As Budapest takes down its Christmas decorations, it’s time to start thinking about healthy, warming weekends away from the city. Here are seven recommendations for lodgings where you can soak off the winter blues or take in fabulous views of the river, all a short drive or bus ride from the capital. For further tips on sightseeing and dining, ask in tourist offices for the latest winter edition of our We Love Budapest pocket guide, with a special section on the Danube Bend.
BÜKKÖS HOTEL – SZENTENDRE
A four-star spa hotel for over-13s only, the Bükkös overlooks the stream of the same name, high up over the main and many sights of Szentendre, walking distance from the Danube. The spa complex features saunas, infrared, dry and steam, complemented by an ice corner and jacuzzi, plus a beauty salon. Premium double rooms look out over the Szentendre skyline. A full buffet breakfast is served in the grill restaurant and there are also half-board deals.
2000 Szentendre, Bükkös part 16
Take the HÉV train from Batthyány tér, journey time 40min. The Volánbusz runs from Újpest-Városkapu to the nearest stop of Szentendre Római kőtár, journey time 30min. By car, take Road 11, journey time 30min.
HOTEL SILVANUS – VISEGRÁD
Comprising Forest Rooms and Danube Rooms, the Silvanus lives up to its sylvan billing offering a spa centre with ayurvedic treatments, a beauty parlour, a squash court, solarium and Nordic walking, along with a panoramic restaurant where Sunday brunch is served. All, in fact, is panoramic here, the dramatic scenery a main attraction.
2025 Visegrád, Fekete-hegy
The Volánbusz runs from Újpest-Városkapu to the nearest stop of Visegrád Lepencefürdő, journey time 1hr 15min. By car, take Road 11, journey time 1hr.
ODU HOUSE – VERŐCE
Its elevated terrace allowing you to gawp at the entire Danube Bend spread out before you, this masterwork of interior design opened in July 2018, welcoming up to 11 guests in two bedrooms and various built-in platforms. With more than half the sleeping space ranged around communal areas, this is the perfect choice for a large group of friends to get together as ODU is rented out as a whole house – with a garden and free parking, too.
2621 Verőce, Meredek köz 3
Take the train from Nyugati station to Verőce, journey time 35min. By car, take M0/E77, journey time 1hr.
PORTOBELLO WELLNESS & YACHT HOTEL – ESZTERGOM
Opened in 2016, the Portobello takes its name not from the bohemian quarter of west London but its harbour-like location on Primás Island, connected to the Aquasziget Water Park and backdropped by Esztergom’s iconic Basilica. Its main feature is Wellness World, a complex of pinewood spas where relaxing au naturel is encouraged. Family-friendly pools and slides also feature. The hotel also provides special services for babies and toddlers.
2500 Esztergom, Táncsics Mihály utca 5
THERMAL HOTEL VISEGRÁD
Thermal water and spectacular views of the Danube Bend. Great for corporate events, weddings or individual holidays. Now offering Saturday-night packages that include lunch on Sundays, this four-star spa hotel is built around natural thermal springs – hence the pools indoor and out. There’s also a scented steam bath, an aroma cabin and ice well, and all kinds of treatments and massages. Each of the 174 rooms and suites has a view of the Danube or adjoining Pilis Park Forest.
2025 Visegrád, Lepence völgy 2
The Volánbusz runs from Újpest-Városkapu to the nearest stop of Visegrád Lepencefürdő, journey time 1hr 20min. By car, take Road 11, journey time 1hr.
VÁR HOTEL KASTÉLYSZÁLLÓ – VISEGRÁD
This former fortress home of Artúr Görgei, military commander during the Hungarian War of Independence in 1848-49, was converted into a 20-room hotel with extensive wine cellar in 1999. Set down by the riverbank, close to the boat station, with the historic citadel above, the Kastélyszálló (‘Castle Hotel’) is perfectly located for an atmospheric stay – with a wine dinner thrown in.
2025 Visegrád, Fő utca 9
The Volánbusz runs from Újpest-Városkapu to the nearest stop of Visegrád Hajóállomás, journey time 1hr 15min. By car, take Road 11, journey time 1hr.
VÖLGYHÁZ – ZEBEGÉNY
Venerable pine trees and trickling streams are just what the doctor ordered when you want a relaxing weekend à deux in a pretty little cottage. At the foot of the Börzsöny hills and Duna-Ipoly National Park, surrounding Zebegény is equally picturesque.
Zebegény, Völgy utca 24
Take the train from Nyugati station to Zebegény, journey time 50min. By car, take M0/E77, journey time 1hr 15min.