The Hungarian Guide - Investing and retiring in Hungary

  • A stunning capital with unique setting A stunning capital with unique setting
  • walking and birdwatching paradise walking and birdwatching paradise
  • undisturbed nature rich in rare species undisturbed nature rich in rare species
  • enjoy the 144 mile lakeside cycle track enjoy the 144 mile lakeside cycle track
  • Teeming with History Teeming with History
  • over 300 Thermal Health Spas and warm lakes over 300 Thermal Health Spas and warm lakes
  • picturesque lakes with Carp weighing over 100 lb picturesque lakes with Carp weighing over 100 lb
  • Feast on delicious sunripened local fruit Feast on delicious sunripened local fruit
  • Lake Balaton gets as warm as the Caribbean in the summer Lake Balaton gets as warm as the Caribbean in the summer
  • Tranquil Lake Balaton Tranquil Lake Balaton
  • Lush rolling hills of western Hungary Lush rolling hills of western Hungary
  • buy a thatched cottage for under £30 000.. buy a thatched cottage for under £30 000..
  • horsemen and nature lovers paradise horsemen and nature lovers paradise
  • Europe's second largest freshwater lake Europe's second largest freshwater lake
  • A paradise for watersport enthusiasts A paradise for watersport enthusiasts
  • Tihany peninsula- a pearl of history and nature Tihany peninsula- a pearl of history and nature

Country facts

Sunset at Lake Balaton

Sunset at Lake Balaton

Area:  35,920 sq miles – approx the same size as Ireland ( North and the Republic )

Population:  10 million – almost 2 million live in the capital city Budapest – low migration / movement which indicates the Hungarians are deeply attached to their national, culture and linguistic heritage

Language:  98% Hungarian

Religions:  68% Roman Catholic, 20% Protestant, 5% Jewish, 5% Lutheran only 0.5% Muslim ( UK 4.8% )

Currency:  Hungarian Forint ( HUF ) – approx 365 HUF to £1 Jan 2014

Politics:  Democracy with President and Prime Minister

Economy:  Member of the EU since 2004

Average net income approx £100 per week

Major industries Metallurgy, building materials, contract manufacturing, processed foods, chemicals, motor vehicle assembly, pharmeuticals, transport and logistics.

EU accounts for over 66% of trade

Recent History:  At the beginning of the 20th Century The Austrian –Hungarian empire was the most powerful entity  in Europe. This came to an end during the first World War. In fact Hungary was on the losing side in both World Wars. In 1919 Hungary lost two thirds of its land to Serbia, Slovakia, Romania and Ukraine.

At the end of the second World War Hungary was under control of the Soviets and Communism introduced despite the low level of support from the Hungarians themselves. The students of Budapest led the uprising against communism in 1956 but the Soviets sent in the troops to quell the uprising.

In 1989 Hungary played an important part in the fall of Communism by opening its borders allowing East Germans to enter Austria. Since then democratic elections have been held and businesses are now privately owned. EU membership was granted in 2004.

Hungary joined NATO in 1999.