Lively and diverse metropolitan areas south to the city along the Danube
Let’s first set out to the south! The towns of Szigethalom and Ráckeve near Budapest offer many adventurous attractions. Visit Szigethalom to find out more about the everyday lives of the people living in the region 1,000 years ago. At Emese Park, within the former barracks, the organisers and operators of the park have created a settlement reminiscent of the times of Saint Stephen.
Naturally, the buildings would not be too interesting if they were empty, so the team of people at Emese Park don authentic period clothes to bring everyday history to life. You can learn more about Hungarian artisanal crafts and tasks related to animal husbandry and the cultivation of plants, while the men at the museum village also put on demonstrations of armed combat. You can also go horseback riding and even try your hand at archery! Once you’ve taken in the sights, head over to Ráckeve. Ascend the town hall tower, the Fire Tower Lookout to take in the views of the surrounding landscape. In clear weather, you can spot the hills of Buda from the 40-metre high tower, while those with eyes of an eagle can even see all the way to the Velence Hills.
Ráckeve is also home to Hungary’s only Gothic, Serbian Orthodox church – visit this stone-walled building situated between the townhouse as the next stop on your journey. Did you know that at one point, there were water as well as land mills operating here? Discover the only fully functional boat mill on the banks of the River Danube in Ráckeve, which exactly the same way as classic undershot watermills, apart from the fact that this structure is on water. Long ago, the location of the boat mill could be changed according to where the water flow was more appropriate. Since 2010, a growing number of families have visited this exception boat mill, which is also home to a highly entertaining museum.
Children can grind the wheat themselves to experience the difference between various types of semolina and flours and even purchase some of the flour ground at the site. At the end of the day, take a walk along the Danube in Ráckeve and admire the Savoyai Mansion, the very first non-ecclesiastical Baroque palace in Hungary.