Hungary, Europe - JiveHippo.travel

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Welcome to Hungary

Information & Facts

Attraction Overview

Located in central Europe, Hungary is an interesting blend of East meets Western European. The country's history, with its influences from Russia, Mongolia and Austria, are laid bare in the Baroque architecture, historic castles and fortresses and the quaint towns and villages. The capital city of Budapest is easily the country's main attraction, but take a wander out of the metropolis and you will soon stumble upon a land of equal beauty and charm. Wherever you go, when you choose a holiday in Hungary from JiveHippo, you can be assured of a memorable holiday.
 
No visit to Hungary would be complete without a trip to the capital, Budapest. Highly regarded as one of the most beautiful cities in Europe, the growth of cheap flights to Budapest has made it easily accessible, whether for a short break or longer. Any visitor to the city will be immediately struck by its awe-inspiring architecture. Sliced in half by the river Danube, the city is a blend of both old and new, with historic Buda and modern Pest, with its buzzy, uptempo vibe. Take a tour of the stunning Parliament building, the largest building in the country, and a trip up to Castle Hill is a must for its impeccable vistas of the city. A visit to one of Budapest's grand historic baths to bathe in the bubbling thermal baths also comes highly recommended. If you visit the city in mid-August, then do not miss the Sziget Music Festival, deemed as one of the most popular music festivals in Europe.
If you can steal yourself away from the charms of Budapest, then taking time to discover more outside the capital city can be a very rewarding experience. The shores of Lake Balaton, to the southwest of Hungary, are described as the 'Hungarian Sea' and make for a refreshing place to stop in summer, where you can swim, sail or windsurf.
Another great way to enjoy the waters of Hungary is to take a river cruise around the Danube Bend, where you will be greeted with beautiful, lush scenery and quaint towns. The thermal lake at Heviz is also a popular hangout for watersport enthusiasts.
If you are seeking culture outside Budapest, then the cities of Sopron, Pecs and Eger have plenty to offer the tourist. Eger is awash with stunning Baroque architecture, including a castle, which famously repelled an Ottoman attack in 1552. Pecs also has its share of architectural gems, and is a hit with students who fill the bars at night. The cities of Szeged, Kecskemet and Debrecen are all up there as places worth visiting, where you can expect to find interesting architecture mixed with cosmopolitan cafes, restaurants and good shopping.
Hungary is famed for its zesty, red bull's blood wine, so a spot of wine tasting is a must-do when visiting the country. Eger and Szepasszony are renowned for their reds, whilst white wine fans should make a beeline for the Badascony region.
If you are want to enjoy the beauty and tranquillity of the Hungarian countryside, then take a visit to the vast Great Plain, which covers half of the country and is home to an array of stunning national parks. The thickly forested Northern Uplands area is also worth exploring if you want to enjoy the natural splendour of the country. For a real sense of space, head to Kiskunsagi National Park, with its nine islands of land, making up more than 76, 000 hectares. If you want to catch a glimpse of local bird life, then Lake Tisza Bird Reserve is said to be a breeding ground for more than 200 types of birds.
The cuisine of Hungary is worth getting to know, and is much more than just the famed goulash. Hungary has been making a name for itself in terms of both its wine and cuisine for a long time, so make sure you take time to stop by at a food or wine festival, and become acquainted with this delicious cuisine. Remember to pick up some paprika on your travels to take home, as Hungarian food is synonymous with this fiery spice.

Climate

Most visitors to Hungary come in the summer, where you can expect a typical, continental European, warm and dry climate of mid 20 degrees in July and August. Spring and autumn are pleasant times to visit Hungary, where days are warm but evenings are cool. Winter can be cold and wet in Hungary, where snow is often a possibility. 

Getting Around

Hungary has well developed, efficient pulic transport services.

In many cities and towns you will find bus and trolleybus services, which run from 5:30am to 9:00pm. In the capital you will find that they run later.

The only city to have a metro id Budapest, the metro is convenient and extensive.

If you are looking to get a taxi then always call and order a taxi from a reputable company. 

Trams are mainly located in the larger cities, and the capital has a suburban railway of its own, known as the HÉV.

Health

Before travelling to Hungary, get a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC). This card entitles you to state provided medical treatment.

If you do not have a EHIC, then any treatment that you may need will have to be dealt with by your travel insurance and you must have accessible funds to cover any costs.

Language

The official language of Hungary is Hungarian. Minority languages such as German, Croatian, Romani, Serbian, Slovak and Slovene may also be spoken in some areas. In towns and cities frequented by tourists, English is understood and used.

Money

Although Hungary is a member of the European Union, it still has its own currency, the Forint. You can pay with Euros in many places, but expect Forints in change - and you may not get a great rate for your money, so change any Euros into Forints.

Safety

Petty theft and bag snatching is common, mainly in the cty of Budapest. Always be aware on local transport, in train stations, markets and other tourist areas.

Be careful where you eat and dribnk, reports have been made of tourists being charged extortionate prices, and if they have not been able to cover the costs, they have been marched to the nearest ATM by the establishments security and made to withdraw the funds under the treats of violence.

The same things often happen with taxi drivers, make sure to ask how much the trip will cost you before you enter.

Time

Hungary are under the Central European Time Zone (UTC+01:00)

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