Figula Wine Bar
Family winery on a popular promenade
Usually, the best wineries are to be found on the steep hillsides around Lake Balaton, so it can sometimes be hard work securing a glass of the area’s most famed produce. On the other hand, this wine bar is set in a very popular promenade, close to the city center and the lake, so you can just walk in and sit down without effort. Run by the Figula family, you can be sure that you will be served with the greatest attention, whatever you may choose from the extensive list of quality wines.
Opening hours: Mon-Sat 4pm-12pm, Sun 12am-10pm
Watch out for: Wines
Address & telephone number: Zákonyi Ferenc avenue 4 Balatonfüred, Hungary+36 30 662 4332
Karolina Café & Cocktail Bar
Homemade pastries, wines and cocktails
Karolina is a true gem on the North Shore of Lake Balaton. All the pastries are homemade, following family recipes that are the secret behind their quality. You can sit inside in a very elegant environment or take a seat outside on the patio, from which you can observe the silver boats of the nearby yacht club. Moreover, you can enjoy all sorts of wines and cocktails, and don’t forget about pálinka.
Opening hours: Mon-Sun 8am-1am
Watch out for: Desserts, wines and cocktails
Address & telephone number: Zákonyi Ferenc avenue 4 Balatonfüred, Hungary +36 87 583 098
Larus Café Bar
Great café in an intimate place
Another great place in the same spot in Balatonfüred, here you can enjoy special coffees and teas, lemonades, patisseries, desserts and sandwiches. Should you get here later in the day, you can treat yourself to a nice cocktail or premium wine. This is an ideal place for an intimate chat or for getting in the mood for a long night out. If the weather is nice, you can even smoke a cigar at one of the outside tables.
Opening hours: Mon-Sun 8am-2am, winter 9am-11pm
Watch out for: Wide range of drinks
Address & telephone number: Zákonyi Ferenc avenue 4 Balatonfüred, Hungary +36 87 583 083
A cool bar on the beach
A cool bar for hot summer days: BÁRmikor (which basically means “bar whenever you want”) can be found on the beach, complete with cozy outdoor seats. It can be accessed during the day through the beach gates, and from the street and the water during the evening. If you have ever heard of fröccs, a tasty mixture of soda water and wine, you are welcome to have a sip here – it is definitely worth a try. You can choose from several side dishes that go nicely with the wide variety of fröccs beverages. Weekend concerts lift the mood during the summer.
Opening hours: Sun-Thurs 10am-12pm, Fri-Sat 10am-2am; winter Fri 4pm-12pm, Sat 4pm-2am
Watch out for: Fröccs
Address & telephone number: Szent István avenue 4-6 Balatonalmádi, Hungary +36 30 665 8038
Málnás Fruit Bar
Healthy meals and a good variety of drinks
Located in Siófok’s main square, this teeny tiny shop offers a great variety of drinks and cakes. Those who prefer healthy eating can find paleo cakes here, which are like crunchy coconut cookies, but they also have gluten-free dishes on the counter too, like the lavender chocolate cake. Choose from the long list of smoothies, syrups, sorbets and ice creams and you will certainly be smiling when you leave.
Opening hours: Mon-Sun 9am-9pm
Watch out for: Paleo and gluten-free dishes
Address & telephone number: Fő square 4 Siófok, Hungary +36 70 451 7221
Vinoteca Cocktail Bar & Fröccs Terrace
Boho design and various programs
Set in the beautiful panoramic part of Keszthely and close to the lake, this bar with its boho design and colorful programs certainly attracts many people. Not only you can participate in wine tasting evenings, but there are lots of concerts and parties organized here. It might be advisable to make a quick call in advance – the opening times are not advertised on the web, so it is worth checking, just in case.
Call for opening hours
Watch out for: Programs
Address & telephone number: Balaton shore Csík Ferenc avenue, Keszthely +36 70 947 4985
Limited access, exclusive bar
This very exclusive bar is a bit tricky to access: as part of the Tihany Sailing Club, only members can enter, as well as those who arrive by water. The latter means that anyone who arrives by boat may enjoy the treats of THE Bar – so get on a surfboard, little boat or waterbike and nibble on some of the sous-vide meats, fresh vegetables and fruits from the nearby market.
Call for opening hours
Watch out for: Exclusive meals
Address & telephone number: Kenderföld street 19 Tihany, Hungary +36 30 754 2845
Terazza Bistro & Bar
Panoramic view from the castle
Situated in beautiful and historical Sümeg, in the Káli basin, this bar captures the charm which is so tangible across the whole area. Káli basin is famous for its climate and its resemblance to Tuscany. If you feel fit enough to climb the steep hills of the Castle, your reward will not only be the beautiful panoramic view, but you will find this fine dining bar tucked away at the top. If you fancy a top-notch dish surrounded by an amazing view, then certainly try Terazza Bistro.
Opening hours: Wed-Thurs 12am-9pm, Fri-Sat 12am-12pm, Sun 12am-9pm
Watch out for: Fine dining
Address & telephone number: Csalogány street 7 Sümeg, Hungary +36 30 813 8447
Romantic spot for a sunset drink
The address certainly sounds romantic: not many places are located at the end of a pier, even on Lake Balaton. This location allows guests to enjoy the most awesome views both by day and by night. Not much can top watching a sunset from here, with a tasty cocktail in one hand and a good book in the other. With nice lounge music, big armchairs and, in the background, the murmur of Balaton itself, Stég Bar will beguile you again and again.
Opening hours: Mon-Sun 10am-2am (seasonally, usually from May until September)
Watch out for: Relaxing environment
Address: pierhead, Balatonföldvár, Hungary
Good food and refreshing drinks
Code Zero is visible even from a distance with its bold red décor. Here, everyone can find a tasty dish: meat lovers can choose from beef steak baked on hickory flakes with wasabi-flavored orange jam, or different fish, chicken and pork meals, but vegetarians are not forgotten either. You can also try grilled polenta with bacon bits. Don’t be surprised when your chosen dish is served on a granite plate – this means it won’t get cold so quickly.
Opening hours: Fri-Sun 10am-11pm (closed between October 1 and April 30)
Watch out for: Good food
Address & telephone number: Örkény István avenue 8-16 Csopak, Hungary +36 70 316 6244
By Barbara Boda