©Stella Kalaw

Siófok is a town located in the southern bank of Lake Balaton, an hour's drive southwest of Budapest. It is a popular tourist spot and known for its beaches and mild climate. May was off season so we were glad to be in the company of locals rather than the usual tourist crowds. That afternoon we arrived, we had welcome drinks at Mala Garden where my brother made arrangements for an overnight stay. Zoltan, the manager, recognized him from his two previous trips and came over to chat. He recommended that we take the cruise around the lake. By the time we were on the boat, the sun broke from the clouds and we took pleasure in the warm light. The next day, we took a car ferry to Tihany and drove up the hill to a Benedictine monastery. We walked behind the church where we soaked in a panoramic view of the lake.