Bastei in Saxon Switzerland (Germany)
Bastei (elev. 305 metres) is a rock formation with observation platforms in Saxon Switzerland (Germany) on the right bank of the Elbe (Labe) River between Kurort Rathen and Stadt Wehlen. Its main attraction is a stone bridge (Basteibrücke). It is the first European bridge built especially for hikers, its length is 76 metres and it spans a deep abyss called Mardertelle. Dating back to 1851, the bridge connects the Bastei with the Neurathen rock castle. At that time, it was the absolute first European structure built just for hikers and it has kept its unrivalled status up to the present. Offering panoramic views of the Elbe (Labe) River Valley and of the Elbe Sandstone Rocks (Labské pískovce), it ranks among the most famous tourist attractions in the Saxon Switzerland. Hikers can even find a hotel with a restaurant on the plateau behind the rock formation.