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The Good Life in Aggtelek National Park Part 101: The Betléri Manor and Andrássy Museum

betleri castleFollowing a traditional Easter breakfast of home baked challah, turkey ham from Tomi the butcher at the Hunyadi tér Market, fresh eggs from Attila Szintai in Szendrő, honey from Janos Ambrus in Szendrő, and homemade horseradish, we made a trip into Slovakia to visit the Betléri Manor and Andrássy Museum. The manor ranks as one of Slovakia's most beautiful and valuable historical monuments. It is also the most visited national monument in Göeaster breakfastmör County. We picked perhaps the busiest day of the year to visit. Located just north of Rozsnyó, the manor is surrounded by a 70 hectare (173 acres) English landscape garden. Following its complete renovation in 1994, the manor received the Europa Nostra Award, celebrating the best of European cultural heritage.

It was an easy hour's drive from home, and even with the large crowds, we only had to wait about 30 minutes for the next available tour. Entry is only via guided tour. Full-priced tickets are 8 Euro (2500 HUF). With some time to spare before our tour, we took a leisurely walk through some of the impressive gardens. While the exotic flora was well marked, we would have liked to know something about the many interesting outbuildings on the grounds. There seemed to be a small Turkish bath and a large Freemason's temple or grave for example. I particularly liked the Japanese-style bridge over one of the many babbling brooks criss-crossing the property with built in benches so you can sit over the water. The garden is filled with fountains, statues, romantic garden pavilions and rare vegetation. In fact, it was included on the list of the World's Historic Gardens in 1977.

There are tours in Hungarian if there are 20 or more Hungarian speakers gathered at the time. I do not know about other languages. While the group following us was in Hungarian, we received brochures in Hungarian from the guide. Visitors are immediately struck by the grandeur of   the entrance hall and red reception room. The space is dominated by two massive paintings, The Bear Hunt by A.F. Seligmann on one side and a naked Automedon Achilles onbetleri castle library Horseback by G. Grandjean. Visitors are taken through various salons, bedrooms, studies and bathrooms showing off the wealth and interests of this noble Hungarian family that can trace its roots back 1000 years. The rich collection includes furniture, paintings, weapons, porcelain and glass from both the Andrássy family themselves as well as their peers. The 20000 book library is an inspiring sight, in which the books are just a background for eye-catching tidbits such as an elephant foot ashtray, revolving bookshelves, tiny children's desks, high sliding ladders, and the most godawful ugly and out of place chandelier one could imagine.

We all wondered how the manor and its original collections were successfully preserved and protected through 2 world wars and 60 years of Communism...?

We must go back with a picnic and explore the park (free entry) at another time.


Open Hours:









entrance 9.30, 11.00, 12.30, 14.00, 15.30



entrance 9.30, 11.00, 12.30, 14.00