Where to go for strawberry picking
I remember going to the countryside with my parents about 15 years ago and passing by the Sovkhoz Lenin, a former soviet state-run farm. My parents told me that you could pick strawberries there and that they paid in berries: pick ten buckets and take one home. It seemed very exciting to me, but I never made it to the Sovkhoz. However, I found this opportunity here, in Hungary, and an even better one: there are many farms where you can come to pick not only strawberries but also raspberries, cherries, peaches, and even walnuts, grapes, and figs. I tell you where and how.
Strawberries are the most popular choice. They say there are crowds and queues at some of the fields, but so far I have been lucky. In any case, it is better to go early and if possible, not during the weekend.

We usually pick strawberries near Pomaz (it's half an hour's drive from Budapest), here are the addresses of the nearest strawberry fields to the capital city. They generally open in mid-May, but you have to check each time on the website.
If you see "ZÁRVA", the field is closed. If "NYITÁS 06.06.", the field will open on June 6. Usually, you can pick berries during working hours, from 8 to 19 hours each day. If you don't live in Budapest, here is a list of strawberry fields around the country.


You arrive to the field with your own basket (but you can also buy or rent one on the spot). Your container is weighed at the entrance, and you are given a ticket. When you are finished, you weigh your container again at the exit, pay, and leave. A kilo of strawberries costs about 500 forints, but you can eat them in the field for free, you will not be weighed :)
"The Culinary Studio
of Julia Vysotskaya"
from russia
together with a
famous hungarian
Chef, Zsolt Litauszki

Near the strawberry fields, I usually pick elderflowers. In Hungary, elderflowers are very popular for making syrups and desserts. Below I attach a recipe of elderflowers syrup from a chef of the iconic Gundel restaurant. During the summer the 30-degree heat, take this syrup out of the fridge, dilute it with ice-cold water - and you will thank me. Another idea is to mix it with fröccs (Hungarian word for a spritzer, wine with soda), like they do in bars.


Mix 20 elderflower umbels with 4 liters of ice-cold water, juice of 6 lemons, 2 lemons and 2 oranges cut in slices. Cover the bowl and leave it in the fridge for 5 days. After that, strain it and add 2.5 kilos of sugar. Pour into bottles and keep it in the fridge.

It is great fun to pick peaches. There are plenty of them in Hungary, hanging in juicy big bunches from the branches. Apricots (sárgabarack, kajszi), peaches (őszibarack) and nectarines (nektarin) all grow here. Apricots and nectarines ripe from mid-July, peaches from mid-August, but check the opening times of specific farms in advance.

If you wanna climb apple trees, here are the addresses of apple orchards. And here are the addresses of black cherry (cseresznye), raspberry (málna), cherry (meggy), currant (ribizli), blueberry (áfonya), gooseberry (egres), pear (körte), plum (szilva), quince (birs), walnut (dió), grape (szőlő) farms and even the only fig plantation in Central Europe (füge). The website is in Hungarian, but you can Google translate it, it's worth the time spent.
Batter-fried elderflowers with strawberries and vanilla ice cream at the Gundel restaurant
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