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You will feel like you are running in six different cities, though it's only one!

That's what Hungary's capital, BUDAPEST offers you!

Budapest, the 'daughter of the Danube' is reminiscent of the quays of Paris, the old cobblestone streets of Prague, the multi-coloured houses of Vienna's imperial and art nouveau architecture, the alleys in Barcelona, London's Houses of Parliament and the hills, small winding roads and yellow tramways of Lisbon.

Budapest, with its seven bridges and three hills, has long won the hearts of runners from other countries. In 2002 more than 2000 foreign visitors from 41 countries came to discover this charming and mysterious capital.

The contest starts at the impressing Hősök tere (Heroes' Square), which is usually the main meeting place for skaters and skateboarders, but for a few days at the end of summer thousands of two-legged enthusiasts reclaim the square and admire the 24 sculptures representing important actors from Hungarian history. It's not a coincidence that Fred Lebow - a Hungarian by origin - also wanted the Budapest Marathon to start from here.

The competition is made especially attractive by the city's fascinating beauty - for example, Andrássy Avenue (a Unesco World Heritage site), the art-nouveau style Gresham Hotel, the good old Chain Bridge, the Buda Castle (also part of Unesco World Heritage), the idyllic Margaret Island, the monumental Parliament - runners have all these sights to admire, which effectively eases the pain of this long distance.

After the contest, competitors can bathe their aching feet in one of the 22 pools of the Széchenyi thermal bath, the most famous spa in Budapest.

The crowds accompanying the runners can visit the whirling funfair situated next to the start, where they will find an information booth on 'sports and lifestyle', showmen, concerts and various other programs. In the evening, a fascinating firework display closes the running festival.

But why do I talk so much? Come and see it all for yourself!