Budapest video from 1973 – Must see for Budapest fans

Are you a Budapest fan? If the answer is yes then you will love this Budapest video from 1973. It is a 30 minute film simply showing what Budapest was like, presented by the Hungarian singer Kati Kovacs.

We by coincidence bumped into this film in the library of the Norwegian TV channel NRK, so you can watch the film there if you want to.

Press the link above to visit the video on the NRK website and start watching the website. It is amazing to see the changes that has happened in the city since then. Just take a look at the following picture from the film which was made back then of what is today one of the nicest hotels in town, the Gresham Palace (Four Seasons).

Four seasons in 1973
Four seasons (Hotel Gresham) in 1973

There are lots of clips like the one above that is interesting, but you should be warned that the first 10 minutes are most interesting, because after that they start to sing a lot and you do not get to see as much of Budapest anymore.

And one more thing… it is often just as interesting to notice what you can not see as what you can see. Lots of buildings present today can not be seen in the video, you can see cars driving on the area which is the Danube Promenade today, and so much more. Enjoy the film and watch it.

Welcome to Budapest
This statue welcomed you to Budapest in 1973

It is supposed to be available all across the world, but if you should have problems watching NRK from abroad, just press the link to get help.

What is the currency of Hungary?

One of the most important subjects a blog can write about is money; everyone is interested in the subject and everyone likes to have money, and most of us like it even more if they have a lot of it. Since Hungary is not the largest and most important country in the world, many people ask themselves questions such as where is Hungary, what is the capital of Hungary and of course, what is the currency of Hungary. In our blog we will from time to time simply answer such normal and typical questions, though not with short answers, but with thorough information helping our readers find exactly the information they want and need.

So, what is the currency of Hungary?

The name of the currency used in Hungary is Hungarian Forint, which has been used since 1946. Before that the currency of Hungary was Adópengő, and before that they used Forint (1867-1892), Korona (1892-1918), Pengő (1919-1926) and then Adópengő (1927-1946) before the Forint finally became the currency of Hungary again in 1946. Currently the Hungarians would like to get the Euro as their local currency, so the end of the HUF might be on the horizon, but they have not yet been allowed to get it due to poor economy. But, if the economy starts rising, the Euro might come to Hungary as well in the future, thus making and end to the epoch of the Hungarian Forint.

The Hungarian Forint is often named only HUF which is the abbreviation for the real name, just like the Great British Pound is often shortened down to GBP. Another sign for the Hungarian Forint is Ft, which you can often see on price tags in both stores and on the internet and elsewhere. Earlier the currency of Hungary had a smaller part named fillér, where one Forint was the same as 100 fillér. The last fillér was withdrawn from usage in 1999. After that the smallest coin was the 1 Forint coin (0,0036 Euro or 0,0045 USD). The 1 and 2 Forint coins remained in circulation until 1998, but since then the 5 Forint coin is the smallest still in circulation.

So if you come to Hungary know you can find 5, 10, 20, 100 and 200 Forint coins and 500, 1000, 2000, 5000, 10000 and 20000 HUF bills. One piece of advice is if you jump on a taxi on the street or pay with larger bills in strange, hidden shops and at markets, is to make sure that you receive money back in Hungarian Forint. Some people we know have paid taxis with a Hungarian 20,000 bill and received back 10,000 Romanian Lei bill (which is worth nothing at all). This is not very common, but it happens, so it is worth watching out.

USD to HUF

If you would like to change your USD to HUF at the moment you can multiply the amount in USD with 225, and you will get almost the exact amount in HUF. This means that if you would like to change 200 USD to HUF then you will get somewhere around 45,000 HUF. It is not that easy with brain math, but if you remember the trick of multiplying with 225 and use the calculator at your mobile that should be of great help.

EUR to HUF

If you come from a European country with EUR (Euro) as the local currency then 1 Euro is at moment around 280 HUF. That is in fact a quite big difference to some months ago, because then you could in the most drastic times of Hungarian economy get 320 HUF for 1 Euro. Beneath this text you can find a graph showing the movement and changes in the relationship between the Euro and the Hungarian Forint in the last two years.

currency of hungary

GBP to HUF

Budapest is a very popular destination for people coming in from Great Britain and there are quite a lot of pubs packed with Englishmen drinking bear and having fun. But to buy the beer you need to have some of the Hungarian currency, and if you want to change GBP to HUF then you should calculate that 1 GBP gives you about 350 HUF. If you then change 200 GBP you should get about 70,000 HUF.

Be aware!

When reading about the conversion from USD to HUF, from EUR to HUF or from GBP to HUF we have the ideal and current exchange middle rates. If you go to an exchange office at the airport they will have terrible rates compared to this, and even though it is not normal with commission rates at the exchange offices, they still have horrible exchange rates making up for the „no commission” sign. The best way to grab hold of the currency of Hungary, the HUF, is to use an ATM either at the airport or in the city center, or maybe by finding good exchange offices where the difference between the buy and sale price is nothing more than 3-4 Forint. You can read more about it this at the Currency page at Budapest Guide where you can also find an online currency converter.

MAK Bistro Budapest review

A new star is rising in Budapest, and the name of it is MÁK Bistro. The restaurant has a rustic feeling to it, and it is almost hidden away in the very center of Budapest, only one minute away from the beautiful Chain Bridge on the Pest side of the city. MAk Bistro opened in 2010 and has since then received lots of great reviews, making it one of the most trendy restaurants in Budapest at the moment, but it does not feel to touristic, which is a bonus.

In the Dining Guide 2012 edition and in the Gault&Millau restaurant guide for 2012 MÁK Bistro was listed among the top five restaurants of Budapest. That is quite a job from such a young restaurant, and as I visited the restaurant earlier I was curious to get to know the place better.

During lunch time the restaurant offers two or three course lunches. The price for a two course lunch is 2800 HUF and for three courses the price is 3500 HUF. No drinks are included, so you should add 500-1000 HUF to the bill, and then the service fee, which they automatically add to the bill as you get it. Therefore a lunch for one person here with three courses will normally end up somewhere between 4500-5000 HUF (of course depending on how much you drink).

I (Budablogger) am not so much of a gourmet, so therefore I was curious to see how I would like the food in the restaurant. If it gets to advanced and with to many strange spices and ingredients, I often miss the traditional Hungarian courses. But, today something happened, as I enjoyed all the three courses, and also the „free” courses given along the way. The first course was a soup (Parsnip velouté) which was tasting completely different from most soups I have ever tasted in Hungary, but it was interesting and delicious. The main course (Pink perch with buckwheat pasta) was made from fish with buckwheat pasta, and even though it felt strange at the start, I enjoyed it so much that as all the fish was gone, I took what was left of bread from the table and started to put it into the sauce left from the main course to enjoy them together.

The dessert (Cottage cheese-pomegranate dessert) was extremely fresh and the combination of fruit, cottage cheese and something similar to crunched biscuits made it a perfect end to the lunch menu.

The menu at MÁK Bistro changes continuously, making it an interesting place to visit over and over again, and the prices are not at all scary. Main courses if you come during dinner time cost somewhere between 2500-5000 HUF normally, and they use lots of traditional Hungarian ingredients, though with lots of turns and twists to it. This makes MÁK Bistro a super place to visit if you want to eat upper class food in Budapest with nice prices, great service, a central location and with high quality. Be surprised and enjoy your meal as you visit MÁK Bistro.

MAK Bistro Budapest

Vigyázó Ferenc utca 4, 1051 Budapest
Tuesday – Saturday from 12.00-15.00 and 18.00-24.00
Telephone: +36307239383

What others have written about MÁK Bistro.
Their distinguishing trait is the consisting use of excellet raw material, prepared with the care it deserves… outstanding desserts bring an upbeat ending to your meal. (Gault&Millau 2012)