We did a lot in 2017 and boy can I feel it now. It’s probably the first year I haven’t got frustrated about where we are going next or have time for the wanderlust bug to really hit as there was always something around the corner. Which I appreciate makes us very very lucky!! I’ve still got some content to come around our amazing safari in Tanzania as well!
It’s been hard to narrow down our favourites of this year but after much deliberation I’ve managed it!
2017 Top Experiences:
Seeing Northern Lights – This was one of the most spectacular things we did this year, the aurora is incredible. We prayed and hoped that we would get to witness them, especially after our failed attempt in Iceland. Standing out in the cold was well worth it!
While spending some down time in the Lake Balaton area of Hungary we made a small side trip to a small peninsula called Tihany. It was about an hour’s drive around the lake from Siofok and was pretty easy, Hungarian roads make lots of sense and are easy to navigate! You do have the option to take a ferry across the lake instead but it didn’t fit in with our timings.
There are several things to do on Tihany, most famously is the Benedictine monastery and the Tihany echo. One was more impressive than the other. First off though we decided to check out a Lavender museum as Tihany is known for is lavender farms.
After spending a few days in Budapest the second part of our Hungarian adventure was about to start. We picked up a car and headed down the M1 to the Lake Balaton area. Lake Balaton is the largest freshwater lake in Central Europe (not the largest in Europe as Stuart had spent a large portion of his life thinking) and is beautiful. Its one of Hungary’s hot spots for holiday makers, we were early in the season so it hadn’t got too busy but we could see why it was so popular!
The drive down was straightforward and enjoyable despite Hungary’s crazy drivers and I was so pleased with the idea of some downtime and seeing a part of the country not a huge amount of Brits see.
We stayed in the town of Siofok…which we found out from a Hungarian colleague that it was the Ibiza of Hungary. We were on the outskirts of the town in a wonderful boutique hotel, The Mala Garden. It was modelled on Bali and Thailand with a Thai menu, soft furnishings and a small onsite spa. The hotel is on the shorefront of the lake with it’s own jetty and sunbeds.
Memento Park (sometimes called Memorial Park) is based just outside of central Budapest on the side of a hill in a very unassuming place. Created in 1991 by Ákos Eleőd as a result of a competition the site contains many many statues, or parts of statues from Hungary’s communist period.
“This park is about dictatorship. And at the same time, because it can be talked about, described, built, this park is about democracy. After all, only democracy is able to give the opportunity to let us think freely about dictatorship.” – Ákos Eleőd
A change in my normal roundup’s of trips. I will come back to our time in Budapest but after 2 trips here is my list of 9 things to do in this wonderful city!!! (in no particular order!!)
1. St Stephens Basilica
St Stephen’s catholic church is in the middle of Budapest that you kind of stumble across when walking around the city. The church is named in honour of the first king of Budapest, Stephen, who Hungarians do have an odd obsession with him. They adore him so much his mummified hand is kept in one of the crypts…you can put a forint in the box to make it light up!
So it’s been a while since my last post. We’ve been to Hungary and we’ve been to Plymouth, UK which means I’m a bit behind in my posts. I guess I’ve had a bit of writers block and a bit of being busy with being an adult! Stupid life getting in the way.
While I do intend to catch up with a different post to normal for my Hungary coverage here is some pictures of said trip for the meantime. 🙂
16 days and counting. It cannot come soon enough!
Post written back in April and never published until now!!!!
So this is very late and I intended on getting it out in January but it’s been a bit manic so it gradually got later and later until all of a sudden it was April!
It may seem a bit pointless to review something so long ago but it was such a fantastic year and the turning point in my life with regards to prioritising travel. Holidays and adventures had always been a part of our life but our trip to Uzbekistan changed it all (and encouraged me to start this blog!)
A doubly landlocked country in Central Asia that most people would struggle to locate on a map. I had previously had my reservations mainly due to lack of knowledge about the area but a bit of research and endless hours on the internet I began to see its charm. Now, there isn’t THAT much content on the web about Uzbekistan or Central Asia in general so it did take me a long time to come around to the idea.
Sorry about the delay been a manic week so have only just had time to sit and edit the photo’s! But here we go….
Catch up with Part 1!
After a quick breakfast of toast and jam in our apartment we headed out and made our way towards the Margaret Bridge and across the Danube to start our walk up Gellert Hill.
On the way…
Stuart promised me that it would be a nice relaxing walk up a shaded path. I can’t say I agreed with him!
The walk up was lovely really and it was a shaded path but just a little more step than expected. We set off fairly early as the idea of walking up a hill in the midday heat was a bit too much for our liking and we were glad we did. We got to the top of the hill around midday so the views over the city were amazing.
Our first part of our Budapest weekend. Enjoy!
Budapest is hailed as the undiscovered city in Europe, somewhere which isn’t as popular as say Prague but still has the same history and quirks and interesting people. It is true to say it is an pearl of a place, its interesting streets and squares with architecture which could transport you anywhere round the world whilst having so much of its own charm.
Stuart’s family lived in the outskirts of Budapest for 3 years while he was growing up and for the last 9 years I have heard stories of this place so I was excited when we finally decided to visit.
We departed Chichester at 4pm for a mad dash to Heathrow Airport, there were some delays in the motorway which are almost inevitable but we made it with time to spare. After a quick beer and a burger we headed to the gate and departed at around 9pm.