In the beginning, Saxony ruled the Empire, as the Ottonian dynasty made it her capital region. Saxony today is a diverse land focused on the families that emerged from the collapse of the Saxon tribal duchy in the early Middle Ages. In the north, the remnants of the Welf fought over their Ottonian legacy. In the East, the Saxons started their colonization of Slavic lands. In the South, the Wettin dynasty squabbled over inheritance but eventually built a nation that could challenge the Emperor.

Select a Region to Explore in Detail

Anhalt Wörlitz Gardens


Anhalt belongs to the collections of regions truly devastated by the Second World War. At its heart were the now lost cities of Dessau and Zerbst with centuries of the cultural heritage of the Askanier family. Today we are left only with fragments of a unique playground for the 18th and 19th-century nobility.


Eastphalia, was as the name suggests, the Eastern counterpart to Westphalia. It formed the heartland of the Saxon lands and was the Imperial domain of the Ottonian Empire in the 10th century. The Ottonian Emperors built castles and cities throughout the region, though the defining event for the region was the destruction of the Thirty Years War some 600 years later. Eastphalia offers the richest medieval heritage in Germany to have survived the centuries.
Dresden Street at Night

Electoral Saxony

Electoral Saxony, or Kursachsen, once sat at the heart of a European great power, when the Saxon Duke, August II, was elected King of Poland. His legacy, and that of the Protestant Reformation, define the region’s character. Between the glories of the Protestant Renaissance and the Golden Age of the Saxon Baroque, this land is filled with things to see and experience.
Celle Market Old-Town

Lower Saxony

Lower Saxony once formed the political center of medieval Saxony. It was from here that the Ottonian Emperors ruled and where Henry the Lion challenged the authority of Emperor Barbarossa. The legacy of Henry the Lion lived on in the successor states of Lower Saxony in Braunschweig and later the Kingdom of Hannover. It is a land of half-timbered houses and royal splendor.


If there was any single region in Germany that fully immersed you in the ambiance of the Wilhelmine Empire, it would be Lusatia. Lusatia was a region built on the flow of trade from East to West, and its cities flourished for centuries. In a somewhat remote corner of Europe, it was spared destruction in countless wars and offers a fully immersive tour through the ages.


Like the Saxons and the Bavarians, the Thuringians were among the original Germanic tribes. Unlike them, however, the Thuringian state collapsed in the 14th century and became part of Saxony. Over the following centuries, it would continuously split into ever smaller states, each with its own capital city and ruling family. Today, the legacy of the Saxon duchies means a landscape of castles and palaces.
Greiz Castle Vogtland


The Vogtland is an easily overlooked region covering the borderlands between Franconia and Saxony. Here the Emperors asserted their authority by placing the region under direct control. Their representatives, the “Vogt” or Reeve, ruled in the Emperors’ name. It is a forested region, known for its small towns and many castles.

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Historical Regions

Explore Europe from the perspective of ages past