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2018.10.12 - The Day of Hungarian Bathing Culture - 2018

The Day of Hungarian Bathing Culture - 2018
/The second Saturday of October, every year/

On the second Saturday of October, the Day of Hungarian Bathing Culture is being organized for the 15th time. These events aim to increase the awareness of Hungarian people and visiting tourists about the fact that Hungary is the country of medicinal and thermal waters.


Hungarian bathing culture goes back several hundred years. There were times, when the rich thermal springs of our country were being used by other nations (Romans, Turks). However, for us Hungarians, the enjoyment of our cold and hot waters has always been an important issue. In order for this tradition not to be forgotten, and to help generations of the past and future to be aware of this treasure, the Day of Hungarian Bathing Culture is organized every year.

It would be a mistake to think that this treasure upon which the Hungarian bathing culture is built is only a natural treasure: artesian waters, rivers, lakes, Lake Balaton, thermal springs. The human factor, traditions and the system of values are equally important to guarantee the proper utilization of these natural treasures.

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If we run quickly through the past centuries, we can see the development curve of the Hungarian bathing culture. Our memories reach back to the world of Roman baths two thousand years ago, way back to the flourishing bathing culture of the city of Aquincum. Later, Buda became the capital of the Medieval Kingdom of Hungary, since its thermal waters attracted both nobles and commoners. In the decades of the Ottoman rule, the Turkish bathing culture further enriched these traditions. The Hungarian Reform Era was marked by bath societies and healing centres, followed by the era of luxury resorts during the time of the Monarchy, among others in Herkulesfürdő and Budapest, all built on medicinal waters. In the name of an increasingly freer body culture, the beaches at the beginning of the 20th century are conquered by larger masses of people, and swimming as a sport becomes popular, with successful athletes such as Alfréd Hajós, who had their names written on the nation’s wall of fame. Our Olympic champion water polo teams and swimmers mark the second part of the 20th century, with the visitors of the swimming pools and baths imitating their moves. This is especially true for swimming kids, who hope that they are going to be next ones to get on the podium.

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Hungarian baths are free to join the events of the Day of Hungarian Bathing Culture and decide about the offers for their visitors. Among the baths of Budapest, the Gellért Thermal Bath offers various cultural programmes and synchronized swimming shows, and certain beaches have reduced entrance fees for this day.