Dear Visitor! Let us invite you for a short virtual walk in Kalocsa, the town which is almost as old as the foundation of the Hungarian State and is one of the oldest cities of our country. We tried to collect you all the treasure we are so proud of and is so typical of us living here.
Forrás: A városnéző videót köszöjük a Kalocsa Korona Toursnak!
Our town is a real, lovely little town by River Danube where the air is clean and you can take a sightseeing tour by bike, learn about handcraft, immerse in local traditions, admire the treasure collected by the archbishops over a thousand years and also have a rest tasting delicious paprika dishes, as Kalocsa is the capital of growing spice paprika.
In the heart of the downtown you can discover one of the nicest Baroque Cathedrals of Hungary with its magnificent Angster organ which was even played by composer Franz Liszt in the 19th century who acknowledged it.
Near the Cathedral you can catch sight of the Archiepiscopal Palace surrounded by horse chestnut trees and the Holy Trinity Square where the open-air Christmas Crib is placed before Christmas. In the evenings the story of the Three Magi is presented by local people. The 18th century buildings of the square still preserve the historical atmosphere of the place. You can discover all the reminiscences of the one thousand-year-old past in these buildings and the institutes operating there.
The Archiepiscopal Library is uniquely rich in codices and incunabula dating back to the first centuries of book printing. The main attraction of the library is definitely the Baroque reading room furnished with great care and artistic sense by Archbishop Ádám Patachich (1732-1784). The Archiepiscopal Treasury and Archives preserve a remarkably varied collection to present the history of the one thousand-year-old Kalocsa Archbishopric.
In addition to the outstanding repertory of birth, marriage and death register, it also offers plenty of information on local education, economy, politics and public life, law court as well as documents of church administration. It is obvious, as the archbishops of the diocese governed huge country districts in the Middle Ages and they even lead the army in patriotic fights.
In the 19th century Kalocsa was developed to become a school town which gave home to prominent Hungarian institutes. Saint Stephen Secondary Grammar School can boast of a still operating observatory which was established by Archbishop Lajos Haynald in the former Jesuit Grammar School.
The extraordinarily thorough Sun observations made by Jesuit monk astronomer Gyula Fényi made Kalocsa more noted than Budapest for the astronomers of the 19th and 20th century. Based on the spiritual heritage of this historical past every year we organize the Blue Bird Festival of Charity associated to the name of bassoonist György Lakatos. This event has become a real gem of Hungarian cultural life over the past 20 years.
We may say that the locals do not just maintain traditions, but actually live in them. The typical Kalocsa folk art motifs are well-known everywhere as they appear on folk costumes – even nowadays a lot of people are involved in embroidery making and some elderly ladies still wear folk costumes in the street every day – and they can also be discovered on the walls of houses due to the skilful hands of painting women or on the deservedly famous Kalocsa porcelain.
The products of the Kalocsa Porcelain Painting Manufacture have been featured by the media several times nowadays. Also Prince William and Princess Catherine appreciated the tea service decorated with beautiful old Kalocsa motifs which was sent to them by Kalocsa town to congratulate on their wedding.
McLaren pilots Louis Hamilton and Jensen Button were presented with hand-painted porcelain cups by the Kalocsa delegation attending the Hungarian Grand Prix in 2011.
In 2012 Tamás Nádas stunt pilot world champion flew the Kalocsa folk art motif up to the sky and at the World Championship organized in Hungary he could step on the first place on the winners’ stand in his overalls decorated with the same motifs.
Fashion designer Tünde Hrivnák created a collection called By Me Spacy and by this she could prove that these old-time folk art motifs look not only elegant on modern garments but they also make them unique. This collection has already been presented in numerous countries of the world, which suggests that the local folk costume is definitely a living tradition of our nation and it also meets the requirements of modern time fashion.
Children literally grow into folk dancing in our town and region. Folk dance ensembles and art schools have thousands of members. The Folk Dance Festival along River Danube, which has been organized for several decades, demonstrates all the folk dance groups along the river and also numerous foreign dance groups are eager to return and take part in the popular six-day-long event.
It happened in the 20th century that the folk art of the town and the locally produced spice paprika started to gain reputation all over the world. The houses in Kalocsa and nearby are decorated in a very special way in autumn. Strings of red peppers form a beautiful red carpet between the eaves and windows. This is the traditional way of desiccating pepper pods before grinding. The air is filled with the sweet, piquant fragrance of paprika. The Paprika Museum was placed in an old building belonging to the church in the centre of the town.
The exhibition gives a thorough presentation of the history of Hungarian spice paprika. The sight and smell of pepper strings hung on the beams enhances the experience for visitors. The locally made paprika dishes, such as the Kalocsa fish soup, tripe and cellar stew are deservedly famous. The Kalocsa Paprika Festival is an outstanding event of our multicoloured gastronomy. As a part of the festival the cooking competition of paprika dishes is organized every year.
Museum Károly Viski must also be mentioned here, as it became The Museum of the Year in 2002. History and folk life are demonstrated together in the exhibition halls of the museum. The 200-year-old country house, which was built on a small heap of ground and the Bakod Horse Farm also form an organic part of our past. Visitors can learn about folk art, local traditions, life in the old-time farms and animal keeping.
The beautiful bank of River Danube and Lake Szelid, the gem hidden among poplars are also regarded to be main tourist attractions thanks to the medicinal water and nice surroundings which attract lots of tourists here in summer.
Returning to the heart of the town we can finish our walk in the Park which was planted and looked after by the Archbishops over the centuries.
We do hope that after taking this virtual walk you will feel like strolling in Kalocsa individually as well. We look forward to welcoming you to our town.