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Why fly to Dresden?
As you are about to walk through a doorway and above it looks down a face peering at you with intense emotion, you will realize you have arrived in one of the most artistically-inspired cities in Germany.*
Dresden is full of structures that have been touched by the hands of artists who know their craft well. From bronze statues adorning walkways to Gothic curlicues driven into cement, Dresden is a cultural fantasy land.
Dresden sits about an hour's drive from the Czech Republic and is split in two by the Elbe River. The river boasts lovely walkways that are chiseled to perfection and provide the perfect set to stroll and relax by the river.
Head into old town, which is on the north side and take in the architectural beauty of the Church of our Lady, a monument that sparks pride in residents. It was reduced to rubble during WWII but later rebuilt after the reunification of Germany. Today it stands tall and proud in its old form.
The church is one of hundreds of buildings that were destroyed during war time and amazingly enough most were reconstructed to look like they once did, which is why Dresden of an old city but the order and perfection of one that has been built in the modern day.
Other buildings of note include the Semper Opera House or the 18th century Zwinger Palace. At one time it was the exclusive domain of royalty and friends, but today is open to all with buildings converted into museums and galleries and the gardens landscaped to royal perfection. You can find Rafael's Madonna Sistina here as well.
The Neustadt area on the other side of the Elbe River provides a bit more of a funky alternative scene. You can check out the area's baroque style and this is also where many state government buildings are housed. The Neustadt also has some funky bars and restaurants that provide more of an international appeal. Head to Lutherplatz square for dining, shopping and lively bars and pubs.
Of course if it is quiet splendor you are looking for than the windy streets of the old historic district will welcome you with beautiful street side cafes and restaurants with views of the city's architectural brilliance. Sitting outside on the patio and watching the sunset and turn the old city into a haze of pinks and oranges is the perfect way to end an evening in the city.
Summers in Dresden are quite warm compared to the rest of Germany. Highs in July and August hit the mid 20s and occasionally higher. The beginning of November signals a significant nose dive in numbers with highs in the low 10s. The numbers continue to decline into the winter with lows several degrees below 0. The winter months are also when the city is dusted by snowfall, which is usually at its heaviest in January.
When to fly to Dresden
Summer is a popular time to visit the city as the temperatures are quite warm and perfect for enjoying the city's promenades and outdoor restaurant seating. The influx of tourists during the summer months also means flight ticket prices tend to increase from June through to the beginning of September.
Temperatures in the winter months are quite chilly so wandering the city requires a little more bundling up, which seems to deter travelers. The low visitation numbers mean flight ticket prices go down. This might be a good time to scoop up a deal and visit Dresden's beautiful Christmas Market where you can find all sorts of handmade local goods..
Getting into Dresden
Your gateway into Dresden opens up at Dresden International Airport which is located approximately 45 minutes outside of the city center. From the airport you can take the metro train service to the airport. Buses are also an option as are taxi services.
Getting around Dresden
It is lovely to walk this city and take in all that is new but erected from the dustings of old. The public transportation system is also quite handy and extensive. You can take the local train service, the S-Bahn, to zip you around if you are keen to getting to your destination instead of meandering your way there. The bus and tram services run like clockwork and get you into areas the train won''t. You can also catch a taxi if you desire.
- Visit Bruhl's Terrace which is known at the Balconyof Europe. The beautifully- carved promenade is artisically opulent with strong structure and is reminiscent of something perhaps the Greek gods would have strolled upon. You can take the mammoth staircase up and walk amongst some of the city's most impressive buildings like the Royal Art Academy among others.
- Enjoy some of Dresden's theater and arts. If you are able to take in a show at the Semper Opera you will not regret it. The originally building dated back to the early 19th century and today sits reconstructed in its former glory. The symmetrics of the building are beautiful and inside you will be transported to an old but very classy Dresden as you enjoy an evening at the opera.
- The city is home to the largest green diamond in the world. The diamond is a feature in the royal collection at Dresden Palace. You can visit the Green Vault and check out some of the glittering gems and stones.
- *The face above the doorway mentioned above is called The Scary Door and is found in the Neustadt area
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