Each year in Hungary, jovial events take place on 20th August all across the country, with thousands of tourists flocking to the capital, Budapest, to join the centre of the action in honour of St. Stephen’s day. This national holiday marks the anniversary of the country becoming an independent state and celebrates the first king of Hungary, Stephen I, who was canonised in 1083 by Pope Gregory VII.
The day kicks off early with the raising of the flag at 9am in Heroes’ square, which is then followed by a full day of activities for all the family, including concerts and ceremonies.
Twelve hours later and the celebrations culminate with what is arguably the highlight of the day, the spectacular fireworks display over the river Danube.
In addition to the festivities, the day marks the crowning of the winner of the “Cake of Hungary” competition. This year, the 2013 the winner was announced as the honey brittle cake of Milota. This charming confectionary creation is a delicate bake combining cream, praline and honey with a walnut crunch layer.
In the interest of promoting healthy diets, the diabetes awareness foundation has also instigated a sugar-free category of the competition and this year’s winner was an impressive apple-layered red currant cake.