Once the two separate cities of Buda and Pest, today Budapest is one marvelous place with plenty of shopping. From crystal to Hungarian wine and gorgeously embroidered textiles, you’ll find lots of things to buy here.
Budapest has many markets that offer items for an authentic picnic or quirky souvenir.
The Central Market and The Malls
A shopping trip should start with the Central Market. By far the largest of the five market halls dating from the end of the 19th century, it’s closed on Sundays but opens as early at 6 in the morning on weekdays. The lower level sells fresh produce and meat from local farms. The upper level offers items like hand-carved chess sets and leather belts or you can try spicy red Hungarian peppers and sausages. Budapest is also home to many malls. The West End City Center is a huge mall where you can pick up practical items or see a movie. The main outdoor mall and major shopping street in Budapest is Vaci Utca. This is where you you’ll find great bargains and will be able to shop like the locals.
The oldest covered market in Buda is Batthyány tér Market, a supermarket for Hungarian food specialties. If you like fashion, visit The Sunday Artists’ Market at Erszebet Square for locally-designed originals. If you are here during Christmas, you can pick up some ornaments and other gifts at the Christmas Fair. It is traditionally held on Vorosmarty ter, right in the center of the city.
Budapest has been a crossroads of Europe for centuries. Consequently, you’ll find lots of varied items here from all over Europe. Hungarians cultivate both red and white wines and they are some of the best bargains in the city. Head to the Bortarsasag for a lot of choicess including the locally popular Bikaver or Bull’s Blood for a full bodied wine with lots of flavor. If you’re looking for bargains on Hungarian products, look for a CBA grocery store. They cater to locals and often have much cheaper prices. Paprika is also particularly popular in this city. Be aware that it can be very hot so make sure you have the milder version if that’s what you like.
Editor’s note: The information contained on this page was compiled using real traveler reviews about shopping in Budapest.