Sunday, April 17, 2011


I spent most of last week in Budapest, but I'm back to cloudy Trondheim again. I was hoping it would be a break from the crappy weather in Trondheim but no such luck. It was even colder in Budapest :( I was attending a Bluetooth conference at the Intercontinental Hotel there. That hotel has fantastic views of the river and the old chain bridge in Budapest. I recommend it especially if you can score a room on the river side. Every room has giant windows facing toward the river and the Buda castle, and when everything is lit up at night it makes for an incredible view. Unfortunately we were in the hotel at the same time as a group of EU finance ministers, so that meant that everytime you turned around you bumped into some guy in a black suit talking into his shoulder. And I'm not really sure why finance ministers need a 10 car police motorcade with all sirens blaring every time they drive 4 blocks to the parliament building. Couldn't they just walk like the rest of us? Has anyone ever in history attacked a finance minister? I doubt it. Not really worth the trouble. I enjoyed Budapest for the few hours I got to look around. The city was quite clean and most things are not expensive there. I hired a taxi with a friend of mine for 2 hours to drive us to the Memento park and to the Citadel. That cost about 60 euros for 2 hours, which didn't seem that bad. The Memento park is interesting if you like cold war history or things related to the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe. It's quite stark, so don't expect a "park" in the terms of a nice shady place to read a book. It's more like a giant vacant lot with some grass and a lot of old communist statues. And they threw in an old Trabant at the entrance just for the hell of it. If you are looking for a good meal there I recommend this place: The interior is a bit crazy in a cool way (upside down tree as a chandelier), and the food was really good. I had some kind of vegetarian lentil stew or ragout and it was one of the best vegetarian dishes I've eaten - ever -. I talked to another guy at the conference who was a vegetarian and he said the same thing. I didn't pay the bill (thanks Nordic) but I think my share for a salad, main course and dessert with a couple of glasses of wine was probably around 35-40 euros.
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  1. Budapest looks great, I've been considering a weekend trip there for a while. Those prices seem on the dear side to what I've been told though. Mind you, anywhere's cheaper than Norway :)