Having seen what Budapest has to offer, we wanted to slow down our travels to grab a slice of the real 'Hungary'...Heading into the countryside away from all the hustle and bustle.... to a place of genuine calm and quiet... at Tranquil Pines.
In coming to Tranquil Pines, we'd made up our minds we take this opportunity to see just what rural life is for normal Hungarian village folk. Thankfully the brilliant British campsite owners (Andrew/Sharon) have integrated themselves into village life and we were able to offer us a glimpse of what rural village life is like here...
From the villager whose keen to sell his house (above left) for just 2,500 euros to finance his trips to see his elderly wife in her care home to the abundant fields that surround the campsite (including a bee keeping farm!). It was a lesson in being grateful for what you have as we saw an elderly villager manually ploughing (with a yoke on his shoulders) his own back garden to help feed himself
They say the buzz word for people taking road trips is to 'travel deeper'... meaning to take your time and really get to know an area. Whilst we love the idea of this, it's just not practical with two young energetic girls in the van and a desire to see as much of Europe as we can in 2 years! But we thought'd we'd try to see what was available near to Tranquil Pines
TAKING A HUNGARIAN THERMAL BATH...
OPPORTUNITY TO EAT LIKE A LOCAL...
Both girls are adventurous eaters and have tried everything from Spanish Paella to Portuguese Squid.... so we weren't apprehensive to try Andrew/Sharon's 'home cooked' Hungarian Goulash... but little did we know just how tasty this meal really is... in fact it ended up becoming a brilliant opportunity for some road schooling as we discussed the origins of both the meal, how it was stored and where paprika really comes from...Even finishing the meal with a traditional toast with the home brewed 'Pálinka'
TIME TO GET CREATIVE....
Having raced across Eastern Europe for the past 3 weeks, past amazing cities like Cologne, Berlin, Prague or Vienna. Both girls were ready to find some time for things they enjoy... so whilst Lottie helped with some campsite jobs (including adding sun reflectors across the site) Libby delved into her creative side with some painting... and the occasional game of boules, some maths & a little geography too!
DAY TRIP TO BUDAPEST....
Little did we know that Sharon/Andrew run day trips by either car or train to Budapest, the capital city of Hungary, which is both charming and nostalgic. It's positively brimming with things to do for young explorers... so if you missed our post all about 'Things to Do in Budapest' then click here
DAY TRIP TO LAKE BALATON....
We even managed to find some time to throw a picnic into the back on the day we left, and travel the 40mins or so to Lake Balaton. Central Europe's largest freshwater lake is the perfect place to spend an afternoon... and we'd return in a shot to grab a swim in the shallow, family friendly lake
So all in all, a great place to enjoy the first hot weather of the trip in a peaceful campsite in the 'Real Hungary'... Spring has officially sprung as the blossom was filling the campsite as we left to head south towards a brief stop in Slovenia, then onto the Croatian Islands.
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