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Germany: One-Day Trip through Saxon Switzerland

Published: 6.7.2017
Bad Schandau, a German town, is situated almost on the border. We set off from Mlada Boleslav and travel in the direction to Ceska Lipa and Decin. We cross the border at Schmilka border crossing which is mere 8 kilometers from our point of interest. Bad Schandau, as the name suggests, is a spa town. It is situated on banks of the Elbe River in the heart of Saxon Switzerland national park. Bad Schandau consists of nine districts – the old town of Schandau, Krippen, Porschdorf, Neuporschorf, Prossen, Schmilka, Postelwitz, Waltersdorf and Ostrau. As Bad Schandau is really a small town, there are several places to visit.

A beautiful octagonal tower of Johanniskirche, a church built in 1679, sits right on Marktplatz square in the city center. Schurz candy shop is located right below the tower. The store is famous for its apple strudel. There is Sendigbrunnen fountain right in the center of the square. It is a romantic piece of architecture carrying the name of Rudolf Sendig (1848–1928), a famous spa and public life promoter in Bad Schandau. Haus des Gastes makes an end of the square. Now it houses a visitor center. They advice you here on what you need regarding tourism in the area and you can choose from wide variety of souvenirs.

Marktplatz – Haus des Gastes – visitor center   Marktplatz – Sendig fountain and Johanniskirche

If we go in the direction to Johanniskirche we go further straight on. This way we reach the main attraction of Bad Schandau. Toscana Therme water world. There are thermal spa including many attractions both for children and adults. Unfortunately, there is only one outdoor pool. Therefore, the best is to visit this water world in poor weather.  On the day we were there, however, the weather was amazing. We leave Toscana Therme compound, cross a car park and a park and reach quite interessting landmark – an electric lift linking Bad Schandau and Ostrau. It is a 50 meter long metal construction. In 1954 it was declared a landmark of cultural significance. We pay shy of 2 euros to ride up on beautiful scenic point over Bad Schandau town as well as Saxon Switzerland. Behind the scenic point, there is a lynx paddock. To go back down we can either use the lift again or walk.

Toscana Therme   Toscana Therme

the vista over Toscana Therma from the platform by the lift   the vista over Bad Schandau from the platform by the lift  

Yet we leave Bad Schandau for Porschdorf, Neuporschdorf, Waltersdorf and the town of Rathen. This is about 10 kilometers further in the direction to Dresden. We pass by several beautiful rock formations and reach next point of our interest – to Bastei platform. The platform is known for the great Basteibrücke bridge constructed in 1851. It replaced a wooden bridge that was there before. Also, there is situated the ruin of Neurathen, a castle built on a rock. The vista from the bridge and the platform is amazing. What you see are beautiful rocky formation of Saxon Switzerland and the Elbe River. To enter the Basteibrücke is free of charge. Only a tour of Neurathen castle is charged. There is a great view of the entire bridge. Yet should you decided to not to  go onto the bridge, there are plenty of amazing vistas anyway.

the vista from the Basteibrücke over the gems of Saxon Switzerland   Bastei – the gems of Saxon Switzerland

Czech-Saxon Switzerland – the vista from Bastei

the vista over the Basteibrücke from Neurathen castle   a walk on Neurathen castle

As it is getting close to 3 o'clock in the afternoon, we return back to Bad Schandau. Here, we begin the last part of our trip to Häntzschelstiege ferrata. The ferrata is situated in Weckersdorf valley in Saxon Switzerland park. The ferrata is open to access and is of the lightest difficulty (A). If you travel with children, then get on the electric narrow-gauge railway Kirnitzschtalbahn in Bad Schandau and ride in the direction to Weckersdorf valley. You can buy tickets right on the train.

going to Häntzschelstiege ferrata   going to Häntzschelstiege ferrata

going to Häntzschelstiege ferrata going to Häntzschelstiege ferrata cesta na ferratu Häntzschelstiege cesta na ferratu Häntzschelstiege

GPS: 50°55'11.2"N 14°09'10.8"E

Text and photos: Veronika Schubertová

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