Aug 28, 2009 6:52:39 AM
Budapest with children
So many of Budapest’s attractions are suitable for children you’ll only need to tweak your plans a little to ensure the whole family is satisfied. Here are our family-friendly suggestions for making the most of your visit.
Even young children will be impressed by the grandeur of the city’s famous baths. Széchenyi and Gellért are perfect for all-weather fun, with multiple indoor and outdoor pools. Gellért has a wave pool, Széchenyi has a whirlpool. Dagály and Palatinus have vast lawns for lounging or playing in the sun.
Budapest’s children’s dance houses have instructors who will put your kids through their traditional paces to a soundtrack of live folk music. Check the calendar at the Budavár Cultural Centre and the Municipal Cultural House for upcoming shows.
The marionette and puppet shows at the Budapest Puppet Theatre will mesmerise your little ones regardless of the language barrier. Shows designed for children are performed twice daily.
At Széchenyi-hegy, you can board the narrow-gauge Children’s Railway (Gyermekvasút). Built in 1951 by Pioneers (socialist Scouts) the line is now staffed almost entirely by schoolchildren aged 10 to 14. The little train chugs along for 12km, terminating at Hűvösvölgy. Departure times vary depending on the day of the week and the season - consult the website - but count on one every hour or so between 9am or 10am and 5pm or 6pm. The line is closed on Mondays from September to April.
When the sugar levels start to drop head to one of Budapest’s ubiquitous cukrászdák (pâtisseries). Hungarians love sweets and pastries such as Dobos torta, a layered chocolate and cream cake with a caramelised brown sugar top, and piték (fruit pies). These are usually consumed mid-afternoon, a perfect time to revive flagging spirits. For a classic Budapest treat take the kids to Centrál Kávéház, which has been satisfying sweet teeth since 1887.
Other family favourites:
For a whole toy box full of great ideas to help you when travelling with your little tackers, pick up our Travel with Children book.