Conventions

Balaton for Families - 2 days



How long it takes?
2 days
Best vehicle choice for this plan:
public transport
bicycle
car
This region is famous for:
Baths, Spas  and Beaches
Museums and exhibitions
Culture and monuments
Natural values
Balaton
Families
Day 1
Festetics Palace

The Baroque-style building in the centre of Keszthely is one of the most beautiful palaces in the country. Construction began in the 18th century, with the palace reaching its current size by the 1880s. Its colourful park is the most significant feat of landscaping in Central Europe, so be sure to take a walk either before or after visiting the inside of the building. The Helikon Palace Museum is an exhibition that gives visitors a picture of what life was like for aristocrats and the luxurious life of the Festetics family. The palace is home to the only intact aristocratic private library remaining in Hungary, which escaped the ravages of World War II in an astonishing turn of events worthy of the silver screen. Certain scenes of the movie Kincsem were also filmed in the palace.

Tapolca Lake Cave Visitor Centre

The Lake Cave was discovered in 1903 and since then it has been revealed that it is only a short section of a long cave system that sprawls beneath the town. Visitors to the centre first learn about caves in and around Tapolca in an interactive exhibition, and can then ride boats for 180 metres under the ground in crystal-clear water. You do not need strong muscles to row, as it can be steered by hand in most places as you go through the narrow passages. You can also take a short walk in the dry halls of the limestone cave. When you get to the surface, you should visit the nearby Malom Lake, which has a Mediterranean atmosphere to it.

Szigliget Castle

You have to climb a steep slope to get to one of the most beautiful castles in the Balaton Uplands, but the panorama from the top will certainly repay the effort. The 750-year-old fortress resisted all attempts at invasion by the Ottoman army, but was burnt down due to lightning and then destroyed by the Habsburgs. The renovation of the castle was completed in 2020: the stone wall is now taller and has more interactive elements, an exhibition and a covered space as well. The exhibitions are open all year round and show what the daily life of a medieval castle was like, from the smithy through the prison tower and the armoury.

Day 2
Church and Museum of the Benedictine Abbey of Tihany, Lavender House Visitor Centre

Start the second day with your family in the almost 1,000-year-old abbey, the world-famous symbol of the Tihany Peninsula. Once you have finished at the church of the monastery founded by (Saint) Andrew I of Hungary, walk down into the undercroft, where you will find the tomb of the abbey’s founder. It only takes 10 minutes to reach Belső-tó and the Lavender House, where you will find an interactive exhibition on how the Tihany Peninsula was formed and learn about lavender growing. The gift shop, the tea shop, the craft shop and the experience garden also focus primarily on the fragrant purple flower.

Balaton Bobsled Leisure Park

You can spend a whole day in the park in Balatonfűzfő. There are two bobsled tracks, covering a total of 1.5 km, and which will surely raise your adrenaline levels with the tunnel and the 360-degree turn on the track. Facilities at the leisure park also include a fitness area, a forest playground and several adventure trails for all ages. You can also test your skills in paintball and archery, and don’t miss the zipline in the Serpa Adventure Park either.

Tagore Promenade

The statues and plaques on Tagore Promenade in Balatonfüred tell you about the history of the town. Lake Balaton’s best-known promenade is named after the famed Indian poet and Nobel laureate, Rabindranath Tagore. Many celebrities have followed the example of planting trees here set by the great artist. The shaded promenade is also called the main street of Lake Balaton, and is full of cafés, restaurants and ice-cream shops. The latest sights added to the promenade are the Bodorka Visitor Centre – presenting the fauna of Lake Balaton – and the beautifully renovated Vitorlás tér, with its statue of actor István Bujtor.

During your visit

Wine
Olaszrizling is a dry white wine, found in every Hungarian wine region, but the finest examples of the variety grow in the vineyards of Csopak, and on Szent György Hill in the Badacsony wine region. You can taste the character of the terroir in its bitter almond aftertaste. It is used to make light wines fermented in the tank, which are a frequent ingredient used in spritzers, a popular drink (wine mixed with carbonated water) in Hungary, while the Olaszrizling fermented in barrels makes a full-bodied wine to accompany gastronomic dishes and is a premium product.
Gastronomy
Catfish paprikash, which is traditionally made from wels catfish, is listed on the menus of restaurants around Lake Balaton as a specialty. It is a dish you really must taste while you are at the lake. The boneless fish is traditionally served with noodles with sheep’s cottage cheese, sour cream and bacon (cottage cheese noodles) and fried, diced bacon, accompanied by full-bodied white wines.

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