Városlőd - Zirc (OKT-08)
Magyar Természetjáró Szövetség Verified partner Explorers Choice
A lengthy hike in the forest begins during the 8th section of the Blue Trail in the central and highest part of Bakony Mountains. The trail traverses forests rich in wildlife and pretty villages. You will visit Bakonybél with various tourist attractions including the Pannon Observatory for an insight into space.
Entering the world of beech groves the trail climbs up to Kőris-hegy (709), the highest peak of Bakony, which offer a view over the typical Bakony landscape. Then the trail crosses one of the most beautiful mountain beech forests of the country. Although the eastern slope of the mount is just partly forested but it provides a stunning view over the valley with Szépalmapuszta. The valley with large pastures, horses and the forested slope of Kőris-hegy resemble an Alpine landscape. Probably, this is the prettiest part of Bakony. The trail continues to Borzavár and then descends to Zirc, the highest town of Hungary.
- Take a detour to the ruins of Hölgykő Castle near Városlőd.
- Day hikes in old Bakony. Any directions from Bakonybél.
- Bakonybél, the center of Bakony: Astronomical Observatory, House of the Forest, St. Mauritius Cloister, good accommodation and a range of options for multiday recreation.
- Museums and arboretum of Zirc.
Recommended entries and exits
- Németbánya (OKTPH_39): bus stop “Németbánya, forduló”
- Bakonybél (OKTP_40_1, OKTPH_40_2): bus stops “Bakonybél, Petőfi utca”; “Bakonybél, üdülő, bejárati út”
- Borzavár (OKTPH_42_1, OKTPH_42_2, OKTPH_42_3): bus stops “Borzavár, posta”; “Borzavár, vegyesbolt”
Track typesShow elevation profile
Tips and hints.
Follow the Blue (K) marker all along the trip.
- From Városlőd-Kislőd train station hike to Városlőd and cross the village along the main street. Traverse pastures and a long valley to reach the next settlement.
- Before entering Németbánya the Blue Trail turns right and climbs the slope. A lengthy hike in the forest begins.
- The trail skirts Gerence Inn in Bakonybél, takes the first left and crosses the village.
- In Száraz-Gerence Valley the trail bends sharply left and continues along a path on the left to Kőris-hegy.
- Descend along a footpath and then a logging road to Szépalmapuszta. The trail continues along a paved road to Borzavár.
- Cross Borzavár along the main street. 100 meters past the sharp right turn of the road head left along the dirt track.
- The trail curls south around the peak of Pintér-hegy and arrives at Zirc.
- Follow Deák Ferenc Street to the town center and take Köztársaság Street to end the section at the railway station.
Kislőd – Németbánya
From Városlőd-Kislőd train station hike to Városlőd along the paved road. The village still bears some traces of former inhabitants with Bavarian origin. Historic monuments on the main square are well-worth the attention. Besides Városlőd-Kislőd train station a stamper is placed in Fenyves Pub (at the House of German Ethnic Minority, on the corner), too. The trail leaves the village along a paved road and crosses the railway twice. Past the overpass the trail turns sharply left onto a dirt track. Make a detour to the right to the ruins of Hölgykő Castle.
Cross the fields on the outskirts of the village. The trail descends left to Pince Spring. Bridges and stepping stones allow to cross the creek and the trail parallels the creek bed. You will soon arrive at the valley of Vámos Creek and hike parallel to it higher above.
This section may feel like following a trackbed. It is by no accident as it is the remnant of a disused logging railroad (Városlőd-Királykapu-Franciavágás) that used to stretch 36 km long in its heyday. In the early-1960s it carried passengers, too. As high performance trucks appeared at the end of 1960s trains were replaced and rails were removed.
The trail ascends over Töredék-árok (Töredék ditch) along a valley covered with a beautiful and dense hornbeam and beech grove. Pass the clearing at Szénpajta (rain shelter) and cross the bauxite route (“bauxitszállító út”). Proceed towards Németbánya along the creek bed. The trail crosses another road and passes a hunters’ lodge to take the gravel road to Németbánya (stamper near the entry sign).
Németbánya – Bakonybél
The trail steeply ascends on the slope of Szállás-tető through a beech grove and crosses the bauxite route again. It is around a 45 min. detour to visit Savanyó Jóska’s (a famous outlaw) former hideout (Pénzlyuk Cave). The ascent gets less steep and a logging road joins in, which the trail follows. A vast forest surrounds you with narrow gorges branching off to make the landscape picturesque and offer an unforgettable experience. The trail soon arrives at fields near Bakonybél and grants a view over the village as well as surrounding mountains ahead (Parajos-tető and Kőris-hegy). The restored limekiln at the roadside is worth a few minutes’ attention as it is an important historic element of local industry.
Skirting Gerence Inn the trail traverses a sweet grove to cross Gerence Creek. One of the local stampers is placed at the entrance of the inn. The other is at the entrance of Vadszőlő Restaurant (Keep ahead for a few meters along Fürdő Street where the trail turns left. Bakonybél is a good place to stay for a while with, for example, Pannon Observatory, the cloister or the pretty pond of Szent-kút (Holy Well) south of the village.
Bakonybél - Kőris-hegy
The farewell to Bakonybél makes the beginning of the most beautiful forest hike along the western Blue Trail. The valley of Száraz-Gerence Creek rarely rewards hikers with the sight of water. As its name “száraz” (dry) suggests rainwater is absorbed by cracks in the limestone bedrock. The trail leaves the paved road and continues along a steep path through a fabulous beech grove along Barátok útja (Monks’ Path). After a lengthy ascent the trail arrives at the spacious saddle of Parajos-tető and Kőris-hegy. A short but steep ascent (partly along the paved road to the radar station) takes you to the peak.
The stamper is placed at the bottom of the lookout tower. Kőris-hegy offers a varied view over the surrounding area. The view includes signature parts of Bakony, such as Tési Plateau or Kab-hegy as well as Kisalföld (Small Plain) where you can even spot the Abbey of Pannonhalma.
Kőris-hegy – Zirc
The rest of the section is an easy descent from High-Bakony. The trail begins to descend through a beautiful mountain beech grove. After a while the view unfolds over Szépalmapuszta and Zirc, however, the lack of trees is a painful experience. As an information board reads trees had to be cut due to a disease. Unfortunately, as our climate gets drier shrinkage of beech groves is expectable since adverse changes in habitat make them weaker and less resistant to pests. As a preventive step the forestry company cuts them to protect the healthy parts.
At the bottom of the hill the trail turns left to arrive at Szépalmapuszta, a gem of Bakony. The road leads among corrals with grazing horses and a view over Kőris-hegy. The Blue Trail skirts a hotel in the pleasant meadow and continues towards Borzavár. Traversing rolling hills the trail turns right on a hill to change from the paved track to a footpath and enters the village.
There are three stampers in Borzavár. One at the Mayor’s Office another at the food store and the third at the pub. The trail exits the village along the main street and takes a dirt track on the left. Continue to the valley of Pintér-árok and then climb the slope to Pintér-hegy. The trail soon arrives at Zirc, the “capital of Bakony”. Follow the same street to reach the town center where head left to arrive at the railway station (stamper in the waiting room).
- Városlőd-Kislőd railway station is much busier than that of Városlőd with train service from Veszprém, Szombathely and Ajka.
- Bus stop “Városlőd, forduló” in the village center for coaches from Veszprém and Pápa.
- Get off at Zirc railway station (train services from Győr and Veszprém).
- Get off at Zirc coach station (bus services from Győr and Veszprém as well as surrounding villages).
- From Városlőd train station walk towards the village along the road crossing the rails. It joins the main street of the village where the Blue (K) Trail runs.
- The road from the parking lot of Városlőd-Kislőd railway station joins the Blue (K) Trail.
- In Zirc the train station and the coach station neighbor each other. Head left along Állomás Street and take the Blue (K) Trail at the end.
- In Városlőd park free of charge along the street crossing the rails (Petőfi Street).
- Free of charge parking in the parking lot outside Városlőd-Kislőd train station.
- Free of charge parking in the parking lot outside Zirc train station.
Book recommendation by the author
Author’s map recommendations
- Hiking map of Bakony
Basic gear: hiking boots, seasonable wear, drinking water, food. Use Természetjáró app to navigate.
- 41 Waypoints
- 41 Waypoints
Questions and answers
Would you like to the ask the author a question?
Photos from others