It gets a bit nippy in Budapest in the autumn and winter months, that’s for sure. Though that doesn’t make it any less of a fun place to come visit, thanks in part to the abundance of cool and cozy basement bars to drink in.
So you don’t have to endure much time in the cold looking for one, we decided to highlight some of best.
Serving probably the best selection of Czech beers in the city, Yellow Zebra is a place that’s been getting slowly more popular over the years. With an upstairs and a downstairs basement, it’s easy to be part of the action, or tuck yourself away for a peaceful drink depending on what you’re looking for.
The atmosphere relaxed by day and boisterous most nights, and they regularly have live music, making it a great place to mix and mingle. The food is also pretty decent.
Tucked away past a narrow metal stairway entrance, Lampas is a cavernous bar with lots of cozy nooks to sit and drink in. The style is old-fashioned, as are the furniture and fittings, and while this place has an old man feel, the crowd here is mostly young people and refreshingly local.
Another big draw of this place is the near-nightly music events it hosts, with bands spanning a wide variety of genres.
Another oh so hip place, El Rapido is a Mexican restaurant up top and a quirky ruin-style basement bar. It’s ‘thing’ is old toys - the place looks like a walking museum - and tequila. It has a load of it on the menu, from the stuff that rots your soul, to the good stuff that you’ve never tried because it’s always too expensive everywhere you go. Not here though!
Protip, there is a computer setup with Youtube and you can pick your own music to play. Be warned though, the regulars are a discerning bunch, so pick wisely.
Vittula is the ultimate hipster basement bar in Budapest. It’s been open for a good few years, passing regularly through new owners that tend to put their own spin on the place. What you can always expect is a weird crowd, dirt cheap beer, near constantly drunk bartenders and a vague smell of damp in the air.
Don’t let any of that put you off, though, as a night out in Vittula is truly an experience. And, spending most of your night hanging out drinking and smoking on the street outside is so common, this streetside ‘venue’ has its own Facebook page.
Nearby to the trendy Gozsdu part of the Jewish Quarter, this place is one of the best craft beer bars in the city - and certainly one of the coziest. It serves a range of local and highly regarded international brews and is busy most nights of the week.
The venue itself is one room and small, but that helps to keep the crowd limited, making it a great place for a friendly pint before moving off into the night.
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