Places of Interest nearby
Location address: Deutschland, Sächsische Schweiz-Osterzgebirge
Number of texts: 2
The Bastei is a rock formation towering 194 metres above the Elbe River in the Elbe Sandstone Mountains of Germany. Reaching a height of 305 metres above sea level, the jagged rocks of the Bastei were formed by water erosion over one million years ago. They are situated near Rathen, not far from Pirna southeast of the city of Dresden and are the major landmark of the Saxon Switzerland National Park. They are also part of a climbing and hiking area that extends over the borders into the Bohemian Switzerland (Czech Republic).
The Bastei became a place of mass tourism. In 1819 August von Goethe extolled the views: “Here, from where you see right down to the Elbe from the most rugged rocks, where a short distance away the crags of the Lilienstein, Königstein and Pffafenstein stand scenically together and the eye takes in a sweeping view that can never be described in words.” Today the Bastei still has the highest number of visitors of all the lookout points in Saxon Switzerland.