Month: September 2018

Travel Guide to Budapest, Hungary

If you’re looking to travel to Europe on the cheap while not missing out on any of the stereotypical famed architecture or fascinatingly beautiful walking streets, the capital of Hungary is just the place for you. A small country situated right in the middle of the continent, Hungary has been involved in every war in the history of Europe, each one diminishing it in size. Though the country has been through every fathomable war and tribulation, the Hungarian people, ever filled with pride and happiness, have kept their own culture intact, something very apparent while walking down the cobblestone sidewalks of Budapest. From the fresh paprika stalls to the thermal baths that the locals visit every morning before work, here is your (cheap) guide to Budapest, Hungary.

1. Visit Széchenyi thermal baths

 

 

A true highlight of any trip to Budapest, the Széchenyi (pronounced say-cheh-nee) baths are housed in a yellow building from 1913 are are fed from underground thermal springs. There are 21 pools in total, ranging from ice-cold temperatures of 18 degrees Celcius (about 64.4 degrees Fahrenheit) to the practically steaming 40 degrees Celcius (about 104 degrees Fahrenheit)– the locals go there before work and switch between the hottest and coldest bath to help with blood circulation!

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2. Eat Lángos

 

Sure, we have fried dough here in the States, but in Hungary, it’s turned into a pizza/open-faced sandwich hybrid. Lángos (pronounced lahn-gohsh) has been around since at least the early 15th century and has delectably satisfied many locals and tourists alike.

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3. Fisherman’s Bastion

 

A remarkable castle built as the turn of of the last century that is very reminiscent of one you’d see in a Disney movie.The view overlooking the city is stunning.

9627578095_63f83e9d6f_h.jpg4. Art museum

 

 

If you’re looking for a dash of artistic culture, the Budapest Fine Arts Museum has got your back. From exhibits displaying Egyptian art to temporary ones (one of which was Van Gogh!), this art museum has you covered.

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5. Gellért Hill

 

A hill overlooking the Danube and Pest (metropolitan) part of the city, Gellért Hill is a beautiful and easily walkable reminder of the fact that Budapest is truly a sight to behold, views from the top and all.

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6. Hero’s Square

 

Hero’s Square is one of the major squares in Budapest with large statues of the 7 Magyar chieftains– the leaders of the first Hungarian people. Under the communist regime, large parades with military tanks and the communist leaders rolled past this square. Nowadays, the square serves as a reminder of Hungarian resilience and traditional culture.

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7. Central Market Hall

 

 

If food is what you’re looking for, Central Market hall is the perfect place for you. A large multi-story building with indoor sprawling food and tchotchke vendors, the aromatic euphoria sets in the moment you walk through the front doors. The locals sell everything from fresh meat to the most colorful paprika and local dishes to local handicrafts.

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8. Eat Nokedli, Gulyas, (Chicken) Paprikash

 

Many people say that in order to truly gain an understanding of a culture, you need to eat the local food. In that case, Hungarian culture is decadent, savory, and absolutely delicious. Nokedli is a kind of Hungarian egg noodle dumpling filled with itself. It serves as a perfect companion to Chicken Paprikash– chicken well seasoned with paprika. Gulyas, more commonly known as goulash, is a stew of meat, vegetables, and paprika. The best way, from personal experience, to make gulyas is over an open fire with family and/or friends.

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9. City Park

 

 

City Park is a sprawling park with many major destinations either in or right by it: Széchenyi, the zoo, the circus, the museum of fine arts, and more! Enjoy a picnic of lángos (from the stand right next to Széchenyi) and fresh fruit while people-watching for a cheap and memorable way to spend a few hours.

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10. Hungarian State Opera

 

 

The State Opera House may be beautiful on the outside, but the inside is even more so. Gold accents against red velvet line almost every inch inside the theater itself, but even something as simple as the coat room can capture and melt the hearts of all who enter. Catch a show here (in the nosebleed seats) for as little as 500 forint (about $1.80 USD) or just tour– either way will leave you breathless.

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By: Allison Sickles

Red Tide Hits Florida Shores

The state of Florida has been under attack by a surge of the “Red Tide”. The Red Tide has been coloring our oceans red, which is actually caused by red algae in the water. Generally, algae is considered to be very harmless, but this variety is extremely dangerous to both the ocean ecosystem and humans. What has resulted of the tide is a stream of dead ocean wildlife, and beaching of turtles, fish and other sea life. But why does this type of algae cause so much damage? When the algae blooms, and subsequently dies, it releases harmful toxins that contaminate the sea water, which results in the events aforementioned. The next question is: How does this affect us?

There are huge economic consequences of this red tide, and it all stems from tourism. Tourism is one of Florida’s main economic powerhouses; it fuels almost every part of our economy. With this tide getting in the way of some of Florida’s most popular spots, our beaches, expect to see a decline in revenue. This also hurts small businesses near the beaches, as the dip in beachgoers will cause sinkholes in business.

It can also harm us physically. Red algae can cause major health issues, such as respiratory issues and dermal ones, too. It can even affect what we eat–when shellfish gets contaminated by the toxins, and we eat it, it can cause NSP, or Neurotic Shellfish Poisoning. Overall, the algae is not life threatening by any means–you can still swim in red tide-infested water–but it can cause discomfort and be harmful to those who may have respiratory problems that are pre-existing (like asthma).

This is not the first time the red tide has ravaged Florida, though. In 1996, a red tide came to Florida, and killed nearly 10% of its manatee populations, along with 162 dolphins in Mexico. We could see this damage again if we do not take measures to stop this, but there are no real solutions as of yet. All we can do now is sit and take the punches of this toxic tide.

“The Meg” Review

Over the past weekend, I watched a new movie at the movie theater called The Meg. The Meg is a story about a man named Jonas, who is a retired trained rescue diver. Jonas saves many people when they encounter a enormous shark, also known as a megalodon. The movie starts with Jonas in trouble, and he ends up losing some crew members in a rescue mission. Jonas then retires from diving and moves to Thailand. Five years later, a submarine crew, working for a billionaire who funded an international undersea observation program in the middle of the ocean, gets stuck underwater beyond a ground level that has never been discovered before. Their submarine is attacked and thrown around by an unknown creature outside. They begin to run out of time and their crew, in the lab above water, begins to panic, thinking about how to rescue them. Jonas is contacted by a friend who works for the program to help save his crew, and he immediately turns it down–until he discovers his ex-wife is one of the people in trouble. Jonas comes to the rescue and is able to save the crew members; he also encounters “the Meg,” as they call it, while performing the rescue operation. The giant shark is believed to stay under the ground level due to the temperature difference, but it follows the submarine into a world it has never seen. It’s now up to Jonas to save the ocean and all the creatures that are in it from this monster.

I found the movie pretty interesting, because it was action-packed and had great special effects. The shark actually looked real and it didn’t look too fake. It had some funny moments which brightened the movie and kept it from being too serious, and those cracked some laughs in the audience. It was also suspenseful because I didn’t know what was going to happen next, and it had me on the edge of my seat. However, I found it a bit corny and cheesy as well, considering some parts were very unrealistic and the movie jumped around too much. I would recommend this movie to people who are not scared of unexpected occurrences and who like a suspenseful or funny movie. I would rate this movie a 6/10 overall because it seems very similar to the popular movie “Jaws” and isn’t as unique as it could have been.

 

By: Rylee Tuzzeo