Budapest has a spectacular setting, where the Danube narrows to flow beneath the steep escarpment of the Buda Hills. Until 1840, when the first permanent bridge was constructed, the city was made up of two distinct towns: “Buda,” built atop a fortified ridge, and “Pest,” laid out on the floodplain opposite. Nowadays, the banks are intimately linked and the metropolis is both divided and united by the great river that flows through its heart. Buda is home to the Royal Palace and the Castle District, plus a variety of well-preserved Renaissance and Gothic dwellings, many converted into distinctive restaurants and boutiques. Pest, on the other hand, impresses visitors with its neo-Gothic Parliament Building, ornate Opera House, palace-like National Museum and colossal St. Stephen’s Basilica.
Four Seasons Gresham Palace
Wonderful art nouveau hotel in a lavishly restored 100-year-old landmark palace, perfectly located at the foot of the Chain Bridge on the banks of the Danube River, with spectacular views of the Royal Palace, Matthias Church and Buda Hills.
Located between Castle Hill and the Danube, this charming traditional restaurant specializes in duck (kacsa means “duck” in Magyar), the signature style being crispy roast duck with sour morello cherries. Other Hungarian/ Continental dishes include saddle of lamb with walnuts, and venison stew with forest mushrooms. The ambience is hospitable and the service attentive.