Hortobagy National Park, Debrecen

(4.7/5 based on 85+ reviews on the web)
Hortobágy is an 800 km2 national park in eastern Hungary, rich with folklore and cultural history. The park, a part of the Alföld (Great Plain), was designated as a national park in 1973 (the first in Hungary), and elected among the World Heritage sites in 1999. The Hortobágy is Hungary's largest protected area, and the largest semi-natural grassland in Europe.Until recently it was believed that this alkaline steppe was formed by the clear cutting of huge forests in the Middle Ages, followed by measures to control the course of the Tisza River, allegedly resulting in the soil's current structure and pH. However, Hortobágy is much older, with alkalinization estimated to have started ten thousand years ago, when the Tisza first found its way through the Great Hungarian Plain, cutting off many streams from their sources in the Northern Mountains. The formation was finished by grazing animals and wild horses during the Ice Age, followed by domesticated animals.One of its most iconic sites is the Nine-holed Bridge. Traditional T-shaped sweep wells dot the landscape, as well as the occasional mirage of trees shimmering in the reflected heat of the Puszta. Hortobágy has also had negative connotations. Hortobágy was a place where Hungarian Stalinists sent their political opponents to work in forced labour, especially after the Resolution of Informbiro (Cominform or Communist Information Bureau). In much the same way as prison Goli otok functioned in Tito's Yugoslavia (see Tito–Stalin split) and Bărăgan in Romania.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • We have visited here 3 times now and always discover more on every visit. A fabulous place for all the family and if you don't enjoy it you are a very hard to please person! 
  • Hortobagy is Hungary's only National Park. Great place to bring the family, as you travel around the park in a "historical" Hungarian farm cart viewing farm animals and learning of traditional Hungari...  more »
  • Attractions in the Hortobágy, organized programs for all ages are offered. Authentic environment, unostentatious way presents the typical fauna of the Hungarian and the shepherds. In some programs, when a lot of visitors, a small number of seats on the wayside. For dining options, the original desert food kóstálása very expensive.
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Google
  • It is a fantastic reserve for birds but access is extremely limited so you can't see a lot, but there are guides who can be employed to show you superb birds. The cranes coming in to roost are wonderful.
  • This is the place where Uranus touches Gaia. If You want to feel how small You are spend couple of days among the roaming Hungarian grey cattle and racka herds, taste the best East Hungarian dishes, and experience the endless rangeland with clear sky.
  • For a real Hungarian atmosphere you have to go here!
  • Awesome outdoor phenomena. Unique flat world with spiritual accolade.
  • If you want a light trip, it's a good place for that. I recommend you to go there on a dry day.