Zamárdi

Zamárdi is a little settlement on the southern coast of Lake Balaton. It’s a calm place, and its incomes are based on the tourism. There are three times more houses in the village, than those, used by local inhabitants. So there are plenty hotels and apartmans waiting the tourists.

The most beautiful building of the village stands on Fő utca. The house was built in 1847, by  Benedek Freisz. The walls are made of adobe, and the top is covered with reed. Nowadays it can be visited, as it’s transformed into a kind of museum demonstrating the ethnographic aspect of the area. It’s a little village counting about 2500 inhabitants. However, it has a medical consulting room, and dental surgery. There is a beach of 10 kilometers length, the entrence is free.

The wine cellars of the village can also be visited. Wine tasting might be a nice programme.

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Veszprém

Veszprém is a relatively big city near the northern shore of Lake Balaton. The town is also called the ’Town of the Queens’. Because it was the estate of Hungarian queens.

The area is rich in geographic values. In north there are the Bakony Mountains and in South the Upland of Balaton.

There are plenty of things to do around this city. One of the most famous sights is the Zoo of Veszprém. It was opened more than a half century ago, and has many inhabitants. Approximately 150 species live here.

Many festivals take place in the city. In the summer the Festival of street music is one of the most prestigious programmes. In May there’s the Gizella Art Festival, at this event many branches of art are represented. And this festival is organised to the memory of queen Gizella, the wife of the first Hungarian king, Saint István.

There is also a castle, which belongs to the city.

The Saint Mihály catedral of the primacy is really beautiful. It was restaurated in 2005.

The city is a good starting-point for going on trips, as well as bike-tours. There are plenty of tour plans around the city.

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Tihany

Tihany is a peaceful place. It’s located on a peninsula, which dips into the Lake Balaton, and surrounded by a beautiful landscape. Tihany is special in historical, geographical and cultural terms as well.

The Abbey of Tihany is very famous. It was built by the Benedictines, in the 18. century, in baroque style. However, before this monument, there were other buildings at the same place. First in 1055 king I. András set up here the burial place of the royal family. One can still see the tombs in the crypt of the abbey nowadays. The deed of foundation of the abbey is one of the oldest written documents of Hungarian language.

The environs of Tihany had been inhabited by humans since the prehistoric ages.

The peninsula came into existence by volcanic activities. Thanks to this, there are some rare species of animal and plant living here. As well as the presence of geyser-cones is due to volcanism. The most famous geyser-cone is called the „Aranyház” meaning the Golden House.

The echo of Tihany is very famous. It can be heard, when the weather is bright, and silent, however, before, when there were less buildings it used to be louder.

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Keszthely

Keszthely is a city on the western end of Lake Balaton. It’s popular with tourists, in particular during the summer, because of the beaches. Tourism means the main income of the city.

There are some sights in the area. Such as the Festetics Castle. Festetics, is the name of an old, Hungarian noble family. They started to build the castle in the 18. century. The works were finished in 1880, when the monument gained its actual appearance. It was built in baroque style, by two architects: Gustav Haas and Maximilian Paschkisch. In front of the castle stands the statue of George Festetics, the most outstanding member of the family. He thought, that culture was very important, and used to support it in a generous way. He also built the Helikon Library, which is part of the Castle since then. He also organised celebrations, where he invited the most important persons in cultural life.

The castle has a 500-year-old cellar. Nowadays it funtions as a wine-cellar, here they offer aguided tour, combined with wine-sampling.

The castle has a ceremonial hall, where concerts and other cultural events take place. Attending one, might be a nice program for the evening.

Fenékpuszta is part of Keszthely. From the Roman ages a huge fortress used to stand there, which was built in the 4th century. It was probably destroyed in the 10th century by the Hungarian conquestors. The ruins still can be visited.

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Balatonfüred

Balatonfüred is the oldest holiday destination by lake Balaton. It’s on the northern bank of the lake. The city has a reputation for its fizzy fountains, and mediterranean climate. It is also a port-town, and a spa.

There’s also a Heart Hospital, where the Nobel prize winner poet, Tagore was treated. There’s also a promenade named after him.

The big landing stage offers a beautiful view of the lake. The molo is full of venders. The town also has a beach.

One famous building of the town is the Jókai hall, which used to be the week-end house of Mór Jókai, a Hungarian writer. Author of many novels. He only spent the summers here. It was built in eclectic style, and nowadays it functions as a museum.

Balatonfüred is a nice and calm place. Perfect for spending a few days so as to relax.

The ’Anna ball’ is an elegant celebration, which takes place in Balatonfüred every july.

There is a gastronomic festival called the ’wine weeks’ in august, it lasts for three weeks. One can taste here the delicious wines of the area.

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Siófok

Siófok is the biggest city by Lake Balaton. It’s seated on the southern coast of the lake. Canal Sió springs her, from Lake Balaton. They built a sluice on the Canal so as to lower the level of water of the lake, when it’s needed. The canal devides the beach in two parts. On the western side, there is the Silver Beach, and on the eastern side, there is the Golden Beach. The touristic center, with clubs and restaurants is found on the Golden Beach, as well as a beach, where one should pay entrance fee. On the Silver beach there are mainly family apartments, or weekend-houses, there is a beach too, but here you don’t have to pay.

People usually come to Siófok for a week, for having fun and rest. There is the beach, where you can spend most of the day. There are planty of restaurants and bars too. There are discos as well. On the Silver Beach there is Palace disco, which is well-known all across Hungary.

Siófok is popular with Hungarian tourists, but if you come here during the summer you’ll also meet many German tourist.

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