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Coat of arms of Rathen
Coat of arms
Location of Rathen within Sächsische Schweiz-Osterzgebirge district
AltenbergBad Gottleuba-BerggießhübelBad SchandauBahretalBannewitzDippoldiswaldeDohmaDohnaDorfhainDürrröhrsdorf-DittersbachFreitalGeisingGlashütteGohrischHartmannsdorf-ReichenauHeidenauHermsdorfHöckendorfHohnsteinKirnitzschtalKönigsteinKreischaLiebstadtLohmenMüglitztalNeustadt in SachsenPirnaPorschdorfPretzschendorfRabenauRathenRathmannsdorfReinhardtsdorf-SchönaRosenthal-BielatalSchmiedebergSebnitzSebnitzStadt WehlenStruppenStolpenTharandtWilsdruffSaxonyCzech RepublicBautzen (district)DresdenMeißen (district)MittelsachsenRathen in PIR.svg
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Rathen is located in Germany
Rathen is located in Saxony
Coordinates: 50°57′N 14°05′E / 50.950°N 14.083°E / 50.950; 14.083Coordinates: 50°57′N 14°05′E / 50.950°N 14.083°E / 50.950; 14.083
DistrictSächsische Schweiz-Osterzgebirge
Municipal assoc.Königstein/Sächs. Schweiz
 • MayorThomas Richter
 • Total3.58 km2 (1.38 sq mi)
112 m (367 ft)
 • Total348
 • Density97/km2 (250/sq mi)
Time zoneCET/CEST (UTC+1/+2)
Postal codes
Dialling codes035024
Vehicle registrationPIR
WebsiteOfficial website
Rathen shortly after the 2006 flood

Rathen is a village in the Elbe Sandstone Mountains, in Saxony, Germany, about 35 km southeast of Dresden on the Elbe River. Rathen has between 400 and 500 inhabitants.


district Oberrathen - view from Bastei

Rathen is a popular tourist destination, the main sights are the Bastei cliffs, the Amselsee (a lake), and the outdoor theater "Felsenbühne Rathen".

The Rathen Ferry, a passenger reaction ferry, connects Niederrathen, on the right bank of the Elbe river, to Oberrathen on the left bank. Kurort Rathen railway station, on the Dresden S-Bahn and the Dresden to Prague railway, is adjacent to the Oberrathen ferry terminal. Rathen is also a stop for the paddle steamers operating between Dresden and the Czech border.


Rathen was founded in the 13th century around 1261 as place for a castle fortress.

During World War II, a subcamp of Flossenbürg concentration camp was located here.[2]


View of Rathen from the Bastei

The state-recognised climatic spa of Rathen is not only the base for tours in the western part of Saxon Switzerland, but also for the world-famous Bastei rocks. Other popular destinations in the local Amselgrund valley are the lake of Amselsee and the Rathen Open Air Stage. There are a good 400 inhabitants on both sides of the Elbe, linked by a historic reaction ferry, that is a protected monument. In addition to the Old Mill of 1567, which was nearly demolished after the hundred year flood, there is a range of other timber-framed houses.

Due to its proximity to the town of Wehlen the following wordplay saying is given to visitors: "Sie können Rathen wählen, ich würde Ihnen auch zu Wehlen raten." ("You can choose Rathen, I would also recommend Wehlen to you.")

Local places of interest[edit]


  1. ^ "Bevölkerung des Freistaates Sachsen jeweils am Monatsende ausgewählter Berichtsmonate nach Gemeinden" (PDF). Statistisches Landesamt des Freistaates Sachsen (in German). July 2019.
  2. ^ Christine O'Keefe. Concentration Camps

External links[edit]