The Tokaj wine region was named after the town of Tokaj, its former commercial centre, set under Tokaj Hill at the southernmost point of the region, on the confluence of the rivers Tisza and Bodrog. With some good wineries, plenty of mid-range accommodation and a specialist coffee roasting café, this attractive town is a good place to stay, particularly for those who love river trips and sports.
The Tokaj Wine Festival is gradually changing from a festival for the masses to a more cultured affair. You can taste wines from many of the top producers of the region, wander along the market on the pedestrian main street and pop into the wineries that are based in the town.
Harvest Days is one of the oldest festivals in the region, a real celebration of bringing in the grapes with processions, folk costumes and music.
Things to do and see
The attractive 18th-century mansion with shady courtyard garden built by Greek traders today houses the Tokaj Museum with a collection of ecclesiastical art, an interesting selection of vineyards and winemaking equipment and wine labels through the ages and temporary exhibitions.
The newly opened Tokaj Wine Museum nearby introduces visitors to some of the intricacies of the Tokaj wine region.
After a total reconstruction, the 19th-century Eclectic Great Synagogue has become a thriving conference and cultural centre.
Rent a bike from Tourinform Tokaj to explore the area.
Hike up to the television broadcasting tower atop Tokaj hill (Kopasz-hegy or Tokaji-hegy) to see far, far away over the Great Plain.
All aboard for a boat trip on the river, which can even be combined with a wine tasting.
Eating and drinking
Hajnalka Prácser of Erzsébet Winery, who is also a coffee lover, set up a great little café on the main street opposite Tokaj Museum, Tokaj Coffee Roasting Company (HU: Tokaji Kávépörkölő Manufaktúra és Kávéház). As the name suggests, they roast their own coffee (including single-origin and fairtrade), offer a wide variety of coffee preparations (V-60, drip decanter, aeropress, syphon, cold drip) and even bake their own delicious British/American style cakes and muffins. http://tokajcoffee.com/en
Taste wines at some great winemakers and wineries, including in the huge Rákóczi cellar on the main square behind the statue of Bacchus.
Fancy some freshly fried fish, sitting on a bench overlooking the river? Check out the wooden hut next to the bridge at the confluence of the Tisza and Bodrog.