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» Tourist Guide
Tourist Guide
 
 

 

A TOURIST GUIDE TO THE KISKUNSÁG NATIONAL PARK

With its colourful world of horse-breeding farms, village tourism, spas, wines, food specialities and various cultural and ethnographical values, the Danube-Tisza Interfluve region provides great opportunities for tourism. Yet, it is the wonderful landscape that frames all the attractions. The true aspect of the landscape and the untouched beauties of nature are to be traced in nature conservation areas.

The Kiskunság National Park Management Centre is in charge of an approximate 284,165 acres of protected area. 123,550 acres of the total amount comprise the nine separated areas of Kiskunság National Park. Several landscape-protection areas, nature conservation areas and what we call 'ex lege' protected areas bulk up to the remaining 160,615 acres of land.

Owing to the outstanding natural values, a number of the protected areas are famous worldwide. The main objective of the Kiskunság National Park is to preserve and maintain the matchless treasure, and also to show it to anyone interested in a way that satisfies both tourists' needs and the topmost aim of preservation.

Within the protected areas there are now numerous tourist trails, study trails and lookouts, all contributing to a unique experience of the Kiskunság. Our exhibition venues offer the opportunity to get aquainted with the natural heritage and cultural history of the region. The main visitors' centre of the Kiskunság National Park, called the 'House of Nature', is situated in Kecskemét. Here information is provided on the conditions and possibilities under which the protected areas may be visited, and on various programmes for visitors.

Our aim with this short introduction is to provide ideas to and suggestions for arranging a memorable programme for those who show both interest and respect for nature.

Services

Tourist information
Excursions management for registered groups
Open excursions for individual tourists and families at scheduled times (see the Yearly Excursions Calendar for details)
Lectures and sessions on nature and the environment
Films and slide shows on nature and the environment
Ground placements management
Open air school programmes, nature preservation camps
Information leaflets and gifts on sale on the exhibition venues

House of Nature
Kiskunság National Park , Address: H-6000 Kecskemét, Liszt F. u. 19.
Tel: 00 36 76 482 611, Fax: 76 481 074Tourist information: 00 36 76 501 596, 00 36 76 501 594

The Kiskunsag National Park Directorate's adresse

E-mail: titkarsag@knp.hu,  oktatasio@knp.hu

Website: http://knp.nemzetipark.gov.hu

 


Tourist Programme Guide

Upper-Kiskunság Plain (Felső-Kiskunsági Puszta)

This is a vast sodic lowland plain of the Great Hungarian Plain, the former flood area of the River Danube with a calcareous-sodic (what we call solonchak-solonetz type) soil, second in size only to Hortobágy. It presents a nice variation of sodic meadows, grazing lands, sodic terraces and 'blind' sodic flats with a typical vegetation consisting of various salt-resistant and halphyte species. The vast untouched land gives home to the largest and steadiest population of the great bustard (Otis) in Hungary.

In the sodic grasslands traditional extensive animal husbandry is still alive. Typical ancient Hungarian domestic animals, including the grey cattle and racka sheep, are shown in the live open-air exhibition in Bösztörpuszta.

Most of the protected area can only be visited with special permission. Along the one-kilometre 'Réce (Duck) Study Trail', however, all tourists have the opportunity to study freely the animal population and nesting birds of the sodic plains and the reeds. The two lookouts at the two ends of the trail offer special views of the plain.

An interesting display of cultural history is to be found in the nearby 'Nyakvágó Csárdamúzeum' (village inn museum). The Virágh-Kúria (mansion) in Kunszentmiklós offers an ethnographical and local history exhibition enriched with a display of the typical vegetation.

'Szentmiklósi Napok' (Szentmiklós Village Festival) is held yearly at the second weekend of September in Kuszentmiklós, offering various entertainments for the visitor. 'Apaji Lovasnapok' (Apaj Horse Show), held at the last weekend of every July, attracts visitors interested in various races for carriages and pair/four/six, which are accompanied by a street market and a vivid range of various programmes.

Further information:
Kunszentmiklós Polgármesteri Hivatal (Major's Office) Tel: 00 36 76 550 187

Apaj Polgármesteri Hivatal (Major's Office) Tel: 0 36 24 408 173

How to get there: the area can be approached by trains running on the Budapest-Kelebia line.

Fülöpháza Sand Dunes

This is one of the most interesting sand-dune areas in Central Europe. The rich variety of the surface was created by the predominant northwestern, southeastern winds, which have heaped dozens of meters of sand and loess. There are still a number of drifting sand dunes in the area. The dunes are covered with open sandy grasslands, and give home to ample insect population. In the eastern part of the area there used to be a number of sodic lakes in beds that had been created by the wind. These lakes all dried out during the drought of the 1980s, and are rarely filled up with water any more.

Near the sand dune area there is the 'Naprózsa Természetvédelmi Oktatóközpont' (Sun Rose Nature Reserve Education Centre) of the Kiskunság National Park. The northern part of the area can only be visited by permission or in the company of a professional guide, while tourists are free to use the trails marked with a red stripe and the 'Báránypirosító tanösvény' (study trail), which are to be found in the southern part of the area. The 'Kerekegyháza-Kunpuszta Ecological Trail' offers further possibilities for walkers, horse-riders and cyclists.

On the edge of the protected area there are a number of horse farms, and the terrain is excellent for horse riding on the marked paths: an opportunity available for all tourists. The 'Rendek Farming Museum' exhibits relics and shows the present and the past of farming in the Great Plain. The owners of the farm do environment and nature-friendly bio farming. The 'Sand Ridge Model Farm' displays the typical farming methods of the region as well as different ways of ecological farming.

Further information:
Kerekegyháza Polgármesteri Hivatal (Major's Office) Tel: 00 36 76 545 122
'Rendek Farming Museum' Address: Kerekegyháza, Kunpuszta tanya 81. Tel: 00 36 76 381 762

How to get there: The Fülöpháza Sand Dunes can be reached on Road 52 after a 21-kilometre drive or a bus ride getting off at 'Lakos Tanya' stop. There is a car park by the Education Centre.

Bugac

This is the largest separate area of the Kiskunság National Park. The amazing variety of different natural beauties and values include the highly protected Native Juniper Grove, sand dune forests and sand plains, marshes, bogs, boggy meadows, wet grasslands, sodic lakes and sodic plains. The sand-dune forests of junipers and poplars accommodate numerous rare species of plants and animals.

The entrance to the Bugac area of the Kiskunság National Park is at 'Karikás Csárda' (Karikás Inn), where admission tickets and information leaflets are available. Near the entrance some replicas of ancient shepherd's buildings, made of reed and wood, are displayed. The plain (puszta) can be approached on foot or by horse-drawn carriage. The cone-shape building of the 'Pásztormúzeum' (Shepherds Museum), showing up nicely against its background, houses an exhibition of the typical flora and fauna of the region, and the life of shepherds in the plains around Kecskemét. Horse shows, which are offered daily in the high season, demonstrate the skilfulness of the rangemen of Bugac and old shepherd's traditions. Ancient-origin farm animals gazing around revive the one-time atmosphere of the puszta.

The Lower-Plain (Alsó-puszta) and the Bugac Forest (Bugaci Nagyerdő) may be visited along the red cross and the red stripe tourist trails and along the 'Boróka (Juniper) Study Trail'.

The red cross trail leads to a lookout, from where there is a magnificent view over the Native Juniper Grove, which is a highly protected area and may only be visited strictly following the marked trail or in the company of a professional guide.

Another sight of interest is the Plain Afforesting Museum, which is situated in an amazing natural environment.

One of the most important events in the puszta is the 'Bugac Festival', whose main attraction is the Horse Carriage Qualifying Race, which is organized yearly in the memory of Imre Abonyi, former world champion charioteer. For those wishing to spend several days in Bugac, the horse farms and hotels provide accommodation and catering services.

Further sights of interest include the thermal spa in the nearby Kiskunmajsa, which is famous nationwide. In Kiskunfélegyháza, a regional administrative centre, there is the magnificent secessionist town hall and the Kiskun Museum, which houses a unique prison museum.

Further information and programme guide: BUGAC TOURS Tel: 00 36 76 372 688, 00 36 76 575 112 www.bugacpuszta.hu

e-mail: info@bugacpuszta.hu 

How to get there: Bugac can be reached on Road 54 from Kecskemét. A side road at the 21st kilometre stone leads to Bugacpuszta. A car park is available at Karikás Csárda.

The puszta can also be approached by a narrow-gauge train service running from Kecskemét to Kiskunmajsa and back. Some of the trains are what we call 'nostalgia' trains with old engines and carriages. Railway station address: 6000 Kecskemét, Halasi út 19. Tel: 76 504 308.

There is a coach service from Kiskunfélegyháza to the village of Bugac.

Lake Kolon, Izsák (Izsák, Kolon-tó)

Those interested in birdlife will find visiting Lake Kolon near the village of Izsák a unique experience. The lake and its surroundings are protected by the Ramsar Convention on Wetland Habitats and are recorded among the most valuable water habitats on Earth. The once open lake is now the realm of reedmarshes, willow marshes and tussocky meadows. On the small remnants of open water surfaces white water lilies and greater bladderworts delight the visitor's eyes. In the reeds the nesting bird population includes all the heron species that occur in Hungary, and spoonbills. Rare fish species living in the lake include the European mud minnow and the weather-fish, but other rare species such as the European water turtle, the water snake, the sand lizard, and a rare mammal, the otter can also be found here. There are also protected plant rarities in the bog meadows surrounding the lake such as various orchids and irises.

For a walk of the area there are the 12-kilometre long yellow stripe trail, which connects the two villages of Izsák and Soltszentimre, and the adjoining study trails.

The 'Aqua Colun' and the 'Poszáta (Warbler) Study Trail' with their lookouts and observation posts offer an excellent opportunity to watch closely the flora and fauna of the lake. The Bird Sentry by Lake Kolon is one of the major basic sites for ornithological research in the Kiskunság, where the migration of nesting songbirds and waterfowls of the reeds is being studied within the frameworks of a project. The Kiskunság National Park, in association with the Kiskunság Society for Birdlife Conservation, organises bird watching and ringing camps, as well as various other bird-watching programmes, on which registrations are welcome.

The nearby Soltszentimre takes pride in its matchless 'Csonkatorony' (Ruined Tower), which is the ruins of a 14th century fortified church. The ruins are situated in the midst of the puszta and there is a canal nearby, which may have once been part of the moat around the fort.

The village of Izsák gives home to a local history collection, and every autumn the 'Sárfehér Festival' (Sárfehér is a kind of grape) is held here, which is a good opportunity to get to know the viniculture of the region.

The town of Kiskőrös cherishes the old house where Sándor Petőfi, the greatest Hungarian poet of the 19th century was born. There is also a thermal spa in the town with medicinal water of 56oC, which is said to have a good effect on people suffering from various illnesses.

Further information: Izsák Polgármesteri Hivatal (Major's Office), 6070 Szabadság tér1. Tel: 76 374 144; Website: http://kolon-to.com/

How to get there: Lake Kolon lies 27 kilometres south-west of Kecskemét. The lake may be approached from different directions, but the easiest way is to turn off towards Izsák from Road 52 by car, or to travel there by train on the Kecskemét-Fülöpszállás line.

Lake Szelidi (Szelidi-tó)

Lake Szelidi is situated in the Kalocsa Plain, in the lowlands of the Danube basin. It is a typical mortlake that had been cut off from the Danube after the Ice Age. It is 5 kilometres long, 120-150 metres wide and 3-4 metres deep. Its water once contained considerable amounts of sodium and potassium salts, which are typical of sodic areas, and had a high iodine-ion content. For this reason the lake used to be famous for its healing effects. The water, however, has now lost its sodic qualities to become more like fresh water.

In the lake there live some valuable species of fish, such as carp, pike and European wels, which are popular among anglers. Sodic plains, boggy meadows and marshes surround the lake.

In order to preserve the sodic qualities, the water supplies of the lake are rested in the nearby meadows. Due to this kind of water management, the birdlife of the lake has become richer. Apart from the nesting songbirds living in the narrow reed skirt, bulks of migrating waterside birds and ducks can also be observed.

The 'Várdomb' (Castle Hill) on the southern lakeshore is a significant archeological site. The 3,000-year-old urns and other finds that were discovered here originate from the migration period and the time of the Hungarian settlement, and are displayed in the National Museum (Budapest) and the Dunapataj Museum (Dunapataj).

Lake Szelidi is now a popular bath and holiday resort. On the southern shore of the lake there is an 800-metre beach with water-chute and boat hire, while near the lake there is a hotel and a campsite. Those wishing to angle are required to buy a daily fishing licence in the nearby Horgásztanya (Anglers' Camp).

In the 'Kézművesház' (Craftmen's House), which also stands on the shore, different folk art techniques are shown and taught for the public.

The former Unitarian Church of the nearby village, Dunapataj, has been transformed into a museum displaying material remains and written records of the settlement. The village also gives home to a 'tájház', which is a restored former cottage with all the original furniture and household equimpment.

Kalocsa is a town famous for its beautiful Baroque town centre, its outstanding folk art, which has made Hungarian folk art world-widely known, and of course paprika, which has been one of the most important ingredients of the traditional Hungarian cuisine. A real treasure of the town is the magnificent Baroque cathedral and the Archbishop's Palace.

How to get there: Lake Szelidi can be reached on Road 51, there are signposts showing the way after Dunapataj. Dunapataj can be approached by train on the Kunszentmiklós - Tass - Dunapataj line.


Vörös Swamp (Vörös-mocsár)

Between Kecel and Baja the Upper Bácska Loess Ridge, covered with sand and loess, towers 10-20 metres over the low lying Danube Valley plains.

The nature conservation areas that are to be found around Császártöltés and Hajós preserve the natural flora and fauna of the once extended wetland and the remains of the sand and loess plains.

Vörös swamp is under the loess ridge on the confines of the village of Császártöltés. The swamp was formed in the former bed of the River Danube hundreds of years ago. During the slow siltation peat bogs of several metres developed, and peat has been mined for decades. Peat mining created large holes in which some water habitats have formed with a wide variety of species living in them. The holes in the sheer loess wall give home to bee-eaters.

The protected area can be visited along the national blue stripe and national blue square trails and along the Vörös Swamp Study Trail.

In the region the German-speaking citizens settled in the 1700s have developed an outstanding viniculture. The wines of special bouquet are mellowed in cellars, which were hollowed in the loess wall. These cellars comprise the largest wine-cellar premises in Hungary. In Hajós the 1,100 wine cellars make up an independent wine-cellar village, while there are over 1,000 cellars in the village of Császártöltés and further 700 in Nemesnádudvar.

Near the famous Hajós Wine-Cellar Village there is a tiny little settlement called Kéleshalom, which lies in the heart of Illancs, a typical sand-dune area of the Duna-Tisza Interfluve region.

The town of Kiskunhalas is well known for the world famous laces that are produced here, a collection of which is on display in the 'Csipkeház' (Lace House). The spa in Kiskunhalas with three indoor pools, each of different temperature, and an open-air swimming pool is open all year round.

Right next to the railway station in Jánoshalma, resembling a medieval fortified castle, rises the most interesting building of the region, the 'Upper-Bácska Mill', which is still operational. The town's library houses a local history collection and the famous Museum of Viniculture.

Further information: Community Centre, Császártöltés Tel: 00 36 78 443 324
Hajós Polgármesteri Hivatal (Major's Office) Tel: 00 36 76 404 107
How to get there: the village of Császártöltés can be reached on Road 54.

Szikra and the Alpár Meadow

The dead channel of the River Tisza at Szikra and Alpár and the adjoining gallery forests, fenwoods, flood plain marshes and marsh meadows make this smallest unit of the Kiskunság National Park a unique and picturesque destination. The flora and fauna of the area resemble the times preceding the regulation of riverways. The clear water of the dead channels accommodates various species of fish, including robust carps, pikes, European wels, as well as meadow loaches, a protected species. The rich bird population of the flood plain presents an earthly paradise for ornithologists. Rare and protected species of the flood plain forests include the grey-headed laughing-bird and the black woodpecker, while Alpár Meadow hosts a large heron colony.

Tőserdő, with the Tisza backwater beach near Lakitelek, the thermal spa, the holiday resort and campsite, and the lookout overlooking the dead channel of the Tisza, together with a boat hire service and fishing places, is a popular recreation area.

The 'Kontyvirág (Arum) Study Trail', the 'Árpád fejedelem (Prince Árpád) Study Trail' and marked tourist trails offer excellent opportunities for discovery.

From the Church Hill of the nearby village of Tiszaalpár there is a beautiful view over Alpár Meadow, which, according to Anonymus, may have been the seat of the decisive battle of the Hungarian settlement. The statue of Prince Árpád on the Church Hill commemorates that battle. Near the Church Hill there is a reconstructed Árpádian village, which shows a typical Hungarian settlement of the early Middle Ages, displaying relics and finds from excavations in the neighbouring territories. In the 'tájház' (a restored former cottage with all the original furniture and household equimpment) of the village an exhibition of the history and the natural heritage of the region is offered.

On the banks of the River Tisza there are a number of beaches, while there are excellent thermal spas in Tiszakécske, Cserkezsőlő and Kerekdomb.

 

How to get there: the Tőserdő Tisza backwater can be reached on Road 44 from Kecskemét, and on a secondary road from Kiskunfélegyháza. Train services both from Kecskemét and Kiskunfélegyháza are frequent. There is a car park at the holiday resort.

Pusztaszer Landscape Protected Area

This is one of the largest protected landscape areas in Hungary lying on the right bank of the River Tisza. Parts of the protected landscape area include, most improtantly, the Labodár backwater, which is protected under the Ramsar Convention; Büdös-szék Lake, which is an internationally recognised wetland habitat surrounded by sodic plains; and the Sas-ér Forest Reserve. Furthermore, there are two fishpond systems in the protected lanscape area, Lake Fehér and Lake Csaj.

Since the plant associations of the Danube-Tisza Interfluve region and the trans-Tisza region meet and intermingle here, the botanical values of the area are also significant. The most important resting and feeding places for migrating birds in the Southern Plain are also in this protected landscape area. Migrating birds that can be observed here include cranes, wild geese, ducks and various shorebirds. Typical nesting birds of the area are herons as well as various reed songbirds and birds of the sodic plains.

Those interested in birdlife will delight in visiting Lake Fehér near Szeged. From the lookout near the graveyard hill in Szatymaz there is a very good view of Kolon Isle with its swarming gull colony. The observation hide by Lake Csaj, which is primarily for ornithologists and photographers, can be visited by registered groups of 8-10 people in the company of a professional guide. The red stripe trail and the national blue trail lead across this area.

The Hétvezér Emlékmű (Seven-Chiefs Monument) can be reached after a 1-kilometre light walk from the village of Pusztaszer. The obelisk with the 'Turul', the mythical eagle of the ancient Hungarians, commemorates 1,000 years of Hungarian history. The monument stands on the tallest of the seven hills (kunhaloms) called Árpád-halom. Folklore tradition holds that valiant knights built the haloms using their helms to heap up the soil, thus making the first national assembly of the settlers of Hungary a memorable event. The 14-metre tall squared column is decorated with the bronze portraits of Árpád and his Chiefs in relief.

The Ópusztaszer National Historical Memorial Park is situated in the protected landscape area. Árpád Feszty's famous cyclorama painting depicting the Hungarian settlement, which can only be visited on previous arrangement, is displayed here. The Village Museum (Skanzen) shows the folk architecture of the late 19th century and the early 20th century, while the exhibitions in the 'Temple of Forests' presents the natural heritage of the area.

Further information and booking: ONEP H-6767 Ópusztaszer, Szoborkert 68. Tel: 00 36 62 275 257 www.opusztaszer.hu
                                           

How to get there: the National Historical Memorial Park can be reached on Road E5 via Kistelek. There is a coach service from Kistelek railway station running directly to the Memorial Park and back. The lookout in Szatymaz can be approached turning off Road E5 at the 157 kilometre stone towards the graveyard hill.

Mártély LandscapeProtected  Area

The Tisza riverbank at Mártély, which has been a protected area since 1971, is a painters' retreat with its fascinating scenery and picturesque landscape. The former flood area of the River Tisza was shrunk by the river regulations that started in 1846. By cutting through two river bends at Körtvélyes and Ányás, two dead arms were formed. The rank flora of the mortlake islets, washland forests and meadows give home to an incredibly rich animal population. The protected landscape area is an internationally registered wetland habitat with tens of thousands of wild geese and wild ducks visiting the flooded areas and the parts of the river that do not freeze in winter. Migrating black storks and herons provide an amazing sight late summer and in autumn.

The Mártély dead arm is a popular recreation area with a beach, a campsite, restaurants, boat hire and horse riding facilities.

At the first weekend of August Mártély's significant event, the 3-day 'Mártély Feast' is held.

There are direct coach services to Hódmezővásárhely and Szeged from Mártély.

Hódmezővásárhely is famous for its thermal spa, the skilful potters, the 'tájház' (a restored former cottage with all the original furniture and household equimpment) and the colony of artists.

Further information: Mártély Polgármesteri Hivatal (Major's Office), Rákóczi tér 1. Tel: 62 528 062.
How to get there: the Mártély dead arm can be reached on Road 47 from Szeged via Hódmezővásárhely. From Hódmezővásárhely the dead arm can be approached by train or on the cycle path.

Exhibition Venues of the Kiskunság National Park Management Centre (KNPMC):

HOUSE OF NATURE (Kecskemét)

The House of Nature is the main visitors' centre of the Kiskunság National Park. The building houses an exhibition, which gives a view of the history of nature preservation in Hungary. Also, an introduction to the history and present of the national parks in Hungary and to the typical habitats of the Danube-Tisza region is offered, as well as a display of ancient Hungarian crafts.

Various sessions, workshops and lectures on the environment, and periodical exhibitions are organized. Visitors can get information on the conditions under which different parts of the Kiskunság National Park may be visited, as well as on tourist services and programmes. Information materials, scientific publications, maps and posters are on sale here. The building hosts the 'Green Library and Reading Room' of KNPMC.

Address: H-6000 Kecskemét, Liszt F. u. 19.
Opening hours: Tuesday-Friday 9.00 - 16.00, Saturday 10.00 - 14.00
Tel: 00 36 76 501 596, 00 36 76 500 068 e-mail: oktatasio@knp.hu

EDUCATION CENTRE AT LAKE FEHÉR

The building, found near by the Lake Fehér in the Pusztaszer Protected Area, houses an exhibition of the flora and fauna of the natron lakes and plains, the marshland and flooded area and the ethnography of the region. Also an introduction to the ecological effect of the regulation of River Tisza can be seen.
The exhibition can be visited individually or in groups.

Information: Regional Office of KNP Tel: 00 36 62 498 058

 

BUGAC SHEPHERDS MUSEUM

The cone-shape building of the 'Shepherds Museum', built in the style of dry mills so typical of the Danube-Tisza region, houses an exhibition of the relics of the life of shepherds in the plains around Kecskemét and the typical flora and fauna of the region. In the open-air exhibition different replicas of buildings once used by horse herders and shepherds are shown.

Opening hours:1 May - 31 October, daily 10.00 - 17.00
Tel: 00 36 76 372 688

e-mail:info@bugacpuszta.hu  web: www.bugacpuszta.hu

RECONSTRUCTED ÁRPÁD age VILLAGE, TISZAALPÁR

The reconstructed Árpádian village on the edge of the Alpár meadow was inaugurated on the 1,000th anniversary of the foundation of the Hungarian state. The reconstructed settlement, whose buildings were all structured in a traditional way using only traditional materials, serves as a model for experimental archaeology. Different early medieval buildings and objects, such as pit houses, ovens, granaries, and a well are displayed.

Address: 6060 Tiszaalpár, Szent István u. 1.
Opening hours: 1 April - 31 October, Tuesday - Sunday 10.00 - 17.00.
Booking for groups: Tiszaalpár Polgármesteri Hivatal (Major's Office), Tel: 00 36 76 424 133


NATURE TRAILS at the Kiskunság National Park

1. HANKOVSZKY GARDEN AT THE HOUSE of NATURE (KECSKEMÉT)

The undisturbed 2.5-acre garden provides safe shelter to a variety of plants and animals. The study trail in the garden is primarily used to teach schoolchildren how to expore and cherish natural values.
Length: 500 m
Number of stages: 9
Language of information: Hungarian
Featured information: ornithology, botany, and nature preservation. An information leaflet is available and recorded information is for hire in the House of Nature.

How to get there: the KNP Management Centre can be reached by car turning right from Ceglédi Street following the signpost, or by buses number 12, 18 and 35. It takes a five-minute walk from the railway station or the coach station to get to the KNP Management Centre through what we call a pedestrian subway.
Opening hours: weekdays, advance booking is necessary.
Further information: House of Nature, 6000 Kecskemét, Liszt F. u. 19., Tel: 00 36 76 500 068

2. BÁRÁNYPIROSÍTÓ STUDY TRAIL, Fülöpháza Sand Dunes

Walking along the study trail the formation and the typical flora and fauna of the sand dunes, as well as the development of the network of scattered farms and the effects of human nature remaking can be observed.
Length:1500 m
Number of stages: 5
Language of information: Hungarian, English and German

Featured information: nature preservation, botany, zoology, geology and scenic information. There are information boards at the stages and a workbook for the trail is available in the House of Nature or in the Fülöpháza Education Centre.
How to get there: driving westwards from Kecskemét, the trail can be found along Road 52, 20 kilometres from the town. The starting point of the trail is at the car park situated next to the Education Centre, and the path is marked with white arrows.
Availability: any time without permission.
Further information: House of Nature, Tel: 00 36 76 500 068

3. BORÓKA (JUNIPER) STUDY TRAIL, Bugac

The study trail offers the opportunity to get aquainted with the history of the narrow-gauge railway of the puszta and the typical plants and animals of the sand dunes. Apart from these, information on the ancient Hungarian domestic animals and the exceptional way of life of the shepherds is also provided.
Length: 2000 m
Number of stages: 5
Language of information: Hungarian, English and German

Featured information: botany, zoology, geology, and information on the scenery and local history. There are information boards.
How to get there: There is a narrow-gauge train service running from Kecskemét and back. To get to the study trail get off at 'Hittanya' Stop. If coming by car, it is advisable to leave the car at the Pásztormúzeum (Shepherds Museum) and start walking from there.
Bugac can be reached by car from Kecskemét on Road 54 driving towards Soltvadkert.
There is a car park at Karikás Csárda (Karikás Inn).
Availability: the study trail may be visited freely, but the Native Juniper Grove is a strictly protected Biosphere Reserve and apart from the marked study trail, no other areas of it may be entered, except with permission or in the company of a professional guide.
Further information: House of Nature, Tel: 00 36 76 500 068,

e-mail: bugacpuszta@invitel.hu web: www.bugacpuszta.info.hu  

4. RÉCE (DUCK) STUDY TRAIL, Upper-Kiskunság Plain

The wetland habitat, which was formed from the one-time rich fishponds, is one of the last reminders of the waterworld of the puszta. Along the study trail the nesting birds of the reeds and the sodic plains can be observed. The two lookouts at the two ends of the trail provide excellent views over the puszta.
Length: cca.1000 m
Number of stages: 5
Language of information: Hungarian, English, German.

Featured information: nature preservation, botany and zoology. There are information boards.
How to get there: the trail can be reached driving on the road from Apaj in the direction of Kunpeszér and Bugyi. From Kecskemét several routes are possible; one is driving via Hetényegyháza, Kerekegyháza-Kunadacs and Kunszentmiklós; and from Budapest, driving on Road 51 and turning off at Dömsöd in the direction of Apaj and driving on towards Kunszentmiklós. The birdwatch lookout, which is the starting point of the trail, is clearly visible from the road.
Parking is possible by the road or at the first lookout.
Availability: any time without permission.
Further information: House of Nature, Tel: 00 36 76 500 068.

5. VÖCSÖK (GREBE) STUDY TRAIL, Lake Péteri

With the help of the displayed information on boards and in the associate leaflet an insight into the formation of fishponds and the effects of the work of man on nature may be obtained. The lookouts offer the opportunity to observe the lively birdlife of the lakes and the surrounding woods, and the careful visitor can also observe the traces of animals that live here but are often unseen.
Length: 4000 m
Number of stages: 7
Language of information: Hungarian
Featured information: pedology, ornithology, botany and nature preservation. There are information boards, and workbooks are available in the House of Nature.
How to get there: the starting point of the trail, the KNP Researchers' Quarters are on the right side of Road E75, 12 kilometres after Kiskunfélegyháza, next to the Monostor Inn. The area can also be approached by train, getting off at the 'Petőfiszállási tanyák' stop.
The first stage of the trail is the exhibition housed in the Researchers' Quarters. There is a car park in front of the inn and the Researchers' Quarters.
Availability: any time without permission.
Further information: KNP Regional Office, Szeged, Tel: 00 36 62 498 058, e-mail: knpi@t-online.hu  

6. KONTYVIRÁG (ARUM) STUDY TRAIL, Tőserdő

During a pleasant walk in the forest the typical species and the rare plants of the underwood of the flood plain forests can be observed. Looking closely at the oak trees of Majális Meadow, some species of the rich insect population can be seen. At the last stage of the trail there is a geomorphologic rarity, a subsoil water springlet.
Length: 3500 m
Number of stages: 5
Featured information: nature preservation, botany and zoology. There are information boards and the trail is marked with a yellow half circle.
Language of information: Hungarian
How to get there: the yellow half circle trail starts from the bridge in Tőserdő. The Tőserdő holiday resort can be reached on Road 44 and by train from Kecskemét. There is a car park at the entrance of the holiday resort.
Availability: any time without permission
Further information: House of Nature, Tel: 00 36 76 500 068; Lakitelek Polgármesteri Hivatal (Major's Office) Tel: 00 36 76 449 003.

7. ÁRPÁD FEJEDELEM (PRINCE ÁRPÁD) STUDY TRAIL, Tiszaalpár

The trail with its 11 stages provides an overview of the history and cultural heritage of Tiszaalpár, and the variegated flora and fauna of Alpár Meadow.
Length: 3000 m
Number of stages: 11
Language of information: Hungarian, German
Featured information: cultural history and natural history. There are information boards, and information leaflets and workbooks are available in the Major's Office in Tiszaalpár and in the House of Nature in Kecskemét.
How to get there: the starting point of the trail is on Árpád Square right in the centre of the village. Tiszaalpár can be reached on Road 44 or by train from Kecskemét.
Availability: any time without permission. When the River Tisza is flooding, stages 8 and 10, which are in the flood area, are not accessible.
Further information: Tiszaalpár Polgármesteri Hivatal (Major's Office), Tel: 00 36 76 424 133; House of Nature, Tel: 00 36 76 500 068

8. VÖRÖS SWAMP STUDY TRAIL, Császártöltés

As a result of the extensive peat mining in the last decades in Vörös Swamp, valuable open water tables have developed. The study trail winds on the embankments of former peat mining lakes, which are inhabited by a lush flora. The thick peat soil sometimes staggers under the visitor's boots. There are information boards throughout informing on the wetland and loess ridge flora and fauna and the food chain that has developed in the area.
Length: 2500 m
Number of stages: 5
Language of information: Hungarian, German
Featured information: geology and zoology. There are information boards, and information leaflets are available in the House of Nature, Kecskemét or in the Community Centre, Császártöltés, Kossuth u. 167.
How to get there: the starting point of the study trail is near the old brick works, 2 kilometres from the village of Császártöltés along Road 54. Parking is possible at Csala Inn.
Availability: the swamp may present dangers for the inexperienced visitor, so keeping to the marked trail and/or calling in the aid of a professional guide is highly advisable.
Further information: House of Nature, Kecskemét, Tel: 76 500 068; Community Centre, Császártöltés, Kossuth u. 167., Tel: 00 36 78 443 324.

9. AQUA COLUN STUDY TRAIL, Izsák, Lake Kolon

The study trail provides an insight into the specific flora and fauna of the vast marsh. From the observation post hidden in the reeds and from the lookout at the end of the trail the careful visitor can watch the eventful life of the exuberant bird population living in the reeds.
Length: 1000 m
Number of stages: 6
Language of information: Hungarian
Featured information: information on the flora and fauna. The stages are marked with posts. For each stage there are tasks in the workbook that are available in the House of Nature, Kecskemét; in the Kálmán Szily Library, Izsák, Kossuth u. 54.; and at the Lake Kolon Bird Sentry.
How to get there: the study trail goes on the edge of the reeds along the Riding Ground (or Marketplace) in Izsák. Lake Kolon lies 27 kilometres south-west of Kecskemét. The lake may be approached from different directions, but the easiest way is to turn off towards Izsák from Road 52 by car, or to travel there by train on the Kecskemét-Fülöpszállás line. Parking is possible in Izsák or near the Riding Ground.
Availability: any time without permission.
Further information: House of Nature, Tel: 00 36 76 500 068.

10. POSZÁTA (WARBLER) STUDY TRAIL, Izsák, Lake Kolon

Anyone wishing to examine thoroughly the magic world of the reeds of Lake Kolon should definitely visit this study trail. Following the marked trail the visitor is informed on how the local people once made good use of the treasures of nature. The birdwatch and the lookout in the reeds provide a view of the typical marshes of the area. In the Bird Sentry the visitor gets an insight into the techniques of bird ringing, and birdwatch research findings are introduced.
Length: 2000 m
Number of stages: 8
Language of information: Hungarian
Featured information: the trail provides an introduction of the flora and fauna of the reeds. There are information boards, and workbooks are available in the House of Nature, Kecskemét; in the Kálmán Szily Library, Izsák, Kossuth u. 54.; and at the Lake Kolon Bird Sentry.
How to get there: the study trail can be approached on the 6-kilometre sandy path from the Izsák Railway Station. The sandy path may prove unfeasible by car in the dry season. The first stage of the trail is at B. Bognár tanya (cottage).
Availability: advance booking necessary
Further information: House of Nature, Tel: 00 36 76 500 068.

11. CANKÓ (SANDPIPER) STUDY TRAIL, Fülöpszállás, Kelemen-szék

The Upper-Kiskunság Lakes are the largest sodic lake system in Hungary. The special salt-resistant and halphyte species represent an outstanding natural value that is recognised internationally. The lakes are an important resting and feeding place for several species of migrating birds. The Cankó (Sandpiper) Study Trail shows the formation and the species of the sodic lakes. At Kelemen-szék there is an extended black-headed gull population of 1000-1500 couples, which can be well observed from the lookout at one of the stages of the trail. The last stage of the study trail is a hiding nook big enough for 10-15 people at a time. The birds visiting the feeding mead in front of the nook can be watched very closely.
Length: 1000 m
Number of stages: 9
Language of information: Hungarian
Featured information: information on the flora and fauna of the sodic lakes. There are posts marking each stage, and workbooks and leaflets are available in the House of Nature.
How to get there: the trail runs along Road 52, near Fülöpszállás. There is a 1-kilometre path leading from the road to Borda Tanya (cottage), where there is the starting point of the trail. Both the tanya and the lookout standing next to it are clearly visible from the road. There is a car park at Kígyós (Halász) Inn.
The area can also be approached by train on the Budapest - Kelebia line.
Availability: advance booking necessary.
Further information: House of Nature, Tel: 00 36 76 500 068.


TOURIST TRAILS

  • Red Cross Trail, Bugac
    Starting point: Karikás Csárda (Inn), Bugac
    Destination: Pásztormúzeum (Shepherds Museum) / Hittanyák railway stop
    Length: 12 km, loop-shaped trail
    Facilities: 16-metre tall lookout, 3-kilometre study trail
    Resting place: Pásztormúzeum (Shepherds Museum)
    Primarily for: horse riders and hikers
    Transport: narrow-gauge trains
    Recommended routes: a) Pásztormúzeum (Shepherds Museum) - Lookout; b) Hittanyák railway stop - Pásztormúzeum (Shepherds Museum)
    Terrain: difficult sandy ground
    Plant community: sand dune grasses, planted forests - white poplar
    Protected area: KNP Bugac
    Accommodation: Kiskunság National Park Researchers' Quarters, Bugac; campsite, horse farms
    Meals: Karikás Csárda (Inn)
    Maps available: Map of the Kiskunság National Park, Map of Kecskemét and the region, Ecotourism publications of the Magyar Turizmus Rt. (Hungarian Tourism Co.)

 

  • Yellow Stripe Trail, Lake Kolon
    Starting point: Izsák Railway Station
    Destination: Soltszentimre Railway Station
    Length: 12 km
    Facilities: information boards, study trail, birdwatches
    Resting place: B. Bognár Tanya (cottage)
    Primarily for: hikers
    Transport: train
    Terrain: sandy balks
    Plant community: sand plains, wetland habitats and waterside habitats
    Protected area: KNP Lake Kolon, Izsák
    Accommodation: in the village of Izsák
    Maps available: Map of the Kiskunság National Park, study trail workbook and guide leaflet, Ecotourism publications of the Magyar Turizmus Rt. (Hungarian Tourism Co.)

 

  • Blue Square Trail, Császártöltés
    The loop-shaped trail leaves the national blue stripe trail at Kéleshalom turning towards Császártöltés. It joins the blue stripe trail again at the bridge over Dunavölgyi - Főcsatorna (Danube Valley Main Channel).
    There are car parks at the old brickworks near Császártöltés, near Csala Inn and at Cabernet Inn in Hajós.
    Starting point: Csala Inn
    Destination: Hajós Wine Cellar Village
    Length: 20 km
    Facilities: Vörös Swamp Study Trail, information boards and signposts, guide leaflet.
    Resting places: Hajós, Császártöltés
    Primariliy for: hikers, eco-tourists, students groups
    Transport: coach
    Recommended route: the 10-kilometre Kiscsala - Hajós route runs in an amazing natural environment
    Terrain: loess and sand soil with gentle slopes
    Plant community: marshes and boggy meadows, loess grasses and boggy forests
    Protected areas: Vörös Swamp Nature Conservation Area at Császártöltés; Hajós Grassland Nature Conservation Area
    Maps available: there is a guide booklet with maps for the trail and the protected area, in Hungarian and German.
    Accommodation: Középcsala, Kiscsala, Hajós Wine Cellar Village
    Meals: available in Császártöltés and Hajós
     
  • National Red Stripe Trail
    This is the longest tourist trail in Bács-Kiskun County running through Ladánybene, Kunbaracs, Kunpuszta, the Fülöpháza Sand Dunes, Ágasegyháza, Jakabszállás, Bugac, Ilonaszállás and Petőfiszállás.
    Starting point: Ladánybene
    Destination: Petőfiszállás
    Total length: 100 km
    Resting places: Fülöpháza, Jakabszállás, Bugac (Plain Afforesting Museum)
    Primarily for: professional hikers, horse riders
    Transport: coach
    Recommended routes: a) Naprózsa Oktatóközpont (Sun Rose Education Centre), Fülöpháza - Ágasegyháza; b) the Bugac stage; c) Ágasegyháza - Köncsögpusztai railway stop; d) Naprózsa Oktatóközpont (Sun Rose E. C.), Fülöpháza - Szappanszék; e) Lake Kondor - Szabadszállás - Balázspuszta; f) Balázspuszta - Forester's Lodge, Kunadacs; g) Kunbaracs - Ladánybene
    Terrain: difficult sandy balks.
    Plant community: planted woods near Kunbaracs; sand plains
    Protected areas: KNP Fülöpháza Sand Dunes; KNP Orgovány Meadows; KNP Bugac
    Accommodation: the old wing of the Naprózsa Oktatóközpont (Sun Rose Education Centre), Fülöpháza; horse farms
    Maps available: Map of the Kiskunság National Park, Map of Kecskemét and the region

 

  • Great Plain Blue Stripe Trail
    Starting point: Danube Bridge, Baja
    Destination: Öttömös
    Total length: 130 km
    Resting place: Hajós
    Primarily for: hikers, cyclists, horse riders
    Transport: train and coach
    Recommended route: Kéleshalom - Császártöltés - Hajós
    Terrain: plain, sandy and loess path
    Plant community: sand plains, planted forests
    Protected areas: Kéleshalom Sand Dunes Nature Conservation Area, Hajós Grassland Nature Conservation Area
    Accommodation: Kunfehértó, Császártöltés
    Maps available: National Blue Tourist Booklet, Southern Great Plain section (published by 'Tájoló Térképészeti Iroda', Székesfehérvár)

 

  • Green Stripe Millennial Trail
    Starting point: Árpádszállás railway stop, Lakitelek
    Destination: Hét Vezér emlékmű (Seven Chiefs Monument), Pusztaszer
    Total length: 60 km
    Facilities: information boards, study trails
    Resting places: Tőserdő Kapuja Picnic Area; Church Hill, Tiszaalpár; Bokros
    Primarily for: hikers
    Transport: train
    Recommended route: Árpádszállás - Tőserdő - Castle Hill, Tiszaalpár
    Terrain: sandy balks, dams
    Plant community: flood area forests, ploughlands
    Protected areas: KNP Szikra and Alpár Meadow
    (A marked route between Bokros and Pusztaszer will be available in 2004.)

Accommodation

Naprózsa Oktatóközpont (Sun Rose Education Centre), Fülöpháza

The Centre accommodates 30 people at a time. It is primarily recommended to students groups to be used as a base for open-air school or nature education camps.
How to get there: it is at the 20 kilometre stone on Road 52. If approached by coach, get off at 'Lakos tanya' stop.
Meals: Hattyúszéki csárda Inn, 

Boróka (Juniper) Researchers' Lodge, Bugac

The lodge was originally designed to accommodate 20 pople at a time. Tents can be set up in the garden.
How to get there: the lodge can be reached by the narrow-gauge train running from Kecskemét, getting off at 'Hittanya' stop and walking from there along the study trail to Karikás Inn. There is a coach service from Kiskunfélegyháza.
Meals: Karikás Inn, Tel: 00 36 76 372 688.

Vöcsök (Grebe) Researchers' Lodge, Lake Péteri

The lodge was originally designed to accommodate 20 people at a time. Tents can be set up in the garden.
How to get there: by coach on Road E75; the lodge is situated near Monostori Inn 12 kilometres after Kiskunfélegyháza.

Accommodation in the above premises must be booked in advance. Tel: 00 36 76 500 068.

Lake Kolon Bird Sentry

The tourist hostel accommodates 10 people at a time. Tents may be set up in the garden. It is primarily recommended to ornithologists.
For advance booking call 00 36 76 500 068, 00 36 76 501 594.

Tisza Guest House/Pension
Address: 6065 Lakitelek-Tőserdő, Szikra 65/a
Tel: 00 36 76 449 138


Tourist and transport information

TOURINFORM OFFICES

ˇ Baja, 6500 Szentháromság tér 5. Tel: 00 36 79 420 793, Fax: 00 36 79 420 792
ˇ Csongrád, 6640 Szentháromság tér 8. Tel/Fax: 63 570 325
ˇ Gyomaendrőd, 5500 Fő út 173-179. Tel/Fax: 66 386 851
ˇ Gyula, 5700 Kossuth L. u. 7. Tel./Fax: 66 561 681, Fax: 66 561 680
ˇ Hódmezővásárhely, 6800 Szegfű u. 3. Tel: 62 249 350, Fax: 62 249 350
ˇ Jásszentlászló, 6133 Rákóczi u. 2. Tel./Fax: 77 492 135
ˇ Kecskemét, 6000 Kossuth tér 1. Tel./Fax: 76 481 065
ˇ Kistelek, 6760 Árpád u. 1-3.Tel/Fax: 62/ 257-797
ˇ Makó, Széchenyi tér 22. Tel./Fax: 62 210 708
ˇ Mórahalom, 6782 Röszkei u. 2. Tel./Fax: 62 280 294
ˇ Ópusztaszer, 6767 Szoborkert 68. Tel: 62 275 257 ext.133 or 121, Fax: 62 275 007
ˇ Orosháza, 5904 Fasor u. 2/a. Tel/Fax: 68 414 422
ˇ Pusztamérges, 6785 Ifjúság tér 1. Tel: 62 286 618, Fax: 62 286 619
ˇ Szarvas, 5540 Kossuth tér 3. Tel/Fax: 66 311 140
ˇ Szeged, 6720 Victor Hugo u. 1. Tel/Fax: 62 548 092
ˇ Szeged, 6720 Dugonics tér 2. Tel: 62 488 699, Fax: 62 488 690
ˇ Szeghalom, 5520 Tildy Z. u. 1. Tel/Fax: 66 470 380

TRANSPORT AND TRAVEL INFORMATION

ˇ Kunság Volán Coaches, Kecskemét Tel: 76 321 777
ˇ MÁV (Hungarian Railway Company), Kecskemét Tel: 76 322 460
ˇ Tisza Volán Coaches, Szeged Tel: 62 551 166
ˇ MÁV (Hungarian Railway Company), Szeged Tel: 62 421 821

Timetable information:
Trains: www.elvira.hu
Coaches: www.volan.hu


National Parks in Hungary (management centres listed)

ˇ Aggtelek National Park, 3758 Jósvafő, Tengerszem oldal 1. 

ˇ Balaton Uplands National Park, 8229 Csopak, kossuth u. 16.
ˇ Bükk National Park, 3304 Eger, Sánc u. 6. Tel: 00 36 36 411 581,
ˇ Danube-Dráva National Park, 7625 Pécs, Tettye tér 9. Tel: 72 517 200
ˇ Danube-Ipoly National Park, 1021 Budapest, Hűvösvölgyi út 52. Tel: 1 200-4066
ˇ Fertő-Hanság National Park, 9435 Sarród, Rév-Kócsagvár Tel: 99 537 622
ˇ Hortobágy National Park, 4024 Debrecen, Sumen u. 2. Tel: 52 529 920

ˇ Kiskunság National Park 6000 Kecskemét, Liszt F. u. 19. Tel: 76 482 611
ˇ Körös-Maros National Park, 5540 Szarvas, Anna-liget Tel: 66 313 855
ˇ Őrség National Park, 9941 Őriszentpéter, Siskaszer 26/a Tel: 94 548 034

www.nemzetipark.gov.hu
 

   
 
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