The Jewish Quarter and Thermal Baths in Budapest

Day 82, Friday, November 15, 2019

We walk through the Old Jewish Quarter this morning.  These murals are on buildings within a block of our apartment. Many of the buildings in this neighbourhood are old and in need of repair but the murals do brighten up the neighbourhood. Bob tells me to look inside this little blue van… It is set up as a little dining room!   It is kind of cute, except I look in the front seat and it is dirty and cluttered with junk.  Not very appetizing,  There are many shops and workshops tucked into the buildings on narrow streets, sometimes even in the basements, like this bike shop.  I think my bike riding daughter will appreciate the sentiment of the sign above this door.
This is probably one of the most colourful doors I have ever seen.The buildings here have very interesting architectural details.
Seems every city we have ever been in has an Astoria Hotel! Loved the room at the top of this white building.  Imagine living there. The Holocaust Tree of Life Memorial was funded by the late American actor Tony Curtis in memory of his Hungarian-born father. The names of 30,000 Holocaust victims are engraved on the leaves of the metal tree.  The tree resembles an upside down menorah and is located on top of the mass graves of thousands of murdered Jews. The tree is located behind The Dohány Street Synagogue which is also known as the Great Synagogue.  It seats 3,000 people and is the largest synagogue in Europe and the third largest in the world.  We didn’t have time to go inside because  we want to go to a thermal bath today.One more interesting building on our way back to our apartment.  The top doesn’t seem to belong to the bottom. The Széchenyi Spa Bath in Budapest is the largest one in Europe, with 15 indoor and 3 large outdoor pools.  Its water is supplied by two thermal springs.  Here is the floorpan of this huge complex.Térkép

 We start out in this pool with a fun whirlpool-like circular ‘river’ that pushes you around it very quickly.   This pools for lane swimming, not for us today. We like this pool as it is warmer than the first one.   Inside there are fifteen more pools.  This is one of the warmer ones and the only one that has comfy lounge chairs, so we stay here for a while.  I sit beside Bob, in the corner and do some drawings of the bathers.  Budapest didn’t have any life drawing classes, or at least none that I could find, so this will do instead.   The building is magnificent but it is starting to show its age here and there.  I think it might need a renovation before too long.  This is a great place for people watching, and we do come in all shapes and sizes! By the time we go back outside it is dark, and the steam is rising from the pools.  We were thinking of taking a boat ride on the Danube tonight but we decide to stay and enjoy more time here.There are more people now than when we first arrived, and most of them are much younger than us.  We see a few other grey-haired ‘oldies’ but we are few and far between.  We spent more than five hours enjoying the baths, and we both feel nice and relaxed.

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