RACKEVE 46km. South of Budapest, a small town founded by Serbian refugees fleeing the Ottoman Turks. The Serbian Orthodox Church they built in 1487 is the oldest Orthodox church in Hungary, with icons of the apostles and scenes from the life of Christ. Unfortunately the new settlers could not enjoy their new home and church for very long as Hungary also fell to the Turks in 1526.
|Serbian Orthodox Church|
The fields surrounding the town turn from green to red in September and the produce is a big export earner for the country. Many tourists also come to admire the flowery embroidery of the region or to visit the Baroque Cathedral built in the 18th century with its altar carved from Carrera marble or the Archbishop's Palace built at the same time and containing a 120 000 volume library with medieval illuminated manuscripts and a Bible signed by Luther.
Anyone spending a few days in Hungary cannot miss seeing the name of Petofi Sandor. Just a bit North-East of Kalocsa is KISKOROS birth place of Sandor Petofi revolutionary, poet and actor, his Nemzeti Dal (National Song) was declaimed from the steps of the National Museum on the first day of the 1848 Revolution and is the Call to Arms for freedom ever since. His death at the battle of Segesvar in July 1849 at the age of 26 holds him in a class of his own.
Palinka has a special place in Hungarian country life, it can be made of anything apples, apricot, corn, poppy seed, etc. etc. etc. folks are proud of their own brew and gift it to family, friends and guests. Many a Guesthouse I visited welcomed me with a home brew and after the 2nd or 3rd glass we were old friends.