Palóc Museum

Northern Hungary

If you’d like to learn more about the Palóc people, head for the town of Balassagyarmat and this purpose-built museum. The standing exhibit ‘From Cradle to Grave’ takes you through the important stages in the lives of the Palóc people, and includes pottery, superb carvings and mock-ups of a birth scene, a classroom and a wedding. But the Palóc women’s needlework – from the distinctive floral embroidery in blues and reds to the almost-microscopic white-on-white stitching – leaves everything else in the dust.

There are also ex-voto objects used for the all-important búcsúk (church patronal festivals).