Hungary is often overshadowed by Budapest, cheap beer, and goulash in people’s minds. However, the country has much more to offer. With its close proximity to the Danube River, Hungary boasts beautiful landscapes and attractions, many of which are built along or near the river. The countryside surrounding the Danube is lush and green, and Hungary is also home to Europe’s largest thermal lake. These factors, among many others, have contributed to the growing popularity of Hungary as a tourist destination.
Tourism in Hungary is experiencing a record-breaking year. In fact, the latest government tourism figures have surpassed those of 2019, making it the best year ever for tourism arrivals in the country. Visitors are not only flocking to Budapest, but also exploring other regions such as Lake Balaton and the Matra and Bukk Mountains. According to the Central Statistical Office, the number of overnight stays by foreign guests has increased by 14% compared to the previous year.
To accommodate the increasing number of tourists, the Hungarian government is investing in infrastructure to ensure accessibility to remote areas of the country. Their long-term plan is to allow visitors to explore as much of Hungary as possible. Beyond Budapest, tourists are discovering the mineral-rich thermal springs and the great outdoors that the country has to offer. Lake Balaton, with its beaches, volcanic hills, and resort towns, attract approximately one million tourists each year. Bicycle tourism has also seen a surge, thanks to the introduction of e-bikes in the area.
Wine lovers find Hungary appealing for its vineyards. To make it easier for tourists to access the vineyards in the Tokaj-Hegyalja region, the Hungarian government recently opened a new road that can be traversed by bike or foot. As the tourism sector continues to grow, new attractions and areas will be opening up to mainstream tourism.
The shoulder seasons of spring and fall are considered the best times to visit Hungary, especially for those interested in exploring Budapest. The weather during these months is ideal for city exploration, with warm and pleasant days. The fall season is particularly exciting for foodies, as it is harvest season, offering fresh and locally sourced ingredients in restaurants. Wine tastings and experiencing Hungary’s wine culture are also popular during this time.
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