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VIEWpoint pp MAGAZINE ON TOURISM, 2011 FALL

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SÁRVÁRI GUESTHOUSE

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ON THE MAP

Report Section

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Malta the Treasure Island

Blog Section

16

Misleading Name, Misleading Professionalism

Interview Section

18

Adrienne Nagyné Strumpf

Photo Gallery Section

22

The Fall for me….

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MAGAZINE SECTION

The Prickly Pears. Jams and liqueurs are made out of its fruit.

Malta the Treasure Island “I hope that you all already know and I am not the first one who is telling you that, but if you were expecting sandy beaches shadowed by palm trees you came to the wrong place”, told us our travel instructor after our small, 180 seat, flight arrived to Malta, to the airport of the city of Luqa and with that our journey in the treasure island has begun. Malta’s small, 316 m2 territory is located

seem

unutterable

for

us

Europeans.

in the Mediterranean Sea, from south of

Luckily for the tourists almost everyone in

Sicily and east of Tunisia, and can be reached

Malta speaks English, which is their

from Budapest with a direct flight in two

inheritance from the colonial ages when

hours. It is a sovereign state with its own

Malta was the territory of the British

language, which interestingly has arabesque

Empire; what’s more, they constantly mix

roots, although they use Latin letters. Most of

their native language with English which

the names of the towns, for the first sight,

gives

an

interesting

edge

conversations among natives. 4

to

the


Water pipe near Paradise Bay. These aboveground pipes, carrying desalted water, enmesh the whole island.

three

temple ʛgantija we can call upon the faith

smaller,

of the first maltase, in the Hypogeum, the

quiescent version of Malta, and Comino

prehistoric underground temple, we can

which has only four permanent residents

climb down to the core of the earth and in

and

summertime

the capital city, Valetta we can see

visitors, but a large part of it is bird

monuments from the renaissance and

sanctuary and nature reserve.

baroque age.

The

archipelago

islands:

two

Malta,

hotels

consists

Gozo,

serving

the

of

Malta has always served as a gate to

When you look out of the small window

Europe and that had a great impact on its

of the airplane, Malta seems as a bleak and

history as it was occupied by Phoenicians,

dry place where nothing can set root. The

Romans, the Sovereign Military Order of

fields covered with red soil and rocks are

Malta and the British. The diverse nations

divided into small yards and separated with

crossing the island left many monuments

either a rock wall, that has no solder at all,

behind. Walking among the sometimes

so the water can go through, or a wall of

fifty ton rock giants in the megalithic

Prickly pears which is a type of cactus that 5


has big thick leafs and its fruit is eatable

hotels are constantly growing, most of the

and displayed on fruit stands all over

area is left unbuilt and hides the most

Malta, for the misadventure of those keen

beautiful bays of the island, for example

tourists, including me, who feel invincible

the most northern Paradise Bay or the

desire to touch them and have all their

Mellieha Bay that has the longest sandy

fingers covered with tiny stiff prickles for

beach on the island.

days.

Traveling down south, we arrive to St.

Truly, the island’s outmost problem is

Paul’s bay, the center of North-west

the drinking-water shortage; most of

Malta’s tourism. Qawra, Buggiba, St. Paul

winter’s moisture ends up in the sea

and Xemxija built into one large holiday

quickly without filtering into the soil and

resort. Here we can find countless hotels,

the summers are long, hot, and dry. About

apartments, restaurants one after another.

half of the drinking-water comes from

Interestingly, there are not much

unsalted sea water, while the other half is

authentic dishes offered by the restaurants,

retrieved from the ground or from water

but name a nation, and they have it!

collectors placed in the roofs of the houses.

French, Italian, Chinese, Japanese, Thai,

The size of Malta equals to a bigger

even Mexican, the market is outstanding

county in Hungary. The distance between

when it comes to foreign cuisine. Only

the northern Cirkewwa and the southern

one thing cannot be found in this part of

Marsaxlokk is only 43 km, but this tiny

the island: open beaches. If you are not

piece of land hides diverse values.

satisfied with swimming in your hotel’s

The north-western part of the island is

pool or with the few giant rock, which are

ideal for the lazy type of tourists, like

there for you to jump into the water, you

myself, who like to lay in the sun in a

have to get on a bus and travel to the

sandy beach for hours or do water sports

beach.

like jet skiing or wake boarding. This part of Malta was almost unsettled until the end of 17th century, only a few villages were built, but these were constantly exposed to pilot attacks from the sea. There are not many historical sites can be seen here, a few small fortress left from the British that were built to protect the area against the attacks. Although the number of new 6


Fishing boat near Paradise Bay

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The city of Valetta

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The middle part of Malta offers less

which gives a unique Mediterranean image

nature, but more culture. The knights of

to the buildings that never have colored

Malta arrived to the island in 1530. At that

walls. Only the closed wood balconies are

time the Sciberras peninsula on which

painted to various types of colors and add

Valetta is located was almost absolutely

some cheerfulness to the city view.

unsettled. Across the bay, in the place of

The capital city has many sites to

the towns that today called Senglea and

offer. Inside the city wall we can walk

Vittoriosa, fisherman lived among the

among the old, historical streets of Valetta,

ruins left by Phoenicians and Arabesques.

we can visit the grand master’s palace, or

The center of Malta at that time was

the Baracca gardens and we must see the

Mdina, which is located in the middle of

city’s most gorgeous building the St.

the island. However, the order soon

John’s Co-cathedral, dedicated to John the

realized the strategically importance of

Baptist.

Grand Harbor and between 1530 and 1565

What from outside is look like an

they founded Birgu, (today’s Vittoriosa)

average church with the usual limestone

(today’s

walls turns into a lavish cathedral inside.

Conspicula). The collective name for these

The used to be simple but considerable

settlements in our time is Three Cities. In

building was built in the 16th century. The

1565, after the great siege, one of the grand

inside was remade in lipping baroque style

masters of the order, Jean Parisot de la

in the 17th century. The breath-taking

Valette decided to relocate the capital city.

nave’s

Senglea,

and

Bormula,

walls

are

covered

with

Today Valetta is a busy capital that

embossments with golden color, and the

overgrows the one-time city walls. As I

ceiling gives room to the murals that

walk through the city I see rows of

present 18 scenes from the life of John the

windows carved out of the stone, stone

Baptist. Each aisle is dedicated to a grand

bridges and buildings. It seems for me that

master, with sculptures crests, symbols and

the city is a masterpiece of some stone-

scenes from their life. From the nave a

mason giant because it is hard to imagine

richly decorated wooden door leads us into

how humans had the strength to create all

a

this.

significant painting of Malta is displayed.

well-kept

room,

where

the

most

The basic building material of the

The Beheading of John the Baptist was

island is still the locally produced lime-

painted by the Italian baroque painter,

stone. The colure of this stone is ranging

Michelangelo da Caravaggio. In this room

from golden-yellow to middle brown,

a safety guard makes sure that no one

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Closed balcony in the city of Valetta. In the capital city old and new are collated together.

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makes a picture of the invaluable artifact. The floor of the cathedral is also unique.

Three

hundred

seventy-five

knights, members of the Order, buried under marble plates covering the floor. Each grave stone has a Latin script, presenting the heroic achievements of the knight buried underneath, and there are also symbols: blazons, skulls and skeletons carved into the stones.

The nave of the StJohn’s Co-Cathedral. The masters’ of the order.

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main altar and the artifacts displayed artifacts on it are gifts from the grand

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Small windows of flats that are carved into the rock wall.

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The Grand Harbor.

Across the street from the cathedral

The southern part of the island is not as

in a restaurant called Luchiano, where I

popular among tourist as the other parts of

had the best dish ever, a perfect medium

Malta. The reason for that is the substantial

rare steak with octopus stew, I met a young

industrial growth of the area, for example,

Hungarian waitress who told me that the

the implementation of Malta’s second

crowded streets of Valetta become deserted

power-plant, however, this is the part

after seven o’clock because the capital city

where we can find the small villages where

has no nightlife at all. The party centers of

fishery is still the main income resource

the area are St.Julian's, Sliema and

and the small fishing ships carrying the

Paceville, crowded resorts about ten

trade mark of Malta, the Eye of Horus that

minutes from Valetta, popular among

protect

tourists and the young and less reserved

Phoenician times.

fisherman

back

from

the

residents of the island.

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Large cliff with a window that can bee seen on the way to Gozo. such formations

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The small bays of the islands,Comino and Gozo are full of with

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Xlendi Bay, the most popular beach of Gozo reminds us to the historical past.

The main island of Malta that used to

residents are all know each other. Their

reject all effects of globalization, for

keys are left outside of the doors for the

example, the big colored commercial

visitors who are free to go in without

displays,

crowded

knocking. There is another meaning to the

cosmopolite. If we want to go back in time

key in the door. The residents of Gozo

we have to visit Gozo, the little brother of

were fisherman working in large ships on

Malta, which preserved its innocence from

the sea. The captains of the ship always

the

word.

made sure that after arriving to the harbor

Travelling through the narrow but bright

the crew stayed on the ship till the

and clean streets of the villages and towns

morning, so the wives of the fisherman

we can picture how Malta possibly looked

could finish their business at home. The

like at the colonial times. The time is

key in the door also meant ‘you can come

stopped in that little island where the

in; nobody else is here with me’.

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has

wonders

become

of

the

a

modern


Limestone window of ʛgantija, the Neolithic, megalithic temple complex of Gozo.

19


II- Qawra, the inland sea, surrounded with the typical maltase holiday homes. These small garage like two storey buildings have a bedroom upstairs and a large door downstairs that makes it easy to carry the sun beads in and out. The house itself is only used as a shelter.

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The Blue Lagoon. The most beautiful beach of the island of Comino is popular among both tourists and locals.


BLOG SECTION

Misleading Name, Misleading Professionalism. What are the images immediately popping into our mind when we see the word spa? For me it is a very quiet place where one can rest in the hands of professionals. Although, I know that this word in Hungary is often associated with the hotel’s wellness section, where one can enjoy resting in the Jacuzzi, sauna, or wellness pool, I definitely expected something else when I visited Thermal Spa Siklós. The wellness center is located near to the

But do not think that the struggle is over

center of Siklós, although it is relatively

with leaving the locker room. After jumping

difficult to find it, because of the huge

through the dirty feet washing water you

building site that stands between the hotel and

arrive to the pool area. Here you can find four

the main road.

adult and three child pools surrounded with

I can’t deny that the building itself and the

sun beds. The first thing caught my eye in

gate system are very up to date. After buying

that area was not the decorative interior or the

your ticket, (the cost of an all-day adult ticket

two giant slides, but the food that was all over

in weekdays is 2.500 HUF, and there is a

the place. Half loaf of bread displayed on a

discount for the residents of Siklós and for

sun bed, sandwiches and a thermos are

handicaps) you receive a card that you have

sticking out of a beach bag. How can the

to slide at the gate and later on at machine at

management let people eat in the pool area?

the lockers, to view your locker number. It is

How much of that food ends up somehow in

also used as a key for the lockers. This

the water?

system is a great newness after the general

After checking out the restaurant I realized

practice of such places, where you usually get

that the reason for that is that the wellness

a key that is fixed on a rubber band around

section has only one restaurant and a very

your wrist.

little juice bar. In these areas people are not

Unfortunately, both men and women are

allowed to eat their own food, but that would

jammed together into one locker room, so if

be uncomfortable anyway, because even

you want to change your clothes you have to

paying guests can hardly find open spots in

get in line for one of the three changing

the tiny little room, where there are only eight

rooms, provided to ten – twenty people

tables and since the waiting line is long and

staying at the locker room at the same time.

the prices are high people prefer to bring their

Also, there are no benches to sit down in this

own food.

area to, for example put on your shoes, or just

The pool area itself is very demanding, the

simply put down your bag.

four adult pools offer fascinating services, such as, water massage beds, foot massages, waist massages, massage cabins, water springs,

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neck showers, a twisted passage and the

Even the sauna area with its six very small

previously mentioned huge slides, at least

indoor saunas (2 steam cabin, 2 infra, 2

according to the website of the place. As a

Finnish) is extremely loud.

matter of fact, the small harnesses inside of

The only quiet place within the complex is

the pools provide only one kind of steam, I

the outdoor Russian sauna, which resembles

suppose, both for waist and neck and there is

to the Finnish sauna very much, the only

a water massage bad and a twisted passage,

difference is that the Russian sauna is much

but all the other services listed on the

bigger and you have to go out to the cold in a

webpage are invisible, at least for me, but it is

bathing suit to get there.

possible that I missed them because of the huge crowd.

sauna I asked around what other people think

The whole pool area resembles to a sardine

about the place because I thought that I might

can. It is difficult to move without bumping

become too picky. A very nice lady told me

into the wet bodies of complete strangers. I

that they have been visiting the place

understand that serving people and making

regularly since it opened up in august 2010.

huge money is priory in this institution, but if

She said that the particular day I went there

night clubs have to control the number of

was a relatively slow day, because there is

people that can stay within the building why

usually a much bigger crowd. She also told

cannot wellness centrums have the same

me that it is more of the children’s place than

rules. I believe that a crowded pool is just as

the adults’ and maybe because of that she can

dangerous as a crowded nightclub and after

see a large quality decay. The upstairs’ salt

checking in large number of people the

cave has no salt anymore; the equipment of

management should put out the “full up!”

the playing area is scrimpy. The best spot

sign.

according to her was the outside swimming

The other thing just as annoying as the

pool but it is closed for the winter.

crowd is the constant screaming of children. I

Do not get me wrong. I am not against

understand that the place is a children

children or family friendly places. I just think

friendly environment with 3 child pools, but

that it should be emphasized more in the

while cannot these pools be separate area?

advertisements and the website of the place

Where can adults enjoy relaxing when the

that it is more likely a place for a family

sitting pool, or Turkish bath that is offered for

getaway than for a quiet day for resting as a

those wanting to rest are full of the crowd and

Spa title would suggest.

with smooching couples?

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Resting in the calmness of the Russian


INTERVIEW SECTION

Tourism Through My Eyes – In my interview with Adrienne Nagyné Stumpf, the founder and manager of Pyramid Travel Agency, Komló, she speaks about her carrier, the trends in tourism then and now, the changes in the quality of offers, the effects of the depression and the mutinous word on tourism. When did you start to work in the travel

No, I didn’t. One of the reasons was that

business?

the only qualification I didn’t have in the

It was 17 years ago. I worked in several

field of tourism is the tourist guide

travel agencies in Pécs. The first agency

certificate. Once or twice I had to

was Mecsek Tours that was the place

accompany a bus to Greece, but it was not

where I thought that I have found the

guiding.

appropriate job for me. I was twenty and

I assume that during these seventeen

had no previous training in tourism, only a

years you had a lot of opportunities to

school leaving exam and two foreign

travel. Where have you been?

language certificates. First I gained the

Yes,

experience and then I started to study

conduct so called „study tours” to where

tourism.

they invite the assistants from the resale

What was your position at these offices?

offices. These study tours help the

In the beginning I was a cashier in the

assistants to get to know the destinations,

forint cash register, than I got a certificate

hotels and other programs and with that

for selling foreign currency as well. Later

support

on I sold travel packages and airplane

convince the passengers easier to book a

tickets. In the last few years of my career

holiday program if you have been there

as an employee I was an office manager.

and have your own experiences. Of course,

Did you organize travel packages as

you cannot visit all the places you sell. I

well?

visited Greece by ship, Cyprus, Tunisia,

Yes, but only a few. In Mecsek Tours I had

Egypt, Austria, and Mallorca. But if you

to organize package deals to Greece, Italy,

work in this business you have several

and some school excursions. But these

other

were easy, no contingents or charters were

discounted price. And of course, I like to

needed. All the other agencies were I have

travel, so I have been in Slovakia, Israel,

worked were resale offices.

USA, Dominican Republic, Mexico, Cuba,

Did you have to guide the tours that you

Croatia, and Romania as well.

the

organizing

the

travel

salesmanship.

opportunities

to

agencies

You

travel

for

can

a

have planned?

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Which one was your favorite destination

problem is that since this is an ex-miner

among these countries?

city the economy declines, therefore the

My favorite was Cuba, that’s the reason

potential clientele is very narrow. This

why I have been there three times. The

situation is worse year after year.

atmosphere of that country is very special

What are the most popular tourist

and the people are very friendly. They are

destinations?

very poor, but still, very happy. I like their

changed throughout the years?

mentality.

In the summertime the most desired trips

Were you considered staying there?

are Greece, Croatia, Tunisia, Spain, and

I was dreaming about it, but I have a very

Italy. In the last few years, because of the

tight relationship with my family and my

increasing extra expenses for the trips by

homeland. I cannot imagine my life

airplane, people prefer going by bus or by

abroad.

car. In wintertime the most popular

How does your role changed now that

program is skiing in Austria, Slovakia, and

you have your own resale agency?

Italy. Before these extremely high airport

It was very easy to open an own agency,

taxes and kerosene fees, this time of the

because during the years I spent as an

year Tunisia and Egypt was also popular.

employee

the

The number of booked exotic holidays is

connections with the travel organizer

very low. People like to travel, but they

companies. After getting the permissions

cannot afford expensive trips. They search

for the office, I made connections with

for one day packages for neighboring

them and started to sell their trips. In the

countries or domestic travels so they don’t

first six years I worked alone and I had to

have to give up traveling.

organize everything on my own including

Is that tendency different in other,

marketing, finance, sale, and so on. In

bigger cities?

summertime it was very hard working

I think it is similar in the whole country, or

alone, because this is the busiest season for

perhaps in the whole world. On one hand,

travel offices.

the spread of the internet made it easy to

Your agency is located in a relatively

organize the vacations from home, leaving

small town. How does that affect your

out the agencies. On the other hand, the

business?

economical

Komló is not so small; it is the second

discretionary income, and we know that

biggest town of Baranya county. The

this is the money what people can spend on

I

have

established

How

crisis

traveling

decreases

habits

the

buying things which is above their living. 25


It seems to me, the world is becoming

reason why they use a higher rate for the

more and more dangerous. For example,

currency exchange. Of course sometimes

the blasting in London, the rebellions in

the drastic change cannot be predicted. In

Egypt, Tunisia and Greece, the flood in

these cases the tour operator can raise the

Thailand and so on. What effect this

price of the package at least in 21 days

events have on traveling appetite?

before departure, but if the raise exceeds

In my opinion, the media shows all these

8%, compared to the original price of the

events more dangerous than they really are.

package, the client has the right to desist

But people always believe what they see

from the trip. It is very unpleasant to

on television and it is very difficult to

inform the clients about the changes in the

convince the traveler of the opposite. After

price, because they calculated a fix amount

these events it takes a lot of time to gain

and for some people it is difficult to bring

people’s confidence again. Interestingly, if

up the extra cost.

these problems occur in Europe (Greece),

How do you see the future of your

people are more trustful and they don’t

business and tourism as a whole?

hesitate to travel, not like if it happens in

Everything depends

Africa (Egypt, Tunisia). A natural disaster

changes of the world. People not just like

can happen anywhere and anytime, nobody

to travel they need a holiday. If you can

can influence it. This is the nice thing in

rest up, your work will be more effective,

this business, that you cannot predict

but if you don’t have the money for

anything. The outcome of the holiday

recreation it is a negative spiral. You will

depends on the organizing agency, the

be more stressed and your work will worth

circumstances of the target country and it

less. On the other hand, there are a lots of

also depends on the traveller.

countries that live from tourism. For them

How does the drastic change of currency

this is the only possibility to raise the GDP.

rates affect the business?

These are: Tunisia, Egypt, Dominican

When the tour operators put together their

Republic and so on. The international

catalogues, they have to calculate in

trends will have an affect on the tourism

advance for almost 4-6 months. That is the

and the future cannot be predicted.

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on the financial


PHOTO GALLERY SECTION

The autumn for me is……

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. . . . . ROMANTIC THE CASTLE OF SIKLÓS

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. . . . . DELICIOUS HOSSZÚHETÉNY

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. . . . . CHALLENGING KŐVÁGÓSZŰLÓS

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. . . . . BRIGHT LAKE ORF키

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. . . . . COLOURFUL LAKE SIKONDA

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. . . . . MYSTERIOUS THE VALLEY BETWEEN SIKONDA AND MÁNFA

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. . . . . SAD THE VILLAGE OF PÜSPÖKSZENTLÁSZLÓ

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This is Suzy, three years old Hungarian Pointer. Suzy WALKS at least once every day. She loves to PLAY with her ball. She sleeps in a soft pillow in a WARM SHELTER. Her food contains enough nutrient and vitamin to keep her STRONG and HEALTY. Suzy is a HAPPY dog.

What about YOUR DOG?

RESPECT YOUR PET AND IT WILL RESPECT YOU!

THE ONE AND ONLY ISSUE OF VIEW POINT MAGAZINE. MANY THANKS TO ALL WHO HELPED ME! EDITORS: Teodora For, Tibor Bende, Ildikó Bende, TECHNICAL SUPPORT: Tibor Bende, AUTHOR: Ildikó Bende, PHOTO: Ildikó Bende, Zoltán Sárvári. 42


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