Bicycling to Szent Mihály Kápolna

With the harvest finished last Sunday, the family was able to spend the morning on a bicycle trip.  This trip took us 10km along the Balaton bicycling path to Szent Mihály kápolna (St. Michael’s chapel), a small church atop a hill at the edge of lake Balaton.  The trip was pleasant; as you would expect the path along the lake is flat for the most part.  At about half way, we stopped for a break at a small cove by the lake that offered this pleasing view:

You can see the Badacsony hill, our previous bicycling destination, in the distance.  Part of the path we rode upon is shown here, with a glimpse of the chapel atop the hill in the background:

Once at the hill, we pushed our bikes to the top.  Here are a couple of scenes from in and around the chapel:

Balaton village churches: Nemesvita

We’ll be back to the lake this afternoon to finish up the harvest of the grapes this weekend.  Before we go, here’s part 3 of my tour of village churches in our area.

Nemesvita is the next village north from our home in Balatonederics along the slopes of the Kesthely hills.  Nemesvita is further from the lake with no direct lake access and fewer nice views of the lake, and thus has few vacation homes (other than a very nice horse ranch/resort) than Balatongyörök or Baltonederics did. The village consists mainly of narrow roads wandering up the hillside, with simple, stucco-covered homes. The templom in Nemesvita stands rather high up on the hillside, offering inviting views as it rises above the village.  From up-close, it is a bit run down and not as tidy as the others so far, though on the Saturday that I biked there I was able to hear some glorious organ music blasting from the church as someone practiced. It was great to just rest and listen to the music a bit, and I found myself surprised that these small churches in the small villages have organs that sound so grand.

Without further ado, here’s a set of photos from the village:

Balaton village churches: Balatonederics

I’ll have a post on our weekend activities by the lake in the next couple of days, but for now here is the second installment in my series on village churches, at our home village at Lake Balaton, Balatonederics (the first installment is here).

Like many lake communities, Balatonederics has a mixture of permanent village homes and vacation/weekend homes.  The lower part of the village (where the church is located) is densely populated with a few thousand people.  As you reach the upper slopes, you get more fields and weekend homes.

At the center of the village is the templom (church).  Balatonederics’s church seems to be quite well maintained.  Here are a few perspectives:

View from above (actually from our driveway)

View from the outskirts of the village

Another shot from just within the village

Close-up view

Balaton village churches: Balatongyörök

My father-in-law likes to drive to regions around the lake taking pictures of birds.  He has some great shots, but I could never really understand the patience it takes to get these pictures.  Lately, though, I’ve begun to understand better, as I’ve taken up biking to local villages to visit and take pictures of the village churches.  Every village I’ve visited, even if just a small collection of 20-30 homes, will have a church at its center.  These churches are usually simple, elegant structures.  I’ve been able to get to 5 or 6 different villages so far, and periodically I’ll share pictures from these trips.

The first visit is to Balatongyörök. Balatongyörök is probably the least traditional of the villages that I’ve visited, since the village hillside is situated directly above lake Balaton and is now populated by large vacation homes.  Still, the old church remains, with a great view of the lake (unfortunately, I couldn’t get any shots of the church and the lake because of the adjacent forrest).