For the railway station in the Scottish village, see Rathen railway station.

Coat of arms

Coordinates: 50°57′N 14°05′E / 50.950°N 14.083°E / 50.950; 14.083Coordinates: 50°57′N 14°05′E / 50.950°N 14.083°E / 50.950; 14.083
Country Germany
State Saxony
District Sächsische Schweiz-Osterzgebirge
Municipal assoc. Königstein/Sächs. Schweiz
  Mayor Thomas Richter
  Total 3.58 km2 (1.38 sq mi)
Population (2015-12-31)[1]
  Total 341
  Density 95/km2 (250/sq mi)
Time zone CET/CEST (UTC+1/+2)
Postal codes 01824
Dialling codes 035024
Vehicle registration PIR
Website Official website
Rathen shortly after the 2006 flood

Rathen is a village in the Elbe Sandstone Mountains, in Saxony, Germany, about 35 km southeast of Dresden on the Elbe River. Rathen has between 400 and 500 inhabitants.


district Oberrathen - view from Bastei

Rathen is a popular tourist destination, the main sights are the Bastei cliffs, the Amselsee (a lake), and the outdoor theater "Felsenbühne Rathen".

The Rathen Ferry, a passenger reaction ferry, connects Niederrathen, on the right bank of the Elbe river, to Oberrathen on the left bank. Kurort Rathen railway station, on the Dresden S-Bahn and the Dresden to Prague railway, is adjacent to the Oberrathen ferry terminal. Rathen is also a stop for the paddle steamers operating between Dresden and the Czech border.


Rathen was founded in the 13th century around 1261 as place for a castle fortress.

During World War II, a subcamp of Flossenbürg concentration camp was located here.[2]


View of Rathen from the Bastei

The state-recognised climatic spa of Rathen is not only the base for tours in the western part of Saxon Switzerland, but also for the world-famous Bastei rocks. Other popular destinations in the local Amselgrund valley are the lake of Amselsee and the Rathen Open Air Stage. There are a good 400 inhabitants on both sides of the Elbe, linked by a historic reaction ferry, that is a protected monument. In addition to the Old Mill of 1567, which was nearly demolished after the hundred year flood, there is a range of other timber-framed houses.

Due to its proximity to the town of Wehlen the following wordplay saying is given to visitors: "Sie können Rathen wählen, ich würde Ihnen auch zu Wehlen raten." ("You can choose Rathen, I would also recommend Wehlen to you.")

Local places of interest


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