Cruise up the Danube

The first of the tours we booked was a cruise up the Danube on Sunday afternoon. The thing about the tours is that they cost about the price of a good meal in Marshfield. Also, we are in the near suburbs and have no car and, while the Hungarian language is incomprehensible (rendering most signage useless to us), the tour guides and hotel people are fantastic.

Tour pix:

Das Boot. (I’m sorry. I know that’s German but the Hungarian term is unknowable.

The Chain Bridge. Like everything else, blown up by the retreating Nazis and rebuilt exactly as it was.

This was the Franz Josef bridge when the Habsburgs were in charge. Rebuilt in the 40’s and renamed the Freedom bridge.

Same bridge with the Liberty Statue on the hilltop. It once had one of those earnest Soviet soldier statues at the base but that was ripped out 20 minutes after the Berlin Wall came down and is now in Memento Park with other, similar relics. Now the statue is considered to really represent Liberty.

The Parliament Building from the Habsburg era, bombed to crap in WWII and rebuilt by the Hungarians. Beautiful. And pointy.

A scene from Margaret Island in the Danube.. Convoluted history: Tartars, Turks, Habsburgs, Nazis and Soviets bombed the crap out of it in turn. Most compelling, King Bela pledged to give his daughter to God if he repelled the Tartars. God came through, Bela reciprocated, and his little daughter Margaret was sent to a nunnery on the island. She died very young. The Turks eventually invaded and destroyed the nunnery and built a harem. Ironic?

Nunnery ruins:

Here is her grave. Relic hunters dug her up and sold off the relics to various European churches. But the stone was preserved.

Random pix:

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