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Budapest Is Really Two Cities

Budapest, the capital of Hungary, is really two cities: Buda and Pest.

Built by the Celts in the first century B.C., Budapest was originally called Ak Ink,meaning "spring rich in water." About a hundred years later, when the Romans arrived, the inhabitants moved but kept their town's na.e ("Aquincum" to the Romans). After the Romans left, Goths and other Germanic tribes took over.

About the 10th century, Obuda (from a person's name) became Hungary's first center. Not too long after, the nearby town of Pest sprang up. Finally, the town of Buda (not to be confused with Obuda) began. The combination of these three towns was 25,000 to 30,000 in population, making it one of the largest population centers in Europe.

Through the years, the boundaries between the cities have blurred, with Obuda being absorbed. Now, the Danube River divides the two towns that are really one: Buda + Pest = Budapest.


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