As lovely and beautiful as Dresden is, sometimes you have to get away from the “big city.” Where do Dresdeners go?
It’s a simple answer; they go to Tharandt. More specifically, the Tharandt Forest in the town of Tharandt — but I don’t have time to split hairs; too much to do around here. ;-)
There’s no way around it, this is Saxony — and it gets cold here in the winter. But, don’t let that stop you from enjoying the prettiest of sleigh rides during the dark winter months. Other than that, the other three seasons are probably the absolute best to enjoy the Tharandt Forest, and the town itself for that matter.
Besides, that’s when all the festivals are held. One of the biggest is the Kiln Festival, a July event that’s all about bratwurst eating, beer drinking, and music playing. Of course, the Osterfest (Easter Festival) is quite charming, as is the Stadtfest (City Festival) in October. And if you’re lucky enough to be here on the first and third Saturday of most months, you can enjoy the Naturmarkt — where the freshest of fruits, cheese, veggies, and other goodies await you.
A guided tour won’t take you to the festivals or Natural Market, but it will take you to places like the ruins of Burg Tharandt, the old 13th century Jagdschloss Grillenburg (now a museum), the medieval murals at the Dorfkirche, and the Arboretum — a free garden area that’s open from April to October.
Oh, that’s another reason to come during the warmer months, huh?
Where was I? Oh yeah, I was just about to tell you about the 135 km of hiking trails found throughout Tharandt. That’s where I started at — telling you about how city dwellers come to the area to get away. The tall trees are a welcome respite from traffic and concrete. What’s really nice are the BBQ areas throughout the forest, so get yourself some picnic grub before trekking all the way out here.
It doesn’t take much to see why Tharandt is called the Jewel of the Forest — sounds so much nicer than Terrific Tharandt. ;-)