The Hungarian National museum, if you want to see it all, appear to be much bigger and overwhelming than you can imagine. A long stretch of art and artifacts and centuries old history. Don’t plan to see and absorb it all, in a day, just like I did. You need more time than that. And then certainly not plan an evening show in the city’s Opera House later, the same day — something that I ended up doing, again.
I remember my second day in Budapest was long and tiring. I mean the city had too much to offer, and I had only a week to explore it all. But the good thing about Budapest was an efficient public transport, and among its public transport system is the Underground Metro System, that is not just beautiful and iconic, but has a long history associated to it.
Yes, we are talking about the history that takes you back in 19th century — when Budapest, or the entire European continent, at large, got its first metro line.
In many cities, the underground commute involves boring line exchanges, grimy stations, suspicious puddles, and avoiding eye contact with that guy. The stations are certainly not a destination unto themselves. But in certain spots around the world, they’re surprisingly grand affairs — glorious caverns resplendent with art, architecture, and artifacts. And Budapest’s M1 and M4 metro lines are definitely one among them.
With its many perfectly symmetrical stations, and a UNESCO world heritage line, one of the activities you should be planning when you’re in Budapest is the METRO CRAWL.
Spare a few hours, and explore the stations of M1 and M4 metro line. If, however, you’re short on time, a few stations I’d recommend you should definitely check out are: Szent Gellért tér and Kálvin tér on M4 line and Octagon on M1 line.
Though there are 4 metro lines in Budapest, it is only M1 and M2 that qualify the category of An Architectural Marvel. M1, because it is UNESCO world heritage, world’s one of the ancient, and Europe’s first metro line ever built — a centuries old line that is still in place. Its many red and white tiled stations, and a locker provided on each station, takes you back in time when a metro would have considered no less than what a spaceship is considered today.
And M4, because it has stunning stations that takes you through an awesome Psychedelic trip. An amazing engineering, architectural, and artistic achievement, a mix of stunning concrete structures and trippy ornamentation — that’s what M4 is, in a nutshell. They are the stations, which make commuters journeys anything but boring.
And here’s a smiling passenger 😀
Have you been on Metro Crawl in Budapest? What was your favorite station?
Further Reading On Budapest:
I wrote this post in participation with BudapestTourism. Though my tour in the city was partly hosted by them, all the recommendations and ideas are solely personal. And I only recommend what I personally experience or see.