The real veterans of Balaton will not give a straight answer to a question like "which is your favourite beach?" The insiders always want to keep the best places with enough space and no queue to the regular fröccs dose for them. Is Sajkod full now? We have a brand new idea.

We have already written about the beach sect of Sajkod that frequent the calm, western part of theTihanyi-félsziget. Sajkod is still nice and beautiful, but word of mouth is powerful, so it can easily become crowded on a weekend of August.

Time to move on?

If going even further away from Budapest to find peace is not a problem, there's Pálköve - often labelled as "the secret gem of Balaton" by the touristic websites. Luckily, this overused phrase refers to a truly hidden place. Pálköve belongs to Kővágóörs officially, but there are only a 100 people living here, and the town is almost united with Balatonrendes.

The great thing is that this place lies between the shore of Pálkövei-öböl and main road 71 on a small piece of land. A meadow and a forest hide it from the cars and the passengers. Since main road 71 doesn't go through Pálköve, only those will come here, who want to visit this beach on purpose.

There's nothing to see

You may not find giant palaces or fancy hotels here, but Pálköve is more about the calm and natural atmosphere. I had the feeling I was walking in an episode of Lost, when I visited on a warm summer day. However, I can't promise you the same desert island feeling for a weekend in August.

You can find one of the biggest oak forests in Balaton-felvidék, or one of the few ancient reeds of Balaton. Maybe these elements give the feeling that some of the pure, untouched Balaton can still be found here. People here mostly use the red sandstone from the stone mine of Balatonrendes for building; Káli-medence and Kékkút are both close; and following the yellow trail blaze could take you to magical places. Nature rules here. You can taste the healthy water of Rákóczi Ferenc fountain from the well on the beach. If the healing water was not enough and you're dying to visit a museum, Endre Bajcsy-Zsilinszky's (a politician who was killed by the fascists during World War II) former summer home offers a memorial exhibition.

Beach and holiday resort

The beach is filled with people, who are spending their holiday at the local old school bungalow camp. Pálkövei Üdülőszálló was founded in 1965, and it still brings you the socialist pioneer camp feeling with the wooden houses, shared bathrooms, and the oak trees the surround it. The modern age brought Coca-Cola instead of Traubisoda and free Wi-Fi instead of postcards, but the plastic chairs and the unique morning tea are still the same. Fortunately Pálköve is not a metropolis, neither a special gourmet experience, only a good place. In our opinion, it is more than enough in August around Balaton.