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Tourismus Marketing Gesellschaft Sachsen mbH

Wine tip

The Saxony wine region

The vineyards along the Elbe may be relatively few in number, but wine has been cultivated here for nearly 850 years because of the favourable climate: some 1,600 hours of sunshine every year together with a constant change from warm days to cold nights yields complex bouquets and superior quality. Müller-thurgau, riesling and pinot blanc are the main varieties, with goldriesling a speciality that is only grown in Saxony.

History, heritage and the story of porcelain

Saxony has long been one of the most prosperous and culturally advanced of Germany's regions. Today, elegant modern city life goes hand in hand with market squares that are a thousand years old. A great capacity for invention brought widespread fame to Saxony, with trade fairs being held in Leipzig for over 800 years. Saxony is also renowned as the place where European porcelain originated, where Karl May dreamed up every German schoolboy's favourite Native American, and where the company was founded that went on to become Audi. The region's towns and cities are on the doorstep of the mountainous Saxon Switzerland, with Dresden prominent among them as the `Florence on the Elbe'.


The history of European porcelain began in the town of Meissen. 2010 marks the 300th anniversary of the Meissen manufactory, whose products were almost literally worth their weight in gold and remain popular to this day as secure investments. Every piece is crafted by hand in a tradition that continues from the time of Johann Friedrich Böttger. You can watch the artisans at work at the Meissen Porcelain Factory. Meissen is a delightful little town that's well worth a visit in itself. Historical houses and traditional wine taverns with a maze of courtyards compete for your attention under the gaze of Albrechtsburg Castle and Meissen Cathedral.


Chemnitz takes pride in being a thoroughly modern city, dedicated to progress, enterprise and innovation. Cathedrals of industry and an extensive art nouveau quarter provide reminders of its 19th-century prosperity. Chemnitz is also where German expressionist painter Karl Schmidt Rottluff was born. A leading collection of his work is the main attraction at the city's Kunstsammlungen galleries. You might get the impression that Karl Marx also comes from Chemnitz, so prominent is the enormous cast of his head in the city centre. A landmark piece in art history, it is also the world's second-largest, free-standing bust. Chemnitz even bore the name Karl-Marx- Stadt until German reunification. Also from East German times is the annual Begegnungen arts festival, which features concerts, exhibitions and other cultural events.


Görlitz, Germany's most easterly town, has undergone a remarkable transformation since reunification. The old quarter, which had managed to escape demolition but not the ravages of time, has been carefully restored to its former glory, preserving the architectural heritage for future generations. The oldest Renaissance building, the Schönhof, dates back to 1526. It is a defining feature of the townscape, together with the 19th-century townhouses, the narrow lanes and the manicured parks. A must for any itinerary is the Altstadtbrücke, the old town bridge from 1298 which links Görlitz with its sister town in Poland, Zgorzelec.


Freiberg is Saxony's oldest mining town. The extraction of silver ore brought wealth to the town in centuries gone by. The handsome patrician houses around Obermarkt market still attest to this Golden Age. Today, the Reiche Zeche mine serves as a research centre and training academy for Freiberg University of Mining and Technology. Freiberg is also widely associated with Gottfried Silbermann, the influential German organ maker.

Saxony's Elbe Valley

The breathtaking mountainous landscape of the Elbe Sandstone Massif provides the perfect setting for exercise, activity and adventure. It makes the Saxon Switzerland National Park a dream destination for climbers and walkers with its breathtaking panoramic views, much like the Erzgebirge mountains.

Paddle steamers and pleasure boats

Sächsische Dampfschifffahrt is the oldest and largest fleet of paddle steamers in the world. Nine historical paddle steamers and two cruise boats offer regular trips along the Elbe river from Dresden.

Saxon specialities

Marinated braised beef, potato soup and cream cheese potato pancakes are just some of the culinary delights on offer in Saxony's welcoming inns. At Christmas time, Dresden stollen cake is exported around the world. The spiced gingerbread known as pfefferkuchen, which has been produced in Pulsnitz for centuries, can be sampled at Europe's only gingerbread museum. Saxony's beer is also well worth discovering. The first premium pilsner made according to the German Beer Purity Law came from the Radeberg export brewery.

Romance and charm

The 55km Saxon Wine Route links the wineries and estates of the beautiful vineyard region along the Elbe river. The winery open day on the last weekend of August is a popular tradition and there are major wine festivals in late September.

Food and drink

Dishes of fresh fish, potatoes and vegetables are typical of the cuisine in Upper Lusatia. The region's annual Food and Drink Festival in June and July presents these traditional specialities in selected restaurants.

History and tradition

Torgau is one of Germany's best-preserved Renaissance towns, with the Bürgermeister Ringenhain House of 1596 a period masterpiece. The wall and ceiling frescos are the standout features of its authentically furnished living quarters.

Nature and scenery

Sheer sandstone rocks provide the backdrop to plays, concerts, musicals and operas at Europe's most spectacular outdoor theatre: the Felsenbühne Rathen near Pirna. Its summer programme is a magnet for visitors in the heart of the Saxon Switzerland National Park.