Dresden sights are a reminder of the city’s terrible history as well as its resilience. Many of the monuments still have the scars of the destructive firebombing of the Second World War. Others have had to be completely rebuilt and reconstructed.
This Dresden sight is perhaps the ultimate symbol of the city’s reconstruction. The Frauenkirche was not completely rebuilt and renovated until 2005. The dome had collapsed during the bombing raids of the Second World War. It was left untouched for many years afterward as a reminder of the destructive nature of war.
In its new state, the Frauenkirche church has become one of the most visited monuments in the city.
Built from 1710 to 1728, this Dresden sight is considered one of the preeminent examples of Late Baroque architecture. The Zwinger Palace is an opulent palace with a graceful inner courtyard. Within the palace walls there are several great museums, including the Old Masters Gallery, the Armory, and Porcelain Collection.
Semper Opera House
Another highly recognizable Dresden sight is the Semper Opera House a.k.a. Semper Oper. Like many of the other buildings in the city, it also has a tragic history. It was first finished in 1841, only to be destroyed by fire in 1869. Rebuilding took seven years, from 1871 to 1878.
Unfortunately the new Opera House did not survive the bombs of the Allies. It too completely obliterated during the war. Reconstruction efforts brought the Semper back yet again from the ashes in 1985.
The Old Market square has long been the center of Dresden’s cultural life. The Altmarkt dates back to at least 1370, possibly earlier but, like much of the city was bombed and destroyed during the war. It was also restored and today is again at the heart of the city, and the site of the popular Christmas Markets.
The Dresden Cathedral is the largest church in Saxony. It was designed by Gaetano Chiaveri from 1738 to 1754 and built in the Baroque and Rococo styles. Some highlights include the cathedral crypt which contains the encased heart of Augustus the Strong.
This building really lives up to its name. The Neue Synagoge was completed in 2001 as a reconstruction of the original Semper synagogue that was destroyed during Kristallnacht.
The New Synagogue does not retain any of the old synagogue’s architectural features. It is instead based on early Israelite temples. The only artifact that remains from the first synagogue is their golden Star of David.