By Tony Traynor
Budapest has lots to offer the rail enthusiast.
MAV electric classes 431, 432, 433, 470, 480 and diesel class 418. GySev classes 430 and 471, all available for short leaps as are ÖBB 1116 and Railjet 1216s. CD class 380, ZSR class 350 and Romanian class 477 also visit but longer leaps are needed for these.
431133 and 431349 sit side-by-side on the blocks at Budapest Nyugati, 03/08/14 (JW)
In the hills is the children’s railway using class Mk45 diesels on most services although they do have a unit and in summer use a kettle.
Budapest Deli has frequent loco hauled departures all stopping after 4km in Budapest Kelenföld, the stop at Kelenföld is seen by some conductors as a pick up/Set down only station so you have to be a bit smart at times. Kelenföld also has hauled departures to Budapest Keleti. Deli is a bit of a mess of a station with hauled services using the lower numbered platforms, a fair bit of shunting goes on but is unpredictable. Lots of food and drink shacks here and the station also has metro line 2 to Keleti.
431181 rushes into Kelenföld with a local train, 02/08/14 (JW)
Kelenföld is a rebuilt station with the Deli services using the lower numbered platforms and Keleti services use platforms 14+15. A couple of food outlets but fairly rubbish shop wise. Kelenföld is 13 minutes away from Keleti by metro line 4. Keleti itself has plenty to offer food and drink wise including a supermarket across the road on the lower numbered side.
Keleti mainly sees the longer IC trains and thus the only leaps from here are out to Kobanya Felso (15 minute walk to Kobanya Also on the Nyugati line) using class 432 and occasionally class 431. OBB 1116, 1216, GySev 430, 471 and MAV class 433 can be leapt on out to Kelenföld but again the problem with the pick-up/set down scenario exists.
A busy moment at Ferencvaros with 431-hauled local passenger trains heading each way and 431 314 standing alongside on a freight, 22/03/15 (JW)
A few times per day some hauled trains stop at Ferencvaros station. This station is alongside the yard and sees very frequent freight and shunting. Not really any facilities here though. The local service between Kelenföld and Kobanya Kispest stops at Ferencvaros.
Budapest Nyugati is the main bashing station in Budapest, leaving Nyugati the first station is Zuglo some 5km out, all trains stop here although the IC services from here into Nyugati are set down only so use your head. Next station is Kobanya Also where only the locals stop. Next along is Kobanya Kispest where all trains stop. All electric services go straight on here, the locals calling at Pestszentlorinc and Szemereetelep and then all trains calling at the airport station of Ferihegy. This station was new built about 10 years ago and was excellent for the passenger terminal just across the road, however nowadays the passenger terminal is on the opposite side of the airport requiring a bus. The 200E bus runs frequently from Kobanya Kispest station to the airport and stops alongside the train station at Ferihegy.
The above is a link to a YouTube video from TKori225 of Ganz-built diesel-hydraulic 418110 getting into its stride away from a station stop on a Budapest to Lajosmizse service.
From Kobanya Kispest the diesels turn right heading down to Lajosmizse the first stop being Kispest. At the Budapest end of Kispest is a supermarket but more interestingly a flat crossing with a busy tram line. Budapest Nyugati has also a hauled service on the Szob line using mostly class 432 but also class 431. The stopping patterns are a bit up in the air but the first shack is called Rakosrendozo.
Nyugati and Keleti station are of a similar build with the main platforms being in the train shed whilst bay platforms are further up on the left and right, Nyugati has a subway between both sets whereas Keleti doesn’t. Zuglo has a kiosk on the island platform and a couple of drinking shacks down below. Zuglo and Budapest Keleti are just a few minutes apart by a very frequent bus service. Metro line 1 is the oldest metro in mainland Europe.
A 24 hour ticket costs 1650 forint and covers a good distance including the airport and all the stations mentioned above.
A very smart thing with Hungary is that most locos are fitted with GPS and this is accessible to the public at iemig.mav-trakcio.hu
www.bkk.hu Budapest ticket gen
http://www.railfaneurope.net/list_frameset.html Photos of Hungarian locos