The University of Szeged, founded in 1872, is famous for its research activities and prides itself on numerous notable scientists and researchers. Among them is the Nobel Laureate Albert Szent-Györgyi. He discovered Vitamin C!
Students from across the world come to study at the University of Szeged where instruction is available not only in English but also in French, German, and other foreign languages – depending on the study field.
Budapest Ferenc Liszt International Airport (IATA: BUD, ICAO: LHBP), is commonly known as Budapest Airport.
Szeged has a small airport about 5km west of the city. The airfield is mostly used for private chartered jets and shows.
Szeged is about two hours by car from Budapest, give and take the traffic you may encounter in Budapest. Once you’re on the open road it is an easy drive to Szeged. Because it is such an easy drive, you can easily rent a car without stressing about traffic in Szeged. However, I don’t recommend doing so because Szeged has an excellent public transport infrastructure.
From the airport, book a transfer service through Zöld Transfer. See the review “Travel like a local”.
Once in Szeged, there are taxis everywhere at affordable prices. Use the bus and tram network, which is super clean and safe.
Alternatively, enjoy a game of tenpin bowling at the Bowling alleys and Szeged center – Szeged TE (Szegedi Teke- és Bowlingcentrum – Szegedi TE). They’re on Derkovits fasor 1-5, and you can check availability by telephone – +36 362 401 410.
The sightseeing train will take you on a journey of around 45 minutes, pointing out Szeged’s most important buildings, streets, squares, attractions, and history. From May until the end of October, the morning train leaves from Széchenyi Square every hour, starting at 9h00. (For more information, call them at +36-70/977-1292 or email firstname.lastname@example.org)
Follow our “Life in Hungary…“-segment on our Travel and Home Facebook Group! Arina left sunny South Africa for Hungary almost four years ago and shares her “life and living” in what she calls “Paprika-Country”.
A brand-new YouTube channel will also give insight into her beloved pets’ lives in Szeged, Hungary. All three of them are South African-born Maltese “furry children”, now proudly having EU passports!
You will find plenty of sculptures of great significance everywhere in Szeged. For instance, the statue of Lajos Kossuth on Klauzál Square and an unparalleled golden tie pin. The pin is held in the gold spectacle of the Ferenc Móra Museum. Lajos Kossuth was a political reformer who inspired and led Hungary’s struggle for independence from Austria. The controversial Kossuth visited Szeged in 1848, giving two speeches to about 10,000 residents. “The cheers, music, and cannons had no length-end,” they wrote of the glorious day. Kossuth gave his legendary speech on this day: “The people of Szeged, the pride of my nation, the pillar of my poor betrayed country, I bow deeply before you!” Later, in 1902, the statue was inaugurated.
Like in all of Hungary, Szeged also has plenty of incredible sculptures.
“It is a cathedral, a family-friendly church, a destination of pilgrims, a sacred space, an exclusive conference and concert venue, home of the Szeged Open-Air Festival, and an open and receptive community magnet.” -Szegedidom.com
To quote Luther Vandross: “The best things in life are free”. There are many things in life that are FREE and breathtakingly beautiful. One of those is a walk on the banks of the river Maros.
First let me clarify that this square is not the traditional square shape, as it’s slightly irregular. Once you’re here, you cannot miss Heroes’ Gate, in memory of Szeged’s soldiers who died in World War I. This free sightseeing attraction is an absolute must-see with war-theme frescos painted by Vilmos Aba-Novák.
Address: Boldogasszony sugárút
A typical year in this festival city ends with new year celebrations such as concerts, street parties, and spectacular fireworks.
This city comes alive in Spring and usually has at least one sizeable festival every month until the end of summer. Of course, soon thereafter the Christmas markets start (end-November to end-December). But that’s a discussion for another time.
Due to the pandemic, most of the festivals were canceled in 2020. Many of them for the first time since it started. This was a great loss to vibrant Szeged and its people.
The festival season usually opens with The Pork and Pálinka Festival in Mid-March. This is where you taste Hungary’s traditional pork dishes and taste its renowned and strong liqueur. With Hungarian artists making music in the “background” you’re surrounded by cabbage cooking and pig slaughter competitions. Only once you’ve been to this festival, you, and everyone else, are officially in the summer mood and counting the days to full-swing summer!
Another one is the vibrant mid-May Szeged Wine Festival and the Day of Szeged (21 May, and first held in 1931) with the best of Hungary’s wines, and eateries from the line of kiosks. The atmosphere is warm and friendly with everybody joining in 10 days of celebration.
In early June the city finds itself in the ‘90s in Újszeged Partfürdő, at the Déjà vu Festival.
In Szeged, every summer the square in front of the Votive Cathedral transforms into a huge open-air theatre to host the Szeged Open-Air Festival. It’s usually from June to August. With 6,000 seats per show, this cultural festival is the second largest of its kind in Hungary featuring opera, fold dancing, classical music, ballet, rock opera, and many more shows.
July has its very own 3-day International Beer Festival usually around mid-July.
August is the city’s anniversary month and the month for the Szeged Youth Festival.
One of the popular festivals – being a university town, quite frankly, they’re ALL popular festivals! – is the 4-day Hungarikum Festival in August, attracting around 60,000 visitors looking for Hungarian products or simply to enjoy the Hungarian culture.
Brandy lovers get their special treat of soul-warming fruit brandies with the Toros Brandy festival, while fish lovers’ highlight is the International Tisza Fish Festival on the banks of the Tisza River. This is also the best time to taste Szeged’s famous fish soup, cooked from several types of fish. The fish festival is usually held on the first weekend in September.
The Szeged Air Show, at Szeged Airport, is a long weekend around the second week of September about aviators, aircraft, and flights from across the world.
Usually, you meet up on Dom Square shortly after mid-September for the Wine Square, a festival of the best of Hungary’s winemakers combined with culinary specialties and excellent concerts.
And then, Lángos (pronounced langosh). An absolute must. The classic Lángos is brushed with garlic first, then topped with sour cream and cheese.
The name for Hungarian Lángos comes from the word láng which means flame.
And then there is Pálinka, a fiery fruit brandy usually distilled from plums, apricots, and pears. There are endless different variations.
Kecskemét is famous for its Pálinka distilleries. It’s about 91 km from Szeged (1 hour by car), towards Budapest. And since it’s on your way to Budapest, it makes for a nice added excursion.
Szeged is also home to the famous PICK factory. This popular Hungarian brand has been in operation for about 140 years, using a secret recipe.
“Made from pork and spices, winter salami is cured in cold air and is slowly smoked. During the dry ripening process, a special noble mold is formed on the surface of the product.”
Szeged (together with Kalocsa) is the home of Paprika, also referred to as “red gold” by locals, in Hungary, where it’s a culinary staple. For example, sweet paprika has an exquisite flavor and is a delicious addition to rubs and marinades, potatoes, classic chicken paprikash, traditional goulash, and much more.
This premium spice, usually harvested from September 8th to the beginning of October, is also exported to countries such as the USA.
A visit to a few paprika venues is necessary to get that authentic paprika experience.
Like the privately-owned Paprika Museum. Here you’ll see a small display of collectibles relating to paprika. Best you phone before you go, because they are not always open to the public. They’re at Röszke, II. körzet 50/B and you can call them at +36-62/272-788 or email email@example.com.
"If you are looking for products made from Hungarian paprika, it will be a very easy task, as there are dozens of delicacies on the shelves of the shops that are based on this spice. But should you even start? Do not miss out on these products if you are in Hungary!" - The Hungarian Paprika.Read More >>
The length of the day in Szeged varies significantly over the course of the year. For instance, the shortest day is December 21, with 8 hours, 36 minutes of daylight. In contrast, the longest day is June 20, with 15 hours, 47 minutes of daylight.
Summer has beautiful warm sunny days between June to August, generally ranging from the upper 20’s to around the mid-’30s. Lately, even reaching the upper-30s. The humidity in July/early August can be quite high, sometimes exceeding your comfort level. For instance 80% plus.
In autumn (September to November) you have the warm autumn-colored leaves (especially around end-October / mid-November), putting on a spectacular display.
Winter is most definitely not a season for tourism in Hungary. Days are grey, there’s little sunshine, daylight hours are short, and it is cold. In addition, most noteworthy attractions close during the winter months.