Monday, July 20, 2009

Dresden

After Meissen we went to Dresden to see the city and spend some time with our good friends, Rainer and Heike. They found us a great hotel right in the center of downtown. And I'm pretty sure they got us an incredible deal, too.

I got my own room. This is it. Pretty, right? It's completely my style. Very minimal, but really comfortable.


The lobby. Completely digging the textured concrete walls.


It was a gorgeous hotel, and their breakfast was amazing. A-mayyy-ziiiing. (Is it wrong that I care so much? German breakfast is where it's at--I'm telling you.)

I don't remember the names of anything, so I won't even pretend. Maybe once this is posted I'll pick my parents' brains.


The partial building on the right pictured below is the Frauenkirche, which was just recently restored. Actually, most of Dresden has been rebuilt since WWII, and it was rebuilt purposely to look already aged. So even though the buildings look all sooty and weather-worn, they're made to look that way so it seems more like they never got destroyed.
I think the architecture in Dresden is really beautiful. It's a really gorgeous and charming city.
The Frauenkirche again. Our hotel was right on the square this church is the center of, so I took plenty of pictures...

I love the colorful buildings that surround the square.


Let's not forget Mr. Luther, shall we?

Inside another church (not the Frauenkirche).




The Zwinger Palace
The picture above is one of my favorites. It's of one side of the Zwinger, and it was taken through some old-school glass in a window on the other side of the palace. Cool, right?

After leaving the Zwinger, I snapped this photo of the city framed by greenery. No idea what the buildings are.

It's okay... you can make fun of me for taking a picture of the ground. I thought it was really pretty, though. Much better than asphalt or plain old cement.


Rainer and Heike treated us to a boat ride along the river that ended at Pillnitz castle.
The river banks were beutifully green, and the Dresdeners (??) were out taking advantage of the gorgeous day, beautiful scenery, and accomodating river. We saw kites flying, lovers... ummm... loving, runners bounding, and kayakers going towards the city. And I can't blame them--it was really a beautiful day, and the riverbanks were wide and covered in beautiful, inviting grass.
I'm not going to lie... I would totally live here. (If I were loaded and spoke German.)

Or here. Actually, I like the colors on this one a lot better.
Oh, look! Here are the kayakers I was talking about.
Pillnitz.

The grounds at Pillnitz were really beautiful. There was, of course, the greenhouse:
The Chinese garden, lake included
And plenty of woodland- and foresty-looking areas that looked like they were plucked right out of a fairy tale.




On the way back to the boat I decided I could handle this view from my front yard...

...which means I would have to move here. Dang. I guess there are just some sacrifices you have to make to get a gorgeous view. :)
Back in Dresden.


Just off the square that houses the Frauenkirche all kinds of buildings are being renovated. The construction crew ran into a little surprise when they were digging to lay a foundation for some new buildings... and their little 'surprise' has indefinitely postponed construction until they can figure out what the ruins are from.

Next, it was off to Stolpen, the countryside prison for the king's outspoken mistress, Anna Cosel.


Then we went to the beautiful Saxon-Switzerland National Park. Look familiar? Except for the color of the rock and the fact that there were trees, I could have sworn I was here.


The river above is on one side of an outcropping. The valley of rocks is on the other side of the outcropping. And ON the outcropping, in medieval times, there was a whole community living among carved-out staircases, using a catapault to sling huge rocks at passing ships who didn't have permission (or fork out enough $$$) to pass through.
The park does come complete with rock climbers. Of course. What self-respecting National Park doesn't include rock climbers?
The sun set, and we went to dinner inside a restaurant atop the outcropping (which had AMAZING views).

Back to Dresden (sorry, these are not quite in chronological order). :)
The wall of the monarchs. The Kings of Saxony (which is the 'state' of which Dresden is the capital).

In front of the wall of monarchs there was a man dancing on the sidewalk. I thought it was really interesting. Everyone else thought it was weird. Whatev.

And that's a wrap people. Dresden is amazing. You could see pretty much all of the 'sites' in just a couple of days, but if you wanted to relax more and take your time to just enjoy the atmosphere, you could spend a good solid week here. And why wouldn't you? (I would, anyway.)

4 comments:

Denise said...

Beautiful pictures, as always. I wish I had the guts to rid myself of so many things and have things so "simply" beautiful.

Brooke said...

I'm so jealous of all the beautiful things you've been able to see, especially in Germany. I studied German all of jr. high and high school and have always wanted to go there. You're whetting my appetite more and more with these pictures. Someday, someday.

Sarah said...

Thanks, Denise!

Brooke, I didn't know you spoke German! I never thought Germany would be as beautiful and interesting as it is, but I absolutely love it. And the people are incredibly nice. It's the package deal, no question about it.

Orgill Family said...

beautiful Pictures. Sounds like you had fun. This is sista wong by the way.