Our next destination was Budapest – the European “gem”. The Hungarian capital can justly be called a treasure trove of breathtaking views and magnificent historical landmarks.

We moved to Budapest in June, but, although it was the high tourist season, the prices for renting apartments were a welcome surprise for us, even though we chose a large apartment in the very city center.

History of the Founding of Budapest

Budapest is one of the youngest and, at the same time, the oldest European capitals. On the one hand, its history dates back more than two thousand years, but, on the other hand, the city we currently know was officially founded only in the 19th century.

At first, back in 106, instead of modern Budapest, there was the Roman town of Aquincum (from “aqua” – “water” as the city is famous for its hot springs). As far back as that ancient time, the Romans discovered the hot waters’ medical properties and built a lot of baths. Many of them have even survived down to our days.

The Hungarian tribes themselves came to these lands only in the 9th century. Having expelled the Romans, the ancient Hungarians founded their own town of Buda that became a powerful center of the state. At the same time, on the opposite Danubian coast, a completely different, less reputable, town of Pest was developing.

In the 13th century, both of these towns were attacked by the Mongol troops that completely destroyed them. Restoring its inheritance, the Hungarians mounted a strong castle on the Danubian western side. Since then, it was around this castle that a city of Buda began to develop, and the rest of the settlement was named Obuda, which meant Old Buda.

The three towns officially merged only in 1873. From that time on, Budapest began to look like the city that we keep admiring today: the Hungarians erected the majestic Parliament Building, finished the St. Stephen’s Basilica construction, opened Andrassy Avenue. The avenue is currently on the UNESCO World Heritage List.

The city was actively developing and improving right until the Second World War. The war turned the central city areas into ruins and destroyed all the bridges across the Danube. Nevertheless, Budapest managed to restore its architectural landmarks.