Fidel Castro and Hruscsov at Lake Balaton
Balatonaliga is a part of Balatonvilágos, situated at the easternmost corner of Lake Balaton and thus the closest lakeside village to Budapest. Only 90 kilometers from the capital, it was one of the first vacation spots to be developed.
In the summer of 1948, Rákosi, Gerő, László Rajk, Zoltán Vas, and Imre Nagy spent a few weeks in Aliga. Rákosi fell in love with the place and decided to act. The government took over the entire settlement–villas, restaurants, hotels, even a Hungarian Reformed church. It nationalized forty-eight hectars of private real estate. Of course, there was no compensation. It was just done by legislative fiat. All of Aliga was closed off with barbed wire, soldiers with automatic weapons, and attack dogs who guarded the compound. Inside Rákosi’s house was further separated with a high fence.
The expropriated land was divided into two parts: Aliga I. and Aliga II. Aliga II. was reserved for the highest leadership. It was in Aliga II. that members of the Central Committee had their villas. There was a building called the Presidential Villa reserved for visiting dignitaries, and finally Kádár’s villa, well hidden behind trees. This caution deprived Kádár and his wife of actually seeing the lake. Never mind, they built him an island!
Of this island’s guest was - among others - Fidel Castro and Hruscsov alike. First picture shows Fidel Castro and János Kádár sitting aboard the cruiser Szabadság. The previous is dressed in the usual dictator outfit, the latter wear a suit and a hat. The picture also shows a bodyguard and another boat filled - probably - with further guards, waiting - probably - for the enemy scuba divers. Fidel Castro enjoyed the hospitality of the Party holiday resort in Balatonaliga in 1972.,Hruscsov came earlier, and listened to the famous gipsy bands’ music at the shore
of the fabulous Balaton in 1958. Hruscsov and Kádár is now gone, Fidel is near the end. The resort stand even today, but Szabadság was renamed to Zánka, and you can enjoy a ride on it!