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Best Places to Visit in Hungary, Top Attractions
While the majority of tourists who visit Hungary focus on Budapest only, the country has so much more to offer. And obviously, Budapest is a stunning city, one of the most beautiful capitals in Europe, but there are more beautiful towns and cities in Hungary, as well as other natural Hungary attractions such as lakes, thermal springs, caves, and more. The list of amazing places to visit in Hungary is actually pretty long and can be surprising with the variety of tourist attractions. Buda Castle is one of the top Hungary attractions located in the Hungarian capital of Budapest. This castle is preferably known as the “Paris of the East” because of its spectacular beauty. The Danube River is another majestic Hungary tourist attraction. It flows through Hungary from north to south, and passes through Budapest, splitting the city in two. From the freedom bridge, one can witness the best sunset views of the Danube river. It is one of the favorite spots of tourists who are often seen watching the spectacular sunset. If you are visiting Budapest, you cannot return without casting a view on the magnificent Hungarian Parliament building. It is one of the top Hungary tourist spots. There is no reason that you won’t be awestruck by its luxurious architecture and proportions when viewed from Castle hill on the bank of the Danube river. One of the superb places to visit in Hungary is the world-class Hungarian Open Air Museum. Established over 50 years ago, the open-air museum has become one of the significant Hungary attractions. Lake Balaton is Europe’s largest freshwater lake which is so big that sometimes it is referred to as the “Hungarian Sea”. To get the best views over Budapest, you must go to the Fisherman’s Bastion. It is a popular spot to get some Instagram-worthy photos from here. If you want to take the memory of your vacation home, you can go shopping in Great Market Hall. There you can find ideal presents for your family and friends. Overall, Hungary is a good place to spend a quiet vacation.
On the opposite side of the Bükk mountains range, the small town of Lillafured is a popular climactic resort on the shores of Lake Hámori. Established in the 1890s, it has a long and fascinating history tied to Hungary’s royal family.
#2- THE SZALAJKA VALLEY
Sitting 400 metres above sea level, west of the Bükk Mountain range in northern Hungary, the treasured Hungarian village of Szilvasvarad is famously the home of the Lipizzan horses. Eight stocks of the 400-year-old stallions are bred here. Visitors can learn more about Szilvasvarad’s equine history on a tour of the historic stables or during a visit to the Lippizan history exhibition.
Situated on the right bank of the Tisza river in northern Hungary’s Heves County, the ancient village of Poroszlo was declared an official market town in 1445. Although it may not be a popular destination quite yet, it’s a rewarding travel experience for those willing to wander off the beaten path. The most traditional (as well as the richest) experience for visitors to Poroszlo is horseback riding. Trails lead through 1,000-plus-year-old oak forests to the tranquil banks of the river Tisza. A summer destination, there is also a swimming beach, fishing, canoeing and boating on offer.
One of the seven main wine regions in Hungary, Tokaj is a historical viticultural area that lies in the northeastern part of the country. As the birthplace of a wine once coveted by royalty, Tokaj has deep cultural value and draws in many tourists to its historical cellars as a result. Tokaji sweet wines produced in Hungarian cellars are similar to those found in Slovakia’s counterpart wine region.
Just when you thought Balaton couldn’t get any more beautiful, summer arrives and the lavender fields bloom, throwing a dusky purple blanket over the lake’s edge. Immortalised by countless Hungarian poets and musicians, Tihany is without a doubt one of the most beautiful places in Hungary. French Lavender was first planted on the Tihany Peninsula on the lake’s northern edge in the 1920s. What started as small fields belonging to the Benedictine Abbey soon grew into large plantations, bringing a touch of Provence to Hungary!
#6- DANUBE BEND
Northern Hungary is all about the natural scenery – and it’s hard to beat the panoramic views of the Danube from the area around Visegrad, north of Budapest and Szentendre. Here, the river makes a natural horseshoe bend as it momentarily dips in towards Danube-Ipoly National Park. The Danube Bend or Dunakanyar as it is known is both a strategic spot and a place of awe-inspiring beauty. Fortifications dots the hills, once charged with keeping a watchful eye out for enemy forces.
King among beautiful Hungarian cities, Budapest is replete with UNESCO World Heritage Sites, world-class museums, stunning architecture, and of course a legendary nightlife scene. Whichever side of the city you’re standing on, Buda or Pest, there’s beauty around every corner: The grand Buda Castle; the stately Parliament building and its dancing Danube reflection; the tiled Matthias Church; the Wes-Anderson-approved historic thermal water baths – and the list goes on.
Seat of the Roman Catholic Church and home to one of Eastern Europe’s most impressive cathedrals, the northern city of Esztergom is one of the most interesting places in Hungary. Its location on the Danube, a stone’s throw from Slovakia, bestows the whole city with a gorgeous river backdrop. Esztergom Basilica, the largest cathedral in the country, naturally stands out as Esztergom’s main attraction. Its treasures include the largest canvas painting in the world – an altarpiece that recalls the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary – the red-marble Bakócz Chapel, adorned with Renaissance motifs, and a deep Egyptian-style crypt.
Eger Castle is unique in that it contains the ruins of a 10th century cathedral. A tour of the grounds also reveals a coin museum and art gallery dedicated to Hungarian masters. No visit to Eger is complete without throwing back a glass or two of Egri Bikavér, literally ‘Bull’s Blood of Eger’, a local red wine as robust and full-bodied as the city itself. If you’re eager for more, the Eger Wine Region is right on the city’s doorstep.
The so-called ‘pearl of Baroque architecture’ is small and easy to get around on foot. As you wander, gaze at the Gyor Cathedral (Nagyboldogasszony-székesegyház), a Romanesque church from the 14-15th centuries, and take a spin in Bécsi kapu, widely considered to be Hungary’s most beautiful Baroque square. Wander deeper into the old town to discover rows of pastel-coloured facades, smaller churches and pretty palaces.
One of the largest cities in Hungary (second only to Budapest), Debrecen actually served as the country’s capital for a few short years at the end of WWII. Its stature and status is evidenced in the many important institutions housed here, including the University of Debrecen, the nation’s oldest continuously operating university.
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