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deriek-2 Keszthely - A travel report by Mary
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Keszthely,  Hungary - flag Hungary -  Zala
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deriek-2's travel reports

Keszthely- The largest city of Lake Balaton

  19 votes
Two English words have Hungarian origin: paprika and coach. They came from the Hungarian language. Paprika is a spice which give a special hot taste to food, usual in Hungarian cuisine. Coach is a vehicle pulled by horses.

People were always interested in passed centuries, how our fathers lived, what they did and why, what they ate, where they lived, for what they went to fight. Men of our days research in order to know the everyday of its ancestors. If such a researcher finds West-Balaton, he is a lucky one: this is a talkative region. Keszthely is the largest and oldest settlement of Lake Balaton. The beautiful Festetics Mansion, with 101 rooms surrounded by an English park, is the third largest baroque style chateau in the country. The Helikon Library contains 86 thousansd books. In its museum decorative arms and trophy collection of the Duke Windischgratz are extablished. Weekly concerts are organized in the music hall of mirrors.

Favourite spots:
Festetics György established the first agricultural school of Europe, Georgikon in 1797. In the building of farm - on the 175. anniversary of the foundation of school a museum was opened that shows the history of Georgokon, the agricultural memories of the region, display the flora and fauna of the Balaton.

What's really great:
Who would think about yerterdays' transportation when modern automobiles like Mercedeses, Toyotas, Suzukis run up and down on our highways, that transportation of 100 years ago was so very different. At Festetics Castle the renovated coach house and stable was dedicated to bring back memories of those yesterdays. In those days the coach house and stable was an important part of the family's everyday life. Today it is the Coach Museum with 30 carriages, coaches, sleighs from the 18th-19th century.

Héviz ranks as the largest and best- known spa town in Hungary. It is only 6 km far from Keszthely, from Lake Balaton. There was a spa here during the Roman times. It is famous for its unique thermal lake with a surface area 4,7 hectares covered with water-lilies, with depth of 34 meters. It is the second largest hot-water lake in the world, at a temperature of 90 F.

Danubius Hotel Helikon the much liked hotel of the town. It lies directly on the shore of the lake. The hotel with its 224 rooms, indoor swimming pool, private beach and many sport facilities offers a great opportunity for spending an active holiday in relaxed atmosphere.

May be you have already heard of delights of Hungarian cuisine. The tradicional Hungarian dishes abound in piquant flavors and aromas. Dishes are flavourful, spicy and often rather heavy. People (like I am) with a sensitive stomach, should be careful. Flavours of dishes are based on centuries old traditions in spicing and preparation methods. The exquisite ingredients are produced by local agriculture and husbandry. Paprika and garlic is to be found everywhere. In the autumn, a fascinating view is the strings of red paprika hung on the white walls.

Other recommendations:
The area of Tapolca has a splendid landscape: basalt hills covered with vineyards encircle the small town. You can have a great experience paddling a boat on a lake within the 2,3 mile long Tavas cave. The 200-years-old watermill on the shore of the picturesque Mill Lake is now a hotel.

Published on Friday June 24th, 2005

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Sat, Jun 25 2005 - 11:46 PM rating by marianne

Well written and a pleasure to read. Wxcellent information. Thank you for sharing.


Sat, Jun 25 2005 - 06:24 AM rating by fieryfox

Thanks for the info, I'm planning a trip to Hungary next year and am sure that this report will be a great reference. :)

Fri, Jun 24 2005 - 11:22 PM rating by cool_imad

Hi Mary,
This is a very good report and the pictures are soo nice.

Fri, Jun 24 2005 - 08:02 AM rating by rangutan

Nice report but some pictures are from various internet sites though :-(

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