What we do

Idea

It is only through being used and being developed with caution that historical buildings and village structures can be preserved. Villages become more desirable places for inhabitants to stay and they can attract more inhabitants, as well as visitors and tourists looking for something exceptional, if their unique architecture is well-preserved. The protection of historical buildings and monuments, village development and tourism go very much hand in hand. In addition, public relations help raise awareness of this issue, whilst making the villages more well-known at the same time.

This idea was developed in France where the association, Les Plus Beaux Villages de France (The Most Beautiful Villages of France), has enjoyed more than 30 years of success. Several other countries around the world have also taken up the idea (partners) and now work together in an international network.

Saxony is the first state in Germany to create a network based on the French model. Currently, there are 9 certified villages in Saxony’s network.

 

Aims

Sachsens Schönste Dörfer’s (The Most Beautiful Villages in Saxony) highest priority is to support the preservation, valorisation, vitalisation and rejuvenation of architectural heritage in villages in Saxony. The group’s activities focus on:

  • raising awareness of the architectural and cultural riches in rural areas as a whole,
  • increasing the value of the villages’ cultural heritage for tourism and the rural economy,
  • cooperation, networking, sharing knowledge, expertise and experience with organisations and initiatives who share our aims, on both a national and international level.

 

 

The network

Wappen Landesverein Sächsischer Heimatschutz e.V.The association Sachsens Schönste Dörfer (The Most Beautiful Villages in Saxony) was founded in 2011 as a subdivision of the Landesverein Sächsischer Heimatschutz e.V. (a registered association for conservation and the preservation of cultural heritage in Saxony), which itself has been committed to protecting Saxony’s natural and cultural heritege since 1908. Sachsens Schönste Dörfer is extremely active in exchanging ideas and experience with other initiatives for the protection of the cultural heritage of villages, and so works with partner organisations such as Les Plus Beaux Villages de France (The Most Beautiful Villages of France) in France, Les Plus Beaux Villages de Wallonie (The Most Beautiful Villages of Walloon) in Belgium and I Borghi Più Belli d’Italia (The Most Beautiful Villages of Italy) in Italy. Sachsens Schönste Dörfer is also striving to expand its activities throughout Germany as a whole, with the aim of creating a nationwide Organisation “Most Beautiful Villages of Germany”. There is already an active exchange of ideas and Close cooperation with the neighbouring state of Brandenburg. In Brandenburg, the association “Arbeitsgemeinschaft Historische Dorfkerne im Land Brandenburg“, (Historical Village Centres in the State of Brandenburg) is working on conservation and valorisation of village architecture. Furthermore, Sachsens Schönste Dörfer is making valuable contribution to expanding international networks by working with its neighbours in Poland and the Czech Republic.

International Network