Hungary Overview

Animals and Plants

What is growing there in Hungary?

Only about 19 percent of Hungary is covered with forest. Firs, beeches, oaks, willows and plane trees grow there. Much more area is steppe, in which mainly grasses grow. But there are also mountains in Hungary and there are different animals and plants growing there than in the forest or the flat regions.

Several species are under nature protection. Nature is particularly protected in ten national parks. The largest and oldest of them is the Hortobágy National Park with 82,000 hectares. It mainly includes puszta, i.e. steppe. Cormorants, red-footed falcons, bog ducks, bustards and sea eagles are native here.

Which animals live in Hungary?

Roe deer, wild cats, deer, foxes and wild boars are typical forest animals that also live in Hungary.

The golden jackal, the only jackal to be found in Europe, has now spread to Hungary. Jackals actually have a golden yellow fur, but when they live in the mountains it is mostly gray. Originally they were not at home here, but there are now several hundred of them living in the forests around Budapest.

The flat or hilly lowlands are the territory of hares, but also of partridges, pheasants and quails. Other bird species are bustards, herons, cormorants and bog ducks. In autumn, thousands of cranes migrate south across the country, where they winter. Swallows and storks are also among the migratory birds that cross Hungary.

A variety of fish such as carp, pike, bream and eel cavort in the rivers and lakes.

Typical domestic animals of the Hungarian steppe are the rag sheep and the Hungarian steppe cattle. Racka sheep have horns twisted like a corkscrew. They are descended from Urial, a wild sheep, and are under protection. The Hungarian steppe cattle is even threatened with extinction.

Economy

Cars and machines from Hungary

Hungary’s economy is heavily dependent on several foreign car manufacturers producing in Hungary. These include Audi, Mercedes and Opel. The export of these automobiles and auto parts, as well as machinery and electronics, makes up half of the total revenue from exports. The main trading partner of Hungary is Germany. More than a quarter of Hungarian exports go to Germany.

Overall, industry generates a third of the total economic output. There are also factories for food, medicines, and chemical products. Mining and metal processing industry is also located. About a third of the population also works in industry.

Wheat from Hungary

Agriculture only contributes 3.9 percent to Hungary’s economy. About 4.9 percent of people are employed in this field. The main crops are wheat, maize, sunflowers, potatoes and sugar beets. Pigs, cattle and chickens are kept on animals.

Source of income tourism

Budapest and Lake Balaton are Hungary’s most popular tourist destinations. Foreign visitors also come to the Puszta to see this unique landscape. Hungary is also increasingly advertising with its 350 thermal baths. Around 15 million tourists from abroad come to Hungary every year. In 2018 it was even 18 million.

After the end of communist rule in 1990, Hungary faced major economic difficulties. Unemployment was also high. The market economy replaced the planned economy. The economy has recovered since 2010. In recent years, however, the government has increasingly interfered in economic matters. Reforms have been carried out and domestic industry is being promoted more than before. However, Hungary remains a popular location for European companies because taxes are low there.

Children and School

School in Hungary

Children in Hungary start school at the age of six. Many of them go to kindergarten beforehand. It’s called Óvoda here. Kindergarten is compulsory for everyone from the age of 5. The children then usually go to elementary school for eight years. This is divided into two stages of four years each.

If you have good grades you can then switch to grammar school (Gimnázium) and attend it for another four years. With the Abitur in your pocket you can then study. In the meantime, however, there are also grammar schools for six or eight years, which means that you change there after the 4th or 6th grade. Those who do not want to take a high school diploma go to another secondary school for at least two years.

Those who do not want to take a high school diploma go to another secondary school for at least two years. Because compulsory schooling is ten years, so every child has to go to school up to the age of 16. Those who do not go to grammar school can, for example, go to vocational secondary school (Szakközépiskola). That makes about a third of all students after the 8th grade. Or they go to vocational school (Szakmunkásképzö iskola), where they are trained to become skilled workers.

There are also grades in Hungary, but here a 5 is the best grade. A 1 does not want to have a schoolchild here! The notes are called like this:

  • 5 (jeles) “excellent”
  • 4 (jo) “good”
  • 3 (közepes) “satisfactory”, literally “mediocre”
  • 2 (elégséges) “sufficient”
  • 1 (elégtelen) “insufficient”

Until 1989, Russian was a compulsory subject. That was abolished and most students now learn English, German or French as a foreign language. Hungarian, math, biology, history and geography are of course also on the curriculum.

The school year always starts on September 1st and ends in June of the following year. It is divided into two half-years. The school day starts at 8 a.m. Most of the time the children have six lessons of 45 minutes each. At lunchtime, the students eat in the canteen.

Schools in Hungary

What are the names of the children in Hungary?

According to pharmacylib, popular names for girls in Hungary are Anna, Viktória, Vivien, Fanni, Réka, Zsófia, Boglárka, Petra, Eszter and Laura. Boys are particularly often called Bence, Máté, Levente, Dávid, Ádám, Balázs, Dániel, Tamás, Bálint or Péter. You probably know some of them, others cannot be found here, such as Boglárka or Bálint. Bence or Réka are old Hungarian names that have come back into fashion. By the way, the most common surname in Hungary is Nagy. Translated, this means “large”. In Hungary, unlike us, the family name is mentioned first. If anyone introduces himself with Molnár László, it is a Laszlo Müller with us.

What do the children in Hungary like?

The children in Hungary like things like you probably do too. They meet up with friends, enjoy doing sports or they are learning a musical instrument. Singing and folk dancing are also quite popular – more than ours. Families like to spend a lot of time together. Children also live at home longer than we usually do.