Visiting Hungary and wondering where to go after Budapest? There are many worth visiting places in this country, from cities to wineries and lakes. I invite you for a journey around highlights of Hungary.
As I am from Poland, I visited Hungary several times as it was on my way while hitch-hiking south. After admiring the capital I wanted to discover more, taste Hungarian wine and see nature. This little guide on where to go after Budapest, will help you choosing the best places according to your preferences.
Where to go after Budapest? Highlights of Hungary
Most of the people come to Hungary and just visit the capital, which is indeed an incredible city. Stunning views on Buda part from where you can see the Pest on the other side of the river. I have to admit it’s my second favorite city in Europe, after Prague – which stole my heart.
Szeged – paprika, students and festivals
Szeged is a lovely city on the South of Hungary, which could be a perfect stop for a weekend. Lovely architecture plus chill vibe in the evenings, made my stay in Szeged enjoyable. The city of Szeged is famous for the students vibe, as there are several universities as well as paprika, a spice made from dried, powdered capsicum fruits. Being there one week, I ate as much pepper as I normally eat during few years. Szeged is also known for many festivals during the summer season. The biggest is Open Air Festival of Theater held every May. Check what to see in Szeged?
Balaton lake – the sea of Hungary
The Balaton lake is often called the sea of Hungary as it’s the biggest lake in the country and the biggest fresh water lake in central Europe. Balaton Lake in only one hour away from Budapest. During summer is full of tourists coming for vacations on the beach, while winter in Balaton is less crowded. There are plenty of hotels as well as resorts and camp sites. The nice beaches are man-made and private, but getting the entry ticket for the whole day in one of the resorts is super cheap. For cycling lovers – there is a trail around the whole lake – 77 km with no traffic at all! Worth considering, right?
Győr – one of the highlights of the North of Hungary
North of Hungary is definitely a good direction to head after Budapest. Gyor is a lovely baroque town on te north of the country. The most beautiful is the town hall, as it looks like a castle. I loved that there are so many fountains in the old part, so beautiful and refreshing during summer. I had to step in each one, as it was crazy hot, when I was there in July. Gyor is half way between Vienna, Austria and Budapest and not far from Bratislava, Slovakia, which makes it a perfect stop for travelers on their Europtrip.
Eger – red wine and history
Eger, on the north of Hungary is the most famous for its castle, cathedral, red wine, Baroque palaces and Turkish remains, including the northernmost minaret in Europe. Founded in the 10th century by the first Hungarian king, St. Stephen. The city flourished during the Middle Ages when winemaking became the main source of income. Later, during the Turkish occupation, Eger’s architecture radically changed. Most churches were converted into mosques. Turks built lots of minarets and public baths, which they adore.
Tokaj – vineyards and white wine
Another place famous for wine, this time white one. Tokaj is a bit off the beaten path on the north-east of Hungary, close to the border with Romania. However, the amateurs of good wine should surely put this place on their list. I am not a specialist in this matter but love wines and above all love to support local producers whenever I travel. Responsible travel in one of my main objectives, therefore I encourage you for buying locally during your trips.