Posts Tagged With: gothic architecture

Budapest by Night!

Its no Las Vegas, no Dubai, nor a Japanese spangled city.

This is the snazzy, flamboyant and ‘youthful’ historical city of BUDAPEST!

Of all the East European capital cities I have visited, my favorite stands the Hungarian capital city. It resembles Prague in many ways; however I felt Budapest to be so congenial, a city that seemed to be speaking to me through its streets, the beautiful Danube, the different shades of its vast skies and its glittering nights.

Every traveler has to ‘consume’ Budapest at night. Its a Must. The city changes its mood, sheds its formal day clothing and starts the night long party. River Danube glitters with centuries old historical jewels on its banks. I spent three hours at nightfall sitting by the banks of Danube admiring, clicking and not getting enough of the lovely views. A dreamy hour of river cruise, what I would say was one of the best I have ever done. Here are my pictures of Budapest at Night, a must do!

IMG_4401

Iconic scene, most clicked and most loved. Chain Bridge on River Danube. In the background is the illuminated Buda castle.

IMG_4371

On the banks of Danube, a glittering monument

IMG_4383-2

St Stephens Basilica. A massive structure with busy eating joints around it.

IMG_4346-2

Hosok tere: Heroes Square known for its imposing statues and the column of victory. A UNESCO World Heritage Site

IMG_4355-2

Archangel Gabriel holding the holy crown of Hungary. Quite an impressive sight when you zoom in your lens.

IMG_4365-2

The left colonnade of statues of statesmen at Hosok tere

IMG_4366

And the right colonnade of imposing statues.

IMG_4356

The statues at the Basement of the victory tower of 7 chieftains.

IMG_4413-2

Back to Danube. In the background you can see the Mathias Church, the Fisherman’s Bastion, churches and the illuminated streets

20150829_234457-2

One of the most impressive structures of Budapest, The Buda Castle in the Castle District. The lit up castle was truly a fantastic site from the other side of Danube

20150829_225225

While Chain Bridge hogs all limelight, there are many more beautiful bridges on Danube. A night cruise will take you underneath many of them.

IMG_4426-2

And my favorite, The most beautiful monument in Budapest which dazzles both at night and equally at day, The Parliament. Gothic architecture at its best!

Note to Travelers

  • River Cruise on Danube can be purchased from any operator which you will find at all tourist spots. Some of them are operated by the City Sightseeing Tours which i took as well. Cruise prices vary according to timing and also according to the services. The one i took was at 10 pm and the duration was 1.5 hours. It costed 4200 HUF, around 12-13 Euros. They served a welcome drink (champagne) and another drink of your choice. There are options of dinner and music as well.
Advertisements
Categories: budapest, budapest at night, capital city, eastern europe, hungary, monuments of budapest, places to see in budapest, places to see in hungary, places to visit in budapest, river cruise, what to see in budapest | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Stonehenge and Salisbury : The Mystery Wonders of England

Stonehenge needs no introduction to anyone in the world. Brushing shoulders with Pyramids of Giza, as one of the seven wonders of Ancient World, this pristine wonder is one of the gems of English Heritage. Generally people are caught in a dilemma whether to visit or not, as there is nothing touristy to do there and to travel so far to see some stones may not sound as an exciting holiday idea; however I would say for those who are looking to explore British Heritage and go down the lane of history, it cannot get better than this.

Visiting Stonehenge would certainly require a day. If you are based at London it will take you a 2 hour travel by Train or a little over 2 hours by road depending on the traffic. My personal suggestion would be to take a Train from London to Salisbury which in itself is quite a treat of historical marvels. There are Stonehenge Bus Tours from Salisbury which will take you around Salisbury, Old Sarum and Stonehenge. So you get to explore some more pearls of British history.

Salisbury

Salisbury is a town in south-west England in the county of Wiltshire which basks in the glory of the magnificent Salisbury Cathedral.

c1

Salisbury Cathedral

Built in 38 years, Salisbury Cathedral has a Gothic architecture style, quite evident from its spires. It is difficult to get enough of its detailed designs and sculptures on the façade. The saints and kings on its walls seem to be talking to you every time you look at them.

c27 (2)

The facade of the Cathedral

c26

View of the Cathedral from one of its gardens

The inside of the Cathedral is intimidating with its huge stained glass windows, tall pillars and high arches.

c2

The interior of the Cathedral with its tall columnar pillars

c12

View of the interior of the Cathedral

c24

The gardens and the intricate arches all around it.

However other than its magnificent architecture, what makes this Cathedral attract visitors is that it houses the original best preserved copy of ‘Magna Carta’. A quick refresher from our textbooks, Magna Carta was the royal charter which led to the rule of the Constitutional law in England. Beautifully handwritten in Latin, The Magna Carta is on display in the Chapter House of the Cathedral. Photography is not permitted.

c30

Magna Carta. Original copy of the document is preserved in the Cathedral.

Though a lesser known one than its peers, this Cathedral has many entries in the record books of UK.  Standing tall with its 404 feet high spire, which is the tallest in the UK, it pretty much dominates the skyline of this quaint town. Dated as old as 1220 AD, this Cathedral has the largest ‘Cloister’ and ‘Close’ in Britain and houses world’s oldest mechanical working clock.

c31

The tall spire of the Cathedral can be spotted from miles. This is certainly the major highlight of this structure.

Stonehenge

Around 9 miles from Salisbury lies the World Heritage site of Stonehenge. Unlike other monuments, the entry to Stonehenge is highly regulated. One cannot go near the stones and have to view them from the periphery of a restricted fencing.

View of the Stonehenge from outside the fence

Well, an obvious question arises in every visitor’s mind what is after all the hullabaloo around Stonehenge? I had the same apprehensions arising in my mind too prior to my visit. This matter can be very subjective and would be more appropriate to say that it depends what interests a traveller. I am a history freak so it was a natural incline to visit places of historical significance which made me plan a trip to Stonehenge.

As a visitor to Stonehenge, I was completely awed with the brilliance of its placement in the middle of a countryside. It also amazes me like many theorists as to how these gigantic stones were transported and then made into these vertical and horizontal patterns.

????

A close up view

Some theories mention these stones were transported from Wales through waterways and then rolled to its current site, while some believe that this is not possible without human intervention and a large workforce was involved to get these stones. Definitely there must be a deep study of some science involved. Maybe it was an observatory, maybe it was not.  A part of me also goes with the Pagans and Druids to go by the thread of Religion that this place was of religious significance and has a supernatural dimension too.

Another close up from another side of the stone arrangement

Yes a day out seeped in history can be tiring; if its summers you can come back to the quaint markets of Salisbury to soothe your nerves with some retail therapy and chilled beer.

Some of the photos from a local market in the town center of Salisbury

Polish Sausages; quite a common site in any local market

The world would be different without Italian desserts and we are all are bitten by the ‘Italiano’ bug.

Wooden toys which are actually plant holders.

And as I call it a day and walk back to the station, there is an English flavour that i cant help clicking. Canals in the towns with bushy canopies and bridges with the charm of yore.

Salisbury is at the confluence of 5 rivers. One canal flowing in the town.

A bridge across the canal

*Note to Travelers*

The cheapest and easiest way to travel would be to purchase the tickets of the Stonehenge tour from either Salisbury Railway station or get onto the Bus at the marked stops and purchase directly from the Driver.

Online Resource Pool: There is plenty of information on web about Salisbury and Stonehenge and other stone circles in the UK. My suggestions would be to refer the below prior to making your visit.

http://www.english-heritage.org.uk/daysout/properties/stonehenge/

http://www.stonehenge.co.uk/about.php

http://www.salisburycathedral.org.uk/

For train bookings from London to Salisbury

https://www.firstgreatwestern.co.uk/

http://www.nationalrail.co.uk/

For booking tours to Stonehenge

http://www.thestonehengetour.info/

Categories: cathedral, cathedrals of europe, England coastline, english cathedrals, magna carta, salisbury, stonehenge, visit england | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Blog at WordPress.com.