Length 13 km (8 miles), terrain flat
Pictures courtesy of the creative folks at Flickr Creative Commons. Thanks!
Dresden running routes:
Dresden Old Town/New Town
Dresden Elbe River Route
Dresden Grosser Garten Route
For more running routes, see Route List
One of the great things about Dresden is its amazing riverfront. Its classical skyline curves along the Elbe riverside, gracing the old town above the old steamboat docks. And then there's the green hill lining the other side, dotted by palaces, the slopes terraced by vineyards.
There are foot-paths lining both sides of the river, making it simple to run up one side and back along the other. The stretch eastwards from the old town to the Blaues Wunder ("Blue Wonder" bridge in Löschwitz) is the nicest and is the greenest part of the river, and that's what this route follows.
NOTE: This is a fairly long route. But, of course, you can cut it short by turning around any time you please.
|The cathedral and some of the castle, photo by Musical Photo Man|
Turn north towards the river just 100 meters away and run past the Hofkirche, built as the protestant city's first Catholic church after Saxon Elector Augustus III became King of Poland.
Run to the river and cross the old stone bridge, the Augustusbrücke, running to the new town on the other side. Make sure you take a look back at where you're running from: what a view!
|The Frauenkirche and part of the Dresden skyline, photo by Adam Polselli|
You have to turn right to continue on the path closer to the water. You'll stay on this path until the turn-around point 7 km later in Löschwitz.
Across the river, to your right, is the beautiful Dresden skyline, dominated by the reconstructed Frauenkirche. The old steamboats line the riverside, waiting for tourists. To your left is a big old state ministry building, and you'll run straight through a little amphitheater, used for summer events.
You'll go under three bridges before reaching the Blaues Wunder bridge at the half-way point. The first one, the Carolabrücke, is right in front of your nose. It is a modern, concrete span used by cars, pedestrians and trams.
After going under the Carolabrücke, you'll pass another ministry and a small park. And you'll see the next bridge coming up, the stone Albertbrücke.
|Sidewinder steamboat along the Elbe in Dresden, photo by Lars M. Lehmann|
The bridge is held up by a single archway and is fairly elegant in its way. It gets its name from a small hunting palace and brewery up the hill to the left.
|Path along the water below the palaces, photo by Lars M. Lehmann|
Unfortunately, it's hard to see them because of the walls and trees lining the path. But now and then, you'll get a glimpse of the mansions. You'll be able to see them better when you cross the river and return along the other side.
Later, the path goes right down to the waterside, with no lawn, and goes by a little harbor at the 5.5 km mark, as you approach the turn-around point at the Blaues Wunder. The trail leaves the water for the last few hundred meters.
|Blaues Wunder Bridge, photo by Esther Westerveld|
You will come out at the busy street that leads over the bridge. But rather than turning right and heading straight over the bridge, it's worth it to see a bit of this nice village first.
So cross the busy street and run down Dammstraße, going downhill. At the round well-house you'll see a line of nice half-timbered houses to the left, worth taking a quick loop to look at.
|In Löschwitz, photo by Mike Schneider|
At the water, turn right and run back to the bridge, taking the steps up to the bridge and cross the river. This is the 7 km point. The return trip is a kilometer shorter.
On the far side, take the steps down again and get to the path under the bridge.
Now you just turn west and run back along the path all the way back to the start.
|View of the Lingnerschloss and vineyards, photo by Dirk Vietzke|
After you go under the Carolabrücke again, and you head into your last kilometer, you'll run by all the Elbe-tourboat docks, and you'll have the old town on your left. Just run straight back to the Hofkirche and turn left into the Theaterplatz plaza again.