Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Our Final Day In Budapest, and 1st Viking River Cruise Day! Day 8, June 2, 2016

Today is our first full day that's all Viking....we woke up on board the ship, after a nice, restful sleep in our cabin! Even though we are still docked in Budapest, our cruise began yesterday! It's raining a bit today, but that won't stop us! We have a full day planned, starting with breakfast!  It was quite good with a full buffet as well as cooked to order items as well.  

After breakfast we met in the reception area for our first official Viking tour - Budapest City Tour. On river cruises you will find that in your ports an excursion is included every day. Sometimes you will have a choice or two of different excursions that are included. Most passengers who have not yet been to the port will take advantage of these included excursions, but of course you are welcome to venture out on your own, as long as you return to the ship before it leaves for it's next destination! You also will have optional, extra charge excursions available in some of the ports as well. These are often a bit more unique, or excursions that may have an additional admission charge that is passed along to you. Alex and I participated in several of these on this trip and are looking forward to sharing those as well!

But first up, we boarded our bus for the included City Tour! We drove along Andrassy Avenue passing by the shops and buildings where Alex and I had walked the other day when we went to our Segway tour. 

The rain was still coming down, but here is the Opera House

And some other buildings along the way

We stopped at Heroes Square and got out for some pictures and a bit of a history lesson. 

Now it was time to go to the Buda side of the city, and the Castle district. 

We walked to the Matthias Church which has undergone quite a history since its origins in 1015 when the original church was founded on that sight by King Stephen. It was named after King Matthias in the 19th century.

St. Stephen's Statue outside of Matthias Church

And a bit of a falcon posing opportunity as well

From the church we walked to the Fisherman's Bastion which served as a lookout for the guild of Fisherman in the middle ages. At one time actual castle walls stood where the lookout towers now stand.  The seven turrets represent the seven tribes that founded the present day country in 895.  And the Fisherman's Bastion is one of the most visited attractions in Budapest. The views are amazing, and the Bastion itself is quite decorative!

One of the towers

Our ship down below on the Danube!

The Parliament Building

We then had some free time and Alex and I went to get some coffee and pastries before boarding the bus back to the ship. These are some more pictures from the area on the way to our meeting point.

And as we left, this is the front of the Bastion....very ornate isn't it?

We went back to the ship for lunch, and then got ready for our afternoon trip back out! There was more to see before setting sail! 

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