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Ted visits two magnificent capitalsPrint
Gellert Hill Citadella
Arriving late into Budapest meant Ted was determined to get up early the next day and see what the city had to offer. With the promise of a buffet brunch awaiting his return, he set about climbing Hungary’s answer to Arthur’s Seat in Edinburgh: the Citadella on Gellert Hill. Dominating the city, Gellert Hill is a transformed park that took Ted a good half hour to climb. The figure of the Liberty Statue, commemorating Hungary’s freedom from Nazi Germany and later the Soviet Union, is a symbol of pride in the city and Ted was more than happy to salute the bronze lady.
Having skipped down Gellert Hill Ted headed into the city where he meandered the streets until found the Hungarian Parliament Building, overlooking the river. Completed in 1904, the building pays homage to Budapest’s unification of three cities, Buda, Pest and Obuda, in 1873 that created the seat of theHungarian economy and political arm. It sits on the Buda side of the river and under the majestic dome sits the two houses of Hungarian democracy, a gothic symbol of the country’s rich imperial past.
Railjet high-speed train — Budapest to Vienna
Ted waved goodbye to Budapest after splashing out 1,000 Forints (£24) to catch the 2 hour 50 minute Railjet train to Austria. Parked in a comfortable, if not a little oversized, seat, he passed the time exploring the flat, snowy landscape and catching up on some reading.
Evidently keen for public transport, as soon as he arrived in Vienna Ted hit the underground!
Sigmund Freud Museum
A day of culture awaited Ted on his day out in Vienna — the city with the most museums in one place anywhere in Europe… apparently. But unfortunately the skies above the jewel of Austria’s former empire were sodden and grey and so Ted found himself not outside in the palatial grounds of the city but booking an appointment with one Sigmund Freud. Ted tumbled up the stairs to Freud’s former apartment on Berggasse — we’d like to say he slipped but that would be too easy! — and spent over an hour with his little headset listening to accounts of the great psychoanalyst’s life and work. Unfortunately, the great man himself wasn’t in for a one-on-one chat and the famous reclining sofa was off limits but that didn’t stop Ted learning the fascinating intricacies of one of mankind's greatest and most critiqued thinkers.
Wiener Straßenbahn-Netz (Viennese tram)
The persistent rain gave Ted an opportunity to explore Vienna’s public transport and he hurried onto a tram to protect his tweed. The Wiener Straßenbahn-Netz took quite some getting used to and Ted was determined to wait for an ‘old’ carriage instead of the boring modern ones. Nestled at the back of the No.1 tram from Schottentor to Burgring, he caught glimpses of the grand Rathaus (Town Hall), University and Natural History Museum buildings that enclose Vienna’s old town. After a good ten-minute journey followed by a dash past the splendour of the national library and innocuous Austrian treasury, Ted finally found a bar to hide in from the rain.