Statuesque castles’, stunning lakes, extraordinary caves, thick forests, and magnificent churches, Hungary is more than just its glittering capital ‘Budapest’. The myriad places to visit in Hungary are fast turning one of the most popular countries in Eastern Europe into a hot and happening tourist destination. The country has been heavily influenced by its conquerors, which is evident in its interesting architecture and culture.
The Diverse Places To Visit In Hungary
Know where you can explore the secrets and treasures of Hungary before you proceed to plan your trip to this amazing country:
1. Budapest – The shining capital of Hungary
Budapest is one of the must-visit places to visit in Hungary to understand the country’s history and progress in the modern times. Historic & ancient buildings stand regally alongside the modern architectural wonders. No wonder, the length of Banks of the Danube River, Royal Castle Quarter and Andrassy Avenue has been deemed a UNESCO World Heritage Site! It’s also a paradise for foodies. In fact, other than Hungarian cuisine, you’re sure to find a lot of Indian restaurants in Budapest.
Places to visit: Buda Castle or Royal Palace, Great Synagogue, Basilica of St. Stephen, Parliament, Memento Park, Hungarian State Opera House, House of Terror
Famous for: Cruise over Danube River, Hungarian cuisine, Performances at Budapest Opera House
Tip: Do not change money in the streets. It’s against the law and there are chances you can be cheated.
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2. Szentendre – An artistic getaway in a quaint town
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Szentendre or St. Andrews is a mere 20 KM away from the city of Budapest is one of the best places to visit near Budapest Hungary. The picturesque town is every tourist’s favourite and looks absolutely magical with cobbled streets lined with colorful Baroque houses. Lot of galleries, museums, and stores keep visitors occupied.
Places to visit: Art Mill, Belgrade Cathedral, Hungarian Open Air Museum, Ferenczy Karoly Museum, Blagoveschensk Church
Famous for: Museums, Artists colony with galleries & cafe
Tip: If you’re short on time, take a boat ride to Szentendre in the afternoon since it takes twice as long to travel upstream to the town in the morning.
3. Eger – A town with a bloody history and blood-red wine
Located on the Eger River, Eger is one of the top places to visit in Hungary. Visitors witness the remnants of the Turkish invasion which influenced the architecture of the town. A short distance away is the Valley of Beautiful Women which produces Hungary’s best red wine known as ‘Bikaver’ or Bull’s Blood.
Places to visit: Eger Castle, Cathedral Basilica of St. John the Apostle, Magic Tower, Lyceum, County Hall, Kossuth Lajos Utca
Famous for: Vineyards of Eger, Baroque and neo-classicist architecture of the city
Tip: Don’t forget to stop by at the churches for the most stunning sights.
4. Esztergom – A peek into the history of Hungary
Esztergom is among the best places to visit in Hungary to see the influence of Christianity on the country. It has the largest church of Hungary – the Esztergom Basilica, and its museum has the largest collection of Christian relics. The city was also the capital of Hungary between the 10th and 13th centuries.
Places to visit: Esztergom Basilica, Christian Museum, Castle Museum, Danube Museum
Famous for: Interiors of the Esztergom Basilica, Museum with Christian relics
Tip: The Esztergom Cathedral is closed in the winters, so plan your trip accordingly.
5. Debrecen – An expedition to the great grasslands of Hungary
Debrecen is among the popular places to visit in Hungary and is also the second largest city after Budapest. While it has a unique history of its own, it is more popular for being the gateway to the great plains of Hungary and especially as the base for a visit to the Hortobagy National Park.
Places to visit: Calvinist College, Great Church, Deri Museum, Timar Haz, Centre of Modern & Contemporary Art
Famous for: Day trip to Horotbagyi National Park, Flower Carnival in August, Lake Fancsika
Tip: Stop by at the local food joints for an authentic lunch of thick beef soup and pasta.
6. Tihany – A historical village with picturesque views
Tihany is a tiny village located in the Lake Balaton region with a rich history. One of the top places to visit in Hungary outside Budapest, Tihany is known for its Abbey where the first records of Hungarian language are found! The functioning church is thronged by visitors throughout the year.
Places to visit: Benedictine Abbey Church, Lavender House, Visszhang-hegy, Open-air Folk Museum, Benedictine Abbey Museum
Famous for: Lavender Garden, Bird watching at Inner Lake & Outer Lake, Loczy Nature Trail
Tip: Visit the church in the evening hours to escape the throngs of the crowd.
7. Lake Balaton – A sojourn into nature with lakes and forests
The Lake Balaton is undoubtedly one of the best places to visit in Hungary. The lake also dubbed as the Hungarian Sea has a long shoreline of 197 KM which is in fact circuited by a cycle path which visitors can cycle on! The lake is surrounded by resort towns and has beautiful forests especially in the Balaton Uplands National Park.
Places to visit: Herend Porcelain Factory, Festetics Palace
Famous for: Szigliget Fortress, Heviz Spa, Balaton Sound Festival
Tip: Getting to Lake Balaton by public transport is affordable and reliable, but make sure you consult the official timetables of buses and trains before you start planning your day.
8. Aggtelek – A walk through mysterious caves
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Aggtelek is a village that is the gateway to the popular UNESCO World Heritage Site of Aggtelek and Slovak Karst. One of the most interesting places to visit in Hungary, Aggtelek’s Baradle Cave has the most stunning stalactite formations. Especially the cavern ‘Giant’s Hall’ is spectacular and a treat for nature lovers.
Places to visit: Aggtelek Cave System
Famous for: Baradla Cave, Rakoczi Barlang Cave
Tip: Arrive early to escape the crowd.
9. Lillafured – A hike up to the mountains
The Bukk Mountains are one of the most beautiful places to visit in Hungary. Lillafured is the perfect place as a base to visit the Bukk National Park. The park has more than 1,000 caves, beautiful freshwater lakes, and thick woods ideal for hiking. The Lillafured waterfall is also the highest waterfall in Hungary.
Places to visit: Bukk National Park, Lillafured Waterfall, Lake Hamori, Anna Cave
Famous for: Trekking in Bukk National Park, Miskolc Zoo
Tip: Cave bathing is the most popular thing to do among tourists.
10. Sopron – Wander in an ancient city with a colourful history
Sopron has witnessed history through the ages and one of the most historic places to visit in Hungary Europe. It settled by the Celts, Romans, Germans, Avars, Slavs, and Magyars, each of whom left their imprint on the culture and architecture of the city. While the city has expanded, its inner town, Belvaros, is still charming and a delight to wander.
Places to visit: Lake Neusiedl, Storno House, Firewatch Tower, Old Synagogue, Harrer Chocolate Factory
Famous for: Fertő-Hanság National Park with Lake Ferto, Fire Tower with 200 steps
Tip: Take a stroll on Sopron’s cobbled streets.
11. Tapolca – A picturesque resort town with caves
Not many towns or cities have a vast underground cave but Tapolca does! It is the beautiful underground ‘Lake Cave’ that features Tapolca among the famous places to visit in Hungary. Located right in the middle of the town, the lake cave is open to the public and is also famous for its medicinal properties.
Places to visit: Lake Malom-to, Szent Gyorgy Hill, Lake Cave
Famous for: Little Princess Statue, Kotenger
Tip: Do not visit the caves alone. In fact, you’ll find that all guides pertaining to Europe travel tips discourage travelers from engaging in this practice!
12. Tokaj – Stroll through dreamy vineyards
Tokaj is at the center of the wine country and among the best places to visit in Hungary to sample the best wines. The tiny town is filled with pretty houses and offers excellent views of the Zemplen Hills. Perfect for wine connoisseurs, Tokaj has been producing sweet wines since the 15th century!
Places to visit: Tokaj Museum, Wine Tasting Tours, Vineyards
Famous for: UNESCO World Heritage Tokaj Wine Region, Sarospatak Castle
Tip: There’s no dress code for wine tastings, but we suggest you give the white outfit a miss.
13. Pecs – For heritage by day and entertainment by night
Pecs is one of the most popular places to visit in Hungary, next only to Budapest. With a pleasant climate through the year, it is thronged by visitors who come to see the ancient architectural landmarks. Drawing many young backpackers and travelers, the city offers an exciting nightlife.
Places to visit: Zsolnay Cultural Centre, Mosque Church, Csontvary Museum, Modern Hungarian Gallery, Zsolnay Porcelain Museum
Famous for: Trekking at Mecsek, Mosque of Pasha Qasim, St. Peter and Paul Cathedral
Tip: Photography is allowed at Mosque of Pasha Qasim but you should refrain from taking pictures of worshippers during prayer time.
14. Holloko – Relive history at the UNESCO World Heritage Site
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Often featuring among the top 10 best places to visit in Hungary, Holloko is a living piece of history. The tiny village has just two streets but is deemed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site thanks to its unique architecture. The houses are built in a technique known as ‘wattle and daub’ that uses sticks and clay or mud.
Places to visit: Holloko Castle, Church of St. Martin, Village Museum, Guzsalyas, Paloc Doll Museum, Postal Museum
Famous for: Paloc Babamuzeum, Hollokoi Falumuzeum
Tip: You are likely to find greeters at the Church of St. Martin, so be prepared to shake hands with someone when you enter.
15. Visegrad – Of Renaissance monuments and skiing
Visegrad is world-famous for the ‘Bridge on Drina’ which is a UNESCO Site and for the Andricgrad. But it is among the top places to visit in Hungary in December as it transforms into a winter resort. The mountains of Visegrad become perfect for skiing and other winter activities.
Places to visit: Visegrad-Mokra Gora Railway, Visegrad Castle, Duna-Ipoly National Park
Famous for: Royal Palace of Matthias Cornivus, Matyas Kiraly Museum
Tip: The best way to really enjoy Visegrad is to take a hike.
16. Hortobagy – Must-visit for amazing sunsets
Hortobagy is the plainest plain anywhere in Europe! This site is known all over the world for its iconic sunsets, unique flora and fauna, and an amazing display of horsemanship by the Hungarian cowboys.
Places to visit: Nine Holed Bridge
Famous for: Bridge Fair, National Herdsmen Competition
Tip: Be careful not to disturb the fauna.
17. Siofok – Move over nightclubs, day clubs are here to stay
Siofok is a charming quaint town on the south coast of Lake Balaton. One of the most popular holiday resorts in Hungary, it hosts around 200,000 travelers in the summer season.
Places to visit: The Villa Jokai, Museum of Egg, Water Tower
Famous for: Coke Club, Galerius Thermal Spa and Wellness Centre
Tip: Visit Balaton Sound, the country’s biggest EDM festival, which is held a few kilometers away in Zamárdi village.
So, this was our list of the top places to visit in Hungary that you must tick off your list on your next Europe tour. Know any more? Pop them in the comments below, before you book your Hungarian tour with TravelTriangle for an exciting vacation with friends and family!
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