Balaton, the largest lake in Central Europe, was formed by tectonic sagging around 25.000 years ago. The Tihany peninsula divides the lake into two basins. The characteristic view of the Mediterranean lanscape was formed by volcanic eruptions millions of years ago as shown today by two giant calderas. The remains of these craters form two little lakes, higher than the water level of Balaton. Besides geological features, the peninsula is famous for its exceptional wildlife: the area became the first nature reserve of Hungary in 1952.
The archaeological findings of the area show that the peninsula has been inhabited since prehistoric times. People of the Bronze Age, the Iron Age and the Roman Age liked this place. The Romans called Balaton Lacus Pelso and had a ford at Tihany.
The ancient Tihany village started in the Middle Ages when King Andrew I. built a monastery as a burial-place for the royal family in 1055. The Benedictine monks settled here.