Time stands still in Hortobágy, it is today as it was a hundred years ago. Designated a world heritage site 1999, Hortobágy welcomes visitors to experience their world famous traditions. These two days between the dates of 12-14 July are Equestrian Days, showcasing the best of traditional Hungarian horse culture. (Event schedule available at the bottom of the article).
Over the years “Hortobágy Horse Riding Days” has grown into a celebration of horsemanship, and of Matai, the horse breed, as well as the stud horse breeding work, carried out there.
Three days in the land of the foals!
No great traditional event is complete without traditional food, and on these days, you can experience traditional shepherds’ food, buffalo meat, beef stew among the taste sensations. The event will be a real gastronomic experience, because the Hortobágy Csárda, famous for its Hungarian cuisine, and specialities like the “betyarburger”, made of 100% gray cattle.
As with all great Hungarian celebrations there are wares for sale from traditional craftsmen. Children can play among the folk games, handicraft tents, or enjoy the all-day stage performances.
The long-term goal of the event is to preserve and nurture the Hungarian equestrian traditions for the future, by introducing as many people as possible to the skills and knowledge associated with these traditions, folk music and the use of traditional equipment.
Programs for visitors are supported by Debrecen!
History of Hortobágy + Debrecen
The relationship between Debrecen and Hortobágy dates back a long time into the past, as the 300-year-old Hortobágy stud farm was founded by the free royal town of Debrecen. It is one of the oldest studs farms in Hungary, first mentioned in an archive of 1671. The town was organized to provide the horses to its host community. The Hortobágy puszta belonged to Debrecen for centuries until 1948. It provided for the needs of the Debrecen citizens for a long time, with thousands of animals grazing on Hortobágy land.