Tokaj Tourist Attractions
This traditional town lies at the foot of the Tokaj Hills (Tokaj-hegyalja), where the Bodrog and the Tisza meet.HistorySoon after the national conquest in the 10th C, the Magyars settled in the area around Tokaj; one of their leaders built a moated castle here. The resulting pentagonal castle, important to the transportation of salt on the Tisza, fell into Turkish hands in 1576. It was almost completely destroyed in 1604 by the Habsburgs. Four earth bastions and some ruins of the walls are all that remain of this fortification. The town which received its official charter in 1478, developed into an important trading center, which was helped to recovery by the Greeks fleeing from the Turks in the 17th and 18th C.In the center of Tokaj there are some other fine buildings from the 17th/18th C such as the 18th C plait style town hall (Városháza) at Rákóczi utca 54 (around 1790) and the János Szapolyai Palais (Szapolyai János-palota) at Bem József utca 2, which the Russian tsar Peter the Great procured as quarters for the Cossacks who were guarding his cellar in Tokaj. The most handsome building in the town is the Rákóczi Dessewffy Castle (Rákóczi Dessewffy kastély) at Bajcsy Zsilinszky út 15-17, a two-story Baroque building from around 1700. The Late Baroque Greek Orthodox church (Görögkeletei templom) in the Bethlen Gábor utca 14 dates from 1770 and has a tower and six pillars on the front face which support a ledge with a tympanum. Today it houses an exhibition of local history.
The house was built around 1790 by a Greek merchant in 18th C. plait style. The ground floor is reserved for an exhibition of sacral art, while on the upper floor the history of the settlements of Hegyalja from the 16th to the 20th C. is documented and the visitor is given an insight into the lifestyle of the region.
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