The forests of Pilis surround the Danube Bend from the south.
Numerous beautiful vantage points, huge boulders and fairy-tale gorges await explorers in the spring. The rich flora and fauna is now awakening, and the sights of Pilis are once again adorned in all their natural splendor.
To prevent your FOMO, we have collected some of the most beautiful treasures in the region.
Our local favourites
Ariadne cave system in Kesztölc
Hungary’s third longest cave system is located in the Danube Bend, near Kesztölc. The Csévi Cliff’s six separate caves have been transformed into a 16 km long system over decades of work.
The largest caverns and stalactites of Transdanubia can be found here. The Ariadne cave system includes the Leány (Maiden) Cave and the Legény (Bachelor) Cave. The easiest way to approach the latter is from Klastrompuszta.
Following the blue sign, you will climb a steep hill to the entrance. The huge, 3300 m long Legény Cave is only 50 meters away from its pair, the Leány Cave. The two cave systems, filled with maze-like passages, were once a single cohesive system, but their connecting corridors have collapsed over time. Thanks to the excavation works, the caves were recently reunited.
The huge cave system is highly protected, only cavers can explore the interior, but as tourists, you can enjoy the huge entrance cavern to chill or even to sleep in bivouacs.
Pilis Peak and Boldog Özséb Lookout
The Boldog Özséb lookout towers over the Transdanubian Mountains from their highest point, at the 756-meter Pilis Peak.
From its covered terrace, most of the Pilis and the entire Dunazug Mountains are visible. If you walk around the top of the lookout tower in clear weather, you can see the Buda- and Visegrád Mountains, the Pilisvörösvár Basin and the Gerecse.
The pine-paved lookout can be approached from a shorter asphalt road or a longer forest path. To reach the former, you should start from the parking lot near the Két-Bükkfa-Nyereg. If you prefer the path, you can follow the P, Z, Z▲signs from Pilisszentkereszt or Pilisszántó.
Zsivány Rocks in Pilisszentkereszt
The Zsivány (Rogue) Rocks, the giants of the Visegrad mountains, can be admired by the entire family after a light hike.
These huge boulders are part of the 2 km long Thirring tour of Dobogókő. Since the path is of negligible ascent, you can definitely take it with children.
As if the rogue rocks had wandered off from the pages of a storybook to Pilisszentkereszt, they rise protectively over the forest.
The snow-white Oszoly Peak
The white ranges of Oszoly stand guard near Csobánka. But of course, it’s not snowy all year round.
Their colour is due to limestone. This is one of the most visited places by rock climbers. But tourists walking along the trail also love to conqer the Oszoly, as the reward for the short, but sometimes very steep hike is an unforgettable panorama.
Start the tour from the Oszoly rest stop of Csobánka. It is worth to begin the adventure in hiking boots with the right sole, possibly equipped with a hiking stick.
The copy of Eger Castle
In Pilisborosjenő, on the south-western slope of the Nagy-Kevély Peak, stands tall the copy of the Eger Castle. The stone walls were built in the 1960s for filming the adaptation of the famous Hungarian historical novel, Eclipse of the Crescent Moon.
Among the ruins you can examine the main gate with its tower, as well as smaller gates, walls with portholes, a roundel and various wooden towers. From the monument of St. Vendel in Pilisborosjenő, a light 2 km hike leads up to the castle.
Good news is that you can get there by bike, too. And since you are already there, the nearby Teve (Camel) Rock is worth a short detour to visit!
Near Pilisszentkereszt, in the vicinity of the above mentioned Zsivány Rocks, flows the Dera stream. The magnificent gorge is one of the most atmospheric stream valleys in Pilis.
Walking among huge mossy rocks, steep walls rise above you on both sides, studded with trees. The only 2 km long trail crosses the Dera stream here and there through wooden bridges. You can follow the thoroughly marked paths with the whole family.
The elevations are negligible, and the terrain can be easily walked by a child. The special feature of the Dera stream is that it forms a boundary between the Pilis and the Visegrád Mountains. At Szentendre it flows into the Danube.
The Calvary Hill in Piliscsaba reveals a truly special geological formation. A huge mushroom with a thousand faces. A giant hatter made of stone. Or rather, of different rocks.
The boulder was cemented from limestone, dolomite and marl debris into such a strange formation. It is easily accessible from Piliscsaba, following well-marked paths. The peculiarity of the huge mushroom rock is that it takes on a different shape when viewed from different sides.
It’s worth going around the formation. While from one side it’s a chanterelle, from the other it’s an anvil, and from below, the lungs of a giant are looking back at us.
Kevélyhegy lavender fields
A purple, heavenly-smelling, miraculous herb. The sight and smell of lavender has a recreational effect on any person.
On the Kevélyhegy of Pilisborosjenő, a family farm grows the precious herb. A huge area of 5 acres is covered with heavenly lavender. It’s an excellent walking plan for warm, summer afternoons. If you can only break away from work and the hustle and bustle of the city for just one day, strolling through the lavender fields is guaranteed to recharge and relax you.
Whether you’re looking for an therapeutic walk, picking herb, or a fun photo shoot, the Kevélyhegy lavender field is a perfect location.
Since you’ve seen a mushroom rock, how about a camel one? In Pilisborosjenő’s quarry you can gaze upon a huge camel-shaped formation.
Several interesting creatures accompany the camel boulder. What do you see in them? Calcite dolomite blocks were once washed over by thermal water solutions, which hardened the naturally crumbly dolomite. During mining, the shape of the formations was also artificially sculpted. Climbing up these unique rocks, you can take a glance at the peaks of Szénások and Kutya Mountain in the distance.
Vaskapu Valley and Mountain
You can walk in a peaceful valley surrounded by trees in Pilisszentkereszt.
Here and there interesting rock figures rise above you, and continuing your way up, you will overcome a small climb to reach the Vaskapu (Iron Gate) Mountain. Why iron gate? It is named after its two rock arches formed on a huge limestone cliff. Like royal gates, they span over a traveler’s head. Close to the lower, 6-meter rock gate, you will find a cave excellent for a bivouac accommodation.
From the 15 meters high upper arch, a magnificent landscape view unfolds. You can also admire the ranges of Dobogókő and the Két-Bükkfa-Nyereg.