For our anniversary, we took a weekend trip to Dresden, a place Herr has been very interested in visiting. We rented a car (we were upgraded to an Audi when the car rental learned it was our anniversary), and drove through a snow storm to get to the Schloss Hotel in Dresden – Pillnitz. We had the second best room in the palace (the first was already booked), but it was really nice. Because we got in fairly late, we ate dinner at one of the two restaurants. The food was fantastic, and we had the whole place to ourselves.
We started the full day tour of Dresden at the Frauenkirche. The church was just rebuilt in 2005 after being bombed in the second World War. We did not go in immediately, but rather ran into a little pub and drank some hot chocolate (tea for Herr) to warm up for the strong bitter wind blowing through the platz.
Once warm again, we walked south passing the Kreuzkirche and catching a tram to the main train station. Then we returned to the Frauenkirche to tour the interior, and paid extra to go to the rotunda for a blustery yet clear view of the city.
We ate at a small sushi restaurant before making our way to the Semperoper opera house. They had an english tour that we joined an hour later, after visiting the Zwinger. I really want to go back to Dresden this spring now to see the grotto with the fountains on. The Zwinger is mostly a big open courtyard encompassed by a museum. We hung around there until the tour was ready to leave at the opera house.
The opera house was interesting enough, although we were unable to see a performance there due to conflicting schedules with the ticket offices… but we did stop by the Residence Palace to see some of the state treasures. This building is easy to spot at a bird’s eye view due to its massive puffy looking glass dome.
The Residence Schloss was another building razed and recently rebuilt to house the remaining artifacts of the Green Vault (and other museum collections). In order to enter the Green Vault, one must enter at a specific time through an electric airlock after depositing just about everything except your underwear in a locker. Once inside, however, you get to experience how the pieces of art were originally displayed, not the modern style of separating each onto a pedestal with five feet of clearing space.
For dinner, we went to the fancier restaurant at the palace where Herr ordered a full five course French cuisine (we were given a sixth, complimentary of the chef). Admittedly, I was falling asleep watching him eat so much while I only ordered a main course, but the food at both restaurants was excellent. We had live music, a fire, and only a few other couples to enjoy the evening.
In the morning, we decided to go to Leipzig for Herr to railfan a bit (at Europe’s largest train station)… yes, it was his idea. The city was kind of scary though, with parts of it in disrepair. Herr enjoyed a nice romp in the Audi at 230 kph (roughly 140 mph) before we hit another snow storm on our drive back.