Spotlight on Budapest as an incentive travel destination
Craig Thomas
Director

Spotlight on Budapest as an incentive travel destination

12th January 2017

Budapest is famous for being a city of contrasting halves; Buda on the west bank of the Danube and Pest on the right. Like the city itself, it seems as though Budapest's reputation is also one of contrasts. While one person may picture the city's elegant coffee houses, stylish shopping streets and beautiful historic sights, another may think of the city's reputation for hedonistic nightlife and its popularity as an up-and-coming stag destination. In reality Budapest manages to strike a perfect balance. The city's culture and beauty pair with its sense of fun and its lust for life, giving it a vibrancy that is hard to match.

 

 

 

I visited Budapest last year on a research trip year so here's a little insight into what this fascinating city has to offer for incentive travel

 

Incentive travel - Budapest, Hungary

 

Incentive travel - Budapest, Hungary

Budapest TukTuk

 

 

What to do

The perfect way to start your exploration of Hungary's capital is with a city tour discovering Budapest's two halves. Whether you choose to tour by tuk-tuk, Segway or bicycle you'll be treated to spectacular sights including the Hungarian Parliament Building, St. Stephen's Basilica and the Opera House. For an alternative way to tour the sights, try a treasure hunt in a cult classic Trabant car.

 

You can't come to Budapest without taking a dip in one of the city's thermal baths - the Széchenyi baths are the largest in Europe with 15 indoor and three grand outdoor baths to relax in. There's also a whole host of food and drink related activities on offer; visit the market hall to try the famous local bread - langos; craft and create your own chocolates; learn to make traditional Hungarian dishes in a cooking class or hop on a beer bike.

 

Incentive travel - Budapest, Hungary

 

Incentive travel - Budapest, Hungary

 

 

Dining out

Budapest offers a rich mix of dining options. Whether you are looking for Michelin star dining, elegant historic settings, traditional or contemporary restaurants, it really can deliver. My recommendations would be the Kiosk bar, which is casual but trendy with an outdoor terrace perfect for lunch; and Spoon, which is one of the best boat restaurants I have been on, with a contemporary bar, a couple of really stylish dining rooms and fantastic views over to Buda.

 

For a formal dinner, Fisherman's Bastion is the perfect setting; make sure you take a pre-dinner cocktail on the terrace, the view is simply stunning. The restaurant is impressive and stylish and for the right size group there's a magnificent round table that seats 12-18 guests and really makes for an unusual, memorable dinner.

 

Buddha Bar | TripAdvisor

 

Incentive travel - Budapest, Hungary

Széchenyi Thermal Bath

 

 

Nightlife

Budapest has a reputation for great nightlife and it's easy to see why. There's a couple of main areas to head for which literally offer a whole street of cool, stylish bars. Whilst these streets are busy, the atmosphere is fun and friendly rather than drunk and rowdy so they're ideal for simply landing a group and leaving them to find their own favourite. However, no visit to Budapest would be complete without exploring a few of the infamous ruin bars along Szimpla Kert. There are also a couple of really cool rooftop bars to check out.

 

For a more adventurous group you may also want to try the evening pool parties at Széchenyi baths - it's great fun, although you need to think more along the lines of an Ibiza pool party than a relaxing prosecco in an outdoor spa, so it probably depends on your group!

 

Prestige Hotel | TripAdvisor

 

 

Where to stay

The clear choice is the Ritz Carlton, it's new, it's slick and it's very central. However, if your budget doesn't stretch to 5* there's plenty of other choices including Hotel Moments and the Prestige Hotel which are both impressive properties. The heart of Budapest is relatively small so you won't be too far from the action wherever you stay.

 

Incentive travel - Budapest, Hungary
 

 

Key facts

Budapest is one hour ahead of GMT. There are numerous flights from the UK with a flight time of 2 hours 15 mins, making the city ideal for a weekend trip of two to three nights (our standard itinerary is two nights). For incentive groups, you can more or less travel any time of year, each season brings its own benefits.

 

 

Active are experts in arranging incentive travel. For more information on Budapest, or to get a quote for your next group incentive trip, please contact us.

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