• Big Zittau lenten veil "Fastentuch"
Big Zittau lenten veil "Fastentuch"Townhall in ZittauView of BautzenSt Peter and Paul Cathedral in GörlitzMoravian Stars Manufacture in Herrnhut

Cultural Heritage in the tri-state area – Via Sacra (3 days)

This journey leads you into the unique cultural landscape of the tri-state area of Germany, Poland and the Czech Republic – into the region of Upper Lusatia, the German part of the Via Sacra. The Via Sacra connects ecclesiastical buildings and artworks of major importance.

Day 1: Ralbitz – Panschwitz-Kuckau (12 km) – Bautzen (23 km)

  • Trip into Upper Lusatia. After taking a look at Sorb Lusatia and a stopover at the cemetery of Ralbitz, the journey takes you to the Cistercian abbey of St. Marienstern convent in Panschwitz-Kuckau. Tour of convent, church and cathedral treasury.
  • Bautzen: City walk through the historic centre of the more than 1,000-year-old “town of towers”, guided tour of the late Gothic St. Petri Cathedral, oldest and biggest interdenominational church in Germany.

Day 2: Görlitz – Herrnhut (34 km) – Zittau (16 km)

  • Görlitz: Stroll through the unique historic centre. Guided tour of the St. Peter and Paul hall church with its five naves from the 15th cent. with organ play on the “Sonnenorgel” (sun organ). Tour of the “holy grave”, a replica of the holy grave in Jerusalem.
  • Trip to Herrnhut and visit to the brethren of the Protestant “Brüder-Unität” who have been working as missionaries all over the world since 1732. The “Losungen” (biblical words for every day) from Herrnhut are printed by the millions in 50 languages.
  • Visit to the show workshop of the Herrnhuter Sterne GmbH. During Advent, the Herrnhut star (approximately 180 years old) illuminates thousands of apartments, churches, squares and streets in Saxony and beyond.
  • Onward journey to Zittau.

Day 3: Zittau – Kurort Oybin (14 km)

  • Zittau is the town of the Lenten veils. Guided tours of the historic centre, the new permanent exhibition in the former Franciscan Monastery and the permanent exhibition “Great Zittau Lenten Veil from 1472”, with the biggest illustrated (textile) Bible in Germany. Worldwide there are only 18 exemplars of these Lenten veils (of this type) left.
  • Tour of the exhibition “Small Zittau Lenten Veil from 1573”, only Lenten veil of its kind (Arma-Christ type) in Germany.
  • Narrow-gauge railway ride to the Zittau Mountains to the picturesque village of Oybin. Tour of the Gothic castle and monastery compound in Oybin and the historic mountain church that is known as “wedding church”.
  • Tip: The journey can be continued on the route of the Via Sacra to Northern Bohemia and Lower Silesia. Poland: Jelenia Góra with Baroque and ­Rococo houses; Jawor with “Church of Peace” (UNESCO World Heritage); Cistercian convent in Krzeszów, most significant late Baroque convent compound in Silesia; Karpacz with Vang stave church. Czech Republic: Hejnice with Pilgrimage Basilica of the Visitation that houses Wallenstein’s field altar.