Budapest is not a city of half measures. The Hungarian capital’s sublime architectural heritage lends the city a regal air befitting of its moniker, the ‘Queen of the Danube.’ But beyond the lofty elegance of the Royal Palace and the Gothic splendor of the Matthias Church, Budapest is a city that lives in the moment. The creative energy that percolated beneath the surface during the communist era has started to explode across all sectors of the city.
The once decrepit alleys of Kiraly Street have been transformed into a hip designer enclave, with fashionable boutiques and trendy bars drawing an avant-garde and increasingly moneyed clientele. From the hopping garden bars and surreal floating lounges of Hajógyari to the slicked-up cruise ships that masquerade as rocking nightclubs, Budapest is a city that knows how to party.
At the other end of the cultural spectrum, Budapest’s classical arts scene is both distinguished and accessible. For a reasonable price, you can pay homage at one of the world’s finest opera houses; the acoustics at the gorgeous Hungarian State Opera House are deemed the third best in the world (after Milan’s La Scala and the Palais Garnier in Paris). A charming 19th-century villa is home to the Gyorgy Rath Museum, which features a dizzying array of antiquities. The Kogart Fine Arts Museum highlights contemporary home-grown art and features revolving exhibitions that spotlight international modern artists.
Budapest is also known as the ‘City of Baths.’ For centuries, the purported healing qualities of Budapest’s mineral rich waters have enticed city weary travelers. Within easy reach of the city, a number of Art Nouveau spas and thermal baths provide a fine initiation into this time honored Hungarian ritual. The soothing qualities of the country’s wine have also been gaining world recognition. Since the 1990s, wineries having sprung up everywhere, from small family operations to export driven brands which have replaced the nameless bottles that defined the communist years. The best place to develop an appreciation is at Magyar Borok Háza (House of Hungarian Wines).
Airport within a 10-mile radius of Budapest:
- Budapest Franz Liszt International Airport (BUD)
Popular aircraft charters* in the Budapest area include:
- Citation Excel (super light)
- Learjet 45 XR (super light)
- Citation CJ3 (light)
- Learjet 31ER 400A (light)
- Learjet 60 XR (midsize)
- Citation III (midsize)
- Gulfstream G200 (super midsize)
- Citation Sovereign (super midsize)
*This is just a sample. Zephyr provides access to aircraft at every end of the spectrum, from luxurious VIP airliners, to ultra long range business jet, helicopters, and economical turboprops.