Budapest Sightseeing Tour from Vienna you should make your way to the Vienna State Opera House to meet your vehicle. The tour departs from the Opera House at 0715h (07:15am), so make sure you get there in plenty of time. There is no guide on the coach.
Leaving Austria you will drive through the enchanting countryside of western Hungary and arrive at Budapest around 1015h (10:15am). In Budapest you will meet your expert multilingual city guide.
Budapest, Hungary’s capital, is one of the most beautiful cities in Europe. Straddling the River Danube at a narrow point it famously consists of two parts – Pest, which lies on the flat land of the Great Plain – and Buda which spreads over forested limestone and dolomite hills.
On arrival in the city you will first enjoy a bus sightseeing tour of the Pest part of town. You will see the neo-gothic Parliament building, with its heavy ornamental stonework, and the neo-Renaissance Hungarian State Opera House, built in 1884 and one of the city's most beautiful buildings. You will view the renowned Heroes Square. This huge square was built in 1896 to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the arrival of Hungarians in the Carpathian Basin. Flanking the square are two fine museum buildings – the Museum of Fine Arts and the Art Gallery. On this tour you will also see the neo-classical National Museum of Hungary.
At 1145h (11:45am) you will take a break from sightseeing and enjoy lunch at restaurant ‘Sisi’ (payable direct). After lunch, at about 1300h (1:00pm), you will set off on a sightseeing excursion on the Buda side of the river. This will be a walking tour of the historic city center in which you will view the attractions from the outside. Budapest is so beautiful there is plenty to look at even if you do not enter any of the venues.
You will see Buda Castle on the southern tip of Castle Hill. This was the royal residence of the Hungarian kings in times gone by. The building has had a checkered history and has been altered many times but the oldest bit of the present day palace dates from the 14th century.
Stop to admire the views from Fisherman’s Bastion, a late 19th century neo-Gothic and neo-Romanesque terrace on Castle Hill. The seven towers you will see represent the seven Magyar tribes that settled in the Carpathian basin in 896. The terrace takes its name from the guild of fishermen that was responsible for defending this stretch of the city walls in the Middle Ages.
Also in the Castle district you will pass the colourful and highly ornamented Matthias Church. Church tradition says that it was originally built in Romanesque style in 1015. The building you can see today was built in the second half of the 14th century and extensively restored in the 19th century.
You will see Margaret Island in the middle of the Danube. Today it is an attractively landscaped park but its medieval ruins are reminders of its former role as a religious center.
From 1500h (3:00pm) to 1700h (5:00pm), you will have free time to go shopping or simply enjoy more of the beauties of Budapest.
If you are looking for examples of local crafts – embroideries, dresses, dolls, pottery or porcelain – then there will be plenty of vendors in the district around the Castle. If you love markets, then the Great Market Hall at the Pest end of Liberty Bridge is a fun place and the oldest market in the city.
For designer shops visit Váci Utca or Andrássy avenue. Those with lower budgets should head for shops along Nagykörút (Great Boulevard) or the Budapest Markets. If shopping malls are your thing, then Budapest has plenty to delight you.
At 1700h (5:00pm) you will board your coach for the return journey. The coach arrives back in Vienna around 2000h (8:00pm) and you will be dropped off at your hotel.