No matter where you are travelling from, you can look forward to a comfortable and romantic journey to Saxon Switzerland. By car, you can reach the region via the A17 or A4 motorways. Dresden Airport is just 30 km or so away, while Prague Airport has good connections to the Deutsche Bahn rail network that serves Saxon Switzerland. Car rental is widely available, the modern S-Bahn (urban railway) departs every 30 minutes from Dresden to the towns of Saxon Switzerland, while there is no shortage of regular bus services. Or there’s the old stagecoach for the romantic at heart.
Beyond the standard forms of travel, there’s the free-standing “Ostrauer Fahrstuhl” (Ostraus’ Elevator) that takes visitors 50 m above the banks of the Elbe to the Ostrau district of Bad Schandau. The lift is structurally identical – though four times smaller – to the one at Lake Lucerne in the real Switzerland. The rarest form of transport in the region has to be the “Kirnitzschtalbahn” tram line, built in 1898. In peak season, the historically important electric tram – the only tram in the world to enter a National Park – runs every 30 minutes from 8 am to 8 pm between Bad Schandau and the Lichtenhain Waterfall. The best-known passenger of late was British actress Kate Winslett, who filmed scenes on the Kirnitzschtalbahn line for Hollywood production “The Reader”.
Travel tips, Maps and guides: Would you like to plan your tour even before you leave home – and get some insider tips in the bargain? Look no further than the Tourism Association of Saxon Switzerland, which offers a variety of regional hiking maps for the region. Day trips and hiking tours can also be planned online at: http://karte.saechsische-schweiz.de you will find a free tour planner with information on bus departure times, accommodation, gastronomy and opening times.
Climate: You will definitely need sturdy (hiking) shoes. But it is safe to leave your crampons at home. In this “Switzerland” you will rarely encounter the extreme weather conditions typical of mountain regions that are thousands of metres higher. At an altitude of between 100 and 560 m, the Elbe Sandstone Mountains have a distinct climate of their own: cold at the bottom and warm at the top. If the Elbe Valley experiences the lowest levels of precipitation in the area, you’ll find the most sun up on the exposed table mountains, while the canyons afford protection from wind and heat.
The Tourism Association assists you with your travel plans in Saxon Switzerland: booking accommodation, sourcing package deals and other offers, and provision of information and printed material that will help you to make the right choices for a happy holiday.
Tel.: +49 (0) 3501 47 01 47