Why you Should go on an Evening River Cruise in Budapest

Last year I made a vow to myself that I would visit at least one new country every year. This may sound fairly easy to the die-hard travellers out there but when you have two kiddies, a partner that won’t fly and a dog with severe anxiety issues it’s certainly easier said than done! 


My country of choice in 2016 was Budapest. I have never been before but had done a bit of research online and immediately fell in love with the architecture out there. I was also intrigued by the Jewish history of the city, as I have Jewish blood in my family tree.

So In January I booked a budget holiday via Groupon and went along with my sister and mother. You can read about where we stayed in my Aquamarina Hotel Review post.

Budapest really is an amazing city with a crazy amount of things to see and do. We were there for only 2 full days and I didn’t get anywhere near seeing everything that I wanted to.


Evening River Cruise in Budapest

One thing that I did manage to tick off my list was going on an evening river cruise on the river Danube. There are a few different companies that provide the river cruises but we opted for the Legenda boat cruise, mainly because they had the best boat!

If you walk along the river on the Pest side you see the boats moored up along the bank. There’s quite a few to choose from so it might be an idea to do a bit of research before you go to see which would be the best suited for you.

With the Legenda river cruises, they have a selection of different options including sight sighting cruises in the daytime and restaurant cruises. We went for their ‘Candlelit Dinner Cruise‘.

Legenda Boat Cruise Budapest

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evening river cruise in Budapest

Candlelit Dinner Cruise

There are two options to choose from with the candlelit dinner cruise, you can either buy an a la carte ticket which includes the cruise (2hrs 30mins), a welcome drink and live music. With this option, you then pay as you go with the food.

Alternatively, you can opt for the exclusive dinner package which includes the cruise, a welcome drink, live music and the four course a la carte menu.

We opted for the a la carte ticket which in hindsight was the wrong choice! We thought it would work out cheaper but in reality, you are better off going for the whole package.

Evening River Cruise in Budapest

How Much Does it Cost?

The a la carte ticket costs 9,300 HUF (roughly £25.50) and the exclusive dinner package costs 18,600 HUF (roughly £51) which does sound like a big difference but you have to remember that the first option doesn’t include your food.

If we went again I would just go straight for the full package option.

Tip: If you bought a Budapest Card when you first arrived you get a 20% discount! We had them and I would recommend them. You can buy 24 hr, 48 hr or 72 hr cards. Post on that to follow shortly.

The Cruise

In the evenings in Budapest, almost all of the riverside buildings are lit up. It’s quite a sight as you travel along the river. It’s also a great way to get your bearings and work out where you want to visit the following day.

Our cruise started at 7.00pm and lasted 2 hours 30 minutes. Here is a list of some of the sights that you will see on the cruise…

  • Hungarian Parliament Building
  • The Chain Bridge
  • Hungarian National Gallery
  • The Royal Palace
  • The Elisabeth Bridge
  • Citadella
  • Gellert Thermal Bath

Budapest evening river cruise

Candlelit dinner river cruise in Budapest

The Food

The food was, like everywhere we went in the city, amazing! Full of flavour and cooked perfectly.

My starter on the Legenda river cruise in Budapest

My main course on the Legenda river cruise in Budapest

As well as great food the service was fantastic. They even helped us pay our bill when we got confused with converting HUF to pounds after too much champagne.

Tip: Install a currency converter on your phone BEFORE you go. We really struggled to budget on this holiday as we kept forgetting how to convert HUF into pounds.

In Conclusion

I am so glad that we decided to do the evening river cruise it really made the whole trip quite magical.

Now I just have to convince the other half to get on a plane and go back with me so we can have a romantic evening together. Not going to hold my breath on that one.

This year I’d like to go to Amsterdam, I have already started making plans for what I’d like to see when I get there. I’m going to look into getting a cruise over there then maybe Phil might come with me. Check back soon to see how we get on.

Why you Should go on a Evening River Cruise in Budapest

Water Gypsy

You may also like: Day One in Budapest + Day Two in Budapest 

10 thoughts on “Why you Should go on an Evening River Cruise in Budapest

  1. What a beautiful post and gorgeous photographs. I am envious of your trip down the Danube, its also on my bucket list. Definitely need to try and get there sometime soon, thank you for all the useful tips. xx

    1. Thank you, Karen!
      It really is a lovely place to visit, especially in the Winter months. I’d love to go back one day and do some more exploring.

    1. Hi Lynsey, We got a fantastic deal on Groupon which covered our flights and hotel all for less than £150!
      They have always got great deals for holidays on there, definitely worth taking a look 🙂

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