No journey to Germany ought to exclude Dresden, a metropolis filled with historical past and unbelievable structure. The former capital of the Saxon Kingdom was additionally the biggest metropolis of now-defunct Eastern Germany.
Today, it’s a fascinating instance of a Central European Baroque and Rococo metropolis, enriched by different types, comparable to Renaissance, Historicism, Modernism, and Postmodernism.
Hard to consider that in 1945 the allies destroyed this magnificence. Rebuilding Dresden wasn’t straightforward, however the result’s very good. So when visiting Berlin or Praguego forward and arrange at the very least a day journey to Dresden.
Dresden’s Historical Architecture
Dresden’s previous glory is all over the place. The historic middle is the small space between Wilsdruffer Street and the Elbe River.
Do not miss the Neumarkt Square and the monumental Frauenkirche. The Dresden Castlethe Cathedralthe Academy of Fine Artsand the Semperoper will not disappoint you both. However, our favourite spot had been the gardens of the opulent baroque Zwinger Palace.
There was no probability of us not going up one of many towers that dot the middle. We selected the much less touristic Holly Cross Church and loved some excellent views.
The monumental Frauenkirche is an 18thCentury Lutheran church designed by George Bahr, the town’s most celebrated architect on the time. The Allies bombed it closely in 1945 and left in ruins for 50 years.
Fortunately, it opened once more in 2005 and is now one of many metropolis’s most visited monuments. Go inside and see the altar within the middle, fairly an progressive method on the time.
The spectacular 96 meters excessive dome has altered Dresden’s skyline. It is so sturdy that it has survived a number of sieges.
Dresden Castle (also referred to as the Royal Palace) is likely one of the metropolis’s oldest buildings. For nearly 400 years, it was the royal residence of the kings of Saxony and Poland.
The Castle is within the middle of Dresden’s Old Town. There’s no manner you may miss it! The construction is large and has a number of towers and bridges above the streets. Different architectural types adron the constructing, from baroque to neoclassical.
The well-known New Vault is contained in the citadel. It hosts the biggest assortment of treasures in Europe. Though utterly destroyed throughout WWII, it was restored to its unique state.
North of the Castle, and linked to it by a bridge, we discover the imposing Dresden Cathedral. It’s all the time been the town’s major Catholic Church. But since 1964 it is Dresden’s Catholic Cathedral.
While a lot of the native inhabitants was Protestants, the Saxon rulers had been Catholics, in order that they constructed this cathedral for themselves. Therefore, they constructed the bridge connecting it with the citadel.
Don’t overlook to go inside. Look out for the lavish organ, essentially the most well-known work of celebrated instrument designer Gottfried Silbermann. Walk to the crypt and test the tombs of the various Saxon and Polish kings buried there.
Academy of Fine Arts
Dresden is all about views! Go to the long-lasting Bruhl’s Terrace to get pleasure from a few of the finest views within the metropolis. Gorgeous buildings line this lovely pedestrian promenade. The first constructing you’ll acknowledge is the large Academy of Fine Arts.
Construction of the Neo-Renaissance constructing started in 1887 and completed in 1894. German architect Constantin Lipsius took care of the design. You’ll simply acknowledge the frilly tympanum on a excessive gable, and a glass dome within the form of a lemon squeezer crowning the constructing.
The Academy hosted the Saxon Art Association till World War I. Besides, the well-known group Die Brücke that based the German Expressionism motion met right here. No marvel it is likely one of the oldest and most prestigious lecturers in Europe.
The Semperoper, subsequent to Elbe River, is residence to the Saxon State Opera, Orchestra, and Ballet. World well-known architect Gottfried Semper designed it within the 19thCentury. The constructing’s clear Neoclassical look mixes Neo-Renaissance and Neo-Baroque types.
Once once more, the allies destroyed it in 1945, similar to the remainder of historic Dresden. However, it was reconstructed sooner than most buildings, in 1985.
The Semperoper is kind of particular to music lovers since a few of the world’s most good items premiered right here, together with works by Richard Wagner and Richard Strauss.
The Zwinger Palace is a baroque palace constructed by the courtroom architect Matthaus Daniel Poppelmann. He erected the palace out of the Dresden fortress, thus its title (the killing floor in entrance of a citadel). Gottfried Semper added the neoclassical Semper Gallery on its northern facet within the 19thCentury.
Once once more the palace was closely broken in 1945. However, the artwork assortment was evacuated in time.
Today the palace homes three totally different museums: an image gallery, a porcelain assortment, and a salon containing mathematical and bodily devices.Go inside and put together to be dazzled!
Dresden’s Modern and Contemporary Architecture
Dresden has a plethora of fascinating structure that goes past historic buildings. The socialist neighborhood north of the Central Train Station is value visiting. My favourite road in Dresden, pedestrian Prager Street, is right here. TheUfa Cinema Palacetop-of-the-line examples of Deconstructivism on this planet is right here too.
A totally totally different constructing is the oriental-inspired ex-cigarette manufacturing unit Yenidze. Be certain to search for the New Synagogue or the Transparent Factory throughout the Old Town.
Likewise, on the opposite facet of the River Elbe stands the Kunsthof Arcades set up and the monumental Museum of Military History. If you get hungry, there are a number of eateries on pedestrian Hauptstrasse Street.
UFA Cinema Palace
Near Prager Street, one can find the UFA Cinema Palace, a posh of eight film theaters. Viennese architects Coop Himmelblau designed this deconstructive constructing within the form of a twisted prism.
Opened in 1998, it has develop into the image in Dresden of up to date structure. The constructing’s design follows its location, the buffer zone between business and residential areas.
Notice the façade, finished utilizing a number of supplies together with Beton brut and metallic cloth. Every single angle is totally different, nice for photographing!
The Yenidze is a former cigarette manufacturing unit constructed between 1907 and 1909. The manufacturing unit imported tobacco from Ottoman Yenidze (now Genisea in Greece) and selected an oriental look to promote its enterprise.
Its architect Martin Hammitzsch brilliantly mixed artwork nouveau with oriental structure. You will acknowledge the constructing from its excessive dome and colourful chimneys.
As in lots of different instances across the globe, it wasn’t common when it opened. Some individuals known as it a tobacco mosque! Since 1996 it’s a fancy workplace constructing.
Not every thing is outdated in Dresden’s Old Town. The metropolis’s New Synagogue breaks the grid with its daring geometric idea and an nearly vertical look.
Architects Rena Wandel-Hoefer and Wolfgang Lorch designed the misfit construction on goal. It represents Dresden’s Jewish neighborhood, all the time considerably aside.
The New Synagogue stands the place the outdated Semper Synagogue was. That temple acquired burnt throughout the notorious Crystal Night, its ashes eliminated in a matter of days. Luckily, the unique David’s Star was saved and is now on show within the new constructing.
Another instance of Dresden’s fashionable structure you need to go to is the so-called Transparent Factory or Gläserne Manufaktur. The shiny constructing stands initially of Dresden’s grandest park, Grosser Garten. How this may be hailed as expertise baffles us.
What’s distinctive about this constructing is that it is completely made from glass. In complete, some 27500 m2 of glass had been used to assemble this up to date exhibition house.
What’s not distinctive about it’s that it produces glass for Volkswagen vehicles and brags that it is CO2 impartial. Yes, the identical firm that lied about diesel, faked expertise, cheated, and polluted all the world with CO2 emissions claims to be impartial. So, come right here and determine for your self what’s nicer: the manufacturing unit or the close by park?
A gaggle of native architects and sculptors designed the Kunsthof Arcades Passage in 2001 and it quickly grew to become a magnet for the younger and artistic.
Each of the 5 courtyards has its personal Theme: parts, gentle, animals, legendary creatures, and metamorphosis. The most well-known one, the Elements courtyard, consists of quite a few metallic pipes that flip into musical devices when it rains. Let it rain!
Take your time and stroll about a number of cafes, eating places, retailers, and galleries. Make certain to go to early. Most locations shut within the night!
Museum of Military History
Following World War II, most of Dresden’s monumental structure from earlier than 1945 had to be reconstructed. That’s how dangerous issues had been. In the case of the Museum of Military Historythe reconstruction acquired an sudden twist.
In 2011, the famend Polish-American architect Daniel Libeskind designed the brand new wing of the museum. To us, it appears extra like an interruption of the outdated palace-like constructing.
The architect made an announcement by inserting a pointy quantity that cuts deep contained in the outdated constructing. He created a grand viewing platform pointing to the place the bombs that destroyed Dresden got here from. An awesome place for reflection!
Where to Stay in Dresden
Dresden is a comparatively small metropolis and most of its historic structure is across the Altstadt. Without a doubt, the very best resort in Altstadt is the extravagant Hotel Taschenbergpalais Kempinskian actual 18th-century palace.
The Westin Bellevue Dresden in Neustadt, throughout the River Elbe, is one other fabulous historic palace resort. If you do not spend the evening on the resort, go for a espresso at its lovely gardens and revel in spectacular views.
We spent a weekend within the fantastic Hotel Suites and beloved it! You cannot beat the placement, in entrance of the Frauenkirche. The 5-star luxurious resort has top-notch amenities, together with a spa with a sizzling tub and a terrace. Be certain to guide a room with direct views of the church. We’ll be again for certain!
How to Get to Dresden
As talked about above, it is very straightforward to arrange a day journey from Berlin and Prague to Dresden. Eight trains depart from Berlin every day and take about 2 hours. There are 7 trains every day from Prague that take a bit over 2 hours.
Trains from Leipzig depart each half hour and attain Dresden in simply over an hour. If you’re coming from Wroclawin Polandyou at present have to change trains in Wegliniec.
Granted, it’s not so shut for a day journey to Dresden, however you possibly can spend an evening or two and return. Dresden’s major prepare station, Hauptbahnhof, is on the finish of Prager Street, southwest of the middle.