BALATON UPLANDS NATIONAL PARK

The National Park of Lake Balaton is located on the northern shore of the lake, on the Balaton Uplands, covering a 1-15 km wide area, and it includes the Kis-Balaton region. The area is uniquely rich in natural values. The alternation of different geographic forms and configurations of the terrain, such as vast lake surface, swamps, plains, basins, monadnocks and hill ranges, have contributed to the development of diverse flora and fauna. There are more than 200 protected and specially protected plants in the National Park. Even the estimated number of protected, rare animal species can be several hundred. The geological structure of the area also shows great diversity making the area geologically valuable. There are many remains from different geological ages, such as volcanic basalt hills having a typical form, cone geysers, caves, sinkholes, and block fields. Kis-Balaton can owe its existence to the combined effect of three factors. Besides the fact that the area became more and peatier, the river Zala laid its sediment here too. The third is the human factor: man has also transformed nature. During the series of interventions, the country's most beautiful bird paradise was in jeopardy. In 1979, Hungary joined the Ramsar Convention and Kis-Balaton was included in the list of "Wetlands of International Importance". Reconstruction works began in 1984. Various types of moorland plant communities characterize the vegetation of Kis-Balaton. Around the enormous body of water and on the islands, there are alder and willow carrs, tussock sedge communities, mesotrophic wet meadows, and large reeds. Its rare, endangered plant varieties include the Kievan nettle, the calamus, and the moonwort. The wildlife of the area is characterized by birds. Two hundred and fifty species of birds were counted in Kis-Balaton and its surroundings, - practically, with the exception of the water birds living at natron lakes, almost all the domestic water and reed birds can be found here - out of which a hundred and ten also nest here, and twenty-seven are specially protected. Also the white-tailed eagle comes here from the forests of County Somogy to prey, the osprey also appears here periodically, while the Montagu's harrier and the short-eared owl nest here. At the time of bird migration, tens of thousands of birds warble in the area. Among the species of fish, there are large numbers of European weather loach and European mud minnow, which are rare species elsewhere. The rare mammal of reeds is tundra vole, but the Eurasian otter, the European pine marten and the short-tailed weasel are very common here too. The insect and lower fauna of the area are even richer; there are species that can only be found here in Hungary or throughout Europe.

Kis-Balaton is specially protected, therefore cannot be visited. However, the birdwatching towers of Kányavársziget, near Balatonmagyaród, and Papsziget, near Vörs, can be accessed.
 

Program calendar
Featured programs
Accommodation