Balaton Summer 2019

Lake Balaton and the local area are the most popular tourist attractions of Hungary for summer. Besides swimming in the lake and relaxing on the beach, there are plenty of surrounding landmarks and places of interests as well. Balaton can be reached by train easily, because the main railway lines run along the shores, across the centres of nearby towns.

Popular summer destinations and programmes near Lake Balaton

Zamárdi

During summer, there are several famous music festivals in Zamárdi (Balaton Sound, Strand, B my Lake). These festivals are in a walking distance of about 15 minutes from Zamárdi Train Station, so they can be reached by train easily. During these festivals, passenger trains regularly arrive at and leave from the Southern shore of Lake Balaton, even during the night, so passenger transport is ensured 24 hours a day.

Balatonfüred (Tihany)

Balatonfüred is the largest city of the Northern shore. The most famous street of the town is the Tagore Promenade, and there are many historic villas here, as well as an Aquapark.

Tihany is 30 minutes far from Balatonfüred by bus. From the Tihany Abbey, the view of Lake Balaton is beautiful, while the old village has a magic atmosphere with its authentic houses. The bus from Tihany to Balatonfüred departs from Balatonfüred Train Station, therefore, the connection between train and bus traffic is smooth.

Siófok

Siófok is the largest city of the Southern shore. Numerous high-quality hotels await their customers along the shore, in a walking distance from the train station.

Siófok is the centre of night life and extremely popular among young people. On Friday and Saturday nights, several parties are pulsing at the promenade along the beach, from dusk to dawn.

Balatonboglár

Balatonboglár offers the most beautiful view of Lake Balaton from the sphere lookout called “Gömbkilátó” located on top of Várdomb Hill. Not far from the sphere, there is an adventure park, as well as a summer toboggan run, so this is a very popular destination for families.

At Balatonboglár, there are plenty of concerts, while the wine festival of Balatonboglár – from 16 to 20 of August this year – also attracts a lot of tourists.

Keszthely (Hévíz)

Keszthely has deep historical roots. The most famous sight of the town is the Festetics Palace built in the 18th century, where now several exhibitions are held, and has a park of nature reserve rank.

The downtown of Keszthely entices with its pleasant, traditional atmosphere. From here, it is also a good idea to visit Hévíz, where Hungary’s most popular spa is located. The thermal lake with its warm water has a healing effect on arthritis. Hévíz can be reached from Keszthely easily by bus, which departs directly from Keszthely Train Station.

Badacsony

Badacsony is the most characteristic hill of the Northern shore with its volcanic shape. This area proved to be excellent for the growing of grape vines, thus, Badacsony is a home of numerous small and large wineries. These wineries are in a short walking distance from Badacsony Train Station.

Timetable information

NORTHERN SHORE

Kék Hullám

The semi-fast trains called Kék Hullám travel between Budapest and Tapolca every two hours daily. The trains have air-conditioned InterCity carriages with WiFi, and in most carriages, there are electrical sockets for passenger convenience.

Tekergő

The fast trains called Tekergő only stop at major stops and stations between Budapest and Tapolca. These trains also have high-capacity bicycle carriages , which makes them highly suitable for bikers.

Katica

The semi-fast trains called Katica travel between Budapest and Balatonfüred every two hours daily. The modern Desiro multiple-unit passenger trains are air-conditioned and low-floor, also comfortable for passengers traveling with baby carriages.

SOUTHERN SHORE

Balaton and Tópart Express Trains

The Balaton and Tópart Express Trains to Balatonszentgyörgy together provide hourly transport to the biggest resort towns of the Southern shore. Seat reservation fee shall be paid for the Balaton and Tópart Express Trains in addition to the regular ticket price. They have separate fast train and InterCity carriages.

The new dining cars are novelties this year for the Balaton Express Trains that leave every second hour. These dining cars offer not just a few simple warm meals, but hamburgers, hotdogs, cold drinks and draught beer as well. Follow this link to see the menu card of the dining cars of the Balaton Express Trains.

Déli<-Parti Déli→Parti

The semi-fast trains called Déli→Parti between the railway station Budapest Déli and the Southern shore of Balaton leave every two hours daily, and they stop at all stations along the shore of the ‘Hungarian Sea’. This type of train is highly recommended for bikers, because these trains have bicycle carriages with a capacity to carry 28 bicycles.

Siófoki FLIRT

The trains called Siófoki FLIRT provide a faster and more comfortable way of traveling to Balaton on weekends than the semi-fast trains Déli→Parti. The sections of these multiple-section trains are disconnected at Siófok, and the sections stop at different destinations along the lake.

Bicycle tours and carrying bicycles around Lake Balaton

There is a 210-km-long bikeway around Lake Balaton, a marked lane, and at some parts, a separate cycle track, and it is very popular during the summer. Along this bikeway, there are plenty of bike rental facilities, camping places, snack-counters, and resorts specialised for bikers.

Most trains to Balaton are suitable for carrying bicycles. We recommend in particular the semi-fast trains Déli→Parti for the Southern shore and the Tekergő trains for the Northern shore, even for bigger bicycle groups. The other trains require the purchase of separate bicycle tickets because only a limited number of bicycles can be carried at the same time.

For our passengers with bicycle, we recommend the tourist ticket for bikers, which enables passengers to carry their bike from any part of the country to Lake Balaton, as well as along Lake Balaton.