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The Bastei bridge in Saxon Switzerland
The Bastei is a rocky prominence overlooking the Elbe River within the Elbe Sandstone Mountains in Germanymarker. As a mountain of 305 meters height the Bastei surpasses the river by 194 meters. The landmark was formed by water erosion over one million years ago. Located near Rathenmarker in Saxon Switzerland the Bastei is a landmark in a national park near Pirnamarker southeast of Dresdenmarker. It is part of a climbing and hiking area that extends to the Czech Republicmarker as Bohemian Switzerlandmarker.

The Bastei has been a tourist attraction for over 200 years. In 1824 a wooden bridge was constructed to link several rocks for the visitors. This bridge was replaced in 1851 by the present Bastei Bridge made from sandstone.The rock formations and vistas have inspired artists, among them Caspar David Friedrich (i.e "Felsenschlucht" [216683])

The low part of the Rathenmarker spa can be reached from Dresdenmarker with paddle steamers on the river Elbe. Another famous landmark in that tourism and climbing area is the fortress Königsteinmarker.


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