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Exotic Destination: Escape to Hungary

By Shawn Nicholls, Contributor

Golf vacations are all about relaxing and escaping from the norm. And what better way to escape than to travel to Hungary, which despite a lack of popularity, is home to not only numerous championship golf courses, but also more than 100 natural thermal baths and springs.

About 78 miles southeast of Vienna, vacationers can relax and recuperate at the Danubius Thermal & Sport Hotel in Buk by enjoying sulfur baths and some spine work in the suspension tub, while at the same time receive a visit from the in house dentist.

Just down the road sits the Birdland Golf and Country Club, which offers both championship and par three courses. The 18-hole layout is built around numerous lakes, adding to the challenge of the 6500-yard track.

Birdland has been open for ten years, and in 1995, the championship course was named one of the top twenty European courses that express appreciation for the international golf life.

"It is our objective to offer the most enjoyable recreation, pleasure and a unique atmosphere to our guests and members in a quiet environment where connections and new friendships and relations can be made," Attila Hegyi, the club president said on the course website.

Seven-day packages that include meals, unlimited golf, two massages, two spa treatments, and other perks at Danubius start at around $682 per person. The golf club also works to offer specials to the executive golfer as well.

"Abroad it is a new trend that the significant business decisions are made at the golf courses - the green conference room - instead of the office desks. This is getting to become a trend in Hungary as well," said Hegyi.

"To help this procedure our club continuously organize social golf events where companies can invite their significant business partners for an unusual meeting not only to acquire the basis of golf but to have fun at the same time," he said.

Also in Hungary, golf travelers can enjoy the Gellert Hotel, which sits on the Danube River in the center of Budapest, and is just 35 miles from several of the best courses in the country, including the Pannonia Golf and Country Club as well as the Kisoroski Golf and Country Club.

Packages at the hotel, which include full use of the spa and opera tickets, run $309 per person for a three-night stay, not including golf.

Shawn Nicholls, Contributor

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