(having difficulty finding an umlaut here....sorry)
Whilst at the Carl Gustav Carus exhibition, we were interested to see his paintings and drawings of Saechsisches Schweiz - Saxon Switzerland - and the unusual rock formations which he saw there. Choosing to spend a day exploring some of the area between Dresden and the border with Poland, we were surprised to find that our first stop revealed these same rock formations - at Bastei, high above the Elbe.
Once again, I declined the offer of trying my skills as a mountain goat and left it to Mark and Edward to explore further, for several of these rock towers are linked with small bridges and staircases - I could see small pathways and people climbing in all kinds of precarious locations. Good for them.
Simply being there with such a terrific view high above the Elbe was enough - it's easy to see why this is one of the most popular visitor locations in the area and yet until now, this was somewhere totally unknown to us.
Looking across the countryside, we could see our next stop - we planned to visit another of the castles on our list: Koenigstein, there on the flat tabletop of the mountain over on the other side of the river.
We arrived to find a highly organised, efficiently run tourist attraction with a multi-storey car park, transport link to the foot of the castle mound and then a "panoramic elevator" up to the castle itself.
Once up there, however, the view was the best part and the castle itself nothing special - we've been spoiled by the Wartburg!
By this time it was early afternoon and the temptation to explore just one more place was too much. Not only was Goerlitz a most attractive sounding place from our guidebook recommendations, it was also right on the Polish border - and none of us had been to Poland before!
We have now. (Kerchinggggggg)
We really enjoyed looking around this lovely city with so many unspoiled and well maintained buildings. We explored the market places (three), browsed in Silesian china stores and thought of Helmut Peter, family friend of proud Silesian heritage, and went to see the glass roof in the Art Deco Hertie store which was having a closing down sale.
We'd enjoyed one of those special days when one great experience is followed by an altogether different but equally fascinating one.
We finished it off with leberkase, schweinbraten and weissbier too. How good is that?