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  • Writer's pictureKristin

Quick Stop at Lake Balaton

Updated: Aug 17, 2021

The largest natural lake in Europe actually calls Hungary home – Lake Balaton. This lake is 77 km (48 miles) long x 14 km (8.7miles) wide and is in central Hungary. It was right on our route to Croatia so we decided to make a short visit to it to help break up the drive and we’re glad we did.

An Afternoon in Balatonboglar

I’ll be the first to say, we won’t even cover all there is to do in the Lake Balaton region, as we were literally only there for hours. However, hopefully some of the photos or information might be enough to peak your interest. They actually say the north side of the lake offers quite a few quaint towns, which was a bit out of the way for us on our drive. Therefore, we decided to visit the lakeside town of Balatonboglar as they offer a free access beach. (We read some of the other beaches on the lake you have to pay admission.)

We spent the afternoon there just walking along the boardwalk where we saw some swans and swimming at the beach. The water was super shallow there as well – we could walk out about 100 meters from off shore and it was only up to our waists before it dropped off more after that.

Swans near the Balatonboglar Boat Harbour
Sandy Beach at Balatonboglar - Lake Balaton

Slide Paddle Boats

The kids just had a blast playing in the sand and water. They also had some of the paddle boats with slides on them. We were going to try one when we were in Slovakia but it started to rain, so with it be sunny and hot we decided to give it a try this time! We all really enjoyed the hour out on the water just going off the slide. The kids seemed to enjoy it more when they could slide off into shallow water as well. It cost us 4100 HUF ($14 USD) for the hour on the water.

Slide Paddle Boat - Lake Balaton
Family Fun on Slide Paddle Boat on Lake Balaton

There was a large variety of other activities families could choose from in the town as well – including a bouncy castle, playgrounds, some slides, amusement park rides and more! And it seems to be a getaway that not very many English speaking natives visit, as the paddle boat owner told us that they don’t get very many native English speakers visiting.

Bouncy Castle at Balatonboglar - Lake Balaton, Hungary

Other Highlights to Note

If we had more time I would have loved to visit was Lake Heviz, which was a little bit too much off the highway for our visit this time. This is a spa town with 25 C annual average water temperature, as it is the largest biologically active thermal lake in Europe. The photos of people just hanging out in the thermal lake look amazing.

We definitely could have used a bit more time truly explore the Balaton area, but we’re glad we at least got a glimpse of it.


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