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Wine, tour, Villány – From the Siklós Castle to the cellar row in Palkonya

VillányPécs region

You should definitely rent a bike or put on your hiking boots if you want to get into the rhythm of Villány. Slow down and get carried away by this beautiful landscape, which is famous for its red wines. 

To discover Hungary's southernmost wine region, you can choose the Villány-Siklós Wine Route, which includes 18 villages and the vineyards around them, and you can visit quite a few sights on your trip. You can do parts of this, or even all of it, on two wheels or by foot, depending on how fit you are and how much time you have. You can sign up for vineyard tours and taste wine at the Bock, Gere, Sauska, Tiffán, Malatinszky, Jammertal, Csányi and numerous other great wineries. And if you come to this region for several days, you shouldn’t miss the Siklós Castle, which is one of the area’s main attractions. 

The wine region was named after: Villány

The settlement has many famous wineries, and it’s not easy to choose where to eat, and drink some wine. Local producers focus on the Cabernet Franc grape variety, and the wines that are made solely of this type of grape have received protection of origin under the name Villányi Franc


In a 300-year-old press house you can find the local wine museum, which has one of the largest collections in the country. Hundreds of objects present the art of winemaking, from grape planting through plant protection to bottling. You can also see a 3.5-tonne French semi-automatic bottler here, which dates from the 1940s as well as a nice collection of 19th-century wooden grape presses. 

Underground "wine cathedral"

The next stop should be Villánykövesd, at the foot of Fekete Hill, where you can take great selfies. The three-story cellar-village of this small settlement, with its characteristic and colourful doors, makes a great photo. The cellars and the impressive underground Batthyány “wine cathedral” (which is a cellar made by Italian church builders) are protected historic monuments and you can only visit them if you book in advance. 

The hidden gastro village

The most exciting thing about Palkonya is that you can visit family wineries on the hillside at the end of the village, where the protected historical line of cellars consists of 53 press houses and preserves the culture of 19th-century German winegrowers. It is also famous as being a gastro village these days because there are lots of excellent taverns, one after the next, which welcome culinary adventurers with dishes made from local ingredients. Approaching Palkonya from Villány, it is worth walking up to Fekete Hill to the left at the village sign, where a beautiful view opens up before you.

Adventures in the castle

The Siklós Castle is one of the best preserved historical monuments in Hungary, where you will be entertained by a medieval weapons exhibition, a castle prison, a wine museum, a toy country and numerous events. The history of the castle dates back to the 13th century. Although centuries have battered it in the same way as other castles in Hungary, today you can walk inside it as if you were travelling through time. 

The apparition of Mary is still having an effect

Nearby is the Máriagyűd Shrine, one of the country's most popular pilgrimage sites. According to records, the Virgin Mary first appeared here in 1687 to a Catholic farmer named Tamás, and then again to Mátyás, the leader of Siklós. The most important event, the indulgence day of the shrine, is held on 2 July, but several smaller and five larger indulgence days are also held throughout the year. In good weather, visiting Máriagyűd can take all day, because after visiting the church and the statue of Mary, you can also walk along the Csodabogyó study trail that starts from here.