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Six natural wonders in Hungary to add to your bucket list


Megyer-hegy Tarn
Tokaj and Nyíregyháza

Hungary has a wealth of surprising and unparalleled destinations. Head out and explore these extraordinary locations.

Megyer-hegy Tarn

The Megyer-hegy Tarn, with its volcanic origins, is among the most popular destinations in the Zemplén Hills. The tarn was classified as a nature reserve in 1997. Back in the day, there was a millstone mine operating here, the remains of which can still be visited today. The rainwater accumulated in the pit carved a small pond into the tuff, whose sparkling surface is surrounded by huge rock walls. The stone cabins and a few unfinished millstones reveal that miners used to live here for a long time. Put on comfortable hiking shoes and head to the 324-metre-high hill. You won’t regret it, because at the top you’ll have a breathtaking view of the rock ‘cauldron’.

The Bükk geysers

If you are hiking in the Bükk during autumn or spring (especially after the melting of snow or heavy rains), you may come across a unique natural phenomenon. Four temporary karst springs are located under the southern edge of the limestone plateau: the Imókő, Fekete-len and the lower and upper springs of Vöröskő Valley. The karst water bursts to the surface with a huge roar as a geyser and attracts great crowds of hikers. You only have a few weeks a year to adore this spectacular phenomenon. We recommend you access the most popular Vöröskő springs from Felsőtárkány, which is situated 10 kilometres from Eger. Once there, make sure you taste the crystal clear water.

 

The salt hills of Egerszalók

The main attraction of Egerszalók, hidden in the Valley of Medicinal Waters, is the salt hill formed by the water welling up from a depth of 410 metres. Beyond Egerszalók, there are only two places in the world where you can see similar natural formations: in Pamukkale, Turkey and in the Yellowstone National Park in the US. The salt hill was created in 1961, when the area was undergoing drilling works in a search for natural gas and mineral oil. Neither was discovered, but they did uncover the spring, whose water created travertine terraces of 1,200 square metres over the years. The medicinal water contains calcium, sodium, magnesium and sulphur. You can easily access the salt hill on a footpath.

Gemenc Forest

Situated in the middle of Hungary, Gemenc Forest is the only formation of its kind in Europe and has been a protected natural area since 1977. Every year, its 180-square-kilometre surface is flooded, allowing a truly special collection of wildlife to form here. Among the willows and aspens, ernes, saker falcons, black storks and herons find shelter, but red deer, roe deer and wild boars are also widely represented in the area. Wandering along its educational trails, the special milieu of the floodplain forest enchants all hikers arriving here on foot, by canoe or using the famous Gemenc National Narrow-gauge Railway.

 

Bauxite geological park

Just 25 kilometres south of Oroszlány, you’ll encounter a sight that you certainly wouldn’t expect. Walking among the red rocks at the Bauxite Geological Park in Gánt and the Balás Jenő Bauxite Mining Exhibition will make you feel as though you aren’t even walking on Earth, and the park is rare and unique even by European standards. The museum was built on the edge of the mine pit, where you can see classic mining tools and old photographs, but there are also two bauxite locomotives in the museum’s yard.

Veil Waterfall

The list of Hungary’s most beautiful natural treasures wouldn’t be complete without the most beautiful attraction of Szalajka Valley, the Veil Waterfall. The karst water trickles down 17 metres on 18 steps and forms rimstone bars. Once the water wells up to the surface, the trapped carbon-dioxide escapes and the lime starts to precipitate and accumulate, resulting in a stepped structure. It is worth visiting the Veil Waterfall in the beginning of spring, after the snow melts, because the water yield of the waterfall greatly depends on the amount of precipitation. During the summer or dry periods, it can even go completely dry.

The Veil Waterfall, Szalajka Valley

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