Thursday, Day 3 – Lake Balaton (Hungary)

Our Hungarian cousins took us just a skip down the road to the resort area of Lake Balaton, the second largest lake in Europe, which is about 90 kilometers long. We first stop at a small town above the lake, which offers a lovely view to the lake below. The town winds around hills and is what everyone would expect a European village to look like – small houses, some with thatched roofs and most with pretty rose gardens. The main hill is lined with cafes and shops selling embroidered linens, pottery and strings of chili peppers. There is a large twin spired Catholic Church at the top of the hill but it is closed today. We head to the beach area down below along the lake, change into swimsuits and wade into the brisk aqua water. John and Zoli are the brave swimmers. Joy is willing to get half wet and Eva stays on the beach! The beachfront is dotted with cafes where we enjoy Langos, a Hungarian pizza that has a white garlic sauce, turned pink by paprika, cheese that is barely melted and a fried crust that is soft with a crunch and sweet! So yummy and unlike anything I’ve ever tasted. There are so few people here and many “for sale” signs so you can see the area is hurting for business. Zoli tells us that people are too poor to take vacations and the foreigners are being lured to Croatia, where the beaches are also beautiful. Too bad, because this country needs the money and it is just gorgeous here.

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