Bad Schandau in the Elbe Sandstone Mountains is easily accessible by train. It is easy to discover many different hiking routes from here. We did two half-day tours, which were very varied and left lots of wonderful and atmospheric impressions.
Hiking in Bad Schandau is a wonderful way to discover the Elbe Sandstone Mountains.
Bad Schandau – Altendorf – Bad Schandau circular hiking trail
Our first tour of the hiking weekend starts directly in Bad Schandau.
The tour starts in the spa gardens of Bad Schandau. The small and very well-kept spa park invites you to take a leisurely walk. If you like, you can walk through the ice-cold water of the Kirnitzsch in a Kneipp basin and get your circulation going.
Once you have walked past the spa clinic, it is a good idea to follow the signposted Flößersteig trail on the other side of the road. This runs parallel to the Kirnitzschtal road and is wonderfully shaded.
About 2.7 kilometres after our start, we entered the Dorfbachklamm gorge. If you follow the “red line” marking, you can climb up some metal ladders at the end of the gorge. Before that, you climb around in the gorge right next to the small stream and come up via a narrow steep path. Even though this path was really not easy, I think it was worth it. Standing in the rock face like that, looking up and searching for the way – it was a lot of fun for me.
The hiking trail leads through the forest to Altendorf. Via the village road, it continues to the meadow path on the panoramic hiking trail.
The Panorama Trail runs across a large open field. About 4.7 kilometres after our start in Bad Schandau, you then turn right in this field (was signposted) and now enter the forest again.
The panorama path continues to a car park. Cross the car park and follow the Kiefrichtpromenade through a foliage colony. After the small arbours, the trail enters the forest again.
We then continued our walk to the Schandauer-Schloßberg ruins. The castle was built as early as the 13th century.
It served to secure the movement of goods on the Elbe and the Via Regia. Today, only a man-made structure from the end of the 19th century remains. This is known as the castle ruin / Schlossruine Schomberg. A staircase leads to a small viewing platform on the tower. You can’t see much in summer, the trees are simply too dense. But it is still worth making the small detour. It’s a great photo motif standing here among the trees.
From there we continued to the Schlossbastei lookout point.
In 1857, a lookout point was built here on a plateau of the Schlossberg and a few years later a restaurant opened there. This was operated until 1979 and then demolished due to dilapidation.
Today you can enjoy a wonderful view over Bad Schandau from the viewing platform.
Via the Zaukenpromenade, a path finally led us back to Bad Schandau via stairs.
Hiking in Bad Schandau – our route to look at
Hike to the Rathmannsdorf observation tower
A second hike we did from Bad Schandau actually came about rather by chance. With the weather still good, we set off with the aim of hiking to the Liliensteig. We had hardly left the village when it started to rain and it didn’t look as if it would stop again. We decided to walk along Hohensteiner Straße to the trout farm in Porschdorf and stopped at a bus shelter. A glance at the bus timetable showed me once again, as a city dweller, how spoilt I am when it comes to using public transport. The next bus did not leave until an hour later! We didn’t want to sit there that long.
A path marked as a hiking trail (red dot in a white square) led between two houses – the Pferdesteig. We were to take this path back to Bad Schandau. The path climbs quite steeply for almost 100 metres at first, then you come to a field path.
At a small rest area (with a roof!) we took a short break in the rain. Despite the low-hanging clouds, we could see the Lilienstein from here. A small consolation, even if we couldn’t walk there.
We followed Pestalozzistraße through Rathmannsdorf, past the village pond, to a crossroads that led us to the Rathmannsdorf lookout tower.
The observation tower stands in the middle of a field. A 25-tonne steel scaffolding, which visually does not fit into the area at all, was inaugurated here in 2007. If you want to go up there, you first have to pay to get through a turnstile. A machine at the entrance “charges” €1 per person.
Then you take the lift (there are stairs, of course) and go up to the viewing platform. Because there is a lift, the observation tower is barrier-free!
The tower is 15 metres high and even on a rainy day it was worth the visit. You have a great view.
If you have slightly better weather on your visit than we had, you should definitely use the Kneipp pools next to the tower. Just the right refreshment after a hike to the tower!
After our visit, we continued along the road through the village and finally via the Rathmannshauser Weg back to Bad Schandau. This path goes quite steeply downhill and was very slippery due to the rain. However, there are many places where you can hold on to a railing.
Hohnsteiner Strasse 13
There is also free car parking on site.
Opening hours observation tower:
daily: 9.00 a.m. until nightfall.
The tower remains closed during snow, black ice, strong winds and thunderstorms. Depending on the weather, the lift is closed from the end of October to the end of March.
Entrance fee observation tower:
per person: 1,-€
Please note that only the following payment options are possible:
- 1,00 € or
- 2 x 0,50 € or
- 5 x 0,20 € or
- 10 x 0,10 €
So you need the entrance fee to match!