Planning the classic European tour? Visiting a bunch of different countries and cities over a few weeks? Let me guess – you’re visiting London, Dublin, Frankfurt, Barcelona, Paris, Athens and Rome. Was I close? Maybe not in that exact order; but I’m sure I got most of them right! These are easily the most visited cities in Europe for foreign travelers, considered to be the must-visits of the continent. But there’s so much more to Europe – it’s made up of 50 countries, after all! Before you start booking your flights and hotels to the cities that everyone else goes to, consider making your European vacation truly unique by adding one of the spots featured in Meetrip’s Unknown Europe.
While many travelers make point to visit Budapest, one of eastern Europe’s most iconic cities, they don’t really give much thought to the rest of the country of Hungary. Hungary itself has an unusual history, a mix of eastern and western influences and traditions; and as a result, its cities and towns are filled with influences from a variety of cultures. One of these cities is Miskolc, located in northeast Hungary and the fourth-largest city of the country. Its rich medieval history blends with recent industrialization to create a unique and diverse place to visit in Hungary.
The location Miskolc (pronounced “MEESK-waltz”) has been inhabited for over 70,000 years; but earliest mention of the city itself dates back to 1210 AD. The city, like the rest of Hungary, passed between ruling powers for centuries until the Hungarian war of Independence. Miskolc boomed as an industrial center due to the needs of World War 2; and has been Hungary’s primary industrial city ever since. In recent years, Miskolc has been trying to change this reputation of industry, by focusing more on culture; notably the annual Miskolc Opera Festival.
Castle of Diósgyőr, before the walls between the turrets were rebuilt.
However, the biggest cultural push was the restoration of the historic Castle of Diósgyőr, a castle with a history even more tumultuous than the city of Miskolc. The original medieval structure was built during the 12th century, and subsequently destroyed during the Mongol invasion between 1241 and 1242. It was rebuilt afterwards and in the following centuries, served as a wedding gift for the queens of Hungary. However, when the Ottomans moved in and took control of Miskolc, most of the castle was destroyed; and it lay in ruins from the end of the 17th century, until 1953, when a massive restoration project began. After 60 years of work, the renovated Castle was completed in 2014.
Miskolc has something to offer to every type of visitor. Definitely add this place on your “to visit” list in Hungary, and discover the city’srich history.
Just the Facts: Miskolc, Hungary
Population: 161,215 (2013)
Area:236.68 km2 (91.38 sq mi)
Time Zone:Central European Time
Accessibility: Two railway stations connecting Miskolc to other cities.
Transportation: 36 bus lines and 2 tram lines