Lake Velence: A Guide for you and your dog

The lake. Photo: By the author.

Everyone needs to find a way to keep cool during Budapest’s long hot summers, especially our four-legged friends – a fur coat in 35 degree weather is definitely not my idea of fun. Drótszamár Camping, located on the northern shore of Lake Velence, is a short 40 minute drive or train journey from the centre of Budapest. Within the campsite there is a small, but perfectly fit for purpose, dog beach.

The grassy stretch of shoreline is no more than 100 meters wide, but even so there was plenty of room to find a space to lay out our picnic blanket only a short walk from the water front. The whole campsite appeared to be dog friendly so it was not a problem to take the short walk to the toilet hut or refreshment stands located within the park with our dog.

To access the water itself, there are two small staircases leading from the strand into the lake. Bigger dogs were happily bounding into the water from the concrete promenade, however our pooch is not really big enough or brave enough for that, but was happy to trot down the stairs into the warm lake.

At peak times I can image the stairways cause a slight bottleneck especially if you get water phobic dogs being coaxed in by their owners. The first 10-15 meters of the lake are nice and shallow, perfect for splashing around with a ball or frisbee; there were even some chilled puppies enjoying a spot of sunbathing on floating Lilo’s. Further away from the shore the water gets deeper quickly so not advisable for weaker swimmers – human nor canine. Some sort of water shoe would also be advisable for the humans though, as the water is not clear enough to see much below the surface, and whilst not dangerous the lakebed is a mix of shingle and large stones so better to put comfort over style.

Lake Velence isn’t known for its crystal-clear waters or soft sandy beaches, but as long as you are not expecting luxury it makes for a fun, inexpensive and family friendly day out.

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