The wonderfully preserved Main Square town center of Kecskemet Hungary recalls the history of this city as an important market town and crossroads of ancient trading routes. Between the Danube and Tisza Rivers, it anchors the northwest edge of the Great Hungarian Plain with the city of Szeged on the southwest edge. As transportation from Budapest takes only about an hour by car or train, taking vacations to Kecskemet is pretty straightforward.
Though not as well-known as Danube River towns like Esztergom
and Szentendre or the capital of Budapest,
there are a surprising number of rewarding Kecskemet attractions to explore
here. The town is filled with museums of all sorts, and one of the things
to do here is explore them. The fascinating Hungarian Photography Museum
contains a great collection of cameras and historic photographs. It’s housed
in a former synagogue, and the restored ceiling features Jewish themes. The
Museum of Hungarian Folk Art and the Bozsó Collection provide insight into the
role played by Kecskemet Hungary in the cultural traditions of the country with
exhibitions of pottery, embroidery and other textiles, folk and Magyar art and
furniture. The Naïve Art Museum displays paintings and sculptures with charming
peasant themes, and the nearby Toy Museum has a delightful collection of nineteenth
and twentieth century toys.
Set in an excellent agricultural region, the town is surrounded by vineyards and fruit orchards. As a result, one of the Kecskemet attractions is Hungary wine and spirit making. Even if museums aren’t your cup of tea, vacations to Kecskemet will be enhanced by an entertaining visit to the Pálinka Museum, associated with the Ecker Distillery. Pálinka is a typical type of Hungarian apricot brandy (similar to schnapps), and this region is known for its production. The museum takes you on a fascinating walk through all the stages of both modern and bygone production and the tour is topped off with an opportunity to taste the results. You can even go shopping to take a bottle away with you.
Of all the Kecskemet attractions available, the beautiful Main Square town center is what drives Kecskemet tourism more than anything. The city is known for possessing some of country’s finest Art Nouveau architecture, and the splendid ensemble of buildings in the town center is one of the most beautiful in the Hungary. It’s all accessible on foot, and one of the things to do is simply stroll around the square. The striking Town Hall with its frescoes illustrating the history of Kecskemet is one of the best examples, along with the Old Catholic Church, the largest cathedral in the Great Hungarian Plain. Opposite the Town Hall is the fourteenth-century Franciscan Church, one of the oldest buildings in Kecskemet. In front of the ornate theater is the Column of the Holy Trinity, commemorating the Black Death. The amazing Moorish-style Old Synagogue (now the Museum of Science) sits across from the Cifra Palota (Ornamental Palace), a masterpiece of Art Nouveau architecture.
There is also good dining to be had in Kecskemet Hungary especially for traditional tasty cuisine. And there is also an excellent French restaurant, Montmartre Francia Étterem, at the charming Mill Center. Some of the best Hungarian cuisine can be found in Kecskemet hotels many of which offer hearty home-cooked food.
If you want to make plans around local events the city offers many, especially spring and autumn festivals centered around agriculture, and there’s a major International Air Show held here in August. All in all, vacations to Kecskemet are both rewarding and enriching.