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All aboard! - Let the boating season begin

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  • Sebestyén Blanka

4/3/2015 2:00 AM

Lake Balaton's boating season is about to restart, and the Shipping Co. is proud to say that ticket prices stayed the same. It's not all: the replica of the steamer Kisfaludy (1846) ships out on 1 May. The pleasure and event boat is already attention worthy for being an exact copy. but also for being the only floating museum of Lake Balaton.

The regular passenger boat service on Lake Balaton returns on 4 April. For now, you can only travel along the routes Siófok-Balatonfüred–Tihany, and Fonyód–Badacsony, from 1 May, however, passenger boat transport will also be available for the Balatonboglár-Révfülöp route, while 23 May marks the start of the Balatonföldvár-Tihany Rév service.

There will be a daily Badacsony-Szigliget service in the high season, which is a novelty.  The Szántód-Tihany ferries leave hourly until 21 May, and every 40 minutes afterwards, but the company promises to increase the frequency of boats if needed.

To be honest, we can hardly wait for 1 May, when the replica of the steamer Kisfaludy steps into service. The original steamboat was built in 1846, while the construction of the replica began two years ago in Szeged, and was finished in SIófok, where we were lucky enough to take pictures of  the process.

Photo: Sebestyén Blanka - We Love Balaton

The steamer was reproduced on the basis of period documents, pictures and scale models.  In 1846, Kisfaludy was the first paddle steamer of the Balaton, transporting passengers between Balatonfüred andKeszthely, Balatonkenese, and Alsóörs.

Photo: Sebestyén Blanka - We Love Balaton

The steamer was rebuilt with the help of a 120 million HUF subsidy from the EU. The exact replica of the original steamer (now powered by a diesel and an electric engine) is 26 metre s long and 9 metres wide, weighing nearly 70 tons. According to the promises, the paddle wheels on its sides will turn.

Inside the boat, the 50 square metre drawing room will host an exhibition about 19th century boating, and, just like in Széchenyi's time, house a library. Just like the original, the Kisfaludy of today will also ship out for pleasure cruises of about 1-2 hours from Füred.

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