Skrýt nabídku

History & Tourism in the national park


History of settlement

The first inhabitants of Bohemian Switzerland were probably “hunters, fishermen and pickers” more than 10,000 years ago. They wandered the country in small troops and dwelled in overhanging rocks nearby water streams. Nowadays flint tools, coals and boiling pits are the only relics of these ancient discoverers of this sandstone region.

Long after the departure of hunters and pickers, Bohemian Switzerland was only sporadically populated, an agriculture settlement and temporary hillfort were built here and there, or a merchants´ caravan passed by.



The local region considerably changed at the turn of the 13th and 14th centuries when, invited by Bohemian kings, colonizers from the territory of present-day Germany settled here. They founded villages, built rock castles and prospectors´ settlements, started intensive tree-harvesting and floating of timber, and developed forest trades (tar-making, charcoal- burning, and glass-making).



Landscape memory

The high density of forests and rugged topography have determined the character of settlement in Bohemian Switzerland from time immemorial. Larger communities developed outside the central rocky area, on boundaries of the present national park. In most of them, one can find numerous preserved historic monuments of the local vernacular architecture, which are especially typical wood-frame houses with a base (in Kamenická Stráň, Kyjov, and Vysoká Lípa).

However, a number of valuable historic monuments irretrievably disappeared in connection with discontinuity of settlements after 1945. The settlements called Zadní Doubice and Zadní Jetřichovice totally disappeared, a similar fate befell Dolský mlýn by the Kamenice River.



Fortunately, an interest in the history of the local region has been growing in recent years. A new generation of people, who try to preserve and restore architectural and religious monuments and develop a cultural life in communities, come into the world.



History of tourism

The beginnings of tourist discoveries of the local area date back to the second half of the 18th century. The romantic painters living in Dresden then started going on their first trips to the area between “Hřensko” and “Pirna”. They named the Saxon part of the area “Saxon Switzerland”, its variant was also adopted by the Czech side later on.

A systematic development of tourism began in the 19th century, when landowners of local manors (the Kinsky and Clary-Aldringen families) and first tourist societies (Mountain Society for Bohemian Switzerland and Mountain Society for Northenmost Bohemia) made the local region accessible to visitors bit by bit.

The first hiking trails, hotels, restaurants, lookouts and lookout towers were built. Pleasure steamers started sailing on the Elbe River and Kamenice´s canyons have also been made accessible to punts.


Naši partneři

Nationalpark Sächsische Schweiz

CHKO Labské pískovce

Park Narodowy Gór StołowychEUROPARC Federation