Our river cruise is coming to an end with our arrival in Budapest early today. We spent the day getting an introduction to the city and its history. And we learned how the city’s name should be pronounced. I’ll give you a hint – the name doesn’t rhyme with “pest”. The name ends with a sound more like “pescht”. Before we could see the city, we had to climb more steps…
One of the first things we saw on our walking tour was a building with a horse theme – a lot of the statues echo that theme, to be honest. But the most noteworthy thing about it was that it was entered into a “roof contest” and it won for the best roof. Who knew there was even such a thing.
And of course there was a cathedral. Tiled roofs appear to be a thing here. Very pretty.
The tower in the next picture is black, which is a bit unusual. Apparently there are two reasons for this. The first is that it is supported by the roof trusses, and if it was made of stone, the weight would make it collapse, so it is made of copper covered wood. The other reason is that the bell in the tower is rung at funerals, so black seems an appropriate colour.
From the castle heights we had lovely views over the city.
We had some free time to walk around so we went looking for a coffee shop. Along the way we spotted this roof. I was fascinated by the way the tiles curved over the windows.
And then it was coffee and pastries.
Our tour guide told us that Hungarians have a long history of picking the loosing side in wars, so they never win. This is apparently a statue honoring a battle that they “almost won”. There must be an interesting story there, so I’ll have to look into it.
There were many statues, so I’ll give you a tiny sample. Starting with the first king, then the leaders of the seven founding tribes, and finally one honoring the common people.
On a more somber note, I’ll leave you with a memorial to holocaust victims. The shoes are from actual victims, though they have been bronzed. Each pair of shoes represents 100,000 deaths. It is hard to comprehend.