Dresden is a beautiful city full of arts and culture, architecture, and great dining. You can visit anytime during the year, but personally going in the Fall is the best time. The tourist season has ended so the city is less crowded and the city becomes more affordable as the prices of hotels and flights become discounted. Please see below for how we spent 48 hours in Dresden.
Day 1 – Friday Evening
We arrived in Dresden on a Friday evening. We took the S-bahn from the airport terminal to the Hauptbahnhof (main train station), which takes 23 minutes. There are many great hotels located in the city center and we chose to stay at the Westin Bellevue, Dresden. It is a fantastic 4-star hotel located off of the Elbe river and just 10 minutes away by foot from the aldtstadt or old city. This hotel features elegant, spacious rooms and a relaxing hotel pool and spa.
After checking into our hotel, we enjoyed a nice dinner at the Kutscherschanke – Uriges Wirthaus which is just a short walk from the Westin Hotel. The menu boasts traditional German fare.
Day 2 – Saturday
We started our morning at the breakfast buffet which is available at the Westin for an additional charge. You can also venture out for a bite at one of the many bakeries in the old city. Exploring the old city by foot is quite the experience as many of its historic buildings have undergone recent renovations and restorations in the last 16 years. One such building is the Frauenkirche also known as Church of Our Lady, which has been restored to its former glory. We joined an English guided walking tour with experienced guides who discussed the history behind this and many of the classical sites in the old city.
After a morning of exploration in the old city, we spent our afternoon checking out the contemporary architecture at the Military History Museum, which is 20 minutes away by light rail from the Westin hotel. This museum was designed by the Architect, Daniel Libeskind, who is known for designing the famous Jewish Museum in Berlin and the master-plan for the World Trade Center in New York.
The museum has an old world – new world feel since Libeskind incorporated his contemporary design into the existing building. Libeskind said his intention was ” to create a bold interruption, a fundamental dislocation, to penetrate the historic arsenal and create a new experience.” The museum’s architecture as well as the German military’s historical content are well done. Please allow yourself a few hours to thoroughly enjoy this museum.
During the evening time, we saw a performance at the Semperoper, the famous Baroque-styled opera house built in 1841 and rebuilt in 1871 after a major fire. It is located in Dresden’s theatre center, which is 12 minutes away by foot from the Westin hotel.
Day 3 – Sunday Morning
We spent our Sunday morning with a cruise down the Elbe river where we saw the city from a different perspective. We enjoyed a meal and some beer in great company as we made our way to the beautiful Schloss & Park Pillnitz, which is a Baroque palace featuring a museum, park, and garden.
We hope you decide to visit Dresden especially since you are able to do this in a weekend!
Travel Wide. Eat Well. Live Your Passion.
Sarah + Monty