Trek Notes - Germany

Saxon Switzerland National Park - circular walk

The Elbe Sandstone Mountains, located in the southeast of Germany a few miles from Dresden, are also known as Saxon Switzerland, named by two Swiss painters who were impressed by the similarity to their own country. You will see bizarre rock formations, massive woods, plateaus and different shaped valleys alongside the Elbe River. During your walking tour you will see the famous natural and cultural sights like the "Fortress Königstein" the rocks "Barbarine" and "Pfaffenstein" or the well known Rock Arch Pravčická Brána in the Bohemian Switzerland (the largest natural stone bridge on the European continent).

Day 1: Arrival day Individual travel arrangements to Bad Schandau, welcome drink at the hotel. Bad Schandau is a well known health resort in the heart of the Saxon Switzerland. You can use the arrival day for a city tour or a visit of the "Toskana Therme", an indoor swimming pool combined with sounds, light and video over and under the water. Overnight stay in Bad Schandau
Day 2: Walking tour from Bad Schandau via fortress Hohnstein to Rathen (approx. 6 hrs/ 17km) At your first walking day you will leave the valley and arrive at an elevated plain which provides a beautiful scenery. After passing the valley where two important streams called Sebnitz and Polenz meet, you will have to cope with a challenging ascent to the viewing point called Brand, the "balcony of the Saxon Switzerland". You will continue your walk towards the fortress Hohenstein. After climbing Hockstein and passing the little lake "Amselsee" you will finish in the small and lovely town Rathen on the banks of the Elbe River. Overnight stay in Rathen
Day 3: Walking tour from Rathen via Wehlen to Königstein (approx. 4.5 hrs/14km) In the morning you climb up the famous Bastei. Enjoy the beautiful view from the viewing point Bastei in the quite morning. Continue towards Wehlen and cross the river Elbe by ferry. Than the walk goes on along the mountains "Großer und Kleiner Bärenstein". The next highlight is the famous fortress "Königstein" which is enthroned on a 361m high table mountain. The impressive mountain fortress has an interesting history and offers a fascinating view over the picturesque sandstone mountains as well as foothills of the eastern Ore Mountains. Your accommodation is situated at the bottom of the fortress. Overnight stay in Königstein
Day 4: Walking tour from Königstein via rock needle „Barbarine", Pfaffenstein to Gohrisch (approx. 4.5 hrs/11) You start your day with a walk towards the town of Koenigstein. Afterwards you will continue on comfortable and shadowy forest paths. You pass the mountain "Quirl" and clamber the table mountain "Pfaffenstein" where you have a wonderful view over the Lilienstein, a very famous mountain in the Saxon Switzerland. At the top you will find the sign posting leading you to an impressive rock needle called "Barbarine". You will reach the small health resort Gohrisch, situated in a calm and densely wooded area. Overnight stay in Gohrisch
Day 5: Walking tour from Gohrisch via Papstein to Krippen (approx. 4 hrs, 10km) After a short warm up walking slightly uphill crossing meadows and fields you will make your way to the top of the table mountains Gohrisch (448 m) and Papststein (451 m). Beautiful sceneries will recompense the effort. You will pass by two impressive caves before you enter a valley. An old mill with gastronomic offers is worth a break before you continue the last few kilometres towards Krippen. Overnight stay in Krippen.
Day 6: Walking tour from Krippen via Hrensko (Czech Republic), Rock Arch to Krippen (approx. 6 hrs/15km) In the morning you travel by fast train from Krippen to Schöna and use the ferry to Hrensko in the Czech Republic. The walking tour leads you to the Rock Arch Pravčická Brána, the largest natural stone bridge on the European continent and a natural monument of the Czech Republic. It is considered the most beautiful natural form in Bohemian Switzerland and is the symbol of the entire area. The circular tour ends in Hrensko where you will take again the ferry and return to Krippen by train. Overnight stay in Krippen
Day 7: Walking tour from Krippen via Schrammsteine, Kirnitzschtal to Bad Schandau (approx. 5 hrs, 10 miles) The last day challenges again your entire condition. You use the ferry from Krippen to Bad Schandau and the walking path to the rocks "Schrammsteine" cliffs. A part of the way consists of steep ascents and metal stairs. You walk along the route "Affensteig" and follow the "Malerweg" ("Painters path") to the Ostrauer Mühle, a former mill and now tavern. Through the lovely "Kirnitzschtal" you use the traditional Kirnitzschtalbahn, an old tram. It will bring you back to Bad Schandau. Overnight stay in Bad Schandau
Day 8: Individual departure from Bad Schandau. You can of course always extend your trip with extra nights in Dresden or other towns. We will be pleased to arrange additional accommodation for you.

Number of people: minimum of 2 people

Travel dates: 2011 (daily arrival, 1 April - 31 Oct)

Accommodation & Meals
Category: 3*** hotels lodging: bed and breakfast

- 7 overnight stays in walking friendly three star hotels in en-suite rooms
- Rich continental breakfast
- Welcome drink at the arrival in Bad Schandau
- Luggage transport between the hotels
- Train ticket for the walking tour in Bohemian Switzerland
- Detailed information material (English) and walking maps (English caption)
- 24 hours service hotline

Print   To Top