Experience nature

“Our Elbe Sandstone Mountains – a mountain landscape uniting the wild and the mild in a confined space, a piece of the living earth that is worth keeping as a single great nature protection park.”  Paul Wagner, 1931

The Saxon Switzerland provides numerous opportunities to experience nature. Enjoy the landscape while hiking, climbing, cycling, boating … and enjoy the fantastic panorama of the numerous view points.

Have a look...!

  • almost 400 km of marked hiking paths, some surfaced, some with bridges
  • mountain paths especially for experienced climbers
  • 745 authorised climbing rocks with almost 11600 climbing paths and different degrees of difficulty
  • 36 km of marked out cycle paths
  • A plethora of vantage points with panoramic views – for example the Bastei, Lilienstein, Brand, Schrammstein rocks, Kipphorn, Kuhstall, Goldstein
  • Boat trip on the upper sluice near Hinterhermsdorf and on the lake Amselsee
  • Felsenburg Neurathen (rock castle)

In these modern times of genetic engineering, experiencing wild, untouched nature has become a rare treat. And anyway, we have only an inkling of how these natural processes actually happen. The national park serves as an opportunity for scientific research and exploration of natural structures and processes. Amongst other things 4000 permanent observation areas have been set up in a network for the purpose of securing knowledge on long-term forest development. Opportunities for experiences, interpretation and information of nature:

  • guided hikes with the national park rangers
  • special guided tours, excursions and presentations
  • educational programmes for children and young people, families and disabled people
  • Saxon Switzerland National Park Centre in Bad Schandau
  • Information centres: the Blockhaus Brand in the vicinity of Hohnstein, the Eishaus on top of the „Großer Winterberg", the info point Schmilka and the house „Beize" with the outdoor activity area „Waldhusche" in Hinterhermsdorf
  • Information boards for visitors in the area of the national park
  • nature trail e. g. along the "Flößersteig" through the Kirnitzschtal and trail Hohnstein
  • Brochures and leaflets with information on nature and culture


Saxon Switzerland with its 400 kilometres of marked hiking trails differing in various degrees of difficulty and length is therefore well accessible. Many hiking maps and signposts provide information about worthwhile hiking destinations.
For your tours we recommend the following equipment: ankle-high boots, weatherproofed clothing, a map, our packed lunch and your passport (for crossing the border to the Czech Republic).
A selection of hiking tours starting nearby the hotel, you find here. For further information please get in touch with the front office team.


Tour 1

  • Rathen/Amselsee/Schwedenlöcher
  • duration: approx. 2.5 hours
  • starting point: Berghotel Bastei
  • Tour: Bastei - Felsenburg Neurathen - Tiedgesteinaussicht - Grünbachtal - Amselsee (possibility to go on a boat trip or visit the Felsenbühne Rathen) - junction Amselfall - Schwedenlöcher - Bastei
  • worth seeing: Bastei viewpoint - Felsenburg Neurathen - Felsenkessel Amselgrund - Wehlgrund
  • nature: modest hiking trail, a lot of steps

Tour 2

  • Uttewalder Grund
  • duration: approx. 3 hours
  • starting point: Berghotel Bastei
  • Tour: Bastei - Fremdenweg (marking: green line) - Steinerner Tisch - Höllengrund - Zscherregrund - Uttewalder Grund (Felsentor) - Bruno-Barthel-Weg (direction village Rathewalde, marking: Yellow line) - Wolfsbergweg - following the marking Yellow line back to Bastei
  • worth seeing: Bastei viewpoint, Teufelsküche and Felsentor at the Uttewalder Grund
  • nature: modest hiking trail including short and steep hikes

Tour 3

  • village Stadt Wehlen/Rauensteine
  • duration: approx. 4 hours
  • starting point: Berghotel Bastei
  • Tour: Fremdenweg - Schwarzberggrund - Stadt Wehlen (here cross the river by ferry) - Kammweg - Rauenstein - Laasensteine - Oberrathen (here cross the river by ferry) - Niederrathen - Felsenburg Neurathen - Bastei
  • worth seeing: Wehlen botanical garden, Rauenstein, Nickstein, Felsenburg Neurathen, Bastei view point
  • nature: modest hiking trail, partly including steps and ladders, including short and steep hikes

Here you can plan your individual tour.

The Malerweg

Walk in the footsteps of famous personalities across the Saxon Switzerland. Whether painters (for example C.D. Friedrich), poets (H. Ch. Andersen) or travel writers (C.H. Nicolai), they were all inspired by the beauty of Saxon Switzerland and immortalized them in their works. Several-day trips on specially arranged tourist routes already belonged to the program of a Dresden visit 200 years ago. Often, the artists used the same paths for inspiration, so the route is now called "Malerweg". Walk on selected sections of the route and discover the rock and woodland landscape of the Elbsandsteingebirge using old pictures and drawings. By the way, the Berghotel Bastei is a member of the Malerweg project. What this means and more is shown by the following link.


With 745 approved climbing rocks and around 11,000 different climbing routes of the difficulty levels easy to extremely difficult, you will soon discover that the climbing sport plays an important role in Saxon Switzerland. Climbing is an integral part of the Elbe Sandstone Mountains and belongs just as much to the landscape as the Elbe. Sport climbing has been growing in Saxon Switzerland since the end of the 19th century.

In the present time, the first ascension of extreme climbing routes in the degrees of difficulty VIII to XI are closely linked to names such as Bernd Arnold, Manfred Vogel, Jürgen Höfer and Klaus Schäfer. To protect the sensitive sandstone and important natural areas in the national park, there are exact regulations for this sport. You must be warned about climbing tours without proper knowledge.

Are you interested in climbing?

For beginners and advanced, there are numerous climbing courses offered by competent climbing enthusiasts of the region. If you are interested in climbing, try your hand at our climbing wall and learn more about this fascinating sport. Whether you are a beginner or advanced, at our front office desk, we will be happy to arrange for you the right climbing course according to your skills.


The Saxon Switzerland is not only an excellent hiking and climbing area, but is also ideal for cycling. In this way, you will explore the environment in an environmentally friendly way, and you will surely discover the one or other thing that would remain hidden when traveling by car.

Especially popular are the tours on the well-developed and signposted Elberadweg. Along the river Elbe, it offers the cyclist breathtaking views of the sandstone cliffs with the possibility of tapping ways to visit numerous sights in the surrounding area.

The Berghotel Bastei is a good starting point to get to know the Saxon Switzerland with the "wire rope". In our house we offer you free storage facilities for your bicycles and many other suggestions for cycling tours. If you do not have your bikes with you, no problem, you can rent bicycles at our hotel.

Our tour suggestion

  • length: approx. 50 km
  • starting point: Berghotel Bastei
  • tour: Basteistraße - Reingrund - Kohlgrund - Wehlener Grund - Stadt Wehlen (ferry) - trip by train to Schöna - Krippen - Bad Schandau - Rathmannsdorf - Prossen - Königstein (ferry) - Strand - Rathen - Stadt Wehlen (ferry) - Dorf Wehlen - Wehlener Straße - Basteistraße - Bastei
  • worth seeing: Königstein fortress, Bastei


The paddles glide into the water, draw funny waves and forward the small boat forward. From afar you can hear the paddle steamer and the chirping of birds on the banks of the Elbe.

To the left and right behind the banks of the river, steep rock faces rise from the woods. The sandstone walls, which are up to 200 m high, show us the way through the Elbe valley. Not only in hiking, cycling or climbing can you be active in the Saxon Switzerland, but also on the water.

Whether you are in a canoe, a paddle boat, a kayak or an inflatable boat - you will get to know Saxon Switzerland from a different and unusual perspective. Take advantage of the daily programs of various organizers or let your individual schedule of tours be compiled. You can get more information about boat rental, individual trips, group events or tailwave driving after your arrival in our hotel - so that your holiday becomes an experience!