Saxony-Anhalt (German: Sachsen-Anhalt) as a whole is a bit of a step-child when it comes to tourism. Its big cities Magdeburg and Halle are industrial towns that offer relatively little to casual visitors and most of the countryside is unspectacular farms and meadows. Yet one can find hidden gems if one starts looking. Tourists will be most interested in the Harz mountains, the cities Quedlinburg, Wernigerode, Naumburg and Lutherstadt Wittenberg as well as the Unstrut Valley. All these are centered mainly in the south. The north of Saxony-Anhalt is one of the least populated areas in Germany, aside from a few pretty towns like Tangermünde and the lake Arendsee it is mostly dairy farms there. Ideal for those who seek solitude - but not many do.
The north of Saxony-Anhalt is mostly flat. It is also one of the least populated areas in Germany. Poor soil makes farmers resort to cattle and dairy farming. A large part of it is military area thanks to the Bundeswehr being stationed near Colbitz 30 kilometres north of Magdeburg.
Southwest of Magdeburg the scenery changes: The soil gets thick and black, allowing for crops such as sugar beet, wheat and corn. Hills begin to rise and gradually become the Harz mountains. Southeast towards Dessau the land stays flat and then lowers into the basin around Leipzig while south towards Naumburg the land rises again into tiny hills that form one of Europe's most northern wine growing areas.
Luther's Wedding in Wittenberg, held annually.
When you find yourself wanting to go to a small town or village you'll often find that there aren't any trains running there. In this case resort to local buses. Usually the buses leave from a central bus station right in front of the train station. You can find out about transport by bus, tram and train by looking at the INSA online travel planner.
While there is the Elbe River there is no public transport on it aside from a few city sightseeing cruises in Magdeburg.
Aside from 19 official HI/YHA/DJH hostels there are several camping sites, countless small pensions, private rooms and many hotels offering the weary traveller a chance to rest his or her head. The easiest way to find reasonable accommodation is usually to contact the tourist office in the nearest city or village. Most tourist offices have an extensive list of places that have vacancies, so reserving through the tourist office is the way to go.
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