For this leg of the adventure check out Travel By Cassidy Facebook for the accompanying pictures!
I hate to start out with the same line of a slow morning, but when traveling anything after 8 am is slow for me! But this one was going to be really slow because the museums were all closed this day. All Mondays actually. There are a few things to do, but not much. I decided to go to the zoo. It’s supposed to be one of the best zoos in Europe, and I’ve been to a lot of different zoos while on this trip, so when I have time, I go to the zoo. There was a ridiculously long line for the zoo though. Like 30 minutes or more. I almost gave up and didn’t go. But there wasn’t a whole lot else I could do, so I waited. And took notes on what I had done so I could write these blog posts better. And tried not to get a sunburn, because man it was HOT! But eventually I got into the zoo, the thing that had caused the most delays- only one lady working the ticket booth. At the only attraction open on Mondays. No joke.
This zoo was HUGE! Just look at this map! I started off exploring to the left and saw a bonsai garden, didn’t realize there were different types of bonsai trees. They also had this gigantic tropical forest area with sloths, and lizards and different ecosystems including the swamps of Florida! Then I just wandered. This zoo was huge and had lots of different animal habitats from all over the world. They even had a farm exhibit, where a cow licked me. And a high guinea pig area. Like what is with these guinea pigs and tons of habitats? I even grabbed an ice cream cone because it was so hot that day. At least they had free water for us to fill up on. I did see hippos out of the water. Did you realize how BIG those things are? Like I guess I have always seen them in water and only their heads. But these things deserve their killer reputation. If that was running towards me the only thing left to do would be to pray. It was a really cool zoo, but I was just over it about 2 hours in. I was hot and I was tired and it was just too crowded. Way too crowded. I like all the empty places I have explored. (I know selfish- they need the money!) So I finished walking around to say I walked it and left. Good decision to leave, when you aren’t enjoying something you won’t have happy memories.
I grabbed lunch at this little café with a veggie sandwich and a glass of water. It was nice to just sit in the shade and grab a bite to eat. Then I hopped on the metro and went to see the Photography Museum. They had an exhibit about water and motherhood. And another one about the Danube River. Very cool photographs and a nice museum to explore. However, there was a Moulin Rouge outside, and I kind of thought that was in Paris, since I had walked past it there you know? Poor Paris- everything gets stolen from it, the Arc de triumph, Moulin Rouge, next it’s going to be the Eifel Tower! It was a quick museum to walk through and worth the $2.50.
I then hopped in a metro and rode downtown. I wanted to use the last little bit of my Budapest Card before it expired. And I made it! I grabbed another slushie and sat in the shade of the statue that I had no idea what it was and waited for the Communist Walking Tour. I was giving Free Budapest Walking Tours another chance because this was to be a different guide. But it wasn’t really any better. I learned about what they say happened during communist times- about the healthcare, the religion, the politics. But not the building that they happened around. Very odd to me that a walking tour had more sitting than walking. So at the end when they were going to backtrack to the center, I headed off to the hotel. I just wasn’t feeling their version of history- I need to read up on this and see if they were just some of the people who hated communist or if literally all Hungarians hated communism this much.
When I made it back to the hostel, I changed shoes, grabbed my book (that I was very interested in now), and went to go sit and have a glass of wine before I left. It was relaxing to just sit and read in Budapest while enjoying wine. I also warmed up the last of the Chinese take-out before heading out to the train.
The train was an experience in itself. It was kind of entertaining to try to navigate with the Serbian guy who ran the train and spoke no English and he didn’t understand my Macedonian. But all in all good. After a little bit of watching stuff go by, I feel right asleep!