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Wine rally fun around Lake Balaton

Sights

The 21st Hungarian Wine Route Rally this year took competitors around the Lake Balaton wine region; Badacsony, Balatonboglár, Upper Balaton, Balatonfüred-Csopak, NagySomlói and Zala. In addition to the large wineries, smaller operations were also visited in a bid to popularize Hungarian tourism, the wine regions, winemakers and safe transport.

Since 1996, the last weekend of August has been marked by the Hungarian Wine Route Rally, taking competitors to visit some of the most beautiful landscapes and most interesting wine cellars in the country. Each destination has its own mood, where the drivers, safely parked up for the day, have the opportunity not only to taste, but also to learn about local habits, to go around the estates and cellar systems, and talk with Hungary’s top winemakers. Road safety plays a major role in the competition; thus far no accidents have occurred, and the route is always under by police control. In addition to speed  

controls, drivers are often subject to breath tests as well. From the beginning, the philosophy has always been to create a friendly, carefree mood among the racers. It’s a great time to build new business relationships and friendships, far away from the noise of the city but in the natural beauty of some hidden region. This year’s official early morning start began, for the second time, in Kincsem Park on August 28. Dr. Sándor Fazekas, minister of agriculture and one of the patrons of the rally, as well as Dr. Miklós Dukai, deputy state secretary of the Ministry of Interior, greeted the participants at the starting gate. Katalin Süle, spokesperson for the National

Chamber of Agricultural (NAK) and chairman of the Zala County chamber of NAK was the female host of the rally. The three-day event was not just about the love of wine; there were also funny skill tasks, and authentic lunches and dinners with live music, and many surprise prizes. László Fekete, Mihály Polyóka, Róbert Tóth won the overall title, in a repeat of last year. Registration for the 22nd Wine Route Ralle has already started; those who want to be part of this exciting adventure of a lifetime, rather than just read about it, should enter their team at the event website (www. borokutja.hu) as soon as possible.

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