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Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Buda-side: all the way up

So I guess they built the fortifications up here because of the heights. That's the usual way, isn't it? I don't know what the Pest-ites did for protection; there's nothing on that side of the river to hide behind. Anyway, on the Buda side, lots more World Heritage stuff because it's old, old, old, and nothing has gone unrestored. The only trouble is, in a couple spots along the riverfront, on each side, the Communist government allowed some newer buildings, as in hotels (as in capitalism) to be built in newer styles. They are visually disruptive. I'm talking about YOU, Sofitel. I would never stay in these eye-sores. Over in Buda, at least on the street side, the modern hotel has to conform to the appearance of the medieval architecture around it, but overlooking the river, it's also crap.

And way down the river on the Pest side, they have a new arts and entertainment complex that makes no pretense about being old, but it's off by itself. It can look like whatever, and it does. But even there, they incorporated some much older buildings inside of it. This is all since 1989, when they decided to revive the older styles rather than bulldoze them.

Here's the modern construction. Since the old stuff is way inside, you can't see it. But if you are close enough, you can see new stuff sticking out of old things, lots of glass, and all that. The bee-hive thing is trying to mirror the Bastion on the Buda side, I think.




And here's the seriously terrific really, really old castles. This is Fisherman's Bastion, right here.




The Bastion itself isn't that old. It was designed in the late 1800s, in a Moorish style, to unify the actually really old stuff, such as cathedrals and castles that were already up here on Castle Hill. You can see some of the terrific view behind us, and also here's the Danube way down below.

We came up here not only for the view but because the fun-loving Pest-ites, of which I am hereditarily one, came over here to party in the big palaces and the fun little coffee-houses after school and on weekends and what not, and there are more fancy baths over here, too, and much older than on the other side. And still more and more museums. It seems in the past, Hungarians spent a lot of their liesure time naked. On this side is also where the rich and famous built enormous houses overlooking the Danube, and in some cases, the women's naked subathing garden at the Gellert Baths. Here's their view. Just of the river.



You could spend days exploring this place, and if I ever come back, that's the plan.

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