Dresden offers its guest a wide spectrum of the arts, museums and other tourist attractions. As a first orientation, here are a few tips for your trip to Dresden.
The old part of Dresden
Several of Dresden’s tourist attractions are located close to Theaterplatz Square: TheSemper Opera, the Dresden Zwinger, the Residenzschloss (Royal Palace) and the Katholische Hofkirche (Catholic Court Church), also known as the Cathedral, from the tower of which you view the BAROQUE DRESDEN panorama are all well worth a visit.
The Allied air raids on Dresden on 13th and 14th February 1945 severely damaged the Zwinger. Since its reconstruction, the historical building has become home to the Old Masters Painting Gallery and the Porcelain Collection. Take a stroll through the grounds of the Zwinger and pause at the Glockenspiel Pavilion. The bells – made out of Meissen porcelain – ring out every quarter-hour (except in winter).
The Royal Palace, which has been under reconstruction since the 1980s, also houses some of the world-famous Dresden state art collections. Various museums are located within this attraction in Dresden: The “Grüne Gewölbe” (Green Vault) collection, the Münzkabinett (Mint Cabinet), the Kupferstichkabinett (Collection of Prints, Drawings) and the Rüstkammer (Armoury) with the Turkish Cabinet.
Behind the Court Church, Augustusstraße with its porcelain-tiled Fürstenzug (Procession of Princes) leads to Neumarkt Square. This is the site of Frauenkirche (Church of Our Lady), destroyed during the war and now reconstructed , the Johanneum – now home to the Dresden Transport Museum, and Kulturpalast (Palace of the Arts).
Within walking distance of the Neumarkt near the Kulturpalast are the Altmarkt Square and the Kreuzkirche (Church of the Holy Cross), which dates back to the 13th century, making it the oldest church in Dresden.
The Brühlsche Terrace and the Brühlsche Garden along the bank of the Elbe by the Altstadt (old part of the city), are idyllic locations to take a break and relax.
Not far from the Altstadt toward Friedrichsstadt district is where the Yenidze was built at the beginning of the 20th century. What looks like a palace from “Arabian Nights” is a former cigarette factory and now one of the architectural jewels of Dresden.
The Inner and Outer Neustadt district
Guests with more time on their hands are strongly encouraged to visit the other side of the Elbe. The Augustus Bridge connects the Altstadt (old town) with the Neustadt (new town). An absolute must for art lovers and romantics: The famous Canaletto view of the Altstadt from the Japanese Palace. Here is where Dresden lives up to its nickname “Florence-on-Elbe”.
Famous as a student and nightlife district, the Inner and Outer Neustadt lend themselves to a leisurely stroll between galleries, night spots and gourmet restaurants. A rather different attraction in Dresden is the “most beautiful dairy shop in the world” – better known as Pfunds Molkerei (Pfund’s Dairy).
The northern part of the Outer Neustadt adjoins the Albertstadt district, where another unusual museum in Dresden is situated - the Militärhistorisches Museum (Museum of Military History).
The Blue Wonder, Blasewitz and Loschwitz
Another widely used bridge over the Elbe is the Loschwitz Bridge, popularly known as the “Blue Wonder”. It connects the city districts of Blasewitz and Loschwitz.
Three pearls of architecture from the 19th century lie along the hills over the Elbe between the Inner Neustadt and the “Blue Wonder”. The three palaces provide a magnificent view of Dresden and the Elbe.
Besides these Elbe palaces, the Dresdner Bergbahnen (cable cars) also give a stunning view of the city. The Standseilbahn (cable car) runs from Körnerplatz in Loschwitz up the hills over the Elbe to the Weißer Hirsch, the exclusive residential district of Dresden famous even before publication of Uwe Tellkamp’s bestselling novel “Der Turm” (The Tower).
Yadegar Asisi’s panoramas open up the view beyond Dresden’s Altstadt. For example, the city of Meissen is barely visible on the horizon. However, Radebeul, Königstein Castle, the Moritzburg hunting lodge as well as Pillnitz Palace and Park are also well worth visiting for the day and provide plenty of scope for outdoor activities.