Tapolca - Boating Through Underground Cave

Country: 
Kids: 
12 years
3 years
2 years
Author: 
Parent
Date: 
2012-04-14
Description: 

One-day excursion to the Hungarian town called Tapolca was an excellent choice that both children and adults have enjoyed. My husband and myself with our three kids together with four of our friends went there with two cars. The very exclusive attraction is an underground river which flows under the town with magnificent cave system that can be visited and explored by small boats.

 

We've discovered this location in Hungary TOP 10 guide book, and it looked very interesting to us even if we never heard before of it. Tapolca is quite close to the Lake Balaton, a very popular touristic destination in Hungary. The voyage with our car took about 3 hours, mostly on a paid highway. When you enter Hungary you need to purchase electronic vignette (or Matrica, as it is called in Hungary) which is not so expensive like in other neighboring countries. We were quite surprised that this exclusive attraction is relatively unknown in the world.

When we have arrived, we were pleasantly surprised by two things: you can park for free just in front of the attraction and entrance tickets price was very reasonable. It is pity that there is very limited choice of souvenirs and that souvenir sellers don't speak English.

The cave itself is really amazing. There are quite large number of stairs which lead downstairs to reach starting position. Everything underneath is well illuminated with small bulbs so the movement is reasonable easy even with kids. On the end of the corridor comes the beautiful sight: cave filled with extremely clean water with illumination from water. There is a starting position where you take your small boat, and then you can row around in the cave-system. Rowing is quite easy, and you cannot loose yourself, because there is only one single way to go.

Small boats can have just three persons, and one of rowing part you have to do by yourself through the circular route throughout the cave. We were happy that the friend were with us, since our kids were small at the time, so they were very helpful with the seating arrangements in the boats. The ride itself is amazing. On some spots the passages are very narrow so it's not even possible to row, but instead you need to push yourself with your hands on the walls. Even though our smallest kid had only two years, we were sure that the safety is not an issue at any time since the boats are made of brass and they seem very stable.It takes around twenty minutes to complete the full circle. During the ride we had excellent time during which we viewed the cave interior. Sometimes we heard that some of the boats in front of us were bumping the walls, and some of them were stuck for few seconds, but everything went well in the end. Since there is impossible to bypass anyone, you can only sit still and wait. All in all it was a great fun.

After the sightseeing we became somewhat hungry so we went to one of many nearby restaurants. We managed to find someone who was speaking some English. The meal itself was really delightful and it was very abundant. In our homeland it is generally known that the Hungary has very delightful meals for very fair prices: we can definitely confirm that from this experience.

After the lunch we decided to visit the town. Since the town is quite small there is not much to see, but definitely the most beautiful part is where the river is coming to the surface and forms a small lake and then continues through the parks where you can walk by the river. Our kids enjoyed walking and running around. The town is very amiable with lot of small shops and restaurants.

Since this was just an one-day trip, and we still had to drive back home, we didn't had much more time for further explorations. On our way back we made a small detour and climbed the hill near the Lake Balaton to get a better view of the lake. We had already made plans to come back here once again with our friends with maybe some more time for exploration of the Balaton area.

 

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