Football fever hits Hungary
Debrecen is a pretty Hungarian town best known for its annual Flower Carnival and thermal baths; but now it is also becoming known for its up and coming football team - DVSC-TEVA (dvsc.hu/helyek/eng) - who will meet Liverpool in the UEFA Champions League this month and again in November, the first Hungarian side since 1995/96 to play in the group stage.
DVSC-TEVA will play the former winners of the Champions League in Liverpool on 16 September and again in Budapest on 24 November, offering the ideal opportunity for football fans that want to score some brownie points with their partner to combine a short break to Hungary with a chance to soak up all the Champions League excitement that is currently gripping the nation.
Choose to visit the romantic capital, Budapest and explore the UNSECO World Heritage sites, bath in the many thermal spas and enjoy the vibrant nightlife, including many sports bars that will be showing all the action live. Or travel 224 kms east to Debrecen to the city renowned for its unique culture and many festivals that draw thousands of visitors every year.... and now for reaching the group stage in the Champions League for the first time.
Visitors to Debrecen will be treated to some of the best thermal spas in the country, a fantastic cultural scene with venues throughout the town providing a wide variety of entertainment and many festivals and events through the year, plus the chance to explore the stunning surrounding countryside, including the Plains of Hortobágy, now a World Heritage Listed National Park, to enjoy a wide variety of sports and activities.
The famous Debrecen Carnival of Flowers and Festival Week takes place annually in August and draws visitors from around the world, but the town hosts many other events that will appeal to visitors such as the Debrecen Jazz Festival in September, the Hortobágy Equestrian Days in May, the Debrecen Spring Festival in March and the Debrecen Summertime Theatrical Evenings in June and the Debrecen Wine Carnival in August.
To watch the football in Budapest the Champs Bar near the Synagogue is the best known sport bar in the city (champs.hu) or Becketts Irish Pub (becketts.hu/) in the V. District, near the Parliament and the Basilica, is also favoured by sport fans, especially expats.
A little further out of the city centre on the Buda side is the Puskas Pancho Pub in the Symbol (symbolbudapest.hu), a new venue that features seven different bars and restaurants, including a 220 year old cellar restaurant.
In Debrecen virtually every bar and pub will be showing the two matches between Debrecen and Liverpool, either on TVs or projection screens – so take your pick!
Fly to Budapest with Malev, BA, Easyjet, Ryanair or Wizzair from airports throughout the UK. Onward travel to Debrecen can either be done by hiring a car at Budapest Airport or travelling by train.
In Budapest stay at the Mercure Budapest City Center (accorhotels.com) located on Vaci utca, the main shopping street on the Pest side of the city. Prices are from €90 per room per night (rooms accommodate up to three people). In Debrecen stay at the 3* Best Western Hotel Kálvin (bestwestern.com) located in the centre of the city. Prices are from €58 per room per night.
For more information visit gotohungary.co.uk.