Budapest is the capital city of a small European country called Hungary. It is a cultural city, with plenty of things to see and do and even more to eat and drink. I highly recommend a visit to this beautiful city.
I visited for 5 nights as a female solo traveller and would like to share my tips to keeping safe!
1. Exchange your money CAREFULLY!
I arrived from Austria into Hungary so had not yet changed my currency in to forints. I asked the hostel staff where I was staying if they could tell me where the nearest place was to exchange my money.
Luckily it was a 2 minute walk away. It was, what I would call a legitimate exchange shop. Unluckily for me I didn’t check the money when I left and ended up having some Indonesian Rupiah instead of forints. obviously when I went back they denied they would ever do such a thing. Yes of course you wouldn’t…
Moral of the story? Don’t be silly, Check your MONEY!
2. Late Night Drinks
Ok so your on your own, maybe it’s your first night and you want to head out and see what’s around.
I walked around Budapest for the afternoon, taking pictures and sightseeing when I decided it was time for a well deserved drink and some good Hungarian food. I ended up meeting some people and staying out for a couple of drinks more.
It had turned dark outside and the friends I met where going in the opposite direction. Now where I was, was probably no more than a 10 minute walk from the hostel. Being sensible and choosing not to walk, I flagged down a taxi. Now here is my mistake number two.
I got straight in, didn’t speak any Hungarian and just pointed at a map. He drove me and charged me an arm and a leg for a 5 minute drive.
Learn some useful Hungarian phrases, like “please could you take me too_____”. They think because you speak English you have thousands of pounds to your name so will charge you more. Ask them how much the journey will cost before accepting the fare.
Moral of the story? Be safe, but be money aware, keep hold of those pennies!
3. Walk Like A Local
Budapest like any city can be dangerous. As a female you will get attention from men and sometimes It can be daunting. Walking around really slowly, with a map in one hand and your expensive camera in the other will only draw attention to yourself.
I looked at the route I wanted to take and the places I wanted to see before I left the hostel so I had an idea of where I was going. This way the map stayed in my bag, as did my camera, I plugged in my headphones and strutted my way to where I needed to go, not looking like a lost female in need of help or an easy target!
If I got lost, I got lost, you find the best places that way, but in Budapest it’s easy to find your way back to somewhere familiar. My hostel was right next to parliament so if I didn’t know where I was, I just headed for parliament and found my way back. You can pretty much see parliament from most parts of Budapest.
Moral of the story? Don’t walk slow, look like you know where to go!
So have fun and be safe!