Tyukod is a tiny eastern Hungarian village of a mere 2000 inhabitants. It lies on a seriously flat landscape (the Alföld), with hundreds of kilometers of flat land followed by pretty much the same – in every direction.
This is possibly the reason why Tyukod has no less than eleven lookout towers.
The good folks of Tyukod found a way to make money. EU money is irresistibly attracted to things that can be sold as “tourism” or “infrastructure” – two things lookout towers are decidedly not. But that’s not the case on paper, where wooden towers (often rendered unapproachable by shrubs) sound a perfect way to make a village self-sufficient on tourists who flock to a flat land to climb up the ladders and look around.
Inhabitants of Tyukod, for instance, discovered that they can get as much as 80 thousand euros to build a lookout tower. But if you multiply the number of tourists expected to flock to Tyukod to climb a lookout tower by eleven… Nope, that’s still zero.
But you can do that on paper because there doesn’t seem to be any upper limit of what bureaucrats deem commercially suitable for a single village. So now Tyukod has eleven such towers. That’s 264 million HUF (900 thousand euros) – costing over 80 thousand per lookout tower in a village that has no house over 10 thousand euros.
But worry not, Tyukod is not the only Hungarian village aspiring to become a lookout tower superpower. Investigative journalists found 160 such towers in the country.
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Photos: szon.hu, YouTube, kilatok.blog.hu, nepszava.hu