Banks of the Danube

I am here. In Budapest. In the colourful Capital city of Hungary, in the heart of the Carpathian Basin, on the border between hills, mountains and the Great Hungarian Plain (Alföld). In a many hundred years old city with a population of near 2 million. I am near to cultural heritage sites, the banks of the Danube, the Buda Castle Quarter and the Andrássy Avenue where past, present and future meet. Where I can see the whole history of Hungary and where people write history. Big things happened here, history was made on these streets and I can still see its signs in the walls, in monuments, everywhere around me. I see bullet holes from the World Wars and I am surrounded by sculptures of historical figures – our kings, queens and national heroes. But it is not only about the past. It is the place of present politics. Several ministries are situated here, not to mention the building of the Parliament where the Holy Crown of Hungary – which was given for the first Hungarian king from the Pope one thousand years ago – is guarded.

Villa in Andrássy Avenue

Villa in Andrássy Avenue

 

Villa in Andrássy Avenue

Villa in Andrássy Avenue

 

Parliament and the Holy Crown

Parliament and the Holy Crown

 

Margaret Bridge

Margaret Bridge

 

Matthias Church

Matthias Church

Fortunately, I have been here several times: in spring, summer, autumn and now in winter. Every season offers something special here: lilac bushes in full bloom on Gellert Hill in spring, amazing scenery from the Fisher’s Bastion in the clean air in summer, colorful leaves in autumn and in winter the beautiful Christmas illumination. I can feel the spirit of Christmas while drinking a mug of mulled wine, eating hot spit cake with cinnamon, the so-called kürtöskalács from Szekely land.

The weather is misty on this particular Sunday, I can hardly see the bridges and the Hill, but it makes all more mysterious and atmospheric. As it is winter, December I see a large number of hurrying people, who maybe forget about the significance and the beauty of the place. Citizens simply walk past the Shoes on the Danube Bank, the memorial to the victims of Holocaust and people forget that the Chain Bridge which stands firmly, once was blown up.

Everyone can find here something interesting – who loves history, architecture, pomp, nature, spas or delicious foods. I still simply chose walking – enjoying the special atmosphere, the beautiful scenery, feeling my culture and thinking about history. Some decades ago soviet tanks moved on these streets wreaking havoc. Some centuries ago we achieved our independence here and a millennium ago our tribes arrived to this land.

Queen Elizabeth of Hungary, Sissi

Queen Elizabeth of Hungary, Sissi

 

Buda Castle

Buda Castle

 

Buda Castle and Chain Bridge

Buda Castle and Chain Bridge

 

Parliament

Parliament

 

Parliament

Parliament

I walk next to huge villas on the Andrássy Avenue, I commemorate of great Hungarians on Heroes’ square, I take delight in amazing bridges, the Matthias church, the Fisher’s Bastion, the Buda Castle, the Lions Court, the Vigadó Concert Hall, the Gellert Hill. I am surrounded by renascence, neo-Gothic and secession buildings.

This place is full of contradictions. In history, citizens experienced here sorrow, happiness, passion, torture, poverty and luxury. And I still see here everything. Next to magnificent castles, ragged people beg for money. The city is fascinating and disappointing. But it belongs to my country – the glorious but painful past and present, our problems and our opportunities. All belongs to my nation. All belongs to me.

Liberty Bridge

Liberty Bridge

 

Gellert Hill

Gellert Hill

 

Christmas illumination

Christmas illumination

 

Heroes' Square

Heroes’ Square

 

Danube Parliament. Banks of the Danube

Danube Parliament. Banks of the Danube

Budapest, including the Banks of the Danube, the Buda Castle Quarter and Andrássy Avenue – Hungary

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Banks of the Danube I am here. In Budapest. In the colourful Capital city of Hungary, in the heart of the Carpathian Basin, on the border between hills, mountains and the Great Hungarian Plain (Alföld). In a many hundred years old city with a population of near 2 million. I...