Varga Tanya is an event facility located about an hour drive from Budapest, Hungary. The actual driving time is dependent on traffic. I attended this venue through a program named Angloville, and I’ll talk more about this towards the end of the article.
There’s something in a name, and while I’m not completely sure about the term Varga (quite possibly the word references the area) Tanya means farm, and in true reality that’s where I spent the last five or so days. This really isn’t your average farm, yes there are horses, cows and even rabbits but these are more for show. The horses were the main attraction with various performances through out the day of traditionally clad riders. However the ten horse rider definitely took the cake by standing on the last two horses backs while maneuvering the herd. This was done walking, trotting and lastly at full gallop which was quite feat in horsemanship. Of course you could also book into a trail ride or as this was an event facility book your wedding. While I was staying here I was lucky enough to catch a wedding procession and after the ceremony the bride and groom mounted up upon a horse and their friends and family rode behind them in horse-drawn carriages. Talk about “riding off into sunset” along with “they lived happily ever after” fairy tale type weddings.
The lodgings here were to taste and depending on price you could tailor your sleeping accommodation to your needs. The fare was varied between traditional food (goulash soup, cabbage rolls, ect) and other dishes, with plenty to pick and choose from. After six day’s stay however somethings became redundant (like the same cucumber salad every other day) however even vegans would be happy with the variety of dishes. The venue in and upon itself was spectacular; with gardens, reflective pools and fountains. Some highlights of the grounds were a bambo maze; a life-sized chess board, the pool, 3 Jacuzzis and a sauna. Sometimes throughout the day (mainly when the tour buses were in) there was music, and dancing and always wine.
Usually in my blog’s I would not only post facts but also monetary figures which brings me to the age old question of “what are you doing now Jacque?”. Well the truth is after the flop at Yellowstone, and my friends and families work schedule I gave myself 3 options for the summer; ride my bike across Washington east to west, complete my dive master certification, or hit up that gig in Poland that I’ve been wanting to do. So I took the Poland gig which is somewhat of a volunteer position, but after completing one of 4 of these “camps” it’s more like an almost free vacation where you make friends.
The program I am currently traveling with is called Angloville and it has really on point delivered exactly what was advertised. I pay my flight and lodging untill the actual program upon landing in a different country. It’s worth it to come a day early as there is a no-charge tour from a independent local who not only gives you a history lesson but; insight into the government, medical system, and daily lives of the local population, all those things that travelers want to know.
Upon my arrival as a all expenses paid “the bar is not an open bar” volunteer job was to actually just talk to people. Seems pretty straightforward and easy? Well actually it really is. After the meet and greet day one I received a native Hungarian speaker to increase her level of English. We were to achieve this by working on a presentation in English to share at the end of the week to our entire party.
We had about an hour and half to work on her presentation in the mornings, with her doing most the work and I would then make any corrections. The rest of my day’s were spent in 1:1 conversations with prompts, about a fourth of the waking hours. Other interactions consisted of “scheduled” meetings like negotiations and telephone conversations, along with 2:2 sessions. In the end of most sessions with all the different non-native speakers we became good friends. Such good friends that we crashed a wedding party on our last night (with permission). ABBA forever! Well I have almost a week left in Budapest so it’s time to go on some adventures! More to come.