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The Dornburg Palaces

The SaaleHorizontale Trail - hiking with panoramic views

The quality-tested SaaleHorizontale Trail in Thuringia is a 72 kilometre tour which loops around both sides of the Middle Saale Valley. The university city of Jena is the central point of our hiking trail.

The SaaleHorizontale Trail is sponsored by Carl Zeiss, the world-famous lens company based in Jena. The optics specialist's motto for the hiking path is: "When the distance suddenly seems near." You can still enjoy the spectacular views of the Middle Saale Valley from the hills on this route – even without binoculars. The gently rolling landscape is a soft mixture of horizontal and vertical lines.

Nature is king on the SaaleHorizontale Trail. We hike through beech forests and cross meadows scattered with fruit trees – we even find blossoming orchids in spring. We are fascinated by the castle ruins we find along the way. But the highlight is definitely the Dornburg Palaces, a complex comprising three palaces from different eras. Our tour starts and ends in Jena, the lively city which was once home to philosophers Hegel and Schiller. Jena has always been home to foresighted thinkers.

TIP: Jenzig

Manuel Andrack, editor, presenter, author and hiking blogger:
"Jena's local mountain is the Jenzig. At a height of 385 metres, it is the Mount Everest of the SaaleHorizontale Trail. The mountain's prominent shape is reminiscent of a nose. Our keen noses also sniff out the mountain inn on the Jenzig."

At a glance: SaaleHorizontale

Starts/ends: Jena

Length: 72 km

Number of stages: 4

Altitude variation: lowest point 127 m, highest point 401 m

Terrain: 68% unmade, 8% asphalt, 24% other, e.g. farm tracks


Quality over quantity: this is the unwritten law that determines which artists are invited to perform at Jena's annual Cultural Arena festival. Performers will be participating in a programme of contrasts, ushered in by a four-day theatre spectacular. This is then followed by a string of films, concerts, Sunday bills for children and various specials, in a line-up that is as unconventional as it is entertaining.

The origins of the Cultural Arena stem from a huge misunderstanding: in 1987, when Jena was still part of East Germany, the town council decided to demolish the theatre's auditorium in the hope of a newer, better building. But nothing happened – meaning that Jena was left with a semi-ruin with an open space in front of it, instead of a theatre. In 1991, however, a theatre team blessed with equal amounts of idealism and optimism began working in the ruins once more. They planted the seed of what subsequently grew into Jena's new theatre and the Cultural Arena. For more than 20 years now, enthusiastic audiences and exceptional artists have come together in the Cultural Arena to celebrate a special festival of the arts. The event, now a seven-week-long open air festival in the centre of Thuringia's second biggest city, is no longer an insider's tip, and the Arena has long been a fixture in Jena and far beyond. Headliners such as Patti Smith, Götz Alsmann, Ute Lemper, Lou Reed, John Cale, Nigel Kennedy, Einstürzende Neubauten, Element of Crime, Nina Hagen and Wir sind Helden draw crowds of up to 70,000 people each year. When you look at it like this, tearing down the theatre all those years ago was not such a bad decision after all.

Próximas datas:

05.07.2019 - 25.08.2019

Local do evento

07743 Jena

Todas as informações sobre preços, datas e horários de abertura estão sujeitas a alteração.

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