You are probably asking yourself right now, “Where in the world is Szombathely?”. It is situated in the Western part of Hungary bordering Austria and is the 10th largest city in the country. Actually, same feeling when I heard the word for the first time and I’m sure I didn’t get the correct pronunciation. Say (som.bat.hey), (sz) is pronounced as (s) in Hungarian.
Every year in August, Szombathely (Savaria in Roman) commemorates the establishment of the city by the Romans in 43AD through a colorful, dramatic and historical carnival. The city transforms itself into a real Roman settlement featuring period events, wonderful attractions and people dressed in costumes. Traditionally, the carnival lasts for four days (21-24 this year), but there are also related events days before the festival like wine contests and theater plays.
The photos above show the 2011 Savaria Carnival activities
Summer is no question a good time to visit this part of Hungary. Apart from attending the historical carnival, there are also other things that are of interests. On top of the list would be to visit ISEUM – a 2nd century complex of temples built to honor the Egyptian goddess Isis. Among other things to see are Bishop’s Palace, Szombathely Cathedral, Smidt Museum, Bela Bartok Concert Hall, Szombathely Museum and the Garden of Ruins.
I’ll be posting pictures and discussing about those places in my next blog.
If you can understand Hungarian, visit this website for more information.