Travelers to Hungary will enjoy a special treat this Farsang season, especially in Mohács, a special little place, not far from Budapest – well, a day trip worth, that is. This is Busójárás in Mohács, with pagan demons and laughter, the kind of thing that makes travel worth it, simply because it is so different from everything you’ve ever experienced in your life. And if you decide to attend the event, leave all your expectations of “proper” at home, ladies. These demons are anything but proper. They will “harass” you, tease you, and chase you, because this is tradition in Mohács!
The “devils” (Busós) take to the streets of Mohács: fantastic, pagan creatures, who play and dance. There’s music and dance, plus a great choice of local delicacies to tame your hunger, plus busópálinka for the daring ones. This is not only an occasion to party: it is believed that the Busós scare off the winter cold. There will be many interesting events, including pipers and Buso demonstrations, followed by a Busó boat crossing of the Danube. The main amphitheater is set in Széchenyi tér. This is where you can see folk dances, and live folk performances. Here is where the Busós come on horses and on carts, gathering to start the free carnival.
Oh, and the Busó festivities at Mohács are an UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity listed celebration. This means that this six-day carnival reveals a lot about the local culture and traditions, and it has authenticity, unlike the usual tourist traps that make visitors to a certain country waste time on things that don’t really belong.
The tradition originated with the Croatian minority in Mohács, but now, the locals consider it as Hungarian as anything else. According to the official UNESCO listing:
The festival is multifaceted, including a children’s costume contest, a display of the art of mask carvers and other craftspeople, the arrival of more than 500 busós in rowboats on the Danube for a march through the city alongside horse-drawn or motorized fantasy vehicles, the burning of a coffin symbolizing winter on a bonfire in the central square, and feasts and music throughout the city.
So enjoy this in Hungary this February. The festival starts February 4, and it will last till February 9 this year. via www.argophilia.com