Marcali Travel Guide

Discover the best places to visit, things to do, and local culture and customs of Marcali, Hungary, in this comprehensive travel guide.

Introduction to Marcali

Marcali is a hidden gem located in the western region of Hungary, and is known for its serene landscapes, cultural landmarks, and delicious local cuisine. Nestled amongst the vineyards and rolling hills, Marcali is a great place to unwind and recharge. Whether you are a history buff, an adventure seeker, or a foodie, Marcali offers something for everyone. In this travel guide, we will take you through the best places to visit, things to do, and local culture and customs of Marcali.

List of Places to Visit in Marcali

Culturally Important Attractions: Museums and Historical Places

  • Museum of Marcali - showcases the history and culture of Marcali, including local handicrafts, pottery, and traditional costumes.

  • The Church of St. Stephen - The oldest church in Marcali, dating back to the 12th century, adorned with beautiful stained-glass windows and antique frescoes.

  • The Castle Ruins - the remains of an ancient fortification that dates back to the 13th century. This beautiful fortress is surrounded by lush vegetation and offers stunning panoramic views.

Natural Attractions of Marcali: Outdoor Adventures and Scenic Views

  • Lake Balaton - This shallow, warm-water lake is the largest lake in Europe, and is a must-visit destination when in Marcali. Boating, swimming, and fishing are popular activities here.

  • Belltower of Lajosfalu - a watchtower that offers a breathtaking bird’s eye view of the beautiful surroundings of Marcali.

  • Marcali Thermal Spa - provides guests with a unique spa experience, with a variety of saunas, steam rooms, and thermal pools, surrounded by natural beauty.

Hiking/Biking Routes of Marcali

  • The Balaton Bike Route - a 200 km-long cycling route around Lake Balaton, which is perfect for those who enjoy stunning views and picturesque landscapes.

  • Lake Balaton Uplands National Park - a beautiful park full of hiking and cycling trails, waterfalls, caves, and stunning views.

Best Things to Do in Marcali: Activities and Tours

  • Wine Tasting - Visit the local vineyards and taste delicious wines, while enjoying beautiful scenery.

  • Horse Riding - Explore the countryside on horseback, and enjoy the fresh air and natural beauty of Marcali.

  • Paragliding - Get a bird’s eye view of the city by going on a tandem paragliding flight.

Week-Long Itinerary for Marcali

Day Activity
Day 1 Explore the Museum of Marcali and the Castle Ruins
Day 2 Visit the Church of St. Stephen and take a relaxing dip in the Marcali Thermal Spa
Day 3 Go horseback riding and explore the Balaton Uplands National Park
Day 4 Take the Balaton Bike Route and explore the beautiful countryside
Day 5 Go wine tasting in the local vineyards
Day 6 Take a tandem paragliding flight and enjoy a panoramic view of Marcali
Day 7 Explore the Belltower of Lajosfalu and go swimming in Lake Balaton

Food and Drink Scene of Marcali

Must-Try Dishes

  • Fisherman’s soup - a delicious soup made with freshwater fish, vegetables, and paprika.

  • Goulash - a traditional Hungarian dish made with beef, vegetables, and paprika.

  • Kolbasz - a type of sausage made with pork, beef, and spices.

Local Beverages

  • Wine - Marcali is a well-known wine-growing area, and the local wineries produce some excellent wines.

  • Palinka - a traditional Hungarian fruit brandy, made from various fruits, including plum, apple, and apricot.

Where to Stay in Marcali: Hotels, Hostels, and Guesthouses

  • Hotel Lido - A four-star hotel located near Lake Balaton, offering beautiful views and excellent spa facilities.

  • Pension Marcali - A charming guesthouse located in the center of Marcali, with clean and comfortable rooms, and a friendly staff.

  • Hostel Villa Ingrid - A budget-friendly and cozy hostel, offering a central location and a homely atmosphere.

What to Buy in Marcali: Souvenirs and Local Products to Bring Home

  • Pottery - Marcali is famous for its handmade pottery, which you can find in many shops in the city.

  • Wine - Marcali produces some of the finest wines in Hungary, and you can find them in local wine shops and vineyards.

Local Culture and Customs of Marcali

Hungarians are known for their hospitality, and Marcali is no different. When visiting homes or restaurants, it is customary to remove your shoes before entering. Tipping is also common in Marcali, and it is polite to leave at least a 10% tip in restaurants.

Best Time to Visit Marcali

The best time to visit Marcali is during the summer months, from June to September, when the weather is warm and pleasant, and there are many outdoor activities to enjoy.

Do’s and Don’ts of Marcali


  • Try local delicacies, such as goulash, potteries, and wines.

  • Explore the beautiful countryside by bike or on foot.


  • Wear shoes inside homes or restaurants.

  • Forget to tip in restaurants.

Safety and Health

Safety in Marcali

Marcali is a safe city, with low crime rates. However, it is always advisable to take usual precautions, such as keeping an eye on your possessions when out in public and avoiding walking alone at night.

Health in Marcali

tap water in Marcali is safe to drink, and the city has several well-equipped medical facilities.

Getting to Marcali: Transportation Options and Logistics

Airports Near Marcali

The nearest airport to Marcali is Hévíz-Balaton Airport, which is about a 25-minute drive from the city.

Bus Stations Near Marcali

There are several bus stations in Marcali, serving various domestic and international destinations.

Other Options

You can also reach Marcali by train or by car.

How to Get Around in Marcali

The best way to get around Marcali is by bike or on foot, as the city is small and easy to navigate. Taxis and buses are also available for longer distances.

Where to Go Next from Marcali: Nearby Destinations and Excursions

From Marcali, you can visit other beautiful destinations nearby, such as Hévíz, Keszthely, and Tihany.


Marcali is a beautiful city with plenty to offer in terms of natural beauty, cultural attractions, and delicious food. Whether you are looking for adventure, relaxation, or history, Marcali is the perfect place to visit. We hope this travel guide has given you some useful tips and ideas for your trip to Marcali.