That Budapest is a creative city, and not only in the buzzing art and fashion scene. Gastronomes are reinterpreting Hungarian classics for a 21st century international audience, locals are redefining and repurposing their environment to give them a whole new lease of life and age-old institutions like historical baths are remaining relevant by throwing their gates open to night-time revellers. Voted ‘Best Bar in the World' by readers of Lonely Planet in 2012, the A38 used to be a Ukrainian barge but has been repurposed as a concert venue. To experience the creative flow just hop on a Segway, a Fiat turned into a Rickshaw, or a Beerbike and head to the countless ruin pubs, wine and gastro bars.
Budapest is a small city but packs in myriad thrills and very distinct areas are jostling with each other for attention. The ruin pubs of Kazinczy Street lead to the chic wine bars of Gozsdu Udvar, adjacent to the stately splendour of Andrássy Avenue. Budapest always offers more than it is immediately apparent; the imposing facade of an Andrássy Avenue palace might display luxury accessories, or hide a ruin pub 2.0 where young people pour in on a Friday night to sip cocktails amongst exposed brick walls.
From early spring one can feel the creative pulse of the city coursing through its streets in the form of throngs of people outdoors, in search of new tastes, new experiences, new connections. This is a city eager to sate the appetite, with eateries bringing the tastes of the world to Budapest, a revival in street food, and a new wave that is reinterpreting grandmother's cooking with fresh new ingredients and surprising combinations. Not only are new places opening every day on every corner, but all new kinds of places, like milk bars and fröccs terraces, café theatres and artisanal beer gardens.
To take home a piece of the creative essence of Budapest visit a design market, where the freshest Hungarian talent offer their unique products, farmer's market that takes place practically every weekend. The Design Terminal in the city centre is a perfect point to start.