Best Budapest Guide Books for Travelers
Traveling to a new city, and to a new country, can often feel like an intimidating, at times even overwhelming, task. In addition to the mundane, standard tasks of packing and figuring out transportation, one needs to learn about the city itself: where to stay, what to see, what to eat, where to go, the list goes on and in on. In short, when preparing to visit a new city, it’s more than likely that you’ll need a bit of help.
Luckily, that’s exactly what guide books are for! In particular, there are plenty of such books that have been compiled specifically to help travelers get a grasp of the very best of Budapest. With titles focusing on major tourist attractions, fine dining, architecture, night-life (for example ruin pubs), and so much more, there is plenty of information out there for those preparing for a trip to one of Europe’s most exciting cities.
Here, then, are just a few of the most interesting and varied guide books that have been written about the Hungarian capital: they’re sure to be a great help as you plan your next trip!
Lonely Planet Budapest Guide Book
An obvious choice for anyone making their way to Budapest for the first time, Lonely Planet Budapest is a helpful, straightforward guide for tourists planning on making their way to the Hungarian capital. Filled with information on subjects ranging from Budapest baths to bridges, and nearly everything in between, Lonely Planet’s guide to Budapest provides a thorough look at the city’s greatest hits.
While it’s relatively orthodox in its recommendations, in a travel situation that can often be an incredibly useful thing: if you’re looking for the most direct information on the places that you absolutely cannot miss during your stay in Budapest, Lonely Planet’s guide is a must-read. (webshop)
Rick Steves Budapest
Like Lonely Planet, famed travel advisor Rick Steves’ look at the Hungarian capital provides a good overview of where to go, what to see, and what to watch out for during your stay. In addition to hitting the major highlights, this guide also features some of Steves’ amusing and insightful personal anecdotes and experiences of Budapest. (Webshop)
Budapest Day & Night Guide
If you’re looking for a more light-hearted, unorthodox, off-the-beaten-path look at Hungary’s capital, then the Budapest Day & Night Guide might just be the book for you. Compiled by a group of contemporary Hungarian critics and tour guides, the Day & Night Guide fills in some of the gaps that Lonely Planet’s general treatment may have missed.
This is truly a guide for the adventurous, as it includes spots ranging from beautiful, off-the-beaten path bistros in Buda to some of the wildest, most out-of-this-world ruin pubs and clubs throughout Pest. If you’re looking to find some of the spots frequented by Budapest’s locals, then this is the book for you. (Amazon)
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Arrival Guides: Budapest
If you’re in a hurry, or have procrastinated too long to order one or more of these excellent guide books for yourself, don’t worry: there’s always the internet. While not as detailed as some of the works mentioned above, arrivalguides.com’s look at Budapest is a great site for those looking for a quick overview of everything the city has to offer. With quick links to information on sightseeing, restaurants, nightlife, shopping, and more, Arrival Guides is a convenient, accessible way for prospective travelers to get quick information on all things Budapest.
Bonus: Budapest 1900
While all of the guides mentioned above deal with the city as it exists today, visitors interested in the fascinating past of the Hungarian capital can do no better than John Lukács’ Budapest 1900. This book, a history of the city as it existed at the turn of 20th century, is a chronicle of Budapest’s glory years, when the grand avenues and monumental basilicas were all relatively new, and where up-and-coming writers would spend their days reading newspapers and sipping coffee in glorious, glimmering cafes. For travelers, perhaps the true utility of this book lies in the fact that many of the landmarks Lukács mentions are still around today: visiting them after reading Budapest 1900 will truly give you an understanding of the ways in which the past lives on in the city. (Amazon)