Country guides Europe
Hungary Travel Guide
Hungary acts as a convenient gateway between Western and Eastern Europe from its location near the centre of the continent. Culturally and geographically the odd one out, the small landlocked country is a unique and popular European travel destination thanks to its long and fascinating history, stunning countryside, and warm and welcoming people.
The Hungarians are descended from the Magyars of Russia, and the country has at various points been ruled by the Mongols, the Austrians, and the Soviet Union. This provides for a wealth of historical attractions within the Hungarian countryside and in its cosmopolitan capital, Budapest.
Indeed, almost every holiday in Hungary begins in this elegant city, a bohemian metropolis with plenty of attractions in the form of museums, monuments, and historic buildings. Budapest comes alive after dark, with a riotous and romantic nightlife and a restaurant scene that offers something for every traveller.
Outside of the capital, however, Hungary's rolling countryside contains charming towns and villages with medieval squares and picturesque castles that are definitely worth visiting. Travellers can explore the vineyards around Eger, relax in the thermal mineral baths of Balatonfured, or wander the quaint towns of the beautiful Danube Bend for an unforgettable Hungary holiday.
Best time to visit Hungary
Summer is the best time to visit Hungary, when the weather is warm and all the restaurants and attractions are open for tourists. Hungary's climate is temperate, but winters are cold and the weather in spring and autumn is unpredictable.
What to see in Hungary
-Drive to Eger to tour the heavily-fortified Eger Castle.
-See the monuments of Hungary's Communist history at Memento Park in Budapest.
-Take in the view of Budapest and the Chain Bridge from Fisherman's Bastion.
-Relax and enjoy watersports in the thermal lake at Heviz.
What to do in Hungary
-Stroll around Vac to see the pretty cathedrals and the macabre Memento Mori Crypt.
-Treat the kids to a day riding the rollercoasters at Vidam Park.
-Spend a day walking around the charming riverside town of Esztergom.
-Take a river cruise around the Danube Bend.
Getting to Hungary
Getting to Hungary from the UK is made easy by direct cheap flights to Budapest from London and a handful of other cities by a few budget carriers. Direct flights to Hungary from the US are also available from a number of cities.
Eclipse of the Crescent Moon by Geza Gardonyi.
Franz Liszt and Bela Bartok.
The Shop Around the Corner (1940) and Sunshine (1999).
Hungarian wine and mineral water.
Goulash soup, strudel and crepes.
What to buy
What to pack
Pack layers, as the weather in Hungary can be unpredictable.
What's on in Hungary
The Christmas markets held each winter in Budapest's Vorosmarty Square are accompanied by organ and choir concerts.
Did you know?
-The Rubik's Cube was invented in Hungary.
-In 1946, Hungary issued a 'one quintillion pengo' note, the highest denomination ever issued by any country.
A final word
Hungary's stunning landscape and fascinating history make it a convenient and delightful stop on any European holiday.