Although we spent 2 weeks in Germany in December 2013, we didn't visit Dresden ... a city that has one of the oldest Christmas markets in Europe. Since Dresden was close to Czech Republic, we thought of spending a few days here.
We took the DB Bahn (train) to reach Dresden and had a stopover at Usti Nad Labem. But the journey was very comfortable.
In Dresden, we chose to stay at Park Inn by Radisson. The good thing about the hotel was that the Rosa-Luxemburg-Platz tram stop was just a minute away. The bad next was that, we realized it a day later! Until then we did quite a bit of walking! We bought a day pass to use the tram.
Our purpose of visiting Dresden was mainly Christmas markets, however, we did manage to sneak in a few interesting sites.
Katholische Hofkirche was one of them. This is a Catholic Church in Dresden with an impressive exterior and an equally impressive interior. The sad part is that it was completely destroyed during WWII, however, they did manage to rebuild it into the beauty that it is today. The white washed walls of the Church certainly stood out and so did the large organ.
This was followed by a larger than life size porcelain work of art called "Procession of Prince". It literally covered an entire wall. I ain't good at history, but they say that this artwork showed the early rulers of Dresden.
We also managed to get a glimpse of Semper Opera House ... just from the outside. None of us are opera fans! And a couple of beautiful baroque style buildings around the same area.
Bruehl's Terrace is another attraction thats close to Semper Opera House and overlooks Augustusbrucke. It offers stunning views of River Elbe. Augustusbrucke is the Dresden's oldest bridge.
CHRISTMAS MARKETS (if you are travelling during the festive season)
We visited various Christmas markets in Dresden and Leipzig ... that was the main purpose for stepping into Germany in the first place. On the day we reached, we checked into our hotel and headed to Leipzig. It was a 2 hour ride from Dresden and had the 2nd oldest Christmas market in Germany. To be honest, the travelling became a bit too much for us and we actually regretted visiting Leipzig. Imagine ... just landing from Czech Republic, checking in and then leaving to another city in Germany. Pheww!!! Moreover, it was raining. Thankfully, all the markets were walk-able from the main train station.
In fact, we should have just stuck to Dresden because there were so many amazing markets here ... and so unique. I've said this before and I'm saying this again - Germany is the king of Christmas market "hands down". The stuff they have at each market in each city are so different. First, we visited the biggest and oldest (581 years) market in Germany - The Striezelmarkt. Each stall was prettier than the other. Our craving for German sausages were fulfilled here !
Mr. D in particular, enjoyed the medieval Christmas market at Stallhof. I don't blame him, it was nothing like we'd ever seen before. It was like stepping back in time. The costumes worn by the exhibitors, the handicrafts .... it spelt "history"!
Another favourite was the Augustusmarkt, which was a a short walk from River Elbe.
Besides these, we did visit a few others.
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