Part of the undulating Buda hills, Normafa is a popular hiking destination at all times of the year. There used to be an ancient beech tree on top of the incline, which – so legend has it – sprouted in the year of King Matthias’ birth in the 15th century. In 1850, a grandiose performance of Bellini’s opera Norma was held around the tree. From that time on, the area previously called Viharbükk (‘Storm Beech’) was renamed Normafa (‘Norma Tree’). Unfortunately the tree was struck by lightning and destroyed in 1927.

Here you can go for a run on the refurbished running track or hike up to nearby János-hegy, accessed by several forest trails. The view from the peak is amazing – check out the webcam here.

Afterwards, enjoy a warming drink or meal at the Normakert bar/restaurant in the Ski House, or snack on delicious strudel at the kiosk alongside.

You can reach Normafa from Buda transport hub Széll Kálmán tér by buses 21 or 21A, from Hűvösvölgy by the Children’s Railway or from Városmajor by the Cogwheel Railway.