Zittau
HISTORIC CITY IN THE TRI-BORDER REGION

Zittau Salt House © KuWeit Culture and Further Education Society Ltd.
Zittau Salt House© KuWeit Culture and Further Education Society Ltd.

Medieval flair, beautiful mountains and internationality – all this and more can be found in the city of Zittau in the German state of Saxony. Situated on the border to two of Germany’s neighbours, it was designated as a “European Town of Sport” in 2014. Despite its relatively small size, Zittau offers an enormous range of outdoor sports and activities.

Facts

25,086 Inhabitants ¹

2,782 Students ²

1 Higher education institution ²

WELCOME TO ZITTAU

The idyllic city of Zittau is located in a so-called “border triangle”, the place where three countries meet – in this case, Germany, Poland and the Czech Republic. The city lies nestled in the Zittauer Gebirge, the smallest mountain range in Germany. Here you’ll find untouched nature, perfect for hiking or cycling. You can enjoy a great view of the picturesque surroundings from the steeple of St. John’s Church.

Zittau was founded in 1255 and became wealthy through commerce and trade. Long ago, people used to call it “Die Reiche” (The Rich). Its most famous attractions include the “Large Zittauer Lenten Altar Cloth”, which is over 500 years old, and the “Small Zittauer Lenten Altar Cloth”. The large altar cloth depicts well-known scenes from the Bible and is on display in the museum of the Holy Cross Church. The small altar cloth can be found at a former Franciscan monastery which now serves as the Museum of Cultural History.

Many of the tourist attractions in Zittau, like the monastery, are linked together by the Zittauer Cultural Walking Tour. On the tour, visitors are directed to the central square, the Marktplatz, where several old Renaissance- and Baroque-period buildings are located. Two of the most impressive are the City Hall and the Salt House. The Salt House is the central landmark in the historic part of town, built in 1511. On the ground floor, you will find shops and boutiques, as well as the “Markt zum Salzhaus”, a weekly market where vendors sell local products like sausages and handmade wooden articles. There is also a library in the Salt House.

Economically, Zittau is the administrative and shopping centre of the southern Görlitz district. Zittau also has a strong engineering sector and textile industry. The specialises in the areas of Energy and Environment and Transformation Processes in Business and Society. It has partnerships with institutions in 40 different countries. The activities at the are equally cosmopolitan. It was originally founded to promote cross-border learning in the form of master’s degree programmes.

Tip

At the Tierpark Zittau, you can take a ride on a camel or participate in a llama trek. The llamas will even carry your bags.

Internationality is an important topic in Zittau due to its unique role as a bridge between nations at the heart of Europe. In 2001, Zittau established a municipal association together with the Polish city of Bogatynia and the Czech city Hrádek nad Nisou. The three cities jointly organise and host cultural festivals, exhibitions and sport events.

KRISTÝNA FROM CZECH REPUBLIC

LIVING IN ZITTAU

The summer months are an especially busy time in Zittau. That’s when the historical festival “Spectaculum Citaviae” takes place. When evening falls, Zittau transforms into a medieval city. Knights in regalia, jesters and merchants fill the streets.

When the weather is nice, you can take hiking trips into nature. The city is surrounded by the , a mountain range with beautiful sandstone formations. The rocks often have interesting shapes – like a turtle, for example. There are a number of hiking trails that will take you through the . One of these is the “Kammweg” (Crest Trail) which crosses into the Czech Republic part of the way. You can also go cycling here, or skiing in the wintertime.

If you’re not in the mood for anything too strenuous, you can visit the Zittauer Gebirge via the narrow-gauge railway. The train will take you to Oybin where you can visit an old castle and monastery. In addition to the great view, the exhibitions there highlight the history of the castle.

The railway also heads in the direction of , which has a beach, beach volleyball courts and a bike rental. Or you can simply relax in a wicker beach chair. The Westparkcenter, located nearby, is a good place to go when the weather is bad. You can play indoor tennis there, go bowling or treat yourself to a sauna and massage.

In the summertime, the Freilichtbühne Weinau hosts the Zittauer Film Nights, an outdoor movie programme. There are also other cinemas in Zittau, as well as the Gerhart Hauptmann Theater.

Links

Of course, bars and clubs are a big part of student life in Zittau. There are various locations for all tastes, like cocktail bars, dance clubs, sports pubs and venues for concerts, festivals and other things. You can find other party locations just 15 minutes away in the Czech town of Liberec.

Zittau has even more to offer, such as public outdoor and indoor swimming pools and a variety of sport clubs open to enthusiasts of mountain climbing, billiards and table tennis. Zittau was named a “European City of Sport” in 2014.

How to find a room in Zittau

Many university and college towns have dormitories or student halls, and a room there is often the most affordable accommodation. To obtain a room in a dormitory or student hall, you have to apply to your college or university’s student union (). Our ‘Find Student Hall’ function can be of practical help. You only need to make a few mouse clicks to get to the online application form. Find a room and more information about dormitories and student halls in Zittau.

Sources
¹ 
² 

Cities similar to Zittau

"Wenige" market © Graff/DAAD
"Wenige" market© Graff/DAAD
Cities of culture+13

Erfurt

#GreenCentreGermany #HistoricCityCentre #ErfurtDome

The Old Market Square in the city centre was built in the 12th century. © Sophie Nagel
The Old Market Square in the city centre was built in the 12th century.© Sophie Nagel
Central Germany+3

Schmalkalden

#Thuringia #Half-timbered #ThuringianForest

Town Hall square © Bettina Ruhland
Town hall square © Bettina Ruhland
Federal State Bavaria+8

Kempten

#PopularVacationTown #Allgäu #YoungCultureAndGastronomyScene

View towards Martinsberg @ Sophie Nagel
View towards Martinsberg© Sophie Nagel
Federal State Baden-Württemberg+4

Weingarten

#SouthEastBaden-Württemberg #BodenseeRegion #Sightseeings

Goethe-Schiller-Denkmal © Brüggemann/DAAD
Goethe-Schiller-Denkmal© Brüggemann/DAAD
Eastern Germany+3

Weimar

#JohannWolfgangVonGoethe #FriedrichSchiller #Bauhaus

Die Häuser des "Klein-Venedig" bieten Bamberger Studierenden eine historisch entspannte Kulisse. © BAMBERG Tourismus & Kongress Service
Klein Venedig© BAMBERG Tourismus & Kongress Service
Bamberg+11

Bamberg

#WorldHeritage #BambergCathedral #SmokedBeer