On the trail of Kasper to the impregnable castle of Hohnstein

  • By bike
  • Medium difficulty

Start this moderately demanding cycle route through Saxon Switzerland in Hřensko, taking the road past the former border crossing of Schmilka, where the cycle route starts. Follow this route to the picturesque little spa town of Bad Schandau. Ride through the whole town following the cycle route along the bank of the River Elbe and after Bad Schandau turn right to Porschdorf. Ride along this road through the beautiful Tiefer Grund valley past the former Grundmühle mill as far as Hohnstein. After looking around the town and the castle, which formerly served as a prison and was never conquered, head back following the same route. Or, instead, you could continue on to Neustadt and Horní Lužice, or to the Bastei rock viewpoint or to Pirna.

The castle where Kasper was born

The castle and town of Hohnstein lie on the edge of the Saxon Switzerland national park, surrounded by the forests, rocks and rivers of the Elbe Sandstone Mountains. 

Hohnstein Castle is a symbol of the town that lies at its foot, characterised by the charming half-timbered houses from the 18th and 19th centuries.

This picturesque village is also famous for its puppets and puppetry. The puppeteer Max Jacob, who worked here from 1928, is the father of the famous puppet Kasper as we know him today. Jacob made modern puppetry famous throughout the world. At the nearby castle he founded the Hohnstein Kasper Theatre, which attracted more and more people to see the shows at the castle. In 1933, after the rise of the Nazis, the castle was converted into a concentration camp and the theatre company had to move out of the castle and into a villa known as Kasperhaus. After the war Jacob started up his puppet theatre again. The theatre still exists, as does the workshop producing handmade puppets in the town.

Traces of the art of puppetry can still be seen in various places around village today. A local association presents shows in the puppet theatre, and a small exhibition presents puppets from various periods; in addition to this, the town also holds a puppet festival every year.

The project  Tourism without Borders is implemented through the Objective 3 Programme to promote cross-border cooperation between the Czech Republic and the Free State of Saxony 2007 - 2013 period.

Category Route: 

  • By bike


  • Medium difficulty

Higest Altitude: 

345 m. n. m.

Lowest Altitude: 

121 m. n. m.

Elevation Gain: 

570 m

Path length: 

37.8 km

Time requirements: 

4 h

Typ trasy: 

  • Cultural attractions
  • Routes with a story
  • With a story from the past

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