Budapest boasts countless cool clandestine clubs that are full of funky furniture, graffiti, and of course, endless amounts of alcohol. The ruin pubs are major attractions of the Magyar metropolis, and since most of them are found just a few staggering steps away from each other around downtown, all you need is an intoxicating itinerary to visit the best ones during one epic night. Fortunately, the city’s longest-running ruin-bar tour of AllNightCrash has got your back, as every night they embark on an exciting boozing adventure with a bibulous crowd, diving deep into the wild Budapest nights.
First of all, let’s see how to join this crazy pub crawl to discover five of downtown Budapest's best bars without much hassle – and with VIP entry – during one epic night. The tour starts every single day at 9pm in front of Burger King at Oktogon, and everyone is warmly welcomed here by friendly and helpful guides. When we arrive, a cool crowd of twentysomethings, thirtysomethings, tattooed fellows, pierced girls, surfer types, and all kinds of folks from all around the globe slowly starts to gather, and excited eyes wander around, seeking the best future drinking buddies. Cool and colorful T-shirts with the pub crawl’s logo are available here to further increase the community feel. After a quick and smooth registration process, we are ready to hit the road – and the bottle.
After only a few steps we arrive at our first drinking destination, a ramshackle ruin pub and the haunt of diehard party animals, Retox. The name pretty much reveals everything, as Retox is a place where hard drinking is encouraged and literally anything imaginable can happen, hence it is great to start sipping on suds here. We find ourselves amid crumbling walls adorned with colorful art; looking to the right, a cool crowd is playing beer pong – quite possibly not the first round – while looking left, a pole entices aspiring go-go girls for determined spins and turns. After gulping the first free welcome drink and a few glassfuls of other tasty tipples, even those who came alone overcome their initial shyness, and forever-lasting friendships form – for one night.
Leaving Retox behind while vaguely mumbling a ’90s Backstreet Boys hit, we soon find ourselves at the next inebriation station, Füge Udvar (translating to: “Fig Garden”), which is basically the cheapest ruin bar in Budapest. After the compulsory welcome drink, which is a sweet green shot here, it is essential to fill up on low-priced intoxicants, as there are fixed monthly discounts, cold beers, frosty fröccs, and other palatable potables in profusion behind the bar. Füge Udvar has both a roofed and uncovered part, as well as a vivid vibe, so we hang around for a short while, as those who signed up for the Power Hour Pub Crawl enjoy 40 minutes of unlimited premium drinks, including spirits like tequila, vodka, whiskey, rum, and gin, as well as long drinks, such as vodka with soda, whiskey or rum and coke, and gin and tonic.
The next stop is one of chaotic Kazinczy Street’s most colorful spots, Ellátó Kert. The friendly guide immediately gets the group’s welcome drink, which is a local favorite: the pinky, a pink grapefruit-vodka shot. Ellátó Kert exudes authentic ruin-pub vibes, boasting a spacious garden that is a perfect place for when the boogie fever hits you. After another 45 minutes of unlimited fun, we keep chasing the drunken dream.
Next, we take a glassy gaze around The Hive, where the music is enhanced with the sound of constantly cracking bottlecaps, clinking glasses, and popping corks, and then conclude the crawl at Budapest’s huge Fogas Ház party complex, where the dancing and drinking goes on until dawn. Bear in mind that as AllNightCrash’s guides are all true booze experts, no two tours are ever the same, as they always strive to show their groups the best bars in town. However, if you choose their crawl on any day of the week, you are truly in for a real treat of unforgettable (well, not in all cases...) fun, and if you prefer a more personalized experience, the AllNightCrash is always at your service.