We arrived in Budapest on the eve of St Stephens Day.
Budapest celebrates its National Holiday also known as St Stephen’s Day each year on 20th August. We arrived the day before and only realised when we went to have breakfast the next morning. We had stumbled on Budapest’s’ best day!
Most places were closed on the National Holiday but we found a great little café called Stika which served some delicious breakfast and coffee. Perfect. Hubby ordered a breakfast burger, which was in fact two pancakes either side of a juicy pattie.
The Buda Castle was hosting the annual Festival of Folk Arts. Each year this is held at the Buda Castle and combines both Hungarian folk art as well as invited countries to display traditional folk art. This year the theme was embroidery and Mongolia was the guest nation.
We went into a Mongolian Stupor and watched an amazing woman stitch some incredible embroidery. Each stitch was so intricate that even watching was difficult. I definitely need glasses!
The Garden of the Budapest History Museum.
This is where we spent most of our day. The garden was filled with traditional games such as stilt walking, a traditional wooden labyrinth, an air hockey table (minus the electricity and blown air) and ball rolling – highest score wins!
Laid out through the garden was numerous folk art areas, everyone was invited to participate. Felting and embroidery to paper making and painting.
We strolled through the History Museum, which is three levels. While the objects inside the museum did not hold the children’s interest for very long, there were numerous historically significant works of art.
From the open window of the History Museum we watched traditional Hungarian dancing taking place in the square below. The window gave us the opportunity to be out of the crowds and have a cool breeze as we were much higher up.
We left the Buda Castle in the late afternoon and there were people streaming in to the Castle so that they could watch the fireworks and enjoy the music on the banks of the Danube.
We stayed on the Pest side of the river Danube and walked down to watch the fireworks at 9pm. There were hundreds of other people waiting around us for the fireworks. Unfortunately, the fireworks took place behind some very tall buildings that made it impossible for those of us to see them from where we were. We did however, have the pleasure of listening to them!