A Vacation at Lake Balaton in Hungary is just the right thing, if you have the wanderlust again. In this article I'll show you everything you need to know about vacationing at Lake Balaton. In addition, you will learn the most beautiful beaches, the coolest Balaton camping sites and the best, most sustainable accommodation directly on Lake Balaton.
Here is another Table of contents for easy orientation:
- Balaton vacation
- Balaton weather
- Sustainable vacation home for vacation on Lake Balaton
- Balaton Camping
- The most beautiful beaches on vacation at Lake Balaton
- Balaton National Park
- The Tihany Peninsula
- The Keszthely Mountains
- Hungary Balaton - Conclusion
Lake Balaton in Hungary (Lake Balaton)
Lake Balaton, also called Lake Balaton, is located in the western part of Hungary. It is 79 kilometers long and 7.8 kilometers wide. Because of its size, it is also called the "Hungarian Sea". The name "Balaton" comes from the Slavic word "blatna", which means "swampy marsh". Because of the spas, the thermal springs and the beaches it is a very popular vacation resort. Viticulture and fishing are of great economic importance for the place. Especially the wines from Balaton are very popular among the locals and vacationers. After the Hungarian capital Budapest, Lake Balaton is even the most important tourist center of Hungary. By the way, Budapest is only 1.5 hours away from Lake Balaton by car. Therefore, the Hungarian capital is perfect as a day trip and simply belongs in our Nature Travel Blog.
The weather at Lake Balaton in Hungary
Of course, the most fun is the vacation at Lake Balaton with beautiful weather. The high season for vacations at Lake Balaton is definitely the summer. From early May to mid-October there is the perfect bathing weather with an average of nine hours of sunshine per day. In winter, on the other hand, it can get very cold at Lake Balaton in Hungary. From December to January, the average temperature is just 3 degrees. From April it gets much warmer with an average of 17 degrees. In October it is still spring-like warm with 16 degrees.
Sustainable vacation home for vacation on Lake Balaton
If sustainability is close to your heart, the question of how to have fun on site as environmentally friendly as possible also arises for you on vacation at Lake Balaton. Directly on Lake Balaton there is the Hullám Villa, which has set itself the goal of making its accommodation as sustainable and environmentally conscious as possible. The rooms are built from natural materials. Attention was paid to certain details, such as energy-saving lighting and a water-saving toilet flush. The breakfast buffet, which is ready in the morning, consists of regional food with organic coffee and organic tea. Also for vegetarians and Vegan 🙂 For all sports freaks there is also a swimming pool, a beach volleyball court and many other offers at Hullám Villa. Yoga is in the center of the sports offer. Bike rental is available for trips in the surrounding area. The villa is easily accessible both by car and by train. You can find more information about the suitable accommodation on bookitgreen. With the voucher code "CAREBIG" you get a 20 Euro discount on your first booking.
Camping at Lake Balaton in Hungary
If a vacation home isn't for you, there's always the option of camping on site. Camping is one of the best travel options for sustainable travel. Since a vacation at Lake Balaton is very popular, there are accordingly many Balaton camping sites. Camping at Lake Balaton can be done both directly at the lake, as well as in somewhat distant surroundings. The average price for renting a Balaton camping site for two adults including electricity in the main season is about 23 euros. In the main season in summer, however, you have to assume that the Balaton camping sites will be quite busy. Especially directly on the lake is often busy.
Wild Camping at Lake Balaton
In Hungary, unfortunately, there are quite strict rules regarding wild camping. Wild camping is absolutely forbidden, even on your own private property. Even resting overnight with the caravan or caravan on a parking lot or rest area is prohibited. Therefore, you will have to give up wild camping and look for camping sites at Lake Balaton.
Hungary Balaton - The most beautiful beaches
Lake Balaton has a shoreline of more than 200 kilometers. Since in many places you can walk hundreds of meters into Lake Balaton without having to swim, it is popular with young and old. Many of the beaches are not "typical beaches". They are more like sunbathing lawns with grass growth. At many of the beaches there is a sporting offer or pedal boat rides. The most beautiful beaches for the vacation at Lake Balaton I show you now.
There are two big main beaches in Siofok. One of them is especially suitable for families. Here you will find everything a child's heart desires, for example playground equipment and water slides. The other beach is not free of charge, but there are many events and other interesting things to discover. During the day, DJs play here. In addition, there is a large grandstand where animations often take place. In the evening there are music and cultural events. So the entrance fee is worth it. Another advantage of the two beaches is that they are very clean. In my opinion, this is a mega important criterion.
The beach in the small village of Gyenesdiás is a beautiful sandy beach. The parking spaces around the sandy beach are free of charge. The beach is very family-friendly, among other things because there are several playgrounds for children to discover. But the place is also good for night owls. The beach bar offers delicious cocktails in a relaxed atmosphere in the evenings. In addition, many restaurants with traditional Hungarian dishes are waiting for you. Every year the popular spring festival takes place in Gyenesdiás. The program consists of a cooking duel on an open fire, a hike, the demonstration of horsemen and archers, games and folk music. The festival is suitable for families. In addition, the market time in Gyenesdiás starts again in spring.
The town of Balatonlelle has a population of about 5000 and has a very beautiful, clean and well-kept sandy beach with a length of three kilometers. If you like the mixture of quiet relaxation and exciting nightlife, you are right here. Because Balatonlelle has a pedestrian zone with interesting stores and some discos that are open until late at night. One of the sights of the town is the harbor. Here not only during the day there are round trips. A party ship also docks at night, where long, extensive parties are held regularly. Definitely a special experience! There are also numerous events here, especially in the summer time. Especially popular is the wine festival, which takes place between the end of July and the beginning of August. For 10 days it transforms the waterfront into the traditional wine festival, where many Hungarian wines from all regions of the country are presented and served. Another attraction in Balatonlelle is the amusement park, which is also suitable for a visit with the whole family.
Do you like it a little less quiet? Then you are in the right place! The small village has just 1200 inhabitants. Surprisingly, many locals even speak German. So communication should not be a problem. The atmosphere on the beach is quiet and relaxing. The place is also suitable for hiking lovers, as there are many natural hiking trails to discover. However, if it does rain on a day, you can always go to the local thermal baths with the mineral-rich healing waters.
This place is not too big either. With 1080 inhabitants it has even less inhabitants than Balatonbereny. But it is surrounded by hills and small mountains and is generally very green. That is why Balatongyörök is also a nice hiking destination. But you can also go by bike to explore the beauty of nature. Also known for the place are the good wines. The beach is clean and very natural. While swimming you can see the hills from a distance.
Attention dog ban!
At all beaches on Lake Balaton is an absolute dog ban. In many places there are signs, to which you should adhere during your vacation at Lake Balaton. However, it is of course not forbidden in Hungary to let your dog in the water. If you find a small place outside the beach where no sign is attached, you can let your dog in the water.
The Balaton Uplands National Park
Another reason to spend a vacation on Lake Balaton is the beautiful Balaton Uplands National Park. It was created 20 years ago by the merger of six nature parks. The park has a total area of about 57,000 hectares. The Keszthely Mountains, the Balaton Uplands, the Small Lake Balaton, the volcanic mountain Somló and the Tapolca Basin are among the interesting territories of the park. As you can see, it is very complex. Therefore, the national park is really worth a hike. Another nice destination is the Tihany Peninsula, which can be reached by ferry from various places. All those who are interested in the history and details of the national park can take part in a guided tour.
The Tihany Peninsula
The peninsula is about 27 square kilometers and is under nature protection. On the peninsula there are also Belső-tó and Külső-tó. These are two crater lakes formed millions of years ago by volcanism. Peoples from the Bronze and Iron Ages already lived on Tihany. The Romans also settled on the peninsula. On the northern slope of Óvár Hill monks founded a hermitage more than 800 years ago, whose caves you can still visit today. Because many animal and plant species live on Tihany, it was declared Hungary's first nature reserve as early as 1952.
The landmark of Tihany
On the mountain of the island stands its landmark - the Benedictine Abbey in Baroque style. You can either walk up to the landmark or take the slow train. The ride on the slow train takes only a short 10 minutes. On the hill there are a few stores and restaurants where you can have lunch or a snack. Tihandy is famous for its lavender, which you can see blooming everywhere. The stores therefore offer many Souvenirs with lavender. The ferry from Siófok to Tihany takes only a little longer than 10 minutes for the crossing.
The Keszthely Mountains
The Keszthely Mountains is a cave complex, which is 6000 meters long and 137 meters deep. The largest part of the Keszthely Mountains is covered by forests, where a variety of animals and plants can be observed. For example, various species of orchids and daisies grow here. The mountains are the habitat of many mammals. The bat is particularly common. In the mountains the strictly protected Csodabogyós Cave can be explored, but only under supervision and with suitable protective clothing. The Csodabogyós Cave was named after the shrubs in front of its entrance. It is full of dripstones.
The vacation at Lake Balaton in Hungary
Hungary is a very diverse country with a great landscape. Many of the places around Lake Balaton are true oases of tranquility in contrast to the noisy capital Budapest. But as you can see, you don't have to be a quiet person to enjoy a trip in nature. Vacations at Lake Balaton can also be very exciting thanks to exciting evenings at the bar and extraordinary nights. Thus, Lake Balaton is suitable for nature lovers, families, as well as party lovers. Going camping at Lake Balaton is definitely a great experience. If camping is not for you, you can still make your vacation at Lake Balaton environmentally conscious by spending it in sustainable accommodation. The pleasant weather in Hungary makes the trip even more enjoyable. I wish you a lot of fun while discovering the different places.
Where was your best vacation in nature? Write it to me in the comments! 🙂
PS: You can find the right packing list to check off for your next trip in the article Travel checklist.