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What to do during the winter holidays

Between Christmas and New Year’s Eve, there are plenty of ways to burn off the calories and recharge your batteries during the festive season, and there are plenty of opportunities to do a little year-end exercise during the last few days of the year. We’ve put together some ideas for how and what you can do to pass the time between the two holidays if you want to get away from the four walls.

Take a stroll through the mid-holiday market

The Advent activities may be over, but the fair is not over yet! Although fewer in number, vendors and caterers will still be available in the main square, where you can pick up delicious winter drinks and festive treats as well as New Year’s Eve party supplies. And with a nice mulled wine in hand, it’s also worth revisiting the Hungary 365 photo exhibition, which is on until 6th January.

Mulled wine at the hut

Although the weather forecast is not predicting any major cold spells during the holidays, after a good skate or a leisurely walk you can relax at the Kossuth Square hut and chat with family and friends over a glass of mulled wine or a hot chocolate.

The hut will be open every day from 24th December 2022 to 1st January 2023 from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m., and on 31st December from 9 a.m. to 1 a.m.

Passing the time in front of the Reformed Church

The ice rink in front of the imposing Reformed Church in Debrecen’s main square will be open during the holidays and even in the first week of the New Year, so if you want to get active, it’s worth getting your skates on and taking a few laps around the ice.

Rink opening hours:

  • Saturday 24th December 2022 9:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m.
  • 25th December 2022 – 2nd January 2023 every day 9:00 a.m.-8:00 p.m.
  • 3rd January 2023 – 8th January 2023 every day 8:00 a.m.-8:00 p.m.

Journey to the world of the Vikings

For a journey through time and space, discover the world of the Vikings of the Carpathian Basin or visit a tiny French island east of Madagascar in the Indian Ocean in two new temporary exhibitions at the Déri Museum.

  • Vikings in the Carpathian Basin: https://www.derimuzeum.hu/kiallitasok.php?id=76
  • RÉUNION – Anatomy of an island: https://www.derimuzeum.hu/kiallitasok.php?id=78

A refreshing walk in the Great Forest

Don’t let the cold weather scare you off; it’s still worth putting on your hiking boots and taking a long hike in the crisp, fresh winter air. There are plenty of hiking trails in the forests around Debrecen to explore nature. If you don’t fancy a longer hike, you can also take a tour of the park forest trails around Lake Békás, where you can learn about the wonders of the surrounding nature along the way.

Relax in the thermal baths

There’s nothing better in winter than soaking in the hot thermal waters. Okay, maybe you can even squeeze in a spa treatment before or after. A refreshing massage on the wellness island, a few hours of relaxation in the thermal baths or a special sauna session in the sauna world will recharge your batteries, both physically and mentally.

For information on the opening hours and ticket prices of the Aquaticum SPA’s spa facilities, click here: https://www.aquaticum.hu/hu.

Laugh till you drop

Popular representatives of the Hungarian stand-up genre come to Debrecen on the last days of the year. Péter Aranyosi is coming to the Kölcsey Centre on 29th December with a jubilee show to celebrate his 50th birthday, while Ádám Kiss will bring his solo show, entitled End of the World, to the Főnix Arena on 30th December.

Details: https://visitdebrecen.com/hu/hot-now/a-humor-nagyagyui-debrecenben

End of the year concerts

For several years now, it has been a tradition for Debrecen’s classical musicians to end the year with concerts to mark the occasion. This year will be no different, with the Lyra Symphony Orchestra of Debrecen and the SONUS Percussion Ensemble giving a concert to mark the end of the year and the Kodály Philharmonic Orchestra giving a New Year’s Eve concert.

Read more about the New Year’s Eve concerts here: https://visitdebrecen.com/hot-now/year-end-concerts-2022/

Theatre experiences

The Csokonai Theatre company presents classic comedies such as The Game in the Castle and The Clown for Dinner, contemporary and absurdist plays such as The Manger and The Star with No Name, popular musicals such as The Boys from St Paul’s Street and The Wizard of Oz, as well as operettas (Miska the Magician) and literary adaptations (Für Elise).

You can browse the Csokonai Theatre programme here: https://csokonaiszinhaz.hu.

Go to the cinema!

On grey, cold winter days, it’s great to sit down with a big bowl of popcorn and a good movie. Debrecen’s 110-year-old art cinema’s December line-up includes blockbusters and arthouse films, so everyone can find a film to their liking.

You can browse the Apollo cinema programme here: https://www.facebook.com/apollomozidebrecen.

New Year’s Eve parties

Life in Debrecen’s concert halls doesn’t stop after Christmas, with better and better programmes for those who want to party before New Year’s Eve.

The post-Christmas concert programme: https://visitdebrecen.com/hot-now/end-of-yearnew-year-concerts-2022/(opens in a new tab)

Visit to the zoo

Zoo Debrecen, located under the huge trees of the Nagyerdő, will remain open every day from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. throughout December (until 1 p.m. on 24th-31st December), so there’s plenty of time for one last visit this year! The zoo’s inhabitants, including ring-tailed lemurs, papa-eyed penguins and Siberian tigers, will certainly be happy to see you.