Dresden Things to Do Tips by Kakapo2 Top 5 Page for this destination
Dresden Things to Do: 578 reviews and 1,336 photos
King Friedrich August II and the Hotel de Saxe.
You find the statue of King Friedrich August II in front of the Steigenberger Hotel de Saxe on Neumarkt. And read on, so you do not get confused with all the Friedrichs and Augusts and Friedrich Augusts of Saxony… ;-)
The Friedrich August II you see here was the son of Prince Maximilian of Saxony (1759–1838) and Karoline von Bourbon-Parma (1770–1806), and reigned from 1836 until his death on 9 August 1854 in Tyrol, caused in an accident of his horse-drawn cart near Brennbichl.
He was born in Pillnitz Castle (Schloss Pillnitz) on 18 May 1797, and got the world-record-like name Friedrich August II. Albert Maria Clemens Joseph Vincenz Aloys Nepomuk Johann Baptista Nikolaus Raphael Peter Xaver Franz de Paula Venantius Felix of Saxony.
He was married twice but had no children.
In his hand he holds the charter of Saxony’s Constitution from 1831 when he administered the state together with his uncle Anton. In 1836 he took office as the sole sovereign. Friedrich August II’s most important achievements were liberation of the peasants from compulsory labour and subservience in 1832, and a penal law for the whole state in 1836. He appointed liberal ministers into the government in 1848/49, abolished censorship and passed a liberal election law. However, later he obviously thought he had gone too far with his liberal attitude and dissolved Parliament.
The statue was created by Ernst Julius Hähnel in 1867.
August(us) the Strong was Friedrich August I, he was Saxony’s Elector and King of Poland and lived from 1670 to 1733. His son was Friedrich August II – but this guy was another Friedrich August II than King Friedrich August II… The Stong’s son was called “The Fat”, the King of the same name had no byname and was extremely slim ;-)
The problem with those names arises from the conversion of Saxony into a kingdom in 1806, and they seemed to suffer from a lack of imagination, obviously the title Elector and King in front of the names would be good enough for distinction.
To make this mix-up complete, Elector Friedrich August III became King Friedrich August I (the Righteous) in 1806…
Luther's statue stands behind Frauenkirche.
The statue of the reformator Martin Luther is a very striking feature of Neumarkt, right behind Frauenkirche.
I read different versions about the statue’s history and making. I think the following one is the most credible, as it is from the City of Dresden describing the restoration works on it.
Therefore it was finished in 1861 (and not 1885, as other sources say), and in 1885 it was put up at Neumarkt.
An interesting detail is that it was designed by the artist Ernst Rietschel – but not for this site but for the Luther Memorial in Worms. Rietschel’s student Adolf von Donndorf modelled the creation in clay. The bell-foundry C. Albert Bierling (who also cast the Gänsediebbrunnen) cast it in bronze.
It was damaged in the 1945 bombings, and a copy put up on site in 1955. The base, made of granite, was also restored.
Originally the statue was part of a bigger ensemble of statues and reliefs, surrounded by granite pillars and wrought-iron grills.
About Martin Luther and the Reformation
As you might know, Martin Luther was an Augustinian monk and theologian who started the Lutheran Reformation which deeply influenced the Protestant and other Christian doctrines.
He criticised the teachings of the Roman Catholic Church. His major problem was the Catholic’s understanding of doing penance. On an earlier visit to Rome he was shocked about flippancy and demoralization. At the time it was common to pay for so-called letters of indulgence, meaning: The more you paid the less penitence you had to perform for your sins. They even sold letters of indulgence to the relatives of dead people, so the dead could rest in real peace. With the money the church paid for their buildings projects, like in Rome the building of St. Peter’s. In Germany they paid their debts to creditors with the sale of the letters.
By the years it became clear to Luther that God’s justice was pure grace (sola gratia) given to the humans by the existence of Jesus Christ, and that it did not need the church as the conveying institution of God’s grace. (You see the difference very well, for example, in the way Protestants and Catholics celebrate the Lord’s Supper.)
In 1517 Luther changed his original name Luder to Luther, referring to the Greek word “eleutheros”, meaning: free, and: disburdened. This was the visible sign of Luther’s change of mind.
On 31 October 1517 he nailed the 95 Theses on the door of a royal church in Wittenberg – a fact that is not 100 per cent sure. But the Theses which were mostly against the way the Church saw penitence. This was less against their acquisition of money but the idea behind it.
By placing each individual’s freedom of conscience in obeying to the writings of the Bible above the agreements of bishops, Luther’s break-up with Rome was perfect. When he burned the Bull (the Pope’s stamp) after his books had been burnt, Pope Leo X excommunicated Luther in 1521, and the reformator was declared an outlaw by the Emperor through the Edict of Worms.
On the way back home he was deliberately seized by masked horsemen of Saxony’s Elector and taken to Wartburg, a castle above Eisenach. This was necessary to protect Luther from being assassinated. Being declared an outlaw meant that everybody was allowed to kill him.
Wartburg became his exile. He lived there under the alias of “Junker Jörg” and translated the New Testament into German. To achieve a contemporary language the people spoke and understood, he went to markets and listened to the people. So the highly acclaimed translation developed a standard version of the German language. It was published in 1521.
In 1525 Luther married a former nun named Katharina von Bora who, together with eight other nuns, had fled a convent two years earlier. This was part of his philosophy which was against celibacy. They had six children. (On Wikipedia I read that today about 2800 people are descendants of Luther. Interestingly enough none of them has the name Luther. The last Luther died in 1759.)
Luther was born on 10 November 1483 in Eisleben in Saxony-Anhalt, and died there on 18 February 1546.
Weiße Gasse has a relaxing atmosphere.
This is a quiet pedestrian street with an incredible lot of cafés and restaurants. It is rather new street, parallel to Gewandhausstraße, east of Altmarkt, and right behind Kreuzkirche.
The original alleyways were rather narrow. They have been widened, and it is nice to stroll along without being disturbed by cars and their noise.
Gänsediebbrunnen – the Goose Thief Fountain – is the most striking feature of Weiße Gasse. One of the restaurants is named after the Goose Thief – Gänsedieb.
There is a website (rather slow…) with a list of the restaurants of Weiße Gasse which is Dresden’s latest addition to its restaurant scene.
Beside Gänsedieb the Fliegender Holländer (Flying Dutchman) is very popular. But you also find tapas bars, tex mex, all Asian flavours, not to forget an ice-cream parlour.
It is rather nice to go there on a sunny day as most places have outdoor seating areas, and the trees are constantly growing, so it gets nicer and more enjoyable by the day.
Photo 2 shows the archway entrance to Weiße Gasse at one of its ends.
Poor student behaving unlawfully...
This is a lovely fountain named Goose Thief Fountain in Weiße Gasse, near Kreuzkirche and Altmarkt.
It shows a student named Thomas Blatter who was obviously travelling through the country, playing bagpipes, and stole geese to earn his living.
The fountain was cast in granite in bronze in the Dresden bell-foundry C. Albert Bierling between 1878 and 1880. It was designed by Robert Diez, and won a gold medal at the International Art Exhibition in Munich in 1878.
The original site of the fountain was Ferdinandplatz. After the destruction of Ferdinandplatz in 1945 it was relocated to Weiße Gasse in 1961.
Photo 2 shows the whole fountain.
The window of Pfunds Molkerei.
I have not been in all dairies of the world (and in Germany a dairy is the place to buy milk and cheese in first place, not all your grocieres) – but I cannot imagine that there is a more beautiful dairy in the world than the one in Bautzener Straße in Dresden’s Neustadt. So the claim “Der schönste Milchladen der Welt” which is even noted in the Guinness Book of Records, might well be true.
When we visited, Dresden was rather crowded – but Pfunds Molkerei, although at quite a distance from the other attractions of the city, was even more crowded.
But what a place! If you like milk or not, if you want to taste some cheese, buy milk jam, rub your skin with milk soap, get tipsy from milk grappa, poor from buying the fine chinaware they offer, or fat from indulging in their fine milk chocolates… This shop is breathtakingly beautiful and is a number one historic place. It is tiles over and over – including the ceiling – with stunning hand-painted porcelain tiles, made by Villeroy & Boch. Stepping into this shop is like stepping back in time.
The Molkerei (milk-treatment station) was founded by Paul Gustav Leander Pfund who came to Dresden in 1879, together with his wife Mathilde, six cows, six pigs, and the idea to produce milk in a more hygienic way than to transport it in open carts from the sheds to the surrounding towns, and fill up the carts with kitchen scraps and filthy clothes on the way back.
A year later he was joined by his brother Friedrich, a successful actor. From then on the business was called "Dresdner Molkerei Gebrüder Pfund", even after the untimely death of Friedrich in 1883.
Paul Pfund started at a small place in Görlitzer Straße, and set up the milking shed and shop side by side. The customers could watch how the cows were milked behind a glass panel, how they sieved the milk and cooled it. Legend says that the customers could choose the cow they wanted their milk from. Whether this is true or not does not matter. Fact is that this way of producing and selling milk was a huge success, and soon Herr Pfund had to move his business to a bigger place. So he built Pfunds Molkerei in Bautzener Straße. In the 1930’s 60,000 litres of milk were produced daily – after having started with about 150 litres per day.
From that Paul Pfund developed a milk empire, setting up branches and producing everything you can make from milk, from quarg and cheese to the already mentioned milk soap. He also developed businesses for everything he needed around his milk empire, for example a smithy that shoed the drafthorses he needed for transportation, a carton and printing business that made everything from boxes to stickers for the products, a locksmithery, joinery, carpentry, tailoring and plumbing businesses, a paintshop, and so on. For his staff he founded a social security system, including health insurance and kindergarten, and a place where they could meet after work.
As Pfunds Molkerei produced more milk than they could sell he was the first in Germany to produce condensed milk. This was the way to success in foreign countries.
The spectacular shop was built in 1891. In the first floor was the accounting office. Today there is a restaurant where you can not only taste cheese and milk but also typical dishes from Saxony and other east German regions. It is open from 10am to 8pm (for group reservations longer).
The shop is open Mon – Sat 10am – 6pm
Sun and public holidays 10am – 3pm
They also have an online shop.
Bautzner Straße 79
Phone (0351) 80 80 80
Fax (0351) 80 80 820
Email: info (at) pfunds.de
Phone (0351) 810 59 48
Fax (0351) 655 74 20
Email: ilohampel (at) aol.com
It is forbidden to photograph in the shop, this is why I only have an unsharp shot (photo 2), taken from inside my pocket ;-) But still it gives you an idea how splendid the tiled interior is.
Tramway # 11 to Pulsnitzer Straße
If you walk from the city centre (Semperoper or Castle), cross Augustusbrücke, turn right into Köpckestraße, then left into Albertstraße, at Albertplatz right into Bautzener Straße. Molkerei on the left side.
Yenidze and Sächsische Zeitung.
When we arrived in Dresden (from Berlin), the train passed at this totally out of Baroque style building which does not match anything in the city. First you might think of the Russian orthodox legacy, or a stone-turned content of a fairy-tale. The latter is closer to the look – as the dome is not orthodox onion-shaped but straighter mosque-like.
But it is all a little different, and the building has a very interesting history.
For a start, it is called Yenidze. DIE Yenidze. As you know, we have articles in German… ;-) To me Yenidze had sounded a bit more masculine, like DER Yenidze… ;-)
The name refers to the old name of the town of Giannitsa in Northern Greece – which was Yenidze and means “New Town”. It has been known for tobacco plantations for more than a hundred years. And there we are: This building in the style of a mosque was a cigarette fabric for many years, built from 1909 to 1912, run by the cigarette producer Hugo Zietz. The locals called the building “Tabakmoschee” – tobacco mosque.
Once Dresden produced 60 % of Germany’s cigarette production. The best-known brand was Salem – even I as a non-smoker remember it, as my grandfather used to smoke them.
After the war it did not take long to repair the damage, production started again in 1947 already, and from 1953 the Yenidze became the central tobacco office of GDR. After the reunification the building was thoroughly restored and redeveloped, and turned into an office complex. During the restoration the glass dome got back its original colours that had been replaced by uni-coloured glass after the War.
Under this dome there is a restaurant now, and in the basement you find the Märchen GmbH, a cultural place where they perform fairy-tales and more (Märchen = fairy-tale). On their website you can find their ever changing programme.
The building once caused heavy controversy, and the architect who dared to design it – a guy named Hermann Martin Hammitzsch - was excluded from Saxony’s conservative architects’ society!
The Yenidze was the world’s first reinforced concrete skeleton construction. The cleverest thing was to disguise the chimney stalk as a minaret, as they would not have allowed such an industrial chimney in the royal residence of Dresden at the time.
It is said the architect had the splendid Mameluk grave of Khair Bak in Cairo on his mind when he designed the Yenidze in this style-mixture of art-deco and moorish. The building has 600 windows. The dome is 20 metres high, and has a diametre of 17 metres.
The Yenidze is located near Marienbrücke, north of Neustadt, next to the Elbe river. You can spot it quite well from the many viewing towers in the city.
The green building you see next to it, just around the corner in Ostra-Allee, is Sächsische Zeitung which is Saxony’s leading newspaper. Remember the name – I write for them as a freelancer ;-)
Kuppelrestaurant in der Yenidze
Phone 0351-490 59 90
Fax 0351-490 59 92
Open daily 11am - 12midnight
1001 Märchen GmbH
Phone 0351- 495 1001
Fax 0351 - 495 1004
A royal jeweller had this fountain built.
You find this lovely wall-mounted fountain at the north-west corner of Neues Gewandhaus. It is named after a rich jeweller named Johann Melchior Dinglinger who provided the royals with jewellery. He got this fountain built for his residence in nearby Frauenstraße (house number 10) in 1718.
Neues Gewandhaus once housed stands where butchers sold meat on the groundfloor. On the first floor were the workshops of fabric traders and tailors – and this is where the name comes from. “Gewand” is an old word for fine clothes or suits. The tailors then were called Gewandschneider = clothes or suit tailor. Later the building was a storage facility and from 1925 the site of the city’s bank.
In the 1960’s it was converted into a hotel. Since 1997 it is the Radisson Gewandhaus Hotel.
Address: Ringstraße 1, 01067 Dresden
Kunstakademie, seen from the city side.
The complex of the Academy of Fine Arts (Kunstakademie; or officially: Hochschule für Bildende Künste) is the central part of the buildings that border the famous Brühlsche Terrasse along the Elbe river. (Brühlsche Terrasse is a promenade which is aligned by some of Dresden’s most important and impressive buildings, apart from Kunstakademie there are the cathedral and Semperoper, and Frauenkirche in the second row.)
From Augustusbrücke or even from the opposite bank of the Elbe you have a splendid view of Brühlsche Terrasse and the Academy of Fine Arts in particular. But I quite like this untidier sample of buildings from the, let me call it: city side. Just two or three steps to the right of this photo you would walk into Frauenkirche, and around the corner would be Coselpalais. Here you see how far the distance between Coselpalais and the glass dome of the Kunstakademie are in reality (as coming from Neumarkt you get the impression the “Lemon Squeezer” were sitting on a wing of Coselpalais).
The Academy was built from 1891 to 1895. The style is called Historism which should have been a lot less bombastic than Baroque and other styles that had dominated Dresden until then. But still the buildings look massive and party even overloaded with decoration. It appears less harmonious than Baroque and neo-Renaissance, and do not really complement the entity. However, the artistic quality is immaculate.
I would not call the Academy of Fine Arts a Gallery of New Masters, as suggested in the VT data base. There are exhibitions of students accessible for the public but its main purpose is the studies of fine arts.
The Lemon Squeezer is not sitting on this building
In Dresden they call it the Lemon Squeezer (Zitronenpresse), and you can see why.
This glass dome crowns the Kunstakademie next to Frauenkirche – and this photo is an eye-teaser.
The dome does not sit on this yellow building but on the Kunstakademie behind this yellow building which is a wing of Coselpalais.
The main tract was reconstructed in 2000.
If you have read my tip about Taschenbergpalais you already know the name Cosel. Countess von Cosel was August the Strong’s main mistress.
This palace was named after Friedrich August von Cosel (1712 – 1777), the only son and youngest of three children which came out of the relationship between the king and his mistress. The king looked well after his officially illegitimate children, so they got nice homes like this one.
Coselpalais, next to Frauenkirche on Neumarkt, was built from 1744 to 1746 in the Rokoko style. It was damaged and destroyed twice, first in 1760 during the Seven Year War by the Prussians, then under the British bombs in 1945. Reconstruction of the wings started in 1977. The main building was only completed in 2000, including the wonderful sculptures of children, sitting on limestone pillars which hold a beautiful grill-fence.
Today the building is used as a grand restaurant named “Pulverturm an der
Frauenkirche” and as office space.
For groups of ten and more people they arrange historic dinners in the banquet hall where the servants wear clothes from the era of August the Strong. It is followed by “Staatsoperette Dresden”, entertainment with operette and more. As September 2008, the price per person for a two-course meal, a small drink and the entertainment is 33,90 Euro.
via: Staatsoperette Pirna, Pirnaer Landstraße 131, 01257 Dresden
Phone 0351 - 2 07 99 29
Fax 0351 - 2 07 99 37
Contact for Pulverturm restaurant:
Pulverturm an der Frauenkirche
An der Frauenkirche 12
Phone (0351) 26 26 0 - 0
Fax (0351) 26 26 0 - 11
More Reviews (14)
Kakapo2's Related Pages
Dresden Travel Guide
Member Travel Pages
- "Welcome to Dresden"
- "Still Beautiful Elegance"
- "Back to the Future: From Rubble to Baroque Beauty"
- "Five visits in Dresden"
- "Opera and Cycling in Dresden"
- "Dresden in 1995"
- See All...
- Things to Do in Dresden
- Hotels in Dresden
- Transportation in Dresden
- Nightlife in Dresden
- Restaurants in Dresden
- Shopping in Dresden
- Warnings and Dangers in Dresden
- See All...
Explore the World
- Bloomington Hotels
- Bad Windsheim
- Songkhla Hotels
- Croatia Hotels
- Ranikhet Hotels
Badges & Stats in Dresden
- 46 Reviews
- 57 Photos
- 7 Forum posts
- 12 Comments
- See All Stats
- See All Badges (120)
Have you been to Dresden?Share Your Travels
Latest Activity in Dresden
- Posted in Travel Australia Forum "Re: tourist visa"
- updated a Dresden Travel Page "Back to the Future: From Rubble to Baroque Beauty"
- Wrote a Review An alternative Trip to Dresden in Dresden Transportation
- Uploaded a Photo to "The World’s oldest Paddle Wheel Steamer"
- Commented on one of Russell_the_Wombat's Dresden travel pages
Photos in DresdenSee All Photos (57)
Top 10 Pages
- Top 5 Page for this destination Christchurch Intro, 244 reviews, 606 photos, 27 travelogues
- Top 5 Page for this destination Berlin Intro, 124 reviews, 201 photos, 3 travelogues
- Top 5 Page for this destination Wellington Intro, 93 reviews, 172 photos, 4 travelogues
- Top 5 Page for this destination Lyttelton Intro, 65 reviews, 170 photos, 4 travelogues
- Top 5 Page for this destination New Zealand Intro, 81 reviews, 150 photos, 5 travelogues
- West Coast Intro, 68 reviews, 155 photos
- Top 5 Page for this destination Ulm Intro, 55 reviews, 152 photos, 9 travelogues
- Top 5 Page for this destination Canterbury Intro, 34 reviews, 145 photos, 2 travelogues
- Top 5 Page for this destination Akaroa Intro, 72 reviews, 84 photos
- Top 5 Page for this destination Bora-Bora Intro, 49 reviews, 102 photos, 7 travelogues
FriendsSee All Friends (31)
Latest Dresden hotel reviews
- Aparthotels An der Frauenkirche
- 21 Reviews & Opinions
Latest: May 1, 2013
- Hotel Martha Hospiz Dresden
- 16 Reviews & Opinions
Latest: May 16, 2013
- 27 Reviews & Opinions
Latest: May 16, 2013
- Andor Hotel Europa
- 12 Reviews & Opinions
Latest: Mar 14, 2013
- Gasthof Coschuetz
- 1 Review & Opinion
- Hotel Am Terrassenufer
- 27 Reviews & Opinions
Latest: Jan 9, 2013
- Hotel Prinz Eugen
- 22 Reviews & Opinions
Latest: May 19, 2013
- Dorint Hotel Dresden
- 27 Reviews & Opinions
Latest: May 7, 2013
- Radisson Blu Park Hotel Dresden Radebeul
- 24 Reviews & Opinions
Latest: Dec 26, 2012
- Hotel Taschenbergpalais Kempinski
- 145 Reviews & Opinions
Latest: Jun 12, 2013
- Ibis Dresden Bastei
- 64 Reviews & Opinions
Latest: Jun 8, 2013
- Hotel Windsor
- 5 Reviews & Opinions
Latest: May 28, 2013
- Steigenberger Hotel De Saxe
- 105 Reviews & Opinions
Latest: Jun 5, 2013
- Hotel Amadeus
- 2 Reviews & Opinions
Latest: Aug 19, 2009
- Hotel Elbflorenz Dresden
- 17 Reviews & Opinions
Latest: Dec 19, 2012
- Zwinger- 79 Reviews, 198 Photos
- Royal Palace- 35 Reviews, 87 Photos
- Frauenkirche- 47 Reviews, 110 Photos
- Fürstenzug (Procession of the dukes)- 24 Reviews, 47 Photos
- Hofkirche- 27 Reviews, 70 Photos
- River Elbe- 19 Reviews, 43 Photos
- Neustadt- 25 Reviews, 76 Photos
- Semper Opera- 49 Reviews, 91 Photos
- Brühlsche Terrassen- 24 Reviews, 64 Photos
- Albertinum- 11 Reviews, 27 Photos
See All Dresden Things to Do