What to do in Dresden

Dresden is a German city, capital of the state of Saxony. It is an ancient city, very culturalGreat if you like an artistic life that revolves around concerts, choirs and museums. Is that so? So don't leave her out on a trip through Germany.

Today we will focus on this ancient city that has been reborn from the ashes of the Second War bombs as the Phoenix

Dresden

The city was lucky in the First War, but shortly before the end of the Second the allied bombs turned its historic center in ruin and caused more than 25 thousand deaths. The attack has not been without controversy, but the truth is that that day in February 1945 the city burned in flames.

After the war the city remained in the hands of the Soviet Union, and it was under this government that the historic center was rebuilt and the rest of the city expanded following the standards of communist architecture. After the terrible floods of 2002, the Elbe Valley in Dresden was declared a World Cultural Heritage Site, a category it lost in 2009 when a modern and controversial bridge was built.

Dresden is on the banks of the Elbe, in the valley of the river, extending on both banks. It is the fourth largest city in Germany and today It is one of the cities with the largest green spaces in all of Europe.

Dresden Tourism

As we said, it is a super cultural cityIt has dozens of theaters, museums and musical events. So what do we have to visit in Dresden? First the church, Frauenkirche (Cathedral of Munich), with one of the largest domes on the continent. The original church was completed in 1743 but burned in flames in 1945. It remained like this, in ruins, as a memorial to the war, until its reconstruction was prepared in the 80s.

This reconstruction began in 1994 using many of the original stones. The works finished in 2005 and the cross and the orb were forged in London as a gesture of reconciliation for the war destruction. Second, you have to know the Zwinger Palace, an elegant Baroque building whose construction was ordered by the Saxon Elector August II the Strong at the end of the XNUMXth century.

He was born as a orangery but it became a rich and highly ornate complex of pavilions, gardens, and statues. It contains the beautiful Fountain of the Nymph, with niches, balustrade and statues. Today the pavilions house museums with public collections and one of the best is the Gemäldegalerie Alte Mesiter as it contains a wonderful collection of Italian, Dutch, Spanish and Flemish Renaissance works.

This collection was started by Augustus I in the 1746th century but it took shape in 750 at the hand of Augustus III when he bought a large part of the Duke of Modena's collection. There are works by Rembrant, van Eyck, Titian, El Greco, Zurbarán and Rubens, among the XNUMX works exhibited at the same time, only a third of the large collection.

The Dresden Opera House, Semperoper, It opened in 1878 and is the second building in the same place since the first one burned down in 1869. It is in the neo-baroque and Italian Renaissance style, it was damaged in the Second War and was reopened in the 80s. There are performances but also tours to know its beautiful interior.

The Renaissance palace that was that of the residence of the electors and kings of Saxony from the XNUMXth to the XNUMXth century is the Residenzschloss. Today it contains several museums, the Treasury Chamber, historical armor and a Turkish Hall with Ottoman art.

It also houses the Kupferstich - Kabinett, with a collection of 500 sketches, prints and drawings by artists such as Goya, Michelangelo, Jan van Eyck, Rubens and Rembrandt, and the Münzkabinett, the coin collection.

La Green Vault it is a set of royal chambers converted into museums. They occupy the first and second floors of the west wing of the palace. The name, green vault, has been given to the first floor, from the 3th century, with around XNUMX works of art in ivory, gold, silver and amber. On the second floor is the New Green Vault, a separate museum with works that the brilliant blacksmith Dinglinger made for August II the Strong.

In the east wing of the palace, there is a 102 meter long porcelain mural. This mural began to be painted around 1870 but later it was supplanted by porcelain tiles, around 1900. It is known as Fürstenzurg and portrays the 35 rulers of the House of Wettin, from the margraves of the twelfth century, through the dukes and imperial electors to the kings of the nineteenth century.

Speaking of porcelain in Dresden there is also the Dresden Porcelain Collection, in the south halls of the Zwinger Palace. The state collection was established by August II in 1715 and contains Chinese and Japanese treasures from the 20th century. The collection is made up of around 10 thousand pieces but there are only XNUMX% on display.

For a great view of part of the city there is the Brühl terrace, north of the church. is a panoramic terrace of 50 meters that looks to the river Elbe from the right bank between the bridges of Augusto and Carola. The terrace is connected to the cathedral by a ceremonial staircase and dates from the time of the old fortifications of the city, the ramparts. Of all this, only a few gardens remain on the east side.

Albertinum It is the name given to the place where the royal collection of sculptures is located and it is here on the terrace. Today it also contains a new gallery with art acquired in the XNUMXth century and many works of Impressionism.

La Dresden cathedral It is on the west side of the Brühl Terrace, has an Italian Baroque style, and was rebuilt after the war. There are 49 members of the Wettin family buried here in the crypt, including Augustus I and III and all the XNUMXth century kings of Saxony. It also keeps the last remaining organ of the maestro Silbermann.

On the right bank of the Elbe, Neustadt is the name of the Dresden district that was rebuilt after the fire of 1730. Hence the name, «new», neu, the inner part contains the medieval fortifications, the outer part has more than 150 bars and restaurants and is great to go out of night and have a good time.

If you like palaces, you can make a day trip a few kilometers to know the summer residence of the electors and kings of Saxony. There are three palaces, the Wasserpalais, el Bergpalais and Neues Palais. Today they are museums of furniture, ceramics and textiles and it has acres of beautiful gardens to stroll around.

Finally, this German city has a tourist discount card that can be useful: the Dresden City Card which is valid for moving around on urban trains, trams and buses and ferries within the city. It exists of one day, two and three days, single and family and a model called Regio.

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