The hill above Zalakaros is covered by forests, which is the lung of the town. On the continuation of the Park street one of the most famous sights of Zalakaros can be found, the Tower which can be seen from Zalamerenye side of the town. There is a beautiful panorama from the Tower. In case of good weather, the Kis-Balaton can be seen clearly, as well as the Balaton - Highland. At the foot of the Tower there is a winehouse. A lot of nice routes are driven from the Tower to the Parkforest.
The parkforest is the place of some sport events for example bicycle championship.
You can reach the municipality of Nagybakónak by leaving the old Main Road Nr. 7. This beautiful small village is a favoured excursion site.
It is no surprise that the municipality and its surroundings is a favoured starting point of excursions, as the Kőszikla-canyon offers visitors an exciting experience. This place is called Kicikla (kisszikla = small rock) in the vernacular.
Start towards the west and follow the blue sign to reach the three springs. The Árpád-spring is a memorial spring without any water. Follow the blue triangle sign to discover the beauties of the canyon. The ever deepening steep sandstone walls are an eyesight. Should you arrive after a rainy day then you can gaze at the sight of the adjacent walls. The water flowing at the bottom of the canyon arises from the rocks and trickles from the walls. While walking along the canyon, do not forget to observe the protected plant species, such as the purple cyclamen, the primrose, the mezereon, the black byrony, the vetch, and the liverwort.
Do you love animals? Then our animal park is exactly the right place for you. Here you can get real close to buffaloes, donkeys, horses, ponies, bunnies, playful goatlings and more. At our park you can also ride on ponies or take a carriage ride to the shore of the lake Small-Balaton to breathe fresh air and enjoy nature.
The Buffalo Reserve was the "Visitor Site of the Year 2014 in the Balaton-felvidéki National Park".
The visitor site plays an important role in the survival and the conservation of genome of the indigenous buffalo in Hungary, and it is the popular display center of the species since the tameness of the livestock makes direct connection possible with the visitors. The visitors become acquainted with the gentle, pitch dark animals on the path supplied with picnic area, information boards and lookout tower, and at the exhibition on buffalo history. An interactive exhibition displays the flora and the fauna of Kis-Balaton, part of the Balaton-felvidéki National Park. A car park, a snack-bar and a souvenir shop await the visitors.
The Buffalo Festival is held in the Reserve every year in May. Our guests can stroke tame animals every day, during the opening hours. The entrance ticket of the Buffalo Reserve is valid to the site where the tame animals can be stroked. The playground awaits children especially between the age of 4 and 14 years.
The Great Crested Grebe Nature Trail near Balatonmagyaród can be visited for free during the whole year. Interpretive boards give information in Hungarian and in German. Names of species are written in Latin as well. Two other interpretive sites of the National Park are the Tilted House in Vörs and the Matula Hut and István Fekete Memorial Site, where the Egret Nature Trail awaits the guided groups.
Open to visitors during the whole year, every day!
The admission fee includes VAT and the fee of accident insurance of visitors.
Contact, how to arrive:
Zalakaros is a spa town which has turned into an economic power in the region owing to the utilisation of the upwelling thermal water as a resource. Minerals contained in the thermal spring water have enabled the construction and ongoing operation of the spa. The thermal lake may be approached via a walkway starting from Dísz Square; during this short trip, visitors can observe the Thermal Lake and the thematic locations built around it, tour the sights of the thermal lake and the ecoside.
The Gate to the Thermal Lake: Reception Building
Visitors arriving at the Thermal Lake are greeted by a beautifully designed reception building, with one of its highlights being the four-story high lookout tower offering a gorgeous view on the lake itself, the nearby forest and the whole building complex. The building also contains an exhibition area, an event terrace and a playground. One could say that this installation is the gate to the Thermal Lake for all pathways begin here and here is where visitors receive their itineraries which will lead them through the thematic trails and tasks ahead. Starting from the Reception Building, visitors can tour the whole area in the direction they desire.
The walkway starting from the reception building leads visitors all the way to the artificial lake, which gains its water supply from the thermal water drained from the Zalakaros Thermal Bath. The Thermal Lake has a water surface of approximately 12,900 square meters and its lowest point is 1.8 m deep. Walking along its shore one can admire its waterfront plants, like the narrow-leaved cattail, or come across some sweet-grass, flowering rush, yellow iris, or dwarf bulrush when crossing the aquatic adventure course, and from the little island in the middle of the lake, a wonderful view opens up to the fragrant water lilies, Indian red water lilies, pink water lilies, and the myriads of floating hearts.
Aquatic adventure course
The brave ones may test themselves by walking on water at the aquatic adventure course in the middle of the Thermal Lake. The course is built on the shallow part of the lake and consists of concrete steps with a non-skidding surface, ensuring that playing on them is safe.
’Meditation Square of Lights’
After having tried the adventures provided by the lake, it is worth taking a trip to the little clearing in the forest. In a little square covered with a roof, wooden columns of different sizes have been placed ensuring that sunlight always finds its way in through one of the gaps, but only for a short time, with the rays of sunlight constantly moving as the Sun itself. This arrangement makes the effects of the Earth’s rotation quickly apparent.
‘Pavilion of Sounds’
After the Meditation Square of Lights has dazzled your eyes, you should visit the Pavilion of Sounds, located next to the Reception Building as well. With the help of sound-making instruments of various heights placed at the square, one can gain insight into the world of nature’s sounds and observe the changes in sound frequencies in a playful manner.
The trail can be completed on foot and consists of 5 stations where visitors are introduced to the flora and fauna of the nearby forest section, as well as traditional methods of forestry and landscape changing processes. At each station, interactive boards, boards with an embossed surface where children may transfer the design using tracing paper, and plant name boards help nature-lovers gain knowledge in a playful manner.
Fairy Tale Park
For families and smaller children the greatest attraction might prove to be the fairy tale park, which provides unique entertainment with its features. Children can explore the sandbox, the tunnel and the tiny brook flowing across the park, as well as the little tree house built between the branches. Beside the novelties of the park, traditional playground equipment is also provided, such as spring riders and swing sets.
Labyrinths are present throughout the world, in various cultures from ancient times until today. A complex network of corridors where escaping requires excellent observation and orientation skills. Everyone can test their afore-mentioned skills within the labyrinth next to the reception building, created using natural materials. Both old and young are guaranteed to have fun, even if they get lost.
Active Resting Park for the Elderly
An outdoors fitness park is also available in Zalakaros where you can work out and strengthen your body on the fresh air. The park features a hip twister machine, leg presses and extensions, several instruments improving movement coordination, arm and chest presses, elliptical machine, air walkers, shoulder joint healing and massaging equipment.
The most monumental, literally outstanding piece of the unique little world near the thermal lake is the 21 m high slide tower, which is unrivalled in the whole country. The slide tower consists of two slides named Turbo and Kamikaze. The Turbo slide starts from a height of 21 m and is 75 m long, while the Kamikaze slide is 12 m high and offers a speeding sensation for 36 meters.
The farmers’ market, established by taking advantage of EU funds was opened in 2014 in the centre of Zalakaros and it offers a unique sortiment of assorted products.
Everybody needs some relaxing hours, calm walking or family tours in our stressful world. These occasions provides energy to our mind to survive the monotonous weekdays. This nature trail provides possibility for relaxing and observing. There is no better place for the relaxing than a nice walking trail across the forest. You can recognize the changes of the seasons, and collect useful information by reading the boards during walking in the clean air. We wish you pleasant relaxing and a nice tour! Length of the nature trail is 1152 m.
A watermill was reconstructed where the towns of Zalamerenye and Zalakaros meet. The reconstruction work finished in 2015 august.
The millwasfirstmentionedinthe1400s and it was owned by the Pálos Monastery of Örményes . After the dissolution of the Pálos monasticism the ownership went to the metropolitan of Veszprém and then from 1888 it was privately owned. The last owner of themill was Gyula Zsohár.
The millground until 1960 and then unfortunately it slowly be camedecay.
The mill was reconstructed a show it lookedl ike in 1903. The main elments of the mill are the two watermill-wheels, the refiner and the millstoneduct. The mill is now working and is able to produce flour. Inside of the building the walls are decorated with many documents aswell as objects that were back then being used.
The mill is now under private ownership and the owners welcome any visitors. There is no admissionfeeor opening times. If the door is open then you are more than welcome to come in, if it isn’t then please make an appointment with us bye it her calling, sending an e-mail or contacting us via facebook.
The entrance to the Kányavári-Island, a favoured visitors’ centre of the Kis-Balaton region, can be found at the outskirts of the municipality of Balatonmagyaród opposite to the Fenyvespuszta petting zoo. There is a parking for lot for cars and bicycles at the end of the poplar-paved road leading to the island. Here you can frequently meet women selling home-made jams and salads.
There is a nice curved, wooden bridge just a few steps from the parking lot, over which you can reach the island. The visitors’ centre can be visited at no charge. Resting points provide benches and there are means for frying bacon and cooking. Fishermen can occupy marked fishing places on the island after purchasing a daily ticket in the parking lot. After having climbed the look-out tower, visitors can enjoy the varied bird species of the Kis-Balaton region. Take your time to walk along the 2 km long ‘Crested Grebe’ study path offering structured information about the fauna of the Kis-Balaton region.
In the mid 1990s, most of the Vársziget was covered with forests and brushwood, and only the archaeological excavations cleared the ground for shorter or longer periods of time. As a matter of fact, two separate initiatives led to the restoration of the place. One of them was the building of the first phase of the Kis-Balaton storage-lake in the vicinity between 1980 and 1985, in order to improve the water quality of Balaton. Shortly after that, in 1985 Bulgaria announced her wish to erect a monument on the place where the apostles Cyril and Methodius carried out their activity. It was at this point that the management of Zala County decided to renovate the memorial place and the monument of Saint Stephen.
Then, from 1996 onwards, the 1100th anniversary of the Magyar conquest also gave a boost to the development of the place. In the meantime, not exactly corresponding with the above concept, the national water resource authorities decided to build the showroom of a new nature protection establishment on this much frequented place. (Kis-Balaton Ház, “Kis-Balaton House”).
In 2001 the first phase was completed by displaying the ruins of Martyr Adrian’s church as a destination of pilgrimage and by landscaping of the surroundings.
In 2009, at the Millennium of the foundation of the county by Saint Stephen the management of the county decided to place a worthy memorial signal of this anniversary at the worthiest place, namely the first seat of the county.