September 14th, 2008 – by: nonna
if there's an empty space, somebody will decorate it
It was really chilly today with a high of 51 degrees. When we walked along Andrassy Street to Heroesâ€™ Square, we walked briskly. The first section was through a city landscape of large city townhouses. One of them was used by both the Nazis and later the Communists as headquarters of the Secret Police. Itâ€™s now a museum appropriately called â€śThe House of Terrorâ€ť. Supposedly there was controversy when the museum opened because it displays photos of the collaborators, living and dead, punished and unpunished.
On down the street little museums for Franz Lizt, Eastern Art and Kodaly have taken over some of the townhouses before you reach what was a suburb area. These suburban mansions are now mostly embassies and beautifully maintained. I was happily photographing the ornate details and dodging trams (this area has great public transportation if you donâ€™t want to walk).
Heroesâ€™ Square is about 2 miles from the Chain Bridge and was built for the 1896 Millennium Celebrations.
The Millennium Monument in the center of the vast square has statues of various Hungarian heroes. The Palace of Art (great building but not much to see inside) and the Museum of Fine Arts (worth a visit) face each other across the square. The Museum had a photography exhibit while we were there with some arresting photos from 1900â€™s. It was one of the best exhibits Iâ€™ve ever seen and Iâ€™ve been dragging my husband to photo exhibits for years. Even he liked it; it was that good. I had never seen work by Martin Muscek before and that alone was the highlight of Budapest for me.
Jak Chapel in City Park
The City Park (around Heroesâ€™ Square) has lakes, a zoo, gardens, the Szechenyi Baths, the Jak Chapel, and the Statue of Anonymous (the Unknown Soldier).
Anonymous is a haunting statue and I was lucky enough to get a photo of a war vet standing next to it.
in memory of lost companions
We stopped at the Anonymous cafĂ©, had salads and a beer, and watched local families with their children play in the park. If you get lost on the way out as we did you will also see the Transportation Museum.
We think we walked about 10 miles today (my husband says 20 but heâ€™s been known to exaggerate) and were too tired to even think about going out for dinner.