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The route this day took us from Riga to Budapest. The main goal was to find a lot of earthcaches, and collect enough points to reach Pluto. But we had already reached Pluto by the time we got here 😛 So we settled for just finding a lot of caches 😉
Approximate time out caching/traveling: 18 hours
Total walking distance: 23,21 km / 14.42 mi (35 105 steps)
Flights taken: 1
Total cahes found: 49
Total DNF: 2
Cities visited: Riga, Budapest
Famous places visited: Hungarian Parliament
Most memorable cache: GCGFQ9 Me and the Houses of Parliament… and Irene
Biggest surprise: That we actually managed to find two caches more than we had planned
Weather: Clear, overcast
Temperature range: ~3°C / 37°F
Getting up very early
We had a very early flight from Riga to Budapest, so we had to get up early. We don’t like to arrive at the last minute either, so we left the hotel before 5am. My feet got quite sore after all the walking in Vilnius, and even worse yesterday, so the 200 meters from the hotel to the airport was hard! But we made it 😛
Both check-in and boarding went smoothly, and we boarded a brand new airplane for the third time on this trip. It was freezing when we left Riga, so we had to do a quick stop at the de-icing before we could finally hit the skies.
Just above minimum
We almost made it to Budapest, but then we (at least the one of us that wasn’t sleeping) suddenly felt the engines speeding up towards maximum thrust again, and we started climbing back up. Turned out that the visibility at the airport had decreased below the minimums from the ascent was started and until now. It was simply too foggy to land.
The captain informed us that we had plenty of fuel on board, and that we would head to the holding pattern to wait. We didn’t even make a complete round in the pattern before they announced that it had increased just above minimum, and that they would try again. We got warned that we might had to go around again, but the landing couldn’t have been much smoother than this. Awesome! Just slightly delayed.
Finding a lot of earthcaches
After getting to the hotel (took forever in the crazy traffic), and resting for a couple minutes, we headed towards the metro station. The plan was to start with the earthcaches (26 earthcaches hidden very close together). The escalator down to the platform was one of the steepest, and longest, we’ve ever taken. Crazy! (the picture is from half way down)
We did try to find a cache along the way from the station to the earthcache, but the area was closed. So the earthcaches would still be our first Hungarian finds. When we got closer, we noticed that huge parts of the park was closed off due to gardening and maintenance work. Got a bit afraid that they had closed the part with the earthcaches as well, but luckily the fence stopped 1 meter from the first earthcache 😀
We spent the next couple hours here, doing our best to find the information we needed, and make sure we took notes and pictures for the correct earthcaches 😛
Time to start our walk
After doing the earthcaches, and a couple other caches in the park, it was time to take the metro back towards the center again. We did a quick pit stop a the hotel, before starting on our walk.
We crossed the bridge over from Pest (where our hotel was) to Buda. Just as in Vilnius, several caches in Budapest was disabled. So we concentrated on the caches that was still active.
My feet were hurting quite a lot now, after all the walking, so we stopped at a pharmacy to attempt to find something that could help. Trying to buy something you don’t know what is, in a country you don’t speak the language in (and they don’t speak English either), was hard. Very hard. But with some help from Google Translate, we managed to at least buy something 😛
View to the parliament
When we got a bit further north, we had great view of the magnificent Parliament building for the remainder of the walk in Buda. And the virtual cache GCGFQ9 Me and the Houses of Parliament… and Irene brought us to the perfect spot!
We had planned a lot of caches this day, a lot more than we thought we would be able to find. But we still managed to find a couple extra along the way here. Eventually we made it to GC42R0T Danube Promenade 32, a cache on the bridge back to Pest. Muggles everywhere, but we still managed to find it 😀
So this is where all the muggles go
We had looked on the map, and spotted a Mc Donald’s on the other side of the bridge. Some food would be nice now, so we decided to do a quick stop there. So did the rest of Budapest. People everywhere, and not even a corner of a table available.
So we just had to do like a lot of other people, buy food, and eat outside in the cold park.
The parliament at night
After one more cache, it was time for GC75QK6 The Limestones in Parliament House. We didn’t quite understand the tasks at first, so we ended up spending some time here. My feet also needed som rest, and we got to find another bonus cache here. But the biggest bonus, was that we spent enough time here that we got to see the parliament after dark. Awesome!
Meeting other cachers at the most difficult cache of the day
A couple caches later, we arrived at GC68H3N Danubius-kút / Danubius Fountain, where we met two geocachers from Germany. It was very nice to have some help on this very difficult cache!
After reading old logs, studying old photos etc, we figured out where we should concentrate our search. And finally, we found it 😀 Great teamwork, nice to meet you Ursel73!
The long walk
It felt like we had to walk forever to the next one, the virtual GCH50Z Synagogue. But since it was virtual, we just had to find it! And giving up now, when we just had a couple caches left, was not an option.
We made it to the cache, and also found the earthcache there. From the synagogue, we continued to GC5612E Lost Places – Úttörő Áruház. And we got a little lost while trying to find GZ 😛 Navigating narrow streets with high buildings isn’t always that easy 😛 But we eventually found the correct spot, and the cache.
Just one more
We had just one more on our list (that we had postponed from earlier in the day), GC7BCTW Ferenciek tere. That cache was anything but easy. We had seen pictures of the container, and we thought we knew that we at least were on the correct side of the street. But we couldn’t find anything, and muggles everywhere. After reading lots of old logs, we finally noticed something, and sure enough, there it was!
And another one
Now we just had to find one more (you know how this works). My feet was hurting worse than ever before, so I had a strong feeling I wouldn’t be able to walk to the cache closest to the hotel tomorrow, so I decided that we had to find it today instead. And so we did. Turned out that was a very wise decision.
After all this walking, it was very nice to have some hours to relax in the hotel. And we were glad we didn’t have to get up at 5am the next day…
Curious about which caches we found?
You can see all of them on our trip report in cachetur.no, which you can find here.
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