Saxony is a perfect place for hiking! What many do not know: there is not only one “Switzerland” in Saxony. In addition to the Saxon Switzerland, also the lesser-known Vogtland Switzerland is worth a trip into nature. Early in the morning our alarm rings and we start, equipped with backpack and suntan lotion, from the Leipzig lowlands to the town Netzschkau in the county Vogtland, about 130 kilometres in the southwest of Saxony. The dense fog wafts over the green fields and rolling hills, the streets are emptied and slowly we drive uphill.

In the district Brockau we park the car at a small parking lot, from here we start walking. Our destination: the “Kuhberg” – with 511 meters the highest peak in the northern Vogtland area and for more than 1.000 years a popular destination within the region. The backpack is shouldered and so we go. Several hiking trails and a nature trail stretch across the overgrown mountain to the top. Who chooses the direct, paved road, does not need much time, but we leave the main path and explore the many small paths and trails that wind around the mountain. Through the meter high forest we can at some points already spot the great view of the Vogtland at the horizon, however the peak is not yet reached. On the nature trail we come across a school class on hiking day. The girls are picking colorful wildflowers, the boys discuss which of the native plants is the most toxic one. Their teacher calls, it goes on and we continue our hike as well. The last few meters to the summit are somewhat steeper, but then we finally make it.

There we stand in front of a narrow stone tower. The “Kuhberg Aussichtsturm” was built in 1900 on top of the mountain; since then countless hikers have climbed the 64 steps to the top and of course we climb the tower as well. And it is worth it: who climbs the 21 meters high tower, will be rewarded with a fantastic view over the entire Vogtland and far beyond. When the weather is good, you can even see the Fichtelgebirge on one side and the Völkerschlachtdenkmal of Leipzig on the other side on the horizon.

Back downstairs, model trains rattle on tiny tracks that meander along at the foot of the tower. Approximately 30 model railways are in use around the tower rails and pass complex constructed scenes with small houses, railway stations, figures and even a model of the imposing „Göltzschtalbrücke“. A paradise for model railway fans!

After all the impressions our stomachs rumble, but at the restaurant „Kuhberg Baude“ we order culinary refreshments, for example home cooking, regional dishes and refreshing drinks. The sunny terrace is ideal for breathing and preparing for the climb-down with fresh chanterelles and a tingling organic lemonade. Dear Vogtland – we’ll see you again for sure!

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