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Accommodation advice for surprise 50th birthday trip

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Accommodation advice for surprise 50th birthday trip


Budapest is a city my husband has wanted to visit for a long time and I am taking him there as a surprise for his 50th towards the end of August. We will have 4 days in the city.

I think I have decided on staying on the Buda side: we are both "outdoorsy", very active, and enjoy some night life, but also enjoy quiet time and beautiful views. He loves water (grew up on an estuary). We also do a good deal of cycling. As such, I thought we would hire bicycles to get around, which means traveling between the hotel and various sites on the Pest side will hopefully not be an issue, and can either walk or use a cab to go out at night. I suspect we'll use a day to cycle out to Szentendre along the Danube.

The 2 hotels I'm looking at are the Hilton in the Castle District, or Hotel L'arte. Any suggestions as to which has a better view of the river and city lights at night, or just generally is a better choice? I would welcome any other suggestions anyone may have.

Is my thinking sound regarding staying on the Buda side?

Any advise or suggestions much appreciated,


Budapest, Hungary
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1. Re: Accommodation advice for surprise 50th birthday trip

Hello persephone_ew,

I assume you are speaking of Art'otel as your second choice? That is my assumption for my response.

Taking "quiet time and beautiful views" into account - the Hilton Castle of the two would be a great bet. However - the Hilton Castle sits in the Castle District and is a bit detached from the rest of the city - which has upsides and downsides. But - it sounds like you enjoy physical activity - and that's the only "downside" actually - walking to/from the castle district to other sites. I live in the neighborhood and see it as a huge upside because I can "retire to my oasis" at night. ;) While the Art'otel can offer really superb views of the Chain Bridge, parlament, and the Pest riverfront, the Hilton offers a much more expansive views. Both hotels have limited rooms with a view, so you will have to make a special request.

A cab from/to the Hilton into the "nightlife" in Pest will be about 2500HuF each way and take 10-15 minutes. The Hilton is in a higher class than the Art'otel and is more formal. While the Art'otel is nice - and I have had my parents stay there in the past, the furniture, decor and bedding (most important to me) is not as comfy as the Hilton. Nice sure, but not luxurious. But....the Art'otel sits right on the river. Literally 30 seconds (if walking slow) to the walking/bike path along the river. It's a 5 minute walk to the Chain Bridge and to the metro station walking in the other direction.

I enjoy the breakfast at each hotel, both are filling and nice. At night, the small streets and walkways in the castle are special. Even in August - when the tourists are at their maximum, you can walk in the castle district for quite some time before passing another. I think its one of Budapest's gems for the quietness, fresh air, views, etc.

You may also want to venture up to Normafa - at the top of district XII. This forest area has nice walking trails and offers expansive panoramic views in spots. You can also enjoy a narrow-gauge railway ride, and a ski-lift trip for added fun. And note that in the middle of the river sits Margit Island. A nice oasis for taking walks, grabbing a beer, enjoying the outdoors while in the heart of the city.

My vote - based upon the limited exchange, would be the Hilton. You can walk, take taxis or public transportation into Pest and be there in short time, all so you can retire to the quiet neighborhood on the hill if you will.

Best regards,


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2. Re: Accommodation advice for surprise 50th birthday trip

Hi Jeremy

Thank you for that response, that's exactly the feedback I needed! (And yes, apologies, I did mean the Art'otel.)

I'm leaning towards the luxury of the Hilton; it is a special occasion, after all. I guess I'll mull it over a bit longer before making the final decision.

Thanks again.


3. Re: Accommodation advice for surprise 50th birthday trip

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