Tuesday, August 30, 2022

Travel the World - Hungary

I started a 50-week series in 2019 that I called Travel the World. Each week of the series I visited a randomly-selected country, sharing bits of information about that country. I then chose one tidbit of information about that week's country as inspiration for a card. As I explored those 50 countries in 2019, I knew I would continue on until I've visited every one of the 195 countries in the world. By the end of 2021, I'd virtually traveled to 145 countries and plan to complete my journey to all 195 countries by visiting the last 50 this year.

This week's country is...


Hungary is one of Central Europe's landlocked countries. It is bordered to the north by Slovakia, northeast by Ukraine, southeast by Romania, Serbia and Croatia, southwest by Slovenia, and to the west by Austria.

Hungary was founded in 895, making it one of the oldest countries in Europe.

The country was formerly a part of the Roman Empire, after the fall of which, ‘the Huns’ – people of the country at that time – gave the country their name – Hungary.

About 2.5 million native Hungarian people do not live in Hungary. Rather, they live in Romania and other countries in western Europe as well as in North America.

Budapest is the capital of Hungary and the largest city, by far. Over 1.7 million people live in Budapest – roughly one-fifth of the total population of Hungary (9.7 million).

The beautiful city of Budapest is made up of two parts which are separated by the Danube river. The areas – known as Buda and Pest, are connected by a series of bridges. The beautiful Hungarian Parliament building is on the Pest side of the river.

Hungary is among the thirty most popular tourist destinations in the world.

Calling someone by their first name before being invited to do so is considered rude in Hungary.

Many Hungarians find whistling, humming, or singing in public impolite.

Hungary is home to 1,000 lakes.

Hungary might be a land-locked country without an ocean, but it’s home to the largest lake in Central Europe, named Balaton Lake.

White storks are found in the Balaton Lake area.

The animals of Hungary include deer, foxes, hares, and squirrels. Wild boars, wolves, jackals, lynxes, and beavers are also found.

Water Polo is a national sport in Hungary.

The world-famous escape artist Harry Houdini was also born in Budapest, Hungary.

Back in 1988, shortly before the fall of communism in 1989, McDonald’s became the first foreign fast-food restaurant to be established in Hungary. However, it wasn’t the first fast-food restaurant in the country because there was also a local fast-food chain called City Grill and another one called the Paprika.

Hungarians love Paprika so much, it is their National Spice. There are eight grades of Hungarian paprika, ranging from mild to sweet to spicy hot. The love of Paprika is so great, there are actually two museums dedicated to the wonderful spice.

Hungary’s Budapest Metro remains the oldest underground electrified railway system in Europe and the third oldest underground railway globally.

The wheeled multi-passenger vehicle was invented in Hungary in 1500.

The person who discovered Vitamin C, Albert Szent-Gyorgyi, was born In Budapest, Hungary in 1893.

The ballpoint pen was invented by a Hungarian names Laszlo Biro.

A Hungarian engineer, Béla Barényi, created the first Volkswagen Beetle in 1938.

Soccer remains the most popular game in Hungary, and Hungarians still remember the 1953 match of the century where Hungary won over England at Wembley Stadium, England.

There are more than 1500 spas in Hungary, but the capital takes the prize when it comes to the number of thermal springs. In fact, Budapest has the highest number of thermal springs of anywhere in the world.

Hungary hosts the largest cultural and musical festival in Europe – the Sziget Festival. The Budapest Spring Festival is another such festival, attracting musicians and artists from all over the world.

There is a list of pre-approved names that you can name your child in Hungary, but if you want to name your child with a name that’s not on the list, you’ll have to submit an application.

The Rubik's Cube is an Hungarian invention.

The helicopter and ballpoint pen were also invented by Hungarians.

Hungarians pride themselves on winning gold medals every time they have participated in the Olympic Games. Considering the population size, they are ranked second just behind Finland in the number of golds won.

Hungarians are reputed to be the only people who can enter a revolving door behind you and emerge ahead. (Hmmmmm... I'm shaking my head at that one.)

Most people in Hungary use their last name when they are writing or when introducing themselves to the public.

Coffee is considered the national drink of Hungary.

When drinking beer with friends, Hungarians have vowed not to clink glasses after their generals were executed by Austrians, who later celebrated by drinking beers and clinking their mugs.

The national dish for Hungary is gulyas (goulash). Cooked with peppers, carrots, tomatoes, potatoes, onions, diced beef, and paprika, traditional goulash is a thick soup or stew. It dates back to the 9th century when it was eaten by shepherds from the Magyar tribes.

Hungarians are very fond of red pepper powder.

Some Hungarians may be offended if you season your food with salt/pepper.

It is considered impolite to leave food on one's plate.

To indicate that you have finished eating, place your knife and fork parallel across the plate.

Hungarians consider punctuality to be important. 

It takes eight years for a person to complete basic education in Hungary, which is divided into two four years stages.

The literacy rate in Hungary is 99%.

My inspiration for this week's card is based on this fact about Hungary... Horsemanship has a long history in Hungary, going back to the first Hungarians who rode horseback from Central Asia to settle in present day Hungary. Cowboys can still be seen in the plains of Hungary. 

Thanks for stopping by my blog today!

Stamp: Nellie Snellen Jippie Yeah stamped with Memento Tuxedo Black Ink and colored with Copic Markers

Paper: Accent Opaque 120# White and SU Balmy Blue CS and DP from my scrap file

Dies: MFT Stitched Rectangles and MFT Stitched Tag-Corner Squares

Embellishments: Ribbon from an unknown vendor


kiwimeskreations said...

What a fascinating lot of facts Jeanette - I have a friend who was a missionary to Hungary, and she was sent some tubes of paprika, ranging from a mild one - her preference, to a really hot one, which I took home - I really enjoyed it... in VERY small portions :)
That cowboy image is such a sweetie, and you have made another wonderful card with it

Barb said...

Too Cute!