Photography is an integral part of our travel as it dominates our selection of places, activities and even itinerary. After our research and information from fellow travelers over the internet, we came up with this modified version of a trek to Gillert hill which covers almost all major photo spots in Budapest for night photography. Now I can say that it was one of the most productive evenings of our entire trip of 90 days.
Phase 1: Chain Bridge to Buda Castle
Cross the Chain Bridge
There could be endless angles and variations to click Chain Bridge, you just need to play with your creativity.
Way up to Castle
In the daytime, you have the luxury to ride a funicular till Buda Castle which is really not worth the price except you are a damn lazy soul but in that case, you must not be reading this. The last funicular ride is at 10 pm and it costs you 700 CHF for a one-way ride. If you will walk towards the left from cash desk, you will find an entry gate for the walkway.
PhotoTip: There are 2-3 bridges over the funicular track which comes on your way up to the castle and you can get some nice night shots from there.
Phase 2: Walk along the Castle
Once you reach the castle, you have access to the whole city with illuminated bridges and monuments.
PhotoTip: Roam around along the wall of the castle and try different compositions.
Phase 3: On the way to Gillert Hill
There are multiple routes to reach Gillert Hill and all merges to one, in the end. One easy way to navigate is walking along the river and climbing up from stairs near Elizabeth bridge. One benefit of this route is to get some good non-postcard shots with Elizabeth bridge.
PhotoTip: While taking pictures of Elizabeth bridge from the top, be patient in your struggle with trees. I was literally holding a branch in one hand and camera in another.
Phase 4: Walk down from Gillert Hill to Liberty Bridge
After a long walk we took a much-needed break once reaching the top and we enjoyed the amazing view of the city. It wasn’t very crowded in the night but we were not the only ones around and it seemed to be a Friday party spot for locals. Finally, we started climbing down towards the Liberty bridge.
PhotoTip: Lookout for some photo vantage points while coming downhill towards liberty bridge.
We decided to call it a day when we came down to the base with tired feet, drenched clothes and memory cards full of potential clicks which later turned to be few of my best photos of Budapest.
We packed our tripod and camera and started walking back towards our stay when I realized something. I immediately unpacked everything and clicked the first and last shot of the evening where we were in the frame. That’s how we concluded our one of the memorable evenings in Budapest.