Budapest: Exit Point
Get There: Inside one of the ruin bars, Fogasház – Akácfa u. 51, 1073
Open: 2pm – 4am, closed Wednesdays
Cost: 7500 HUF per team (2 people) 13500 HUF per team (3-5 people)
Escape rooms are becoming increasingly popular around the world, with the chance to be locked in a room for 60 minutes and puzzle your way out now popping up in Australia and overseas. However, nowhere does a city seem to be more dominated by them than Budapest. A local informed me that the escape room craze began in Budapest 10 years ago, and has since spread its puzzling logic games to other areas of the globe.
Whether or not this is true, there is a wide range of rooms for you to be locked up in (although if you find yourself in someone’s basement with no obvious signage, you’ve probably just been taken), and choosing one can be hard work. I highly recommend attempting Exit Point. It’s reasonably priced and held in one of the ruin bars so you will get a free beer at the end of it- even if you don’t make it out in time.
We attempted the Wonderland room, which had a Lewis Carroll/Sherlock Holmes/The Witch in the Wardrobe vibe to it and was ridiculously fun. After pointing out the panic button, the clue button (which we desperately needed) and explaining that we had 60 minutes, our host shut the door, flicked the switch on a creepy soundtrack and left us to it. During the first few minutes I felt a little self-conscious at someone watching and listening to everything we did, but this soon dissipated as we found our first clue and solved our first puzzle.
We proceeded to scramble around the room like children, looking under rugs and in jars in order to work out the next step. Spoiler alert, we didn’t make it out in time, but I like to think we came pretty close, with only one incident of being told off when my boyfriend tried to destroy one of the props in a misguided attempt to solve a puzzle. Worth the money and the bragging rights you’ll get if you escape in 60 minutes, this game will challenge your brain and force you to think a little harder than you usually might when backpacking through a city.
Hobo Tip: Save the boozing for afterwards, not before; the room is hard enough, let alone attempting to get through it in an alcoholic fog.