If you jump in the River Danube outside Parliament and swim against the current you will not only get tired, but eventually arrive at Esztergom just south of the border with the Republic of Slovakia. Lots of mountains and high passes so you can’t miss it.
On the way you will swim into an equally old historical town called Szentendre. My hosts decided it was time for me to see it towards the end of my stay. A very pleasant drive north then west. The road and rail tracks follow the river. It’s easier that way!
Szentendre was the seat of a royal family in the early days of settlement by Hungarians. It was also a strategic place for the military. You can see the ruins of a castle on top of a very high hill overlooking a bend in the river. The original defence works are about 900 years old. They were extended over many years.
During winter there can be flooding. Last winter the river rose over the road and rail tracks. Not nice! Drive to the top of the hill next to the one with the castle and you will discover a really great hotel and restaurant right at the top. Go into the restaurant’s outside terrace and you can wine and dine with a truly spectacular view. We did!
As you chomp your way through delicious goulash, or fish, and sip a local wine, you can watch the boats docking way below. I discovered they were full of ‘Seniors’ from Germany who then got into coaches to ferry them to the top of our hill.
They swarmed all over with lots of ‘Ooooohs’ and ‘Aaaaahs’ as they enjoyed the views. They also snipped and snapped with little digital cameras. At least they had the courtesy not to come too close as we ate. Thanks for that my fellow ‘Seniors’.
Here are some ‘snaps’ of the place and the nice people who were there = us!