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Entrance of the beach, 1st floor, Balatonmáriafürdő, Gr. Széchényi Imre tér

The museum of local history presents the foundation of Mária-telep and illustrates its development from a vineyard to a popular resort. The visitor witnesses the way and role of bathing and swimming in the Lake both in the life of the local inhabitants and guest of the village. The foundation of the settlement dates from the time when the root louse affected the vine industry of Hungary. At the end of the 19th century count Tasziló Festetics offered 585 lots from his property to impoverished vine growers. Superintendent in charge of the new vineyard program was count Imre Széchényi. To express their gratitude for the help offered, the settlers named their new village after Maria Andrássy, the wife of count Imre Széchényi.

Swimming and bathing in the lake became popular well before the new settlers started planting vine-stocks and it gained in importance at the beginning of the 20th century when the first summer houses and villas were built in the vineyards. One of the best known villas was Bélavár, owned by the lawyer dr. Béla Bernáth. His son, Aurél Bernáth, the famous painter had pleasant memories of the summers spent at the Lake as a child. While guests came to rest and enjoy their stay at the Lake, local inhabitants worked in summer or even all year round in the field of services. The aim of the museum is to offer a memorable cultural experience both for local inhabitants and guest.

Script and exhibition by Mihály Huszár historian, Tünde Vidák ethnographer.
Translation: Katalin Vajna-Vormair

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