Sipping on a glass or two of tasty Hungarian wine is an absolute must while on your Hungarian vacation. With some of the most well-known wine regions in Eastern Europe, a trip to Hungary wouldn't be complete without a sampling of delicious Hungarian wine, produced by climate and soil perfect for wine-making. Introduced to wine by the Romans, Hungary has been undergoing great resurgence in wine-making and attracting international attention for its success. Relaxing at wineries in Hungary is a great way to balance out a busy day of sightseeing.
There are several major wine regions of Hungary, and it is easy to make trips to several winemaking towns, either by taking daytrips from Budapest or as part of a wine-tasting tour. Each of the wine regions of Hungary offers something different. There are several significant wine regions of Hungary. These wine regions include Észak-Dunántúl (North-Transdanubia), Balaton, Dél-Pannónia (South-Pannonia), Duna (Alföld), Felso‘-Magyarország (Upper-Hungary), and Tokaj. The best way to get to these locations is by renting a car; while you can take trains through Hungary, a car allows you to taste at your own pace instead of being constrained by the train schedule.
If you have the chance, be sure to try one of the most famous kinds of Hungarian wine: the Tokaji Aszú. Tokaji is a white dessert wine is from the wine region of Tokaj-Hegyalja in Hungary, located some 125 miles east of Budapest near the border of Slovakia. The wine has been popular with famous people throughout history, from Beethoven to Goethe to Peter the Great, and was even called "king of wines, wine of kings" by Louis XIV of France.
Another famous kind of wine in Hungary is Bull's Blood, a full-bodied red wine. Supposedly, back in 1552, an outnumbered group of men defending the Eger fortress from attack drank copious amounts of wine to raise their courage. The men inadvertently spilled the wine on themselves, and the attackers were scared away by the belief that the defenders had been drinking Bull's Blood. After wine-tasting in the charmingly Baroque town of Eger you can visit the National Wine Museum to learn even more about wine in Hungary.
Tasting wine in Hungary is also a popular activity near Lake Balaton. Lake Balaton is the largest lake in central Europe. After a day of water sports and sunbathing on the Hungarian beaches, a day of wine-tasting at local vineyard provides a perfect change of pace.
While Budapest itself does not have wineries, you can certainly partake in fine Hungarian wine from all over the country at specialty shops in the city. At the House of Hungarian Wines in the Castle District you can taste some of 450 Hungarian wines, and at the Törley Champagne Factory you can see the world's largest wooden barrel still in use. There are many events in Hungary focused on wine. Come spring, time your visit to coincide with the Spring Wine Festival in mid-April, while in September you can attend the International Wine & Champagne Festival in the Castle District.
Whether you stay in Budapest or venture to more distant Hungarian wine country, it's easy to make time to raise a glass and toast your Hungarian holiday!
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