Veszprém is a beautiful city in the northwest of Hungary, about two hours southwest of Budapest. The city has a stunning castle and an ancient medieval town centre. If you are visiting Hungary for a few days and don’t know where to start, I would definitely recommend Veszprém with its stunning architecture.
Getting To Veszprem from Budapest Airport
Once you arrive at the airport, get on the public transport bus (200E) to Kőbánya and change to the underground there (Blue Line). The metro will take you to Népliget Bus Terminal where you can catch the bus to Veszprém. The ticket to Veszprém costs about 2,500 Hungarian Forints. The bus will take you on a modern motorway direct to the city center in Veszprém.
The walk on this video will take you to all the major sights, such as the zoo, the pine forest, the hilltop viewing tower and the historic castle district.
Things to Do In Veszprém
The forest here is just outside the city centre, next to the zoo. If you arrive early in the morning, you can turn your visit into a day trip or if you want to visit all the museums and sights you can stay at one of the many local hotels. Veszprém is famous in Hungary because the country’s first king started to rule the country from here in the year 1,000. The Pope then decreed in 1216 that the bishop of the city would have the right to crown queens, hence its name: the city of queens.
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Since you will arrive by bus or train from Budapest I would recommend starting a tour of the city center first. Walk around the main artery of the old town, which can be very windy at times. The views are breath taking from the end of the high street where you can see the surrounding hills and valleys.
Veszprém Cafes and Cakes
At the bottom of the high street is the main square with the town hall. There are various cafes around here that sells special Hungarian cakes and coffee. From here you can walk around the base of the castle hill and carry on under the concrete bridge that spans the valley. As you walk along past the river you will reach a couple of hills with a steep cliff edge. You can ascend the hillside using the stairs carved into the hill. Once at the top of the hill, carry on walking towards the Zoo. About halfway to the zoo you will see a major metal structure which is the hilltop viewing station.
Climbing to the top is free and it will allow you 360 degree views over the city and surrounding area. The zoo itself is worth a visit to see various birds and animals enjoying the sun and fresh air atop this scenic hill.
Veszprém Sights in the Old Town
Within Veszprém, there are various museums, the theatre and other attractions which will keep any visitor busy. My favourite part is the main street. Walking from the view point over the valley down the hill to the main gate I could imagine what life was like a century ago. Some buildings have beautiful exterior wall paintings, depicting religious figures while others have ornate carvings.
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The gate itself reminded me of a scene from the Lord of the Rings, when they enter one of those ancient cities. The valleys and hills around here are also a perfect destination for hikers and bird lovers. There are also various paths around here to neighbouring villages and forests, so come on down from Budapest for at least a couple of days, and enjoy the countryside!