BUDAPEST, Hungary, Dec. 14, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Visit Hungary invites travelers to spend the holidays abroad as the capital city of Budapest offers a variety of seasonal activities, eye-popping decoration, and authentic Hungarian traditions. From Christmas markets, thermal baths, candle lighting ceremonies, theatrical performances and mulled wine accompanied with strudel, visitors will discover the city’s most magical time of the year.
Picturesque Christmas Markets
The Christmas markets attract the most attention in a city where the holiday spirit can be found in every corner. The atmosphere of these markets, located smack dab in the city center, turn Budapest into a fairytale setting full of lights and decorations. There are many stalls offering delicious sweets and beautiful crafts at the markets.
Considered one of the most beautiful markets in Europe, the Vörösmarty Square fair is now open and can be enjoyed until Dec. 31, where the aroma of mulled wine and gingerbread fill the air. Another must-see is the market in St. Stephen’s Square, known as the Advent Feast at the Basilica. It is one of the most important Christmas markets in Budapest, boasting more than 100 exhibitors and 200 activities right through until Jan. 1.
Christmas Beyond the Markets
As well as the traditional Christmas markets, Budapest offers many other options to enjoy this holiday season. One of the most popular is ice skating. There are illuminated ice rinks throughout the city. The most famous is at the foot of Vajdahunyad Castle built in baroque style. Skating under the stars at this Városliget Ice Skating Rink, the largest in Europe, is an unforgettable experience. After skating, make sure to walk around the castle while enjoying typical roasted chestnuts.
After these wonderful outdoor experiences in a city where you can find even snow, if you are lucky, it never hurts to warm up. Budapest makes this easy at its famous thermal spas, with their wonderful restorative waters. The Széchenyi Thermal Bath is the largest in the capital and well worth a visit, as is the Rudas Bath at the foot of Gellért Hill, where you can enjoy a spectacular view of the city from its rooftop hot water pool. At the foot of Gellért Hill, you can also try the popular Gellért Bath, one of the oldest baths in a city with more than 1,500 thermal springs.
Running through the end of December, Budapest’s iconic “Advent Tram” transports locals and visitors throughout the city in beautifully decorated trams. A QR code allows riders to support the nursery school for homeless children of Oltalom Egyesület.
The first comprehensive exhibition of El Greco’s oeuvre ever organized in Budapest can be viewed at the Museum of Fine Arts through Feb. 19, 2023. The exhibition seeks to provide a broad overview of one of the foremost masters of European art, Domenikos Theotokopoulos, most widely known as El Greco (1541-1614), through presenting the complexity of his visual world and sweeping stylistic development. The almost seventy displayed works include more than fifty autograph paintings by the Cretan-Spanish master. The last comprehensive exhibition of El Greco’s work on this scale in this part of Europe was in Vienna, more than 20 years ago.
The Hungarian National Museum is launching an Art & Gourmet program on Dec. 17 allowing visitors to have a special guided tour of the exhibition followed by a Hungarian dinner from the country’s top chefs. The initiative will take place every Saturday from 5 p.m.
To end the day, the best option is to enjoy a great show, of which the most Christmassy is the famous Nutcracker at the recently renovated Opera House. Listening to the powerful music of Tchaikovsky at the Opera House, it’s almost impossible to not get into the Christmas spirit in a more splendid way.
For more information, visit https://visithungary.com
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