May 18
Kulcs – Saturday, May 19 through Tuesday, May 22
Fly out of Budapest Thursday, May 24, 2018
WHERE I STAYED
11th Hour Cinema Hostel, Budapest
Rubin Hotel, Budapest
Hotel Kerpely, Dunaújváros
Hotel Ferihegy, Budapest