One of the first big festivals to be organised in the Tokaj wine region was the Whit weekend festivities in Sárospatak which celebrate Saint Elisabeth of Hungary. In addition there is folk dancing, a market along the main street in the castle district and the re-enactment of the 1458 Botkő Battle by the Zemplén Equestrian Society held in the Castle garden’s above the river, a lovely spot to watch hoardes of costumed soldiers, peasants and lords battle it out for victory. This is a weekend of horsemenship, fairs and traditional clothes and weapons. A spectacular show in an amazing setting!
The traditional procession around the town, in which people dressed up in traditional 12th century clothing to commemorate the birth of St Elisabeth of Hungary, was not be held in 2015. We’ll let you know as soon as we can whether the tradition will be back in 2016. The procession leads from the castle around the historic town of Sárospatak to return to the church where mass is held on Whit Monday. This is followed by a short religious procession. Whit Monday is also the first day of the 5-day pilgrimage to Košice in Slovakia, the end of the St Elisabeth Way. This pilgrimage route, which leads up through the Zemplén hills and over the border, along the river valley to the city of Košice, includes both ideas for reflection and information about local products.