Here's what you get when you study abroad with CEA in Budapest:
CEA Budapest students can enjoy city-living with the apartment option. Apartments are a perfect fit for students who want to experience Budapest like a local. Share your apartment with other CEA students but get to know your Hungarian neighbors, too. Fully furnished with modern amenities, apartments are conveniently located near local shops and services. All apartments have easy access to the city center and the university.
This 2000-year-old city is just a train ride away from Budapest, not far from Hungary’s border with Croatia. Originally founded by the ancient Romans, Pécs has a long and fascinating history full of regime changes and cultural shifts. Visit the 12th century Pécs Cathedral, which has functioned as both a Christian church and Turkish mosque, for its architecture and interior frescoes. Tour the Gallery of Modern Hungarian Art, home to over 12,000 pieces. Make a wish at the Zsolnay Fountain, considered one of the symbols of the city. If you like theater, go see a play at the National Theater of Pécs and find out why the city is considered the Hungarian capital of the dramatic arts.
The Danube Bend
Hungary’s famous River Danube takes a sharp turn just north of Budapest, and the bend is widely considered the most beautiful stretch of the entire river, surrounded by green hills and charming little towns on both banks. On the West bank, you’ll find Szentendre, a historically Serbian town known for its arts scene; Visegrád, where palace ruins mark the first recorded spread of the Renaissance outside Italy; and Esztergom, home of the largest Hungarian cathedral. On the East bank, you can visit the botanical garden in Vácrátót or hike through the scenic landscape of Nagymaros.
Village of Hollókő
This mountain town an hour outside Budapest provides a window into traditional Hungarian culture. With a population of just under 400 people, Hollókő is great destination for a quiet retreat from big city life. Visit the castle ruins that date back to at least the 1300s and walk through the charming streets of the village where its businesses operate out of the unique white-washed houses with thatched wooden roofs first built in the late 17th century. Take the opportunity to see locals dressed in the unique and colorful folkloric costumes they’ve inherited from their ancestors and watch as locals parade through the streets in horse-drawn carriages for special events. Hollókő’s the perfect spot for star-gazing on a clear night and the pastoral landscape surrounding the village makes a beautiful backdrop for the many festivals and cultural activities the locals organize or for a simple walk on a sunny day.
This small village west of Budapest is well-known for its wine and film studio, locally considered Hungary’s version of California’s Napa Valley and Hollywood rolled into one. Etyek is home to several small wineries and the Korda Filmpark and Studios. Join a wine tour or visit Etyek during May’s Cellar Festival, and learn more about the filmmaking business and Hungarian movies on a tour at Korda Filmpark.
Spend a day at the largest natural lake in central Europe, where you can go for a swim and hang out on the shore with friends. Lake Balaton is surrounded by popular resort towns along its southern shore and mountainous wine country to the north, giving you plenty of alternatives to lake activities while you’re in the area. Sailing, fishing, and other water sports are popular ways tourists spend time at Balaton during the warmer months, and if urban activities are more your thing, enjoy the night life in the resort towns after spending daylight hours on the water.
Natural Hot Springs
Budapest is world-renown for its natural hot springs and thermal baths, which have been prized since the ancient Romans took over the area to enjoy them. If you’re in the “City of Baths,” you’ll want to take the opportunity to experience this unique cultural feature.
For the ultimate thermal bath outing, participate in the Night of Baths. This one-night special event happens every year in the spring, some time between February and April. Go on a bath crawl through Budapest that can last late into the night, experiencing many of the city’s thermal baths. The night attracts plenty of locals and tourists alike and features entertainment such as concerts, DJs, and fire juggling.
Hungary has a long history of folkloric dance and music, and dance houses help keep these traditions alive. A folkdance house is a venue open to the public where dance lessons are complemented with singing lessons, arts and crafts, and ethnographic presentations. Folk dance experts sometimes perform at dance houses dressed in traditional Hungarian folk costume. The dance houses welcome everyone, regardless of level of exposure to the dance style, and visiting is one fun way of learning more about Hungarian traditions alongside locals of all ages.
With the biggest Jewish population in Central and Eastern Europe today, Budapest contains several important sites of Jewish history and community, including the largest synagogue in Europe. Dohany Street Synagogue, located in the city’s Jewish Quarter, is home to Budapest’s Jewish Museum, the Heroes’ Temple, and the Jewish cemetery. Wander the quarter to enjoy Jewish food and sweets at neighborhood restaurants and confectioneries and to see where local Jews have long lived in Budapest. Beyond the Jewish Quarter, you can stop at the city’s Holocaust Memorial Center to learn more about the Nazi occupation of the country.
Hungaricum Tour – Inventions & Scientific Discoveries
This special tour of Budapest focuses on exploring the city through Hungarian inventions and food. Start off at the Zwack Unicum Museum & Shop to learn more about unicum, a Hungarian herbal liqueur aged in oak casks considered one of the country’s national drinks. Next, you’ll stop at the Central Market Hall where you can sample traditional Hungarian food like lángos, goulash, and strudel; you can also purchase special souvenirs to take home like tins of goose liver, embroidered tablecloths, traditional Hungarian dolls, leather goods, etc. After the Market Hall, follow the tour to the Herend Porcelain Brand Shop and Ajka Crystal Shop, then see Szamos Gourmet Palace, where marzipan roses were created. You’ll visit the patisserie of Emil Gerbeaud, inventor of the Konyakos meggy sweet, a dark chocolate covered sour cherry soaked in cognac. Your final stop is the Hungarian National Museum, permanent exhibition of Hungarian Scholars Who Created the 20th Century that features Hungarian inventors and their most important products: the ball-point pen, the hologram, the automatic gear box, vitamin C, and others.
Sweet Days – Chocolate and Candy Festival
Chocolate is the main attraction at this three-day annual festival in September, where multinational sweets companies and local Hungarian chocolatiers showcase their best products. Besides chocolate, guests can also enjoy honey, coffee, vanilla, wine, macarons, and other delicious treats at a number of food stalls. Take a chocolate tasting tour and learn fun facts about chocolate-making and wrapping. The festival features evening entertainment in the form of swing, jazz, and funk concerts. Admission is free.
Live it up
The only advice you need is to live it up because CEA plans everything for you