Via Sacra – a journey of reflection across borders and through history

Covering a distance of approximately 550 kilometres, the 'sacred road', the Via Sacra, runs along centuries-old pilgrimage trails and trading routes through the area where Germany borders Poland and the Czech Republic. The route links some of Europe's most important religious sites and art treasures.

The Via Sacra Route is a relatively new tourist route through a region of great European cultural importance. Taking in religious architecture and treasures, abbeys, art, legends, milestones and notable figures from European history, it is a popular route for tourists and pilgrims and for cultural encounters. Places of interest on the German section of the route include Marienstern in Panschwitz-Kuckau, which is the oldest continually inhabited Cistercian convent, St. Peter's Cathedral in Bautzen (the oldest ecumenical church in Germany), the 500-year-old Holy Sepulchre in Görlitz (the most accurate replica of the holy sites in medieval Jerusalem) and Zittau's fascinating and famous Lenten veils. Discover, marvel, contemplate – if you open your soul, there is so much that is new and unknown to be discovered along the Via Sacra Route both around you and within yourself. And some places seem to have a special spirit all of their own – a genius loci. The route offers the perfect antidote to the hustle and bustle, stresses and worries of everyday life. If you take the time to explore the religious buildings along the way, you will find peace, tranquillity and relaxation in these sites of cultural and historical importance. Walking along the 'sacred road', pilgrims, whether Christian or not, will find out that Germany – and Europe – continues well past Dresden.

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