"margaret's Kecskemet Page" Kecskemet by margaretvn
Kecskemet Travel Guide: 25 reviews and 87 photos
The area in Eastern Hungary from the Danube (in the west), the Romanian border (in the east), the Ukraine border (in the northeast) and the mountain ranges of northern Hungary is known as the Great Plain. In the far past this prairie was thickly forested and it made an ideal hiding place for nomadic tribes and bands of robbers. The Romans called the area "the land of the Barbarians". They designated the west bank of the river as their border and fortified their cities against the danger of invasion. In the Middle Ages many small towns were built up which were controlled by local tribes and these towns were surrounded by small farm villages. After the battle of Mohács in 1526 the inhabitants fled from the villages to the cities and the great plains area became a dangerous no-mans-land. It was the domain of rebels who fought the Turks. The Ottoman conquerors made forays into the area to punish the local population and also to cut down trees for military use. This destruction and ruin earned the area its name "Puszta" which means destroyed and abandoned. It was to remain destroyed and abandoned for more than a hundred years after the Turks were driven out. The economical growth of the 19th century meant that the Great plain was developed. It attracted farmers and tradesmen, but also writers, artists and poets. It was then that the area was given the name "Alföld" meaning Great Plain. One of the most interesting places for tourists on the Great Plain is the city of Kecskemét. The city is about 90 kilometres from Budapest. It is famous for its apricot orchards and the brandy that is made from the apricots - known as Barackpalinka. The area also produces about a third of the countries wine. Kecskemét is built up around two wide squares. These are the Szabadság tér and the Kossuth tér. In the southeast of the city is the beautifully ornate Town Hall with three lovely churches next to it. There is a Catholic church, a Franciscan church and in the centre of the square the Calvinist church. This church was built in the 17th century. Behind this church is a narrow pedestrianised area, one side of it is a white building which was the home of the famous composer Zoltán Kodály. That was why we decided to go there and see the house. It is not open to the public and today it houses the Music Academy of Kecskemét. The Cifra Palace on the Szabadság tér is beautiful. It was built in Art Nouveau style, today it houses the Municpal Museum.
See the beautiful fields of sunflowers on the Great Plain. more travel advice
Look out for storks when crossing the great Plain. more travel advice
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Latest: Mar 24, 2013