Hungarian Blue Trail / Kektura 👣 🇭🇺 oldest trail in Europe thru-hike – A Walk Across Europe VI
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Hungarian Blue Trail / Kektura 👣 🇭🇺 oldest trail in Europe thru-hike – A Walk Across Europe VI

Hi my name’s Ashley, and in 2018 I went
for a walk. A 2,500 mile walk across Eastern Europe… From the wild woodlands of Hungary, to the warm waters of the Mediterranean – this is my adventure! From the Austrian border I’d follow the
national blue trail – the oldest long-distance hiking trail in Europe.
The trail would take me on a winding route, first to the extinct volcanoes around
Lake Balaton, onwards to Budapest, and then across the country to Romania! In late October I’d walked into Vienna all the way from the southern tip of Spain, I went home for a few months to make some more hiking money and wait out the
worst of the cold. So, on a cold morning on the 25th of March I picked up my
backpack once again and followed the Danube out town… Yesterday I left Vienna and did 19.5 miles on my first day and by the end of it my body was
just, really not used to all this hiking after four months of rest. I’m on here until probably tomorrow morning, and then I’ll be heading south through Eastern Austria, eventually reaching Mount Irrot-Ko. It’s
right on the border. And then I’ll spend the next 700 miles walking through hungary! As for the Danube, the next time I see it
will be in Budapest in maybe two or three weeks. So it’s day 10 and I’m camped on Irrot-Ko.
It’s a mountain it’s like 880 meters high and it’s right on
the border of Austria and Hungary. Last night I was hoping it’d be my first
night in Hungary but when I got in the tent at night I looked on the GPS and I’d kind of
wandered over into the Austrian side of the border again so really this was my last night in Austria and it’ll be my first day in Hungary. There’s an observation tower on top of
Irrot-Ko and it gives you a 360 view of back to where I walked across in Austria, but also ahead to Hungary, and I must say Hungary just looks like one big flat pancake. This is Lake Balaton, which is the largest lake in Central Europe I believe… it’s enormous! I thought Hungary was a flat easy
country, but all these short steep climbs they were killing me! I couldn’t believe I was the same guy who’d walked across the Alps last year! It’s the 16th of April and I’m in a town
called Zirc. I’m in this lovely guesthouse, but it’s more like a 2-bed house. I’ll give you a tour of ‘cos it’s pretty cool. This is the bedroom. Double bed, there’s two pull out beds as well
for four people to sleep in here, Flat-screen TV on the wall. Another bedroom here, it’s pretty much the same, space for four people. This is the upstairs, so I’ll take
you downstairs… Got a bathroom here. It’s nice to have a shower, the last guest house I
was in didn’t have a shower, so yeah, pretty standard. Kitchen, it’s very
nice. The dining room, I haven’t dined in here just dumped a
load of stuff on the table. I’ll use that when I’m packing. But this is the pièce de résistance… Got a pool table! Shame I’m on my own ‘cos I’ve got no
one to play pool with. But at least if I play myself I might win a game. So last night I stayed in a motel. Wasn’t
all that great really, but it was cheap. But when I was there there
was some other guys who were making some kind of webseries on the
blue trail and they interviewed me, which was quite surreal… I’m only about 30 miles from Budapest, but that’s as the crow flies, and the blue trail is nothing like a
straight line. I’ve still got a lot of meandering to do, so it’s gonna be probably a week maybe till I’m in Budapest. I think when you’re walking long distances you can’t really think of things in terms of “I’m gonna make Cyprus”, Cyprus is far away from what I think on a
day-to-day basis. So right now I’m just like “oh I’m walking to Budapest” and when
I get to Budapest I’ll be “Right, I’m walking to the Romanian border.” I get to the Romanian border it would be “right, I’m walking to Brasov in Romania” probably. Or even somewhere closer than that. Spring was here and the forest was alive! By day I would walk through a green world inhabited by deer and hunting cabins… …and in the evenings I would cook my pasta with a front row seat to the
sunset. It’s not the clearest of stamps but you can
definitely tell it’s this little house. I think it’s called “Som-“, “Somol-“, “Somlyova” Possibly. On top of a hill one day, I spotted the
Danube and I knew that Budapest couldn’t be much further away. Today is April 27th. I’ve been on the road just over 30 days and have just left Budapest today, this
morning. The Blue Trail doesn’t go right through the city, it just goes to
the outskirts really and in the hills above it so the other day I caught a tram in
from… You know I’m not even gonna try and pronounce it ‘cos I’ll just get it
completely wrong! But it begins with a H that’s what I know! Yeah, I got a tram in from there and then this morning got the tram back out and
I’ve just been walking in the forest and the Hills above Budapest for the last few
hours. Plan is, heading kind of like north-northwest slightly at the minute, and there’s a ferry crossing at a place called Visegrad which will get me across the Danube, and then I’ll go across the north of the country for a bit For most of the time I was following the
blue trail through forests, and though I always thought I’d be bored after hiking
through the Alps I was the most relaxed I’d been for months. Each village had a water supply to drink from, and although the heat of a day was brutal, the shade of a forest was never far away. I think that’s Kekes, Hungary’s highest peak which I’ll be going over tomorrow. Looks like that’s it. I hope that doesn’t happen tomorrow when I’m going over it. After more than a month on the trail, the climbs were easier, life in the forest was relaxing, I felt at peace out on the trail. Humans had evolved to
be outside, to be among the trees and in nature. Not work indoors in artificial light, and especially on the night shift. It was a primal feeling but I was far from home but felt at home. The last hour so I’ve been walking literally
on the Hungarian-Slovakian border. When I crossed into Hungary from
Austria I never saw a “welcome to Hungary” sign but this maybe makes up
for it… Pretty cool. and the Slovakia one’s down there but I just can’t be bothered walking down to it. Trust the winds to get up just as I was half way across. So I’m in Nyirbator and it’s a 45 mile
hike to Satu Mare, which is just on the other side of the Romanian border and
where I’m gonna head to. It’s gonna be a tough one, it’s going to be a road walk, and I’m
gonna try and knock out 25 today and then the other 20 tomorrow and so yeah let’s get it started! A two-day slog on roads brought me to the city of Satu Mare in Romania. Ahead of me was a land of bears, wolves and vicious dogs. But first I would have to survive my first hotel in
Romania, but that’s a story for next time…


  • David 608

    Man you deserve some sponsorship for your adventures. Best regards from Slovakia.
    ps: Try to hike in next season our red trail (Road of Slovak National Uprising Heroes) part of E8 trail

  • martahartex

    Great! I really was waiting for the second part of your walk all across Europe. I love the way of making your videos in your own calm and unagitaded manner. Hope you will have more views on your videos than in the first part. Keep on walking!

    All the best,

    a long distance hiker from Germany

  • Jodz Harrison

    Hello Ashley…..great video mate another section as beautiful as the last…. its been so interesting to watch your series of vids on your epic hike it truly is amazing and inspiring….hope all well, cheers mate

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