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Cycling and spas in Hungary

Szentlstvan, Hungary.  Tree foliage background deleted Decorated building in Hero's Square, Budapest Parliament building, Budapest, alongside Danube river
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Tribal leaders/horse figures in Hero's Square, Budapest
Heros square Budapest
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Cycling tour in Hungary with hot water thermal baths, easy rides, good food and company

We went on a one week cycle tour holiday, on the flat, alongside rivers, woods, vast fields and flat plains to the east of Budapest in Hungary. Led a very knowledgeable local English speaking guide and followed by driver, with support minibus for our luggage. Daily hot thermal water spa baths allowed us to relax, drink champagne and gaze up the stars and satellites.

Cycling Grade=1 (easy) .....Total cycling distance 233 km.
We stopped for a rest about every 10 km and did 38 to 52 km per day

Hotel Walzer, Budapest
Hotel Waltzer in Budapest
Hotel Panorama at Tiszaors Furdo, bath via gate opposite Mata Club Hotel - Horse riding
Hotel at Mata

Saturday, arrived Hotel Walzer, Budapest. If you arrive early there is an opportunity to visit the Budapest thermal baths before your start your Hungarian cycle tour.  6pm briefing and city tour by bus. Hero's square, Hungary was formed by seven tribes from Siberia in 872, many Kings and temporary (sometime long) occupations since. Viewpoint across the Danube later.

Sunday:. Bus 95km east from Budapest to dyke alongside the Tisza river to the north of Szolnok. Cycled via Nagykoru and Kotelek. Picnic lunch and water powered ferry crossing. On to Kunhegyes and stay in private houses (now Hotel). Outdoor music, lace and basket making. First thermal bath with hot water pouring from pipe coming up out of the ground. Lots of noisy frogs heard while walking back to the private house, late at night. 47 km today.

Private house lodgings at Kunhegyes
Staying at private houses
Drinking 'vitamins' in hot pool at Kunhegyes
Thermal spa bath Kunhegyes
Very large white church Kunhegyes, climb into roof
Church at Kunhegyes

Monday. Kunhegyes. Very good breakfast at private house. Tribal leader on horse in the town square, shooting arrow eastwards (towards Russia!). Large white church, we climbed into the roof, ate ice cream outside, cycled via Abadsolok to Tiszafurad along top of dyke to find holiday area with water flume ride, the along dyke to nature conservation area with many moored boats. Hot picnic lunch cooked at almost empty camping site sitting at comfortable table under trees. Then near Tiszaentimetre across railway and through Kunmaderas to Hotel Panorama at Tiszaors-Furdo. Through gate opposite to thermal baths open all evening, night and morning. Total 43km today.

Tuesday: Bus back to near railway engine museum then to Tiszaszolos for stop near supermarket/post office. Then off into the country again to find a dyke and eventually nature reserve lake and holiday/fishing boats. Boat trip in reeds to see black and white storks and other water birds. Lunch in restaurant. Then TiszaFured, Egyek. Stopped cycling at junction with Route E33. Then by bus to Hortobagy Mata Club Hotel. Large posh hotel with modern large pool & sauna. Much appreciated live local music at supper, meatballs, chocolate pancake à la flambeé. Total: Cycle 52.km

Resting, possibly S of Kaba
Stop for drinks and biscuits on cycle tour.

Big sky country near Hortobagy
Flat plains to the horizon
River crossing

Wednesday: Horse carriage ride, horse riding, truly organic grey cattle, sheep with twisted horns and pigs. Set off on bikes. 9 arch bridge, visitors centre/museum, via several poor remote farms. The concrete cycle track had a few unusual bumps. Picnic lunch after Balmazvjaros alongside quiet river. Enormous loaves of bread. Snooze in the sun under a line of trees, alongside canal. Eric went to see if there were any walnuts on the ground from last year (none). Then to Trofors Hunting lodge hidden in woods with fishing lake about 3km north of Nadudvar. 52km today. Evening meal outside. Evening bus to pool. Best so far with plenty of champagne, stars and satellites to watch. Massage/sauna.

Horses on plain at Mata, 2km N of Hortobagy
Horses on Hortobagy plains
Riding on plain at Mata, 2km N of Hortobagy
Tradional horse riders: Hortobagy plains
Grey cattlle on plain at Mata, 2km N of Hortobagy
Giant white cattle
Donkey on plain ?

Thursday: Cycled into Nadudvar to see local black pottery making. Then 10km south to Kaba Thermal bath in town. Kaba is famous for its meteorite which exploded with fragments all over the place on April 15th 1857. Large open grass area, nice new brick walkway around pools. Lunch cooked in large witches cauldron under shady trees. Natural gas flare tower. Afternoon route partly off road but not difficult. Chris did tumble bumpkin beside bridge while walking down steep slope with bike pulling. (All mended now.) Arrived Hajduszoboszio town at enormous thermal baths with 17 pools and plenty of tiling and stainless steel. Ice cream before bus back to Trofea Hunting Lodge. 38km cycling today.

Friday: Breakfast in the Kings Room with gallery, wooden panelling. Bus back to Budapest, afternoon in town using No 8 local bus to Elizabeth Bridge - food market. Final evening meal. Thanks to all.

Saturday morning: Departure, although some stayed on to visit Gellert bath, music concert, library, museums etc.

Up to bridge, about 10km NNE from Kaba
Eric - lost in space
Map reading
Potter in Nadudvar
Pottery in Nadudvar
Marking pottery with patterns using a stone
Marking the pottery

The groups contributions to the velo-touring guestbook are below:

The first spa tour of 2002 came with warm, sunny weather and skies clear and blue.

Our guides were George and Steve in the van
and we all had a good time even getting a tan.

When the sun grew much hotter and the wind blew much stronger the Hungarian kilometre grew very much longer.

The navigational aid was quite a delight
we could always find the next satellite.

When travelling through scenery lush and bucolic
we were urged on by Vitamins quite alcoholic.
Food, weather and the company of such splendid folk will live long in memory and 'it's not a joke'

When tiring and wishing we could all travel slow
we were comforted by Georges's 'Gemma lets go'

The last day nearly brought disaster as down the hill Chris went faster and faster
Like an acrobat she tumbled down, Got to the bottom and felt such a clown.

Then MaryJo went into the pool she lost her clothes and felt a fool.
The lady in white searched every box till at last she found MaryJo's socks.

Three cheers for the guides, we all used to say
EGESZSEGEDRE, once more at the end of the day
Ach, wir können es nicht fassen,
kaum sind wir da, müssen wir Ungarn schon verlassen.
Die Radtour war sehr schön,
von uns aus könnt' es weitergehn.

Und waren es manchmal 40 Kilometer nur,
der Sattel hinterließ trotzdem seine Spur.
Die Sonne hatte uns richtig lieb,
wie gut, dass es soviel Bäder gibt.
Wir ließen so manches Wässerchen rinnen,
teils von außen, teils von innen!

Der Kuckuck ruft, die Nachtigall singt,
der Reiher seine Flügel schwingt.
Radeln, Entspannen und gutes Essen
ließen uns den Alltag schnell vergessen.

Ein letztes "Gemma" hängt wehmütig im Raum,
dass wir nie mehr wiederkommen, das glauben wir kaum.
9 arch bridge, Hortobagy
9 arch bridge at Hortobagy
Picnic lunch at Horgasztanya Camping
Nature lake adjacent to Tisza River, West of Tiszafured
Boat trip on Tisza lake
Stork nest on pole, poss Nadudvar
Stork on its nest
One of 17 hot baths at Hajduszoboszloi Gyogyfurdo
Sitting in hot thermal spa

Any comments please e-mail eric@satsig.net.   Many thanks to contributors for pictures and text.

All content Copyright (c) reserved 21Group  12 May 2002,  updated 25 Feb 2022.