Rhapsody of thermal waters: sights of Hungary
The Republic of Hungary is located in Central Europe and has no access to the sea. Since 2004 — Member of the European Union. The population of the country is about 10 million people. The capital is a city with an intricate history Budapest.
Hungary’s geographical location surrounded by mountains has formed a continental climate with mild winters and hot summers. The wonderful water arteries of the Danube basin and the famous Lake Balaton are wonderful adornments of the Middle Danube plain, on which the country’s territory is located. Hungary is famous for its healing waters, and its rich history is captured in many cultural and historical attractions.
Sights of Hungary
Hungary is a paradise for travelers who prefer cultural tourism. Beautiful, cozy cities with ancient architecture, majestic castles and magnificent palaces — in short, everything that is so loved in small European countries with a long history — is presented in Hungary to a delightful degree. Where to go for impressions?
Admirers of active recreation will be pleased with the “Blue Pedestrian Route”, which runs a thousand kilometers along the Transdanubian Central Massif. It passes through beautiful natural and historical sites, with interesting monuments and amazing landscapes.
Hungary has some of the best European thermal spas, offering a wide range of wellness treatments. Near the largest lake Balaton is the resort of Heviz on the eponymous lake — the largest thermal lake in Europe. Other popular resorts are Gellert and Szecheny (Budapest), Aquasiget, Sarvar, Bükfurdo, Miskolc-Tapolca.
Interesting fact: the water in the lake Heviz is updated every day.
Sights of Budapest
Budapest is one of the most beautiful cities in Europe, the only European capital-resort. The city is located on the site of a tectonic fault, which led to the emergence in the local area of numerous thermal springs. Healing local waters appreciated by the Romans, the remains of baths which belong to the II century.
Budapest consists of two historical centers. On the right bank of the Danube there is a green and hilly Buda, on the left — flat Pest. The union of two old independent cities occurred relatively recently — in 1873. Budapest — the largest city in Hungary, it is home to about 1.8 million people.
Budapest is a city-museum, and therefore there are no problems where to go in the first place. You just need to get on the funicular or go by car to the historical (from the XIV century) district of the Buda Castle, and all the numerous sights of Budapest are at your disposal. Here are the museums (Military Historical, Serf, Museum of the History of Budapest), the National Gallery, St. Matthias Cathedral, the Royal Palace, the Labyrinth, the Fishermen’s Bastion and other architectural and historical monuments, stunning in their beauty or singularity.
Buda Castle — the most popular tourist attraction of the city. The huge Labyrinth located under it scares impressionable tourists with its mysterious and eerie twilight, and the Fishermen’s Bastion is very photogenic and beautiful. In addition, from it you can look at the Danube and Pest.
Another famous landmark of Budapest is Andrassy Avenue, which attracts with its beautiful buildings and green recreation areas. There are numerous theaters, museums, night clubs and restaurants. By the way, the Hungarian cuisine is famous for such national dishes as lecho, paprikash, retesh (strudel).
The main architectural landmark of the city, the Parliament Building, is one of the most beautiful and largest government buildings in the world.
The construction of the parliament lasted twenty years — from 1885 to 1904. The building itself is made in neo-gothic style, and the interiors are executed in a medieval manner and richly decorated with gold leaf, mosaic panels, marble and frescoes. In addition, the height of the dome — 96 meters — has a symbolic meaning: in 896 the Magyars settled in the territory of modern Hungary. In the Parliament building guided tours are held at a specific time. During government meetings, visits for tourists are canceled.
Among other architectural monuments should be called:
- St. Stephen’s Basilica is the largest church in the city. The basilica contains the relics of King Stephen I of Saint, the founder of Hungary. From the observation deck of the cathedral you can see the wonderful panorama of Budapest. The height of the temple, as well as the height of the dome of Parliament, is a significant 96 meters;
- The central synagogue in the Jewish quarter is the largest in Europe and the second largest in the world. Built in the middle of the XIX century. During the Second World War, the Jewish quarter was turned into a ghetto, and a cemetery was forced to appear on the territory of the synagogue;
- Castle Vajdahunyad — a romantic castle in the city park of Budapest. The walls of the castle are surrounded by a moat, and although it was built at the end of the 19th – beginning of the 20th century, it resembles a medieval fortress.
Budapest is justly proud of its grandeur and beauty; The UNESCO World Heritage List includes embankments of the city with a magnificent panorama of its central part overlooking the Danube, the Buda Castle and Andrássy Avenue.
Castles and palaces of Hungary
In fact, to look at all the Hungarian palaces and castles, you need to spend more than one week. There are about three thousand of them in the country, and not all of them are there, where you can be reached by car. The castles of Hungary are distinguished by architectural wealth, special luxury and grandeur. The most interesting of them are:
- Brunswick Castle, located 30 km from Budapest. The palace building was erected in the neo-Gothic style in the 18th century and surrounded by a beautiful English park with 300 rare tree species. Ludwig van Beethoven repeatedly stayed in the castle, taking turns in love with his two students of the Brunswik family. Now on the first floor of the castle is the Beethoven Museum, where you can go only to look at the rarities associated with the name of the great composer. According to one hypothesis, the famous «Moonlight Sonata» was written in this castle.
- Grashshalkovich Palace (castle in Gödel) is the second largest palace complex in Europe after Versailles. The total area of the castle is 17,000 square meters. m, and the palace park occupies 29 hectares. The castle began to be erected in 1733 in the Baroque style. After 130 years, the majestic building was a wedding present from Hungary to its new rulers — Emperor Franz Joseph and his charming wife — Empress Sissy (Elizabeth of Bavaria).
- Festetich Castle is a beautiful 18th century castle on the shores of Lake Balaton. It features a rich facade and luxurious interior decoration. On the ground floor there is an exposition of magnificent samples of weapons from different eras.
- Ferdet Castle (Esterházy Palace) is a baroque palace and park ensemble that has no analogues in all of Hungary. This magnificent castle is famous for the fact that the distinguished composer Joseph Haydn lived and worked there.
- Castle Shashvar — a beautiful structure of the XIX century in the Neo-Renaissance style. Now in this castle is a five star hotel.
Among the amazing natural wonders of Hungary, where curious tourists go, you can name:
- Lake Balaton — “the Hungarian Sea”, the largest body of water in Central Europe and the most visited resort in the country. The maximum depth of Balaton is only 12.5 meters. The calm expanse of the lake is divided into two parts by the Tihany peninsula — a natural reserve with unique representatives of flora and fauna. Landmark of the peninsula — Tihany Abbey with centuries-old buildings;
- Lottia cave near Lake Balaton. The climate inside the cave is considered healing. It is half hidden under water, so tours of it are carried out in boats. You can reach the cave in ten minutes by car from the town of Balatonfüred;
- Tapolca caves with a healing microclimate and hot springs where you can swim;
- Bükk National Park. On its territory there are the Bükk massif and the Miskoltsky zoo, which contains 130 species of animals and more than 700 species of rare tree species. Among the picturesque mountains is the fabulous beauty of Lake Hamori;
- National Park Hordobadi — the oldest national park of Hungary (1973), is included in the UNESCO World Heritage List. More than 300 species of birds live in the park, and herds of buffalo, oxen and sheep, herds of horses graze on pastures. In addition, in the territory of Hordobadi there are the Museum of Peasant Life and the Museum of the Park, the Nine-Arch Bridge is one of the longest bridges in Hungary.
Interesting fact: thermal springs are located on 70% of the territory of Hungary.
Hungary is a country where there are no routes that have been trodden down by tourists, this is what gives Hungary a lot of advantages. Beautiful cities and castles, picturesque nature did not turn into a glossy picture, but retained the original charm and beauty.