“It is good to have an end to journey toward; but it is the journey that matters, in the end.”-Ursula K. Le Guin
Honestly I didn’t have any great desire to go to Dresden. It really just was a logical place to stop between Hamburg and Prague. Although Prague was really just a logical place to rest between Hamburg and Budapest… wow. Essentially you can tell that I never ever want to do a night train again. (to be honest I had a bad experience, but I think if you do it better than I did and pay a little more you can actually have a quite nice time…but I don’t like spending more money and to use the Eurorail… again I’ll get to this in another post).
So I headed to Dresden out of hopes of not exhausting myself and thinking I’d at least be able to see something new.
I arrived in the afternoon and caught a tram over to the Neustadt where my hostel was located. I stayed at Lollis Homestay, and I might just rave about this hostel a little.
Again, I’ll need another post just on hostels to cover this accurately, but the main thing you should know is that I really enjoyed my time here. And the reason for that was simple. The hostel strove to create a good environment where you could meet people. And it was small enough that it could do so effectively. But I’ll mention more on that later.
After checking in I headed out to go to the Zwinger palace and museums. They are absolutely gorgeous buildings, but inside there are also three collections. A porcelain museum, a fine arts museum, and a museum of scientific instruments.
I was interested in both the porcelain and art museum. Figured I’d skip the science one. However, the tickets came bundled at a cheaper price, so I gave in and bought one for all three. I started with the porcelain. It was a giant collection, and I enjoyed seeing the variety. I can’t say I really took my time, but I did walk through the whole place and stop to examine some pieces n greater detail. Then from there I moved to the Old Masters art gallery.
I told my mom afterwards that I’d seen the cherubs painting from our local coffee shop. It sounds dumb, but one of my favorite coffee shops back in my hometown in the US had a replica of this painting (or the cherubs I should say) and had them sitting with coffee at a table. It no longer exists sadly as the shop closed down, but I loved that painting as a child. I never actually learned the name of the painting until now. So I present the Sistine Madonna by Raphael. Better known for its cherubs than the madonna of course!
This was the most famous work in the museum, but there were a few other pretty ones. All in all a nice collection and housed in such a beautiful place! I will mention you can feel free to roam the outside without paying. So for anyone not interested in the museums, you’re fine!
Last I stopped by the scientific instruments museum. I skimmed through it because I wasn’t all that interested in the content and was beginning to find myself zoning staring in display cases anyways.
So I headed out to go explore more of the city. It was beginning to get dark so I walked around downtown a little bit. I didn’t see quite as much as I wanted to, but I don’t know that I really would have wanted another day there since there weren’t a lot of other “major” sites to see. And I felt more self-conscious of my lack of German skills in a place like Dresden as well.
I picked up a few groceries at an incredibly busy grocery store. Like in France, Germany has a lot of places that are closed on Sundays meaning the few that aren’t are incredibly busy. After eating two warm and fresh rolls on my way out of the store, I headed back to my hostel. They were having a free dinner. Carrot ginger soup and spinach rolls. And it was an awesome experience. I talked with so many other people from a variety of other countries. It was a good chance to connect and eat delicious food.
So I chatted with a girl from Georgia (the country) and a Korean and two ex-British men who were now living on the continent. I was getting sleepy with the filling and warm meal so I couldn’t stay as long as I liked, but it was a great experience nonetheless. If any are interested in staying in Dresden I really recommend Lollis Homestay. It’s a lovely place! Very eclectic and fun and wonderful to meet people. I’d say its only downside is it’s a little far from the old town. But if you’re into the newer town with all the bars and such it’s a good location. Just depends what you want!
Off to bed before leaving Germany to head for…Prague!