Living in Balaton area

Hi to all, I have a close friend coming from UK and want to live in Balaton with his wife and 2 kids. I wish to know if Siofok is a suitable place to live in ? Any person could recommend a family area ? My friend is an international consultant and can work from home so Balaton sound a good place for him and his family. Thanks in advance for your feedback and recommendations.

My neighbours house and mine is for sale in Zalaapati,14 km from lake balaton & Kesztheli the largest town on the lake. Both Cottages have more than 2 acres of land with nut & fruit trees.
Prices are around £19,000 each

Hi there!

My husband lives in Siofok so I have been there many times. It is an extremely beautiful town. I definitely recommend staying there since this town is at its best during the summer. The lake is very close so, depending on where you stay, you can even walk there. There are lots of restaurants and shops as well. However, be warned that because it is a summer town, lots of people go there to party and it can get very crowded and loud.

Since it is a town next to the lake, there are lots of boats going to different places. What I suggest is that the family can make accommodations in Siofok so that way, they have everything they need and the lake is close. If they want to, they can take day trips to places like Tihány, Badacsony, Balatonfüred, etc. The first and the last towns are escpecially beautiful and very family-oriented. Badacsony has vineyards and might also be good to take the whole family.

If they do plan in staying in Siofok, then I suggest staying in the quieter parts of town (like Kiliti). It's only about a 10-minute drive to the downtown area of siofok. It might also be a cheaper option to stay there.

I've been coming and going from there for the past 1.5 years but, this was my experience. Please do message me if you need more info.



I read your thing again and realized that you meant to find a place to live. The post I made before is still applicable. However, if your friend would like to buy a place, then the better and cheaper properties are in Kiliti. Very quiet, serene and picturesque.

Siofok is not a bad place and being the biggest place on the south side of the lake, a natural choice.  On the other hand, if you want to go to the airport, it's a distance.    I go to Balaton twice a year and it's definitely summer oriented.  It's dead in winter.

Don't know if your friend's family speak Hungarian.  Anywhere outside of the Budapest area is more difficult on language.  If no-one speaks Hungarian, it'll be more isolating for someone with kids if one of the adults ends up being away a lot.  International schools I expect do not exist. Balaton is generally better for German language as many Germans and Austrians visit regularly.

The Budapest areas for expats are in the centre of the town if single and for families, district II/IIA (2/2A), III (3) and XII (12).  Further out, towards the West expats like Biatorbagy, Telki, Paty (cars needed) and Budakeszi (my locale) amd Torokbalint (both with Budapest buses).

Aures99 wrote:

and want to live in Balaton


I live near Lake Balaton, and while daily seeing the lake is very nice, unless there is some special reason for living near the lake (other than romantic notions that is must be grand), the issues others already mentioned do matter. For example, yes, it really is rather dead here out of season, and very crowed with tourists in the season and with lots of mosquitoes.....

If you have the means, consider doing what Hungarians with means do: Live most of the year in your apartment in Budapest, and own a house near Lake Balaton, and visit the lake as much as you wish. Gives you the best of both worlds. And this is actually quite common: our road has 20 houses, and my wife and I are the only ones who live here full time, and year round.

Hi, we used a really good property buyers agent in the lake balaton region and i'll send you a pm with the details :) she doesn't just find you a house, she helps set up your new life too and translates where needed..

Hi there,

If they have two kids the biggest issue will be to find appropriate schools for the kids. Balaton is not very well-known of its high standards or international schools. Especially, if they are approaching or over 11 years old. From schools point of view Keszthely, Balatonfüred or a lovely town nearby called Veszprém would be a much better option on the long term. If they need more help to find out their options I am happy to help with the search regarding schools or places to live.


andreamorris wrote:

From schools point of view Keszthely, Balatonfüred or a lovely town nearby called Veszprém would be a much better option on the long term.

I do think it is important to point out that Keszthely and Balatonfüried/Veszprem are in two different counties in Hungary. Logistics living in one county, and enrolling one's children in another county, may be complicated.

And getting your children to school may be a problem. Public transportation here has limitations. Not that it is not good (it is rather good actually), but time tables and connections can vary quite a bit if you rely on buses.

And IMHO, Veszprem has the better schools.

Yes, I agree. It would be a nightmare to live in Siófok and enrol your child to school in Veszprém/Keszthely or Füred. I meant to suggest to choose one of these towns for living rather than Siófok.

andreamorris wrote:

Yes, I agree. It would be a nightmare to live in Siófok and enrol your child to school in Veszprém/Keszthely or Füred. ...

In the public system, to enrol your child in a school you need the address card and you only get priority in the area in which you live (or rather the child lives) and has an address card.  There's almost no choice in some towns with only one high school (age 11 means high school).   

With two or more kids of differing ages, the logistics of attending different schools with an early start or differing end times plus them being some distance apart would be quite a challenge.  But it's possible to find schools with both primary and secondary schools on the same site. 

Private schools obviously are different.   Home schooling is possible but from what I've heard,  there is no experience of that system in HU.  I've heard the HU government and teachers actively discourage it.

Holiday home, Balaton
Everyday home, anywhere else.