Tuesday, 1 July 2014

Holiday to Budapest, Hungary

I've been a little busy and tired since the end of university with sorting out our end of year show and all that, but I've also had a little time to enjoy myself finally too!
To kick-start my Summer holidays we booked a little holiday to Budapest in Hungary for a couple of days - a place I had never been to nor knew anything about.
 
We flew with Ryan Air....surprisingly not as bad as the media likes to say. Although I will say the day after we landed back in the UK, two Ryan Airplanes at Stanstead crashed into each other. 
 We stayed in a cheap hotel in the City Center (the same name as the hotel!). It was very clean, had tv and wifi but we had to share a bathroom with the other people on our floor. It wasn't that bad but it was kind of awkward in a British sort of way :)
 
A shrine at 'The House of Terror' - a trip advisor recommended museum in the old headquarters for the Nazis and the Communists (at different times of course). This was a really interesting museum and was on the same road as our hotel.
 A bike shop, these were very popular, much like bikes are across Europe...
 
Trams!
Lots of stunning architecture, museums and castles in and around City Park - as you might have guessed - a big park :) We liked it here as it was rather pretty, but the pub here had the rudest staff ever.
 
The Hungarian Parliament, where the guards did a little display!
 
We went to the Museum of Ethnography as it was right opposite the parliament, and it was full of interesting objects relating to the culture and history of Hungary. I particularly liked the little vase!
 
Along the Danube River...
 
The Central Market building!
Plenty of fruit and veg on sale, aswell as sausages, alcohol and souvenirs. Everything in Hungary was really cheap, and we struggled to spend all our spending money.
 
Me enjoying an iced latte in the Ruin Bar!
 
The Ruin Bar was very cool ... it was full of tourists, and the decor was done up like a grotto full of crazy, mismatched stuff with fairy lights.
There was even a room with a load of strung up old computer screens, flashing weird clips.
One morning we went to a Catholic church, which was extremely fancy. It had a gold display case too which had the actual hand of the founding father of Budapest inside it :s kind of strange and mildly morbid.
On our last full day we went up the top of Gellert Hill. Its more or less the highest point in Budapest, and overlooks the city and the river. It was the hottest day of our holiday so far, and I was quite grumpy and knackered! There were also a few odd people about, just sitting around by themselves.
Down from the Gellert Hill, we went to the Basilica and the Fishermans Bastion which were really beautiful and had great views! This part of the trip was on the side of Budapest (Buda) that was less touristy, and more residential. It was quite interesting to see the difference...
 
On our way back across the river to Pest, we stopped off at Margaret Island, which is dead centre in the river.
 
It had a cute park there with a big fountain and lots of forested area. There were also lots of mini karts you could hire to drive around :)
 
When we got back across the river we went straight to the Cat Cafe - one of only two or three in Europe! I'd been looking forward to this all holiday. 
 You buy a drink or two in here and you get to spend a few hours with the Cats! The staff were also really friendly too, much friendlier than any other Cafe or restaurant we had been to throughout the holiday.
 
They had a very popular little Bengal kitten too....he reminded me of my own Bengal cat Ash when he was just a bubba! But anyway this kitten was lovely <3
 
On our last night we went back to the Ruin Bar (a different one this time) in an attempt to use up some of our spending money, and I had a really really good cocktail...coconut flavoured :) my favourite. The people in the bars and restaurants round the Ruin Bars were definitely the most tourist friendly (and generally just nice!) in the whole city.
By the end of this trip I was so exhausted - we had walked a total of 42 miles in just three days!
 I think next time I come here, and there definitely will be a next time, I will likely stay closer to this part of the city :)

Sunday, 1 June 2014

Forest Baby Book

Its almost two weeks since I finished all my coursework and handed everything in at university - feels like forever ago. I spent the majority of the weekend working to get as much done as possible, then got up early on the Monday where I worked all day until 3am. I was as you might have guessed, utterly exhausted, but managed to get myself up at 5am to hand in my work at university for 10am! We had to hand in everything, sign a form and give a presentation, which was pretty embarrassing as presentations usually are, but once the day was over I went straight home and fell asleep at 6pm....didn't wake up again til 8.30am the next day. I don't think I've ever worked so hard in all my life, but its all over for now!
I pick up my work later on this week as they finish marking it soon, so looking forward to the results that come out later this month? Hmm. 
Well anyway - this is the final major project I have been working on. When I get my work back from university I'll have to scan in some of my sketchbook work, but for now here are the finished images. Its a children's picture book called 'Forest Baby', based on my research of the woods undertaken this Spring :)
 
 
 

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