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Lake Balaton

Photo credit: Gribiche / Foter / CC BY-SA
Lake Balaton
  • (worth a detour)
  • 10+ km
  • Easy
  • Free
  • full day
  • 2 2

The Hungarian sea

Usually called the “Hungarian Sea” by locals and visitors alike, Lake Balaton is the most popular holiday destination of Hungary and the largest freshwater lake in Europe as well as the largest Lake in Central Europe. The Zala River flows into the lake and the Sió canal flows water out of it.


The mountainous region of the northern shore is known for being a major wine region and its historical heritage, it is a must-visit for those who find themselves in the area. Parallel to it is the southern shore, a flat region known for its modern resort towns.


The area around Lake Balaton was settled as early as the Iron Age and the Romans who also called the Balaton as “Lacus”, “Pelsodis” or “Pelso”.


Its length is around 77 km and its width is around 14 km. The Balaton has a catchment area of 5,174 km2 and a surface area of 592 km2. The maximal depth is 12,2 m and the average is 3,2 m.