Forested hiking trails, superb wine regions, traditional folk culture and hilltop castle ruins beckon you to what are called the Northern Uplands. In a country as flat as a palacsinta (pancake), these foothills of the Carpathians soar above most of Hungary. After exploring Bükk National Park on foot, why not sample the spectacular red wines of Eger or the honey-sweet whites of Tokaj?
As reminders of far too many battles won and lost, ageing castles and evocative ruins punctuate the landscape. This is also a land where the Palóc people hold strong in traditional villages such as Hollókő. If you want to experience village life – steeped in folk culture, replete with horse-drawn carts, dirt roads and tiny wooden churches – the Bereg region in the northeast is the place to go.
- Eger Savouring the unequalled jewel of the Northern Uplands, celebrated for its legendary wine, baroque architecture and easy-going temperament.
- Hollókő Spending the night and listening to the silence in this tiny village where folk art and tradition live on.
- Tokaj Tasting the famous 'wine of kings and the king of wines' in this picturesque little town.
- Szatmárcseke Trying to crack the code on the boat-shaped grave markers at the village cemetery.
- Tákos Marvelling at the patterns of the painted wooden interior in its 'peasants' cathedral'.
When to Go
Mar & Apr Don't miss Easter in Hollókő, when everyone dons their traditional finery for Mass.
Jul & Aug Crowded, but this is the season for medieval tournaments at castles such as Eger’s.
Sep & Oct Enjoy the grape harvest, scenery in the hilly areas and autumn colours.