picturesque hour's drive or S-Bahn ride away from Dresden towards the Czech
border will take you to the national park known as 'Saxon Switzerland'.
A map, if not a walking book would be recommended here. Bad Schandau is
a good starting point for a series of well-marked walks, which partly jaunt
along the border through splendid beechwoods. You can climb up the hillside
or take the 50 metre lift - which also doubles up as the world's tallest
candle! (featured in the Guinness Book of Records) From the S-Bahn, take
a ferry across the Elbe - you will see the lift - there is also ample parking.
The region poses an average challenge for avid hikers and rock-climbers,
who should of course be appropriately equipped. Sunday afternoon wanderers
will need sturdy footwear and a head or heights to scale the rockside ladders
on some of the walks. Outstanding views of the Elbe and rolling landscape
can be enjoyed atop the rocks which form the Schrammsteine, Affensteine
and Carolafelsen, and nature-lovers can bird and flower-spot to their heart's
delight. Refreshments are available throughout the region - no trail is
too far away from a friendly cafe, as the region is an established outdoor
The Festung Königstein - a romantic fortress village built on a hill
beside the Elbe is a tourist trap but a quaint one. Bank holiday weekends
in Spring and Autumn are particularly busy, so it is recommendable to book
accommodation in advance.
| Burghotel Stolpen
Nestled among the late gothic buildings of Stolpen Castle the Burghotel
Stolpen is a perfect starting point for a trip to the Sächsische
Schweiz. Exposed beams and country style wooden furniture lend an
atmosphere of rustic comfort to the hotel's 44 rooms and suites. Both
the hotel and the castle adjacent to it are situated on a basalt outcrop
and enjoy sweeping views over the lush Saxon countryside. For more
information about the medieval town of Stolpen and the 700 year history
of the castle see: www.oberelbe.de
(some information in English).
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