If you have chosen to stay in Budapest, be aware that Lake Balaton can be reached without too much effort by car: just take the M7 motorway, considering that the destination is about a hundred km away and can be reached in just over 60 minutes), or by train, as we did , since the railway lines cover all the places close to this destination in an excellent way in less than two hours, at the price of 7.50 euros, showing you all the splendor of the Hungarian countryside.
This time we decided to stay in Balatonfured, a delightful town, but here are 7 things we recommend you try and experience if you come to Lake Balaton.
Let's start with a relaxing walk along Tagore Setany, also called the “Promenade”, a wide pedestrian street lined with trees that skirts the edge of the lake for several kilometers. It is pleasant at any time of day because during the day the shade of the shrubs gives refreshment while, in the evening, the soft lights make it very romantic.
In such a holiday, the gastronomic foods par excellence of the Hungarian summer cannot be missing. So choose a booth on the shore and order your lángos (fried dumplings) and your beer! This is the typical August menu on the shores of the lake. Last but not least: an excellent kurtoskalacs to end a typical dinner!
Stay in one of the many local houses instead of the classic hotels, so you can enjoy even more the experience of living in a Hungarian home and immerse yourself completely in local life. We have chosen Hollik Apartman due to its proximity to the Promenade (100 meters), to one of the largest bathroom facilities and to the train station. We spent three days in this delightful pastel-colored cottage and highly recommend it to everyone for its location, positive reviews and peaceful atmosphere.
The small town of Tihany is located on the northern shore. A quiet place to appreciate this town that boasts numerous medieval traces. Here you can find the ancient Benedictine abbey built by King Andrew I in the 11th century and rebuilt in the Baroque style in the following centuries.
The Lavender Festival is organized every year in Tihany. In those days the town was filled with perfumes and purple flowers. This year the Festival is held from June 15th to 22nd!
A curiosity: the tomb of King Andrew I is located in the crypt of the building and is the only tomb of a medieval king preserved in Hungary.
Let's move from Balatonfured and not far away is the village of Keszthely, here is one of the most important points of interest in the area: the Festetics Palace. This large mansion belonged to one of the wealthiest families in Croatia, who arrived in Hungary in the 17th century, and who moved permanently to Keszthely in 1739.
Siófok is the entertainment capital of Lake Balaton. It is located on the southern shore.
Festivals, discos, restaurants, a real "Rimini" on the shores of the lake.
Many tourists, Hungarians and foreigners, flock to the promenade and the pedestrianized center where you can find the aqueduct tower, the symbol of the city, built in 1912 and from where you can admire a unique panoramic view of the lake.
On the northern shores of Lake Balaton is the wonderful town of Szigliget, which is home to one of the most picturesque castles in Hungary. Built on the Várhegy hill, Szigliget Castle rises to over 242 meters and houses a medieval fortress built by the Benedictine order around the 13th century. The fort was attacked on many occasions. What can be seen today are the ruins of the castle that protected the region from Tartar invasions and Turkish occupations.
So? Have we teased you enough?
A tour in Hungary cannot be considered complete if you do not spend a few days along the placid shores of its wonderful lake.
For us it was a very pleasant surprise so when you are in Budapest, don't miss this opportunity!
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