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Budapest, Hungary: Central Europe’s Best Kept Secret for Budget Travelers

Budapest is Central Europe’s best-kept secret. Located in northern Hungary (not to be confused with BEING hungry), Budapest is home to some of the most interesting historical locations, food, and spa culture that Europe has to offer.

As formerly two cities – Buda & Pest – Budapest is the jewel of Hungary and continues to be a popular destination for bachelor/bachelorette parties due to its cheap cost of living and vibrant nightlife. If it isn’t on your top destinations for 2019, you should definitely add it now!

In this guide, you’ll get an overview about:

  • Accommodation
  • Downloadable Google Maps with
    • Things to see
    • Places to eat at
    • Nightlife recommendations
  • Costs
  • Instagrammable places
a woman eating in a café in Budapest


When it comes to accommodation, I always prefer boutique hotels to chains because there’s so much more culture associated with them. This time, we decided to go for an apartment outside of the main tourist area to enjoy a well-deserved break from our usual hustle and bustle.

We stayed at:

Hi5 Luxury Apartments (££)

  • Boutique, affordable luxury in the city center
  • On the ‘Buda’ side
  • Walking distance from everything
  • Full-apartment amenities
  • Great for young professionals and couples

Additional hotels that I can recommend are:

The New York Palace (£££)

  • Boutique, Luxury
  • On the ‘Buda’ side
  • Eat at the incredible New York Cafe for breakfast
  • Incredible Spa
  • Great for culture-seeking travelers looking for upscale accommodation

Bohem Art Hotel (££)

  • Boutique, trendy, & upscale
  • On the ‘Buda’ side
  • Walking distance from city center & nightlife hubs
  • Great for trendy, alternative groups

Pest-Buda Hotel (£)

  • Boutique
  • On the ‘Pest’ side
  • Charming yet affordable
  • Great for shoe-string budgets

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Fortunately, Budapest is still incredibly affordable so anyone on any budget can enjoy a long weekend in the city. For a decent trip – not luxury, but definitely not bunking it in a shady hostel – I would be prepared to spend about £100 per day on a combination of accommodation, food, and activities.

If you’re a big party animal, I would tack on an additional £40 per epic night out. Budapest is truly so so affordable in comparison to most major European cities.

For example, The Telegraph estimates the following for a boozie night out:

price estimates for a trip to Budapest
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I can confirm that Budapest is incredibly affordable and quite frankly MUCH better value for money than Paris, London or any of the major tier 1 cities across Europe. Don’t be afraid to try lesser known destinations in 2019! Otherwise you’re just missing out.

Instagrammable Places

Budapest is so naturally gorgeous – with its wide open streets and beautiful old architecture – that the whole city will light up your feed. My favorite photoshoot destinations are already tagged in my Google Maps download above, but I wanted to highlight my two favorites.

St. Stephen’s Basilica

* Best to go before 8:30 am on a weekend to avoid the tourists.

St. Stephen's Basilica in Budapest

Fisherman’s Bastion

*Best to go to before 8 am as tourists come early before opening to grab photos

Fisherman's Bastion in Budapest
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