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The Düben Heath

Do you want to have an active, adventurous vacation or rather a relaxing wellness weekend? Or you need few quiet days in the lap of nature? Then go to the Düben Heath! The fairy, stunning region with great flora and fauna may become the place, where you will experience emotion-reach and unforgettable moments. Düben Heath Nature Park is a popular resort area for many holidaymakers who enjoy hiking, beautiful landscapes and local attractions.

Beach place Dahlenberg reservoir

Location and history of the recreation area

The Düben Heath extends over two German states and represents a unique landscape that has been converted into a recreational area despite its great industrial importance and is now used solely for recreational purposes. It is partially located on the land of Sachsen-Anhalt and partially in the Free State of Sachsen. On the territory of the heath there are five prosperous towns: Gräfenhainichen, Dommitzsch, Kemberg and two spa resorts: Bad Düben and Bad Schmiedeberg. Such cities as Leipzig, Halle, Wittenberg, Torgau and Dessau are a stone's throw away from here and Berlin can be reached just in an hour by car.

A significant fact about the region is that it has its own dialect. There is even a Düben Heath dictionary.

Map of the region with hints

Today’s peculiarities of the Heath landschaft are predominantly due to the soil exploitation in recent centuries. For a very long period of time forestry played a crucial role here and was the driving factor for the economic growth and the development of the region. Hilly landscapes are mainly formed from sandy soils and that is why they are not suitable for extensive agriculture, but astonishingly rich in lignite. Exactly this led to the western part of the area being characterized by rapid destruction of forests and exponential mining of lignite in open pits until the 1980s. In the 1990s, worried citizens opposed such overuse of natural resources, calling to end the exploitation of the soil and to restore the heathland to their original state. As a result, in 1992 the first park was designed here thanks to the citizens' initiative.

Düben Heath Nature Park

The eastern part of the hilly landscape, the Düben Heath Nature Park, covers an area of 770 km² and is equally extended through the territory of the states of Saxony and Saxony-Anhalt. It is considered as one of the most popular recreational areas of East Germany. The natural borders of the park are formed by the floodplain of the Middle Elbe in the north and east, and the Mulde valley as well as the Bitterfeld and Gräfenhainichen in the west and east. Surrounded by the river landscapes, this territory represents a nature reserve, marked by ancient mixed and coniferous forests, bogs, lakes and tranquil ponds. It is the biggest woodland in Central Germany with 66 % of the forest area, where your can not only give your mind, soul and body some time to unwind, but also get your money’s worth.

Flora und fauna

Due to its natural wealth, the park has a lot to offer, even the most demanding tourists can find something to their liking. A large number of rare animal and plant species inhabit this area in their natural environment and can be observed in the wild. Squirrels jump from one oak tree to another, roes and deer roam leisurely through the forests, boars and rabbits appear every now and then and eagles, storks and cranes fly overhead. Often you can meet here a symbol of the region - a beaver, which leaves unmistakable traces on the banks of the rivers and lakes. If you want to bring children closer to the nature or to learn the whole world of wildlife yourself, the Düben Heath is a perfect option for your vacation. Ten observation points, which allow a view into the life of the region, are scattered throughout the park.


The former lignite mines are now full of lakes and ponds glittering in the sunlight. Their presence in the region that only recently was industrial is a good example of the human influence on nature and environment. The flooding of the open-pit mines led to the development of a wonderful lake landscape in the Düben Heath, where the land and water combine and you can experience adventurous and active recreation on the beach. Those who crave for relaxation can just enjoy the view and crystal-clear water. So you can arrange a picnic directly on the bank: either at a large lake like the Bergwitzsee, the Gremminer See, the Gröberner See or the Muldestausee or at a less cultivated, small pond, for example, the lake Barbara, the Zschornewitzer lake or the Königsee at Uthausen.

Highlights of the Düben Heath - attractions you should not miss

This region of the Middle Germany is full of unique sights that are also called Heath Highlights and attract numerous tourists throughout the year. A variety of the tourist places is amazing: from old castles and palaces, museums with local color and ancient mills to regional cuisine.

Planning the trip to the Düben Heath with your family, be sure to visit the Reinharz water castle. The old Baroque building is surrounded by the spacious landscape park and stone walls and looks like an embodiment of the Brothers Grimm fairy tale. Not far from here you can relax in the cafe "Graf Löser" and taste seasonal specialties. Another castle of the region called Hartenfels Castle is located in the Torgau, close to the banks of the Elbe. It was constructed in 16th century in Renaissance style as a residence for the electors of Saxony. Nowadays it is a perfect place for regular exhibitions.

Every year thousands of travellers stream into the nationally famous spa resort of Heide - Bad Düben, which offers a variety of thermal baths and spa services.

No less interesting is also the town of Eilenburg - an attraction, which is situated on the edge of the heathland. In summer it is a perfect place for children, where they can spend an unforgettable time and let their energy run free in the large bee trail Rubiconpark and enjoy bathing and swimming in the Kiessee to the fullest. In addition, the small but fine zoo attracts many nature lovers, where they can discover and observe over 200 different animal species.

Another Düben Heath place of interest is the labyrinth of Altjeßnitz, which is a true jewel of the Baroque horticulture and attracts thousands of visitors every year. The tour might take the whole day, because the maze is only the one part of the large complex. Altjeßnitz also consists of the old castle ruins, i.e. the bell tower, the castle park and the stone church. Running through the 2500 km² large labyrinth and 4 hectare of park is a pure pleasure for children as well as for adults. Among 200 paths only one is a right and leads to the center of the maze. It turns out to be a real challenge to find it. But if you're lucky enough to find and climb the pedestal in its middle, you can enjoy a splendid view over the whole park and the magnificence of carefully cultivated, well-kept natural environment.

In the Düben Heath every visitor has a chance to feel like Alice in Wonderland.

But there’s more about regional culture and entertainment. Every first Sunday of the month different events are held in various venues, scattered throughout the Heath. Some of them are completely unique and offer diverse dancing, singing and game programs and the others are held annually and are growing in popularity in the whole Germany, for example, the Wood Sculpture Contest or Nature Park Festival, where lots of regional specialties are presented and promoted and you can experience a great deal of local traditions.

Lausiger Teiche, 06905 Bad Schmiedeberg, Germany

Free time and leisure activities

The ice-age formed Heath landscape is like a treasury that has to offer something unique and splendid every season. In the Düben Heath Nature Park you can observe animals in their natural environment, admire plants and centuries-old trees as well as get some air - this place will help you come to peace and find yourself.


The best way to explore the surroundings is by foot: either alone, in groups, as a part of the professionally organized tours or in a modern way - with GPS navigation device. 500 km of the hiking trail is sufficient to experience the wild nature and to improve your fitness. The walk will leave a lasting impression even on solo travelers, and with no worries: the most important routes are provided with signposts.


For those who prefer bicycle, there is a perfect opportunity to explore the Heath landscapes. All the hiking roots are suitable for cycling, and if you buy a hiking map in the info center of the Nature Park, your will experience an unforgettable adventure. There are numerous places scattered throughout the park where you can take a break, pick mushrooms, have a picnic or go fishing.

Water sports

Lake landscape of the Düben Heath is no less attractive than woods and moors. Numerous lakes and ponds enable canoeing, sailing and kayaking. Arranged water sports tours are especially popular among children - their excitement is palpable when it comes to splashing in the warm water, diving and swimming. The perfect opportunity presents itself in summer: tourists can try all kinds of water sports and just spend a great time on the beach.


If you are looking for exclusive offers and want to experience something special, then you should try an unusual skiking course in Uthausen. Skiking is a modern sport that has grown in popularity in the last few years. It is similar to the cross-country skiing, where the air-filled tires are used, which enables driving on all types of roads. Skiking is suitable for people of all ages, sexes and performance levels, and can be performed in any weather. All the best features of jogging, nordic walking and inline-skating are combined in this one sport and therefore it is dynamic, easy on the joints and safe, and helps to stay fit and healthy. You will become a great fan of this kind of sport once you try it, so do not hesitate!

Accommodation near the Düben Heath Nature Park

On the territory of this unique reserve are situated 8 camping sites, where the travelers and nature lovers can stay and rest with comfort near the river banks or in the wood. Those who would rather prefer a nice room in the hotel of the Düben Heath should definitely check out the accommodation offers in the spa town Bad Düben. HotelFriend may recommend you the Heide Spa hotel with its wide range of spa services and bathing area as well as friendly and attentive staff.

This hotel in the heart of the historical spa town is a true pearl of the region, where everyone will find something to their liking - from business travelers, who are looking for comfort and mobility, to the tourists with big families, who expect many entertainment options for their kids to choose from as well as wellness-services that will help them relax after a long day.

Comfortable and well-equipped single- and double rooms as well as suites of the Heide Spa have the best conditions for the proper recreation. There is a wide range of wellness-activities to choose from: baths, massages, saunas and all sorts of beauty procedures and treatments. If you want to plan your vacation and book hotel services beforehand, you should definitely use HotelFriend website and choose one of over 20 arrangements to your own taste and go on an exploration trip to the Düben Heath.

The Düben Heath Nature Park is one of the favourite tourists destinations with beautiful landscape and fascinating attractions that allure and inspire. Book an accommodation as well as services with HotelFriend!