République tchèque

Balaton Region


Lake Balaton is one of the most precious natural treasures of Hungary. The area was settled by Neolithic man, as the cave paintings in Lovas show. The motte in Tihany dates from the Iron Age, but traces of Celt and Roman civilisation have also been found. The Romans were the first to plant vines on the sunlit slopes running towards the lake. Grape cultivation and wine production have been characteristic of the surrounding area for centuries: today, Csopaki Rizling, Füredi Rizling, Badacsonyi Szürkebarát, Tihanyi Merlot and Cabernet wines are famous all over Europe.

Balaton is Central Europe‘s largest lake: 77 kilometres long, and 4 to 14 kilometres wide. The first Magyars (Hungarians) reached the Balaton area in about 900 A. D. Their descendants have left traces of many activities, construction prominent among them: for example, the undercroft (crypt) of the Tihany Abbey where the founder of the monastery, András I, is buried. A new economy centred around the area's medicinal waters began to flourish at Balaton around 1730 and led to a new way of life in the 18th century.

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