With its rich culture, stunning architecture and cosy atmosphere, Dresden is the ideal destination for a weekend get-away. Located just a couple of hour’s drive from Berlin and five hours from Munich, it’s fairly easy to get here – especially if you have a comfortable car like we did. Here are our best recommendations for a weekend in Dresden.
Capital of culture and history
You probably didn’t know that the coffee filter and toothpaste was invented in Dresden. Or that the city has the most beautiful milk shop in the world. Well, that’s the case – and Dresden actually offers more than one should think.
If you go behind to polished facades, you’ll quickly get to know the brutal and tempestuous history: the city suffered heavily from attacks at the end of World War 2 (in fact, the war was over when allied forces decided to throw bombs, you know….just in case!) and just like that, ancient buildings were torn down in a matter of hours. Luckily, it was decided to reconstruct the entire city, which is why Dresden appears today like it did some hundred years ago.
Dresden is often referred to as ‘Florence of the Elbe’ (Elbe is the river running through the city), so needless to say, it’s a popular weekend destination for couples and lovers in need of a little ‘time off’.
If you’re fond of art, culture and history, Dresden ranks as one of the most interesting destinations in Germany. I was especially fond of visiting:
- Semperoper (world-famous opera house built in 1841). Its orchestra is one of the oldest in the world, dating back to 1548!
- Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden (popular art museum featuring beautiful works of some of history’s most renowned painters)
- Schauspielhaus am Zwinger (beautiful theater at the old castle) – make sure to see a play while you’re here!
- Royal Palace (of course a must-see when you’re in Dresden! For almost 400 years, this was the residence of the kings of Saxony)
Luxury for all senses
Dresden houses a selection of charming hotels of which I’d definitely recommend Taschenbergpalais Kempinski (a separate review will come up soon!) or Gewandhaus Dresden. Both located in the center with luxurious amenities and great service! Everything is in walking-distance though, so you don’t need a car to get around.
The city offers numerous good restaurants – 25 of them are listed in the Michelin guide, e.g. Intermezzo at the above-mentioned Taschenbergpalais, but also Alte Meister and (M)eatery at Gewandhaus is worth a mention. Last-mentioned has a reputation of serving the best meat in town, so if you’re a carnivore, there’s no excuse.
Arrive in style
Of course it’s possible to reach Dresden by train from either Munich or Berlin, but it’s much more comfortable arriving by car, which also grants you the freedom the explore the region. We were kindly sponsored by Auto Europe, who has the biggest selection of rental cars online. They even offer a selection of eco-friendly cars with free GPS systems.
Dresden is a must-see in Germany and I can’t wait to return soon! 🙂