Hungary is a landlocked country in Central Europe, intersected from north to south by the Danube. Hungary borders in the north to Slovakia, the northeast to Ukraine in the east to Romania, in the south to Serbia and Croatia, in the southwest to Slovenia and in the west to Austria. Its total area is 35,919 square miles and the capital and largest city is Budapest. Hungary has seven statistical regions. It is expected that these regions replaced the former 19 provinces and the capital.
The Hungarian Republic is a parliamentary democracy, The president is the head of state and prime minister leads the government. Current president is László Sólyom, Gordon Bajnai is prime minister at this time (2010).
Hungary’s capital city Budapest is located on both sides of the Danube, the city was formed in 1873 by merging Óbuda and Buda on the right bank of the Danube to Pest on the left. In the town are many beautiful sights and monuments. The Buda Castle Quarter, the banks of the Danube and Andrássy Street banks are on the UNESCO World Heritage List. Heroes’ Square lies at the end of Andrássy Avenue, on that square is the Millennium Monument, statues of the leaders of the seven Hungarian tribes that have founded it in the 9th century and other greats of Hungarian history. When the thousandth anniversary of Hungary was celebrated in 1896, was the construction of the memorial began in 1929 the square was finished and got its name. Two important buildings, Museum of Fine Arts and the Palace of Art, standing alongside Heroes’ Square. The largest synagogue in Europe is also located in Budapest, it’s a magnificent building.
The Hungarian cuisine has traditional dishes such as the world famous Goulash, in a stew or soup. A Hungarian innovation is the use of paprika, to flavor the dishes, and tejföl, a thick, heavy Hungarian sour cream is often used to soften the dishes flavor.
For fun and relaxation is the Vidám Park, a theme park, and the zoo Állatkert. The Vidam park has three roller coasters , the wooden rollercoaster Hullámvasút is one of the oldest in the world, in 2009 they built the new Spinning Coaster. The Budapest Zoo, Állatkert, was built in 1866 and is the largest and oldest zoo in Hungary. The oldest remaining buildings in the zoo, the gateway and the elephant house, dating from 1912, when the zoo had been substantially renovated.
Lake Balaton is one of the main tourist attractions of the country. It has an elongated shape, the length is 49 miles, the greatest width 9.3 mile, the average depth is only 2 mile, the water’s relatively warm summers. During the summer various resorts organize long-distance swimming competitions to the opposite shore. In the center is the lake nearly split in two by the Tihany Peninsula.
The thermal lake of Hévíz is one of the largest biologically active and natural thermal lake of the world. With physiotherapy, the thermal water and mud from the thousand-year-old Pannonian Sea, it treats all forms of rheumatism and locomotory diseases.
Residents of Schengen countries, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, Switzerland, Australia, Canada, Croatia, Japan, New Zealand and the United States of America do not need a visa, for a stay of less than 3 months. Visitors from other countries can request a visa at the Hungarian Embassy or Consulate. All visitors need a valid passport or identity card.