Deak Tir (Deak Square).       July 1997.

This is where you come to if travelling by long distance bus within Hungary, or you need to change from one line to another on the metro. Also you can find the main Tourinform (Hungarian State Tourist Bureau) office close by, which has a very helpful staff. They have brochures in English of all the different regions in Hungary and piles of information you never thought existed. There are touch screen computer terminals for tourist information in many locations.

When it comes to changing money the banks usually give the best rate, AMEX has two offices in Budapest, but give a lousy rate for changing cash, try the various exchange bureaux off of and on the Vaci Utca. Always check the buy and sell rate, if there is more than 5% difference between the two, then you are being ripped off. Never use the black market as only cowboys work the tourist turf's to rip off unknowledgeable punters.

Transportation is very good in Budapest, and there are many combinations of tickets to purchase; everything from a 3 stop ticket on the metro for 40 Forints, to a month pass for the whole of Budapest for about 3,000 Forints (#9 or $15 approx.) Beware of not having a ticket as the "ticket Gestapo" will nab you and make you pay a fine of 1,000 Forints. You always see them when it's too late, and then when you see them standing there with their red armbands, it's too late.

The metro runs up until, then there are night buses running all night which usually go every 15 minutes for most places within the inner city. The yellow metro line was the first metro built in continental Europe back in 1896, and the line was recently renovated to its original state. There are also tram lines which I think gives you a real feeling of Budapest, with lines running along the Danube embankments, across the magnificent bridges between Pest and Buda, and along the avenues and the main ring road, which spans through the main artery of the city. Trolley buses and regular buses also operate through the city. Most of the working population go to bed soon after 9 or 10.p.m. so that usually means that people come home in the afternoon. Don't worry though, because the majority of young people are students and live at home or in student accommodation, which means a lively cafe, club and movie culture.

If you need to see a good map of the whole city then try this link. There is even a search engine which will find you any place in the city.

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