What You Need To Know
Debrecen known by alternative names) is the second largest city in Hungary after Budapest. Debrecen is the regional centre of the Northern Great Plain region and the seat of Hajdú-Bihar county. It was the largest Hungarian city in the 18th century and it is one of the most important cultural centres of the Hungarians. Debrecen was also the capital city of Hungary during the revolution in 1848–1849. During the revolution, the dethronement of the Habsburg dynasty was declared in the Reformed Great Church. The city also served as the capital of Hungary by the end of the World War II in 1944–1945.
Population: Estimate 286,73
Area: 461.2 km²
The development of Debrecen is mainly financed by agricultural, health care and educational business. The city is the main center of shopping in the east of Hungary. Forum Debrecen is the largest shopping mall in the region. Debrecen is one of the most developed cities in Hungary, regional center of international companies, like National Instruments, IT Services Hungary, BT and health product manufactures (Teva).
According to the 2011 census, there were 177,435 (84.0%) Hungarians, 1,305 (0.6%) Romani, 554 (0.3%) Germans and 504 (0.2%) Romanians in Debrecen. 31,931 people (15.1% of the total population) did not declare their ethnicity. Excluding these people Hungarians made up 98.9% of the total population. In Hungary people can declare more than one ethnicity, so the sum of ethnicities is higher than the total population.
According to the 2011 census, the total population of Debrecen were 211,320, of whom 209,782 people (99.3%) speak Hungarian, 49,909 (23.6%) English, 22,454 (10.6%) German, and 5,416 (2.6%) speak Russian.
Debrecen is located on the Great Hungarian Plain, 220 km (137 mi) east of Budapest. Situated nearby is the Hortobágy National Park.
The city was first mentioned by the name “Debrezun” in 1235. The name derived from the Turkic word “debresin”, which means “live” or “move” and it is also a male given name. Other theory says the name is of Slavic origin meaning well-esteemed (Polish: Dobrze cenione). In other languages, the name of the city varies more in spelling than in pronunciation: Romanian Debrețin, GermanDebrezin, Serbian Debrecin, Czech and Slovak Debrecín.
According to the 2011 census, there were 52,459 (24.8%) Hungarian Reformed (Calvinist), 23,413 (11.1%) Roman Catholic, 10,762 (5.1%) Greek Catholic, 899 (0.4%) Baptist, 885 (0.4%) Jehovah’s Witnesses, and 812 (0.4%) Lutheran in Debrecen. 54,909 people (26.0%) were irreligious, 3,877 (1.8%) atheist, while 59,955 people (28.4%) did not declare their religion.
The city used to be somewhat isolated from Budapest, Hungary’s main transport hub. However, the completion of the motorway M35 means Budapest can now be reached in under two hours. Debrecen Airport (the second largest in Hungary) has recently undergone modernisation in order to be able to handle more international flights, although almost all flights to and from Hungary still use Budapest’s Ferihegy Airport(now called Budapest Ferenc Liszt International Airport). Cities that can be reached from the Debrecen Airport include Brussels, Eindhoven, London, Malmö, Milan and Paris. There have also been improvements to some parts of the railway between the capital and Debrecen as part of Hungary’s mainly EU-funded National Development Plan for 2004 to 2006. There are many railway stations in Debrecen, the most significant is the main station of Debrecen, in addition other smaller stations exist, these include Debrecen-Csapókert, Debrecen-Kondoros, Debrecen-Szabadságtelep and Tócóvölgy. Debrecen’s proximity to Ukraine and Romania enables it to develop as an important trade centre and transport hub for the wider international region. Local transport in the city consists of buses, trolleybuses, and trams. It is provided by the DKV (Debreceni Közlekedési Vállalat, or Transport Company of Debrecen). Nearby towns and villages are linked to the city by Hajdú Volán bus services.
Debrecen, typical of Central Europe, has a climate on the boundaries of oceanic (Köppen Cfb) and humid continental (Dfb).