hidden europe 50

Exploring the Ore Mountains

by hidden europe

Picture above: Part of a 'Kursächsische Postmeilensäule' - a milestone erected in the Electorate of Saxony as part of an initiative to formalise postage charges. This milestone is at Bad Gottleuba on the former post route between Dresden (Saxony) and Teplice (Bohemia) (photo © hidden europe).


The Erzgebirge (Ore Mountains) offer excellent possibilities for hiking, cycling and cross-country skiing. But even less energetic visitors can reach remote communities in the region by local bus and train services.

The Erzgebirge (Ore Mountains) extends along the German-Czech border from the Elbe Valley in the east to the Elstergebirge in the west. This mountain chain is about 140 kilometres long, with the highest elevations towards the west where the summit ridges rise well above 1,000 metres; the loftiest point is Klínovec at 1,244 metres. It is more an accidental ripple in a broad sweep of rounded hills than an imposing mountain. A road leads to the very top of Klínovec, where an observation tower dating from the 1880s and dedicated to Kaiser Franz Joseph is a reminder that this was once Habsburg territory.

Not everywhere in this region is as tame as the top of Klínovec. Parts of the Ore Mountains have a genuine sense of remoteness and it is possible to follow footpaths through forests and mountain meadows for many hours without meeting a soul. The region offers modest opportunities for skiing and other winter sports, and there are a number of small ski resorts on both the Czech and German sides of the border.

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