Dutchman Finds Love in Hungary: The Extraordinary Story of How He Bought a Hungarian Village

Published: November 26 2023

This blog post tells the extraordinary story of a Dutchman who fell in love with Hungary in the 1980s and ended up buying an entire village. He believes that Hungary is more liveable and cheaper than his home country and plans to move there with his Dutch-Indonesian wife.

Falling in love with Hungary

In 1987, when he was only 20 years old, the Dutchman, Elroy, sat down in a small Hungarian pub in Kecskemét and fell in love with the country. Over the years, he made friends in Hungary and regularly visited to hike in the Hungarian hills and swim in Lake Balaton. He admired the cleaner air and the presence of hidden villages in Hungary, unlike in the expanding cities and villages in the Netherlands.

Working in Amsterdam and starting a business

Elroy worked long hours in Amsterdam and had a child with a woman who chose drugs over caring for their baby. Despite being alone, he provided for his child by working in docks and bars. Eventually, he started selling Sziget Festival tickets to Dutch youngsters, and his business flourished. This success led him to think about buying a house in a Hungarian village, where it would be easier to keep animals and bees without dealing with numerous permissions, unlike in the Netherlands.

Buying and renovating a village

Elroy, along with his friend Sajt (Cheese), visited Nógrád County and found Bedepuszta, a village with poor families living in devastated houses. His goal was to find cheap properties in better condition in nearby villages to help local families relocate to areas with schools, shops, and work opportunities. After a few years, he was able to buy up all the houses in Bedepuszta, renovate them, and make the village his own. He actively participated in the renovations, doing carpentry work, painting, and building stoves and bathrooms.

Welcoming guests from around the world

Elroy and his wife now split their time between Amsterdam and Hungary, but they plan to eventually move permanently to the village. They welcome guests from all over the world and offer the opportunity to "rent an entire village" for a few days or weeks.

Conclusion

Elroy's extraordinary story of falling in love with Hungary, buying a village, and renovating it showcases his admiration for the country's landscape and people. His desire to create a unique experience for guests by allowing them to stay in his village highlights his passion for sharing the beauty and charm of Hungary with others.

Questions & Answers

Who is Elroy and what is his story? Elroy is a Dutch national who fell in love with Hungary in the 1980s. Over the years, he bought up an entire village called Bedepuszta in Nógrád County, Hungary. He plans to move to Hungary with his Dutch-Indonesian wife and believes that Hungary is more liveable and cheaper than the Netherlands.

How did Elroy discover Hungary? Elroy discovered Hungary in 1987 when he sat down in a small Hungarian pub in Kecskemét. He made friends there and regularly came to hike in the Hungarian hills or bathe in Lake Balaton. After the regime change in Hungary, he visited more frequently and fell in love with the landscape and the people.

Why did Elroy choose to buy a house in a Hungarian village? Elroy chose to buy a house in a Hungarian village because he found that it was easier to keep animals or bees in Hungary due to less bureaucracy and permissions required compared to the Netherlands. He also wanted to help local families in the nearby villages by purchasing properties in better condition to give them opportunities to move to areas with schools, shops, and work opportunities.

Which village did Elroy buy in Hungary? Elroy bought the village called Bedepuszta in Nógrád County, Hungary.

What does Elroy do with the houses in Bedepuszta? Elroy actively participates in renovating the houses in Bedepuszta, doing carpentry work, painting, and building stoves and bathrooms. He also welcomes guests from all over the world and offers them the opportunity to rent an entire village for a couple of days or even weeks.

Where is Bedepuszta located in Hungary? Bedepuszta is located in Nógrád County, Hungary. It is close to cities like Gyöngyös and Miskolc, and not far from Budapest.

What are Elroy's future plans? Currently, Elroy and his wife spend half a year in Amsterdam and the other half in Hungary. However, they plan to eventually move permanently to Hungary.