Is wild camping allowed in Hungary?

No, wild camping and free standing are unfortunately not officially allowed in Hungary. In rural areas and away from Lake Balaton, however, an eye is usually turned and camping is tolerated.

Last researched: Autumn 2020

Unfortunately, wild camping is not allowed in Hungary. The rules are very strict, especially for free camping in mobile homes away from designated campsites. In rural areas, however, you will usually find an owner who will let you stay overnight on his property.

Thanks to the "Erdőtörvény" (Forest Act), camping in forests is not a problem as long as your stay does not exceed 24 hours. However, this only applies to campers on foot or by bike, wild camping with motorized vehicles is not permitted.

Due to the strict laws, bivouacking and staying overnight in the car to restore driving ability is unfortunately not allowed.

Wild camping near a ruin
Wild camping near a ruin
Walk through the forest
Walk through the forest

Tips and tricks for wild camping in Hungary

Hungary has long been a popular tourist destination. With picturesque mountain ranges, a multitude of thermal baths, Lake Balaton and many other lakes, and of course the delicious goulash, this is no wonder. Although wild camping is not officially allowed in Hungary, it is largely tolerated in remote areas. So that you don't get any problems with the authorities on your journey through this beautiful country, we have put together a few points you should pay attention to.

Fires
Especially during the summer, bush and forest fires often occur in Hungary. During this time, campfires are sometimes even forbidden at official fireplaces. In forests and grasslands, open fires are prohibited year-round. More detailed information and an overview of areas where fires are strictly prohibited can be found at the following link: https://www.katasztrofavedelem.hu/.

Traffic
Hungary has a zero-alcohol-level limit. If you are stopped with more than 0.5 per mil, you will be charged with criminal proceedings, and your driver's license will be revoked. Fines of up to 1.100 € can be applied on the spot. If you are not able to pay this fine, the police are entitled to confiscate your vehicle.

Toll
If you want to use motorways and motorways marked with an "M" in Hungary, you have to buy an electronic vignette. The prices depend on the total weight of your vehicle. Motorhomes need the e-vignette of vehicle category D2, regardless of the weight. You can buy it online before your trip https://ematrica.nemzetiutdij.hu/. You should check if the information on the vignette is correct, to avoid later problems. If you want to buy it locally, you can do this at most petrol stations or border crossings. If you don't have a vignette and use the motorway, you have 60 minutes after the entrance time to buy one without having to pay additional fees. Penalties for driving without a vignette vary between €45 and €200, depending on the type of vehicle.

10 interesting, bizarre and funny facts about Hungary

Lake Balaton is known to be located in Hungary and is the largest inland lake in Central Europe. Typical dishes? Clear, paprika, Hungarian salami, and goulash. But did you know that what in Hungary is called Gulyás is rather a goulash soup, and what most people call Pörkölt is called goulash? Here we have compiled some interesting facts for you so that you can get a little more (though not necessarily important) information about Hungary.

Fact #1 - Strange world records
Hungary has a few strange world records, such as most bottle twists on the back of the hand. It was 146 within a minute.

Fact #2 - Pinball Museum
The Flipper Museum (Flippermúzeum) in Budapest is Europe's largest interactive pinball exhibition with 130 pinball machines. All pinball machines can be used free of charge, so the entrance fee covers everything.

Fact #3 - Toasting with beer glasses
In Hungary, it is considered rude to toast with beer glasses. This is the result of a legend from 1848 and is still done today.

Fact #4 - Subway network
The Budapest subway network is the third oldest subway network in the world and the oldest functioning electric subway in Europe.

Fact #5 - Inventions
We owe Hungary many inventions. For example, they invented the ballpoint pen, the magic cube, and the DC motor, or contributed significantly to them.

Fact #6 - The language
Hungarian is one of the 20 most difficult languages to learn in the world, especially for English-speaking people.

Fact #7 - Number 96
The number 96 is of particular importance, 896 counts as Hungary's founding year, buildings may not be higher than 96 feet and the anthem lasts, recited at the right speed, 96 seconds.

Fact #8 - Hollywood
Hollywood has its origin (partly) in Hungary. The founder of Paramount Pictures, as well as the founder of the Fox Film Cooperation, comes from Hungary.

Fact #9 - Red
Want an example of a difficult language? In Hungarian, there are two words for the color red: vörös for lively and piros for inanimate objects.

Fact #10 - The Pengő
Pengő was the Hungarian currency before the introduction of the forint. Due to hyperinflation after the Second World War, the banknote with the highest nominal value, the 100 million trillion-Pengő, was introduced to the market.

Everything you need to know for your trip

Equipment

  • Warning triangle Yes
  • Safety vest Yes, one per occupant
  • First aid kit Yes
  • Replacement lamp set No
  • Spare tyre / repair set No
  • Fire extinguisher No
  • Tow rope No
  • Tear rope for all trailers No

Driving

  • Do I need a vignette, or are there tolls? Yes
  • Right hand trafficTo avoid dazzling other road users, you need to readjust or mask your headlights if they have asymmetrical light and are right-hand drive
  • Is it compulsory to drive with lights on during the day? Yes

Information

  • Is the tap water potable? Yes
  • Socket type: C+F
  • Energency numbers: 112
  • Currency: Forint (HUF)
  • Official Languages: Hungarian
  • Country licence plate code: H

Average prices, in €

  • Price coffee rounded: 1.00
  • Price beer rounded: 1.00

Entry conditions for animals

  • You need a valid EU pet passport in which your animal is clearly identified (microchip or tattoo), as well as a rabies vaccination valid on entry. The rabies vaccination must be at least 21 days old, but not older than 6 months. Yes
  • If your entry is from a non-EU country with a reduced rabies status, you must have a rabies antibody test carried out approximately four weeks before you enter the country and have it entered on your EU pet passport. Yes
  • Your dog must be treated for tapeworms 24 to 120 hours before entry. No
  • In addition to a valid EU pet passport with all the required entries, you also need an official veterinary health certificate (max. 10 days old). No
  • The import of fighting dogs or breeds classified as dangerous is not permitted. No
  • Special features: In public dogs must be kept on a leash and in some areas they must be muzzled.

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