Friday, April 29, 2011

The Smaller Streets of Old Pest

Egyetem Ter, originally uploaded by deanv41.

I'm reminded of the phenomenon in Paris of the contrast between vast and imposingly grand boulevards, radial and ring roads versus the exquisite intimacy of very narrow and ancient side streets which humanize such monumental capitols. Budapest is clearly the product of an empire rather than the seat of government for a smallish European nation. The scale of it can be oppressive but for the likes of scenes like this one toward Egyetem Ter and the University Church in the oldest part of Pest, the inner city, Belváros. While the more northerly sections are dominated by crass commerce and the city's emerging tourist bonanza, the sections south of Kossuth Lajos Utca are far more serene.

Below is a glimpse of the neighborhood's most lovely park, the gated Károlyi Kert, bursting with tulips, fountains, the sound of kids at play and a relaxing cafe at the northernmost corner from which to sip a lager and watch Hungarians going about their day.

Királyi Kert in Pest

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