October 16, 2014

YOU GUYS!

Amanda Green Bottoms' handwriting on a restaurant logo in Budapest, Hungary.

OMG. You guys. You will NEVER guess what happened to me in Budapest!!! We were walking down a pedestrian street near our hotel — actually one of the most beautiful pedestrian shopping streets in the world — ranked 7th out of 16 among shopping streets in Paris, Milan, and Amsterdam. It’s renowned for it’s atmosphere and attractiveness, and is one of the most popular sites in Budapest. It was right by our hotel, so we walked down this street multiple times a day.

Amanda Green Bottoms' handwriting on a restaurant logo in Budapest, Hungary.

I looked up at one of the many colorful outdoor cafe awnings lining the street, when to my complete shock I saw MY HANDWRITING. Like, my ACTUAL HANDWRITING on a restaurant awning in Budapest!!! How totally amazing is that??!

Amanda Green Bottoms' handwriting on a restaurant logo in Budapest, Hungary.

They had it on banners and signs all over the restaurant…

Amanda Green Bottoms' handwriting on a restaurant logo in Budapest, Hungary.

They even had a flat screen TV where the logo would occasionally pop up with my handwriting. See “The Italian Kitchen in Budapest”??! That’s my handwriting! You can download it as a font here.

Earlier this year I took a “What Font Are You?” quiz on Buzzfeed and also got MY handwriting. So crazy!! I feel like I’m in an episode of The Twilight Zone!! :)

Amanda Green Bottoms' handwriting on a restaurant logo in Budapest, Hungary.

Then later at an outdoor market, I found magnets with another one of my fonts! That funky Budapest font is another font I made, Rebekah’s Birthday. So crazy! I love seeing the fonts pop up everywhere!! :)

Breathtaking photos that prove Budapest is one of the most stunning cities in Europe! I never knew how amazing Budapest is!

If I didn’t already love Budapest, I totally would now!! :) We had such a fun time in this city. It was so beautiful and we loved how not crowded it was.  Plus the food was amazing!! Keep an eye out for my post on the food!! :)

Breathtaking photos that prove Budapest is one of the most stunning cities in Europe! I never knew how amazing Budapest is!

On our first day there, we took a walking tour with Discover Budapest to see the sights and learn some of the history of Budapest. Did you know the Rubik’s Cube and the ball point pen were invented in Hungary?

Breathtaking photos that prove Budapest is one of the most stunning cities in Europe! I never knew how amazing Budapest is!

Above is St. Stephen’s Basilica. It’s the tallest building in Budapest — tied with the Hungarian Parliament building — representing that church and state are equal. 

Breathtaking photos that prove Budapest is one of the most stunning cities in Europe! I never knew how amazing Budapest is!

You can go up to the top for an incredible panoramic view of the city!! From here you can see all over Budapest… Buda Castle, Matthais Church, and Fisherman’s Bastion

Breathtaking photos that prove Budapest is one of the most stunning cities in Europe! I never knew how amazing Budapest is!

A peek at the Budapest Eye… Budapest’s giant ferris wheel.

Breathtaking photos that prove Budapest is one of the most stunning cities in Europe! I never knew how amazing Budapest is!

All the way to the red domes of the Hungarian Parliament Building and the vibrant green tiled roof of the Hungarian State Treasury.

Breathtaking photos that prove Budapest is one of the most stunning cities in Europe! I never knew how amazing Budapest is!

We also got a peek at one of Budapest’s famous Turkish bath houses, the Széchenyi Spa. The water is supplied by two hot springs, and it’s the largest thermal bath in all of Europe. Going to the spa is totally a thing in Budapest! :)

Breathtaking photos that prove Budapest is one of the most stunning cities in Europe! I never knew how amazing Budapest is! Photo via Stephanie

Heroes’ Square was one of my favorite historic monuments in Budapest. It was built in 1896 to celebrate the 1000-year anniversary of the founding of Budapest. Behind the tall column are two matching colonnades, each with seven statues featuring famous figures of Hungarian history. 

Breathtaking photos that prove Budapest is one of the most stunning cities in Europe! I never knew how amazing Budapest is!

Next up was the fairytale-like Vajdahunyad Castle. It’s one of the most beautiful attractions in Budapest. During the summer and fall, you can take a romantic boat ride around the lake, and in winter it turns into an ice skating rink.

Breathtaking photos that prove Budapest is one of the most stunning cities in Europe! I never knew how amazing Budapest is!

Vajdahunyad Castle hosts various festivals and events throughout the year.

Breathtaking photos that prove Budapest is one of the most stunning cities in Europe! I never knew how amazing Budapest is!

We just happened to be there during a food festival! We were in heaven running around to all the different booths checking out the local fare.

Breathtaking photos that prove Budapest is one of the most stunning cities in Europe! I never knew how amazing Budapest is!

After walking around all day we popped in for a short break to rest our feet and get some free WiFi at the famous New York Cafe in the Boscolo Budapest Hotel. This is not your typical coffee shop! How fun would it be to spend an afternoon here with a pastry and cup of coffee and chat with a good friend?

Breathtaking photos that prove Budapest is one of the most stunning cities in Europe! I never knew how amazing Budapest is!

On the way back to the hotel, we walked down Váci Street, the pedestrian shopping street I mentioned earlier.

Breathtaking photos that prove Budapest is one of the most stunning cities in Europe! I never knew how amazing Budapest is!

How fun is this colorful cafe with it’s hanging lanterns??

Breathtaking photos that prove Budapest is one of the most stunning cities in Europe! I never knew how amazing Budapest is!

Okay, we could not leave Budapest without checking out a ruin pub! Szimpla Kert is Budapest’s oldest and most famous ruin pub.

Breathtaking photos that prove Budapest is one of the most stunning cities in Europe! I never knew how amazing Budapest is!

Ruin Pubs are one of Budapest’s most unique attractions. They are bars that pop up in formerly abandoned buildings and are decorated with a hodgepodge of retro decor. Their live music and unique atmosphere make Budapest’s ruin pubs extremely popular hot spots!

Breathtaking photos that prove Budapest is one of the most stunning cities in Europe! I never knew how amazing Budapest is!

Of course we went at like 2pm on a Sunday afternoon (because we’re wild and crazy like that) so the party was not quite hopping yet. Haha.

Breathtaking photos that prove Budapest is one of the most stunning cities in Europe! I never knew how amazing Budapest is!

I thought the texture of this wall was so unique. I immediately thought of you guys and wanted to offer it as a full-size download for anyone who wants to use it to create textures or anything crafty like that. Let me know what you do with it! I’ll link to it here so everyone can enjoy. :)

Click Here to Download Full Size

Be sure to check out my first post on Budapest for more of Budapest’s must-see sights.

Stay tuned for the AMAZING food we found in Budapest!! :) You don’t want to miss it!! :)

Have a great weekend!! :) xoxo


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October 14, 2014

Breathtaking Budapest

27 Breathtaking photos of Budapest that will make you want to pack your bags right now! I never knew how amazing Budapest is!

This fall has been a whirlwind of adventures. I spent half of September traveling around Europe with my friend Stephanie from Plain Chicken. Stephanie has an amazing blog with super easy and delicious dinner recipes. If you haven’t been there yet, it’s definitely worth checking out! Over the past 7 weeks Stephanie and I have spent 34 days together exploring Europe. First we took a road trip all around Sweden. Then we flew to Amsterdam for a fun weekend of sightseeing. And a few weeks ago we had the opportunity to take a European cruise with Gate 1 Travel. We started in Budapest, cruised along the Danube River, made stops in Vienna and Salzburg, and ended up for a few days in Munich, Germany for Oktoberfest. The real Oktoberfest. It was an unforgettable experience. I can’t wait to tell you all about it. :)

We flew out a few days early before our cruise left to explore Budapest. I had no idea what to expect, but we ended up LOVING Budapest!! It was so gorgeous, not crowded, and had incredible food. Another bonus is that Budapest was SO inexpensive!!

Here are a few of my favorite photos that made me fall in love with Budapest. It is truly one of Europe’s most beautiful cities!

27 Breathtaking photos of Budapest that will make you want to pack your bags right now! I never knew how amazing Budapest is!

The Széchenyi (Say-chain-ee) Chain Bridge is one of Budapest’s most well-known landmarks. It crosses the Danube River and connects the Buda and Pest sides of the city. It was the longest suspension bridge in Europe and the first permanent bridge to cross the Danube River in Hungary when it opened in 1849.

27 Breathtaking photos of Budapest that will make you want to pack your bags right now! I never knew how amazing Budapest is! Photo via Stephanie

Two incredible stone lions guard the bridge at both sides.

27 Breathtaking photos of Budapest that will make you want to pack your bags right now! I never knew how amazing Budapest is! Photo via Stephanie

Walking across this historic bridge gave us some of the best views of Budapest’s landmarks. Above is Buda Castle, home to Hungarian royalty in the capital city of Budapest. This was the site of lavish ceremonies during the Austro-Hungarian Empire.

27 Breathtaking photos of Budapest that will make you want to pack your bags right now! I never knew how amazing Budapest is!

We also got a sneak peek at the Castle District, home to many of Budapest’s historic sights and attractions, like the dramatic Matthias Church and the seven towers of Fisherman’s Bastion seen above.

27 Breathtaking photos of Budapest that will make you want to pack your bags right now! I never knew how amazing Budapest is!

Matthias Church is absolutely breathtaking. The coronation of Austrian king Franz Joseph I and his wife Elizabeth was held here, which marked the establishment of the Austro-Hungarian Empire in 1867.

27 Breathtaking photos of Budapest that will make you want to pack your bags right now! I never knew how amazing Budapest is!

The vibrant ceramic roof is made of tiles from the renowned Zsolnay factory of Hungary.

27 Breathtaking photos of Budapest that will make you want to pack your bags right now! I never knew how amazing Budapest is!

Hard to believe this church is over 700 years old!

27 Breathtaking photos of Budapest that will make you want to pack your bags right now! I never knew how amazing Budapest is!

Just beside Matthais Church is another one of Budapest’s most well-known landmarks, Fisherman’s Bastion.

27 Breathtaking photos of Budapest that will make you want to pack your bags right now! I never knew how amazing Budapest is!

Fisherman’s Bastion was built in the late 1800s to celebrate the 1000-year anniversary of the founding of Hungary.

27 Breathtaking photos of Budapest that will make you want to pack your bags right now! I never knew how amazing Budapest is!

Sitting atop Castle Hill, Fisherman’s Bastion provides some of the most spectacular views in all of Budapest.

27 Breathtaking photos of Budapest that will make you want to pack your bags right now! I never knew how amazing Budapest is!

Can you imagine going out to lunch at an outdoor cafe with this as your view??

27 Breathtaking photos of Budapest that will make you want to pack your bags right now! I never knew how amazing Budapest is!

Swoon.

27 Breathtaking photos of Budapest that will make you want to pack your bags right now! I never knew how amazing Budapest is!

From below, Fisherman’s Bastion looks like a fairytale castle.

27 Breathtaking photos of Budapest that will make you want to pack your bags right now! I never knew how amazing Budapest is!

Probably because of its seven towers, which represent the 7 tribes that founded Hungary.

27 Breathtaking photos of Budapest that will make you want to pack your bags right now! I never knew how amazing Budapest is!

It’s a bit of a hike up the hill to the Castle District, but the views are 100% worth it. Plus you can reward yourself with Budapest’s famous cream cake, which we were absolutely DYING over. Stay tuned for more info on that. :) I’ll be doing a post about all the incredible food we found in Budapest!!

27 Breathtaking photos of Budapest that will make you want to pack your bags right now! I never knew how amazing Budapest is!

After we made our way down the hill, we walked along the river to the Hungarian Parliament building, the third largest parliament building in the world.

27 Breathtaking photos of Budapest that will make you want to pack your bags right now! I never knew how amazing Budapest is! Photo via Stephanie

Finally it was time to cross the bridge back to the Pest side of the city. This is a view of the Chain Bridge from the Buda side.

27 Breathtaking photos of Budapest that will make you want to pack your bags right now! I never knew how amazing Budapest is!

And this is the view from the Pest side.

27 Breathtaking photos of Budapest that will make you want to pack your bags right now! I never knew how amazing Budapest is! Photo via Stephanie

We were crossing the bridge just as the sun was setting.

27 Breathtaking photos of Budapest that will make you want to pack your bags right now! I never knew how amazing Budapest is!

The Széchenyi Chain Bridge is one of the best places in Budapest to watch the sunset!

27 Breathtaking photos of Budapest that will make you want to pack your bags right now! I never knew how amazing Budapest is! Photo via Stephanie

Didn’t Stephanie get some incredible photos in Budapest?? I’m so thrilled she let me share some of them here with you. Be sure to follow PlainChicken.com for the rest!

27 Breathtaking photos of Budapest that will make you want to pack your bags right now! I never knew how amazing Budapest is! Photo via Stephanie

She used a Sony DSC-RX100M III. It’s small and lightweight, fit in her pocket, has a GREAT focal length — it zooms in really far, but would also zoom out really wide to fit in tall buildings and landscapes — and the aperture was phenomenal. It goes down all the way to f/1.8 for beautiful blurred backgrounds. And it was a LOT easier to carry around than a big DSLR. Also it creates its own WiFi connection so you can send the photos straight to your phone for instant sharing even when you don’t have a WiFi signal. Stephanie did a TON of research and seems to have found the ideal travel camera. I’m seriously thinking about getting one for those times when I want to get awesome pictures, but not carry around a huge camera.

27 Breathtaking photos of Budapest that will make you want to pack your bags right now! I never knew how amazing Budapest is!

The view of the city reflecting on the water at night is magnificent.

27 Breathtaking photos of Budapest that will make you want to pack your bags right now! I never knew how amazing Budapest is!

I would’ve never thought to have come here had it not been for our cruise with Gate 1 Travel. So glad we got to experience Budapest!

27 Breathtaking photos of Budapest that will make you want to pack your bags right now! I never knew how amazing Budapest is!

This is just a fraction of how gorgeous Budapest is. We seriously had so much fun here. More to come soon!

xoxo,
Amanda


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If you’re planning a trip to Amsterdam and looking for restaurant recommendations, here’s our review of everywhere and everything we ate in Amsterdam!

BEST Restaurants in Amsterdam!! #travel #amsterdam #netherlands #europe

Lanskroon Banketbakkerij
Singel 385, Amsterdam

We couldn’t go to Amsterdam without trying a famous Stroopwafel! A stroopwafel is two thin waffles with a caramel filling in the middle. We tried this famously dutch treat at one of the most popular bakeries in Amsterdam.

BEST Restaurants in Amsterdam!! #travel #amsterdam #netherlands #europe

Van Stapele Koekmakerij
Heisteeg 4, Amsterdam

This bakery in Amsterdam only makes ONE thing: an ultra decadent chocolate cookie stuffed with gooey white chocolate. There is always a line out the door! A must-try in Amsterdam.

BEST Restaurants in Amsterdam!! #travel #amsterdam #netherlands #europe

The Pancake Bakery
Prinsengracht 191, Amsterdam

The Pancake Bakery is a MUST in Amsterdam!! We came here for breakfast after visiting the Anne Frank Museum. It’s very close by.

BEST Restaurants in Amsterdam!! #travel #amsterdam #netherlands #europe

They’re also open for dinner and serve sweet and savory Dutch pancakes. You can choose from some of their famous specialties or create your own from their huge list of toppings and ingredients! Stephanie got ham & cheese, and Erin got bacon & cheese. I LOVED my Nutella pancake!!

BEST Restaurants in Amsterdam!! #travel #amsterdam #netherlands #europe

They also serve Amsterdam’s famous “poffertjes” (pronounced kinda like poffer-chez) with melted butter and powdered sugar. Swoon!! These are also a must! :)

BEST Restaurants in Amsterdam!! #travel #amsterdam #netherlands #europe Photo via Stephanie

Burger Bar
Kolksteeg 2, Amsterdam

Our first night in the city, we had a delicious burger at Burger Bar. Add your own toppings (even a fried egg!) to create your own custom burger.

BEST Restaurants in Amsterdam!! #travel #amsterdam #netherlands #europe

Lo Stivale d’Oro
Amstelstraat 49, Amsterdam

One of my favorite, most unforgettable meals in Amsterdam was at Lo Stivale d’Oro. It was the sweetest Italian restaurant run by a mom and her sons. One of the sons was softly playing the guitar and serenading the restaurant in Italian. The other son was our server. The mom was in the back making everything from scratch, from the bread to the ravioli.

BEST Restaurants in Amsterdam!! #travel #amsterdam #netherlands #europe

They’re famous for their homemade ravioli and sage, but unfortunately they were out when we went there. They substituted decadent, pillowy soft gnocchi instead. To die for!!

BEST Restaurants in Amsterdam!! #travel #amsterdam #netherlands #europe Photo via Stephanie

Pancakes & Waffles
Oudebrugsteeg 29, Amsterdam

There are sugar waffles ALL over Amsterdam!! This hole in the wall, run by just one guy who makes everything fresh right when you order it, was our favorite out of all the places we saw.

BEST Restaurants in Amsterdam!! #travel #amsterdam #netherlands #europe

We got a sweet sugar waffle topped with Nutella and whipped cream. Love!

BEST Restaurants in Amsterdam!! #travel #amsterdam #netherlands #europe Photo via Stephanie

Ice Bakery by Nutella
Leidsestraat 102, Amsterdam

Oh my gosh you guys!! There is a NUTELLA BAKERY in Amsterdam!!!!

BEST Restaurants in Amsterdam!! #travel #amsterdam #netherlands #europe Photo via Stephanie

They have Nutella EVERYTHING and there are giant jars of Nutella everywhere!! It’s like a Nutella museum!!

BEST Restaurants in Amsterdam!! #travel #amsterdam #netherlands #europe

How gorgeous are their sugar waffles?? You can get Nutella ice cream, Nutella milkshakes, Nutella hot chocolate, Nutella cookie sandwiches, Nutella waffles, Nutella pancakes, Nutella poffertjes, Nutella muffins, Nutella everything!!!!

BEST Restaurants in Amsterdam!! #travel #amsterdam #netherlands #europe

I had to try the Nutella ice cream!

BEST Restaurants in Amsterdam!! #travel #amsterdam #netherlands #europe

And Nutella poffertjes!!! So, so fun!!

That’s all for Amsterdam. Thanks so much for looking!! Have a delicious day!!


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