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Upper Lusatia.Cultural

Zittau – Town of the Lenten Veils

Saxony ’s extreme south-eastern town is more than 750 years old. Situated directly in the borderland to Silesia and Bohemia, it was once a blossoming trade centre and was praised as the »Rich One«. Its historical town centre with buildings dating back from Gothic style to Classicism has been preserved nearly completely. Unique in Germany: the Zittau Lenten Veils. The precious textile works of art are presented in the Museum Kirche zum Heiligen Kreuz ( Museum Church to the Holy Cross) and in the Museum Franziskanerkloster (Museum Franciscan Monastery). They are a special attraction at the touristic cross-border route »Via Sacra«. The larger veil (56 m²) shows ninety biblical scenes, the smaller one (15 m²) the crucifixion.

New-Town with Salt-House

New-Town with Salt-House (Source: Manfred Lohse)

Zittau – Close to nature in the border tristate

Instead of the medieval town wall, a »green ring« with an imposing tree population has surrounded the historical inner town since the 19th century. Precious buildings, such as the Fleischerbastei (Butchers’ Bastion), the Baugewerkenschule ( Building Trade School), the Kreuzkirche (Church of the Holy Cross) and the Weberkirche (Weavers’ Church) are characteristic of the circular building development. Right on Zittau’s doorstep, Germany’s smallest low mountain range invites to relaxation, walking and climbing – reachable in a wonderfully nostalgic way by a steam-powered narrow gauge railway. Likewise in the whole region, there are many traditional »Umgebinde« houses, witnesses of old people’s architecture, to be found here. To the east of the Zittau mountains, there are the Iser mountains and the Sudeten mountains of the Polish and Czech neighbours adjoining.

Fleischerbastei und Blumenuhr

Fleischerbastei und Blumenuhr (Source: Manfred Lohse)


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Tourist Information Zittau
(city information centre)
Markt 1 (Rathaus)
02763 Zittau

Phone: +49 (3583) 752200
Fax: +49 (3583) 752161


Museum Church to the Holy Cross – Large Zittau Lenten Veil (1472) Depictions of the biblical history on 90 pictures 8.20 m x 6.80 m) – unique in Germany
Frauenstraße 23

Phone: +49 (3583) 5008920

November to March, every day:
10 am – 5 pm, apart from Monday
April to October: everyday: 10 am – 6 pm

Museum of Cultural History – Franciscan Monastery and Small Zittau Lenten Veil (1573) Franciscan Monastery and Museum for Nature Study, History, Art and Cultureof the Zittau Region
Klosterstraße 3

Phone: +49 (3583) 554790

November to March, every day:
10 am – 5 pm, apart from Monday
April to October: everyday: 10 am – 5 pm

Gerhart-Hauptmann-Theatre Zittau with forest stage at the health resort Jonsdorf
Theaterring 12

Phone: +49 (3583) 770536

Schinkel-Monument »St. Johannis Zittau« with lookout tower
Opening of the church in 1837, height of the church tower 60 m, 266 steps
Johannisplatz 1

Phone: +49 (3583) 510933

April to October: Monday to Friday
12 am – 6 pm, Saturday/Sunday/bank holidays
10 am – 4 pm
November to March: Monday to Friday 10 am – 4.30 pm, Saturday/Sunday/bank holidays
10 am 4 pm and 1 pm to 4 pm

Zittau Municipal Indoor Swimming Pool (1873)
A modern indoor swimming pool in a classicistic architectural monument
Töpferberg 1

Phone: +49 (3583) 79690960

Zittau narrow gauge railway
Steam locomotives since 1890 – the most beautiful way to the Zittau mountains
Bahnhofstraße 41

Phone: +49 (3583) 540540


Zoo in the Weinaupark
Zoo of native animals since 1965
Weinaupark 2 A

Phone: +49 (3583) 701122

April to October 9 am – 6 pm
November to March 9 am – 3.30 pm