It says something for the unique culture and people of Hungary when their favourite activity is playing chess while soaking at an elegant thermal bath complex. Taking to the water in Hungary is a tradition and one not to be missed especially in Budapest, the nation’s stately capital. The River Danube flows through the centre of the city, separating the ancient towns of Buda and Pest. As you explore the city’s medieval heritage, don’t be frightened by the crazy-looking names. Your pronunciation may not fool the locals, but they’ll be thrilled to hear you try and will go out of their way to make you feel welcome. For something completely different head to the Statue Park, the last resting place of more than 40 statues from Hungary’s Socialist past.
Beyond the city lie lakes and spa towns and the vast Hungarian Plain that still pounds with the sound of hoof-beats – the Hungarians love their horses. Join them on a ride, or watch the Magyar cowboys demonstrate their awesome abilities. Meet Hungary’s dynamic young generation in the university city of Szeged and wander the cobblestone streets of arty Szentendre, one of several towns along the picturesque Danube bend.
Hungarian cuisine reflects this country’s unique heritage. The Turks introduced coffee and paprika and it is from here that hearty, rich goulash soup originates. Try turkey roasted with fruit, and for dessert, chestnut cream. Live life to the full the way the Hungarians do.