Last updated: 07:00 AM ET, Sat December 08 2018
View to Fishermans Bastion castle and tower in Budapest city. Hungary (Photo via Yasonya / iStock / Getty Images Plus)

Budapest

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Budapest, the capital and largest city of Hungary serves as an important economic, commercial, industrial and cultural hub of central Europe. Rich in both natural and architectural beauty, the historic city receives over 20 million visitors a year. Standing triumphantly on the banks of the Danube River, Budapest is filled with lush green parks, inspiring museums and a pulsating nightlife that makes it one of the most attractive and charming cities in Europe.

One of the most recognizable buildings in Budapest is the neo-Gothic Hungarian Parliament which is the largest building in Hungary as well as the oldest legislative building in Europe. Besides housing the National Assembly and being an architectural masterpiece, the Parliament is home to the Hungarian Crown Jewels in addition to the half a million precious stones and gold that were used to build it. The Great Budapest Synagogue, also know as the Dohany Street Synagogue is the largest in Europe and second largest in the world. Built between 1854 and 1859 in the Moorish Revival style, it stands 174 feet tall and has the capacity to hold nearly 3,000 people. The synagogue is also attached to a neighboring Jewish museum and cemetery.

Budapest is one of the world’s few cities where over a hundred caves can be found in the municipal area. Located in the Buda Hills on the eastern bank of the Danube, these hydrothermal caves form a natural labyrinth of beautiful stalactite formations. Many of these majestic caves have guided tours throughout, and are a popular attraction for tourists and locals alike. Budapest travel would not be complete without shopping at the Great Market Hall, where Hungarian linens, lace, pottery, jewelry and other souvenirs can be found.

Budapest’s long and enduring history, coupled with its vibrant culture and natural and architectural beauty makes it one of the most striking and unique cities to visit throughout the world. Whether discovering fragrant Hungarian cuisine or visiting an authentic bath house, Budapest offers travelers a European experience unlike any other.