4th – 5th December 2016
- Day 1
- Fly Stansted to Berlin
- Transfer to Dresden with light lunch
- Check in and tour of Maritim Hotel
- Dresden city tour & evening meal
- Day 2
- Rail transfer from Dresden to Leipzig
- Leipzig City Tour & Lunch
- Private Mendelssohn concert
- Fly Leipzig to Stansted
Sunday 4th December
We flew with Ryanair from Stansted 0750/1040 – early start, but at least it made for having a whole day to enjoy. We took hand luggage and this was adequate for at least 3 nights away.
We were met by Anke Hermann from Augustus Tours, she is very knowledgeable of the whole area and a really nice person. We went by mini bus from Berlin Schonefeld Airport to Dresden, a trip of approximately 2.5 hours. There is going to be a new airport opening up called Berlin Brandenberg but a date for this hasn’t been set yet.
Before arriving at our hotel we went to the Augustmarkt in Dresden and met Rudiger Zopp a well-known local Stollen Bread Maker, he made us very welcome with some Gluwein and Stollen and we also had a photo opportunity with him.
We arrived at the Maritim Hotel late afternoon, we had time for a quick freshen up before our informative Hotel Inspection. In my opinion, it was one of the nicest Maritim Hotels that I’ve stayed in, I had great room with a view of the Elbe River.
We were then met for our evening guided tour of Dresden – it was a very cold evening and it added to the Chrsitmas Market feel. We had a 3 hour Tour including the Zwinger, Frauenkirche and the Markets. We stopped at the Christmas Market for some warming Gluwein before going on to our evening meal which we had at Alte Meister, located in the heart of the city right along the Elbe River.
It was such a shame that we didn’t have long to explore Dresden in the daylight as it is a beautiful city with lots of history. More info and travel ideas can be found here.
Dresden, capital of the eastern German state of Saxony, is distinguished by the celebrated art museums and classic architecture of its reconstructed old town. Completed in 1743 and rebuilt after WWII, the baroque church Frauenkirche is famed for its grand dome. The Versailles-inspired Zwinger palace houses museums including Gemäldegalerie Alte Meister, exhibiting masterpieces of art like Raphael’s “Sistine Madonna.”
The Dresden Frauenkirche,
Early Breakfast after a very comfortable nights sleep and we walked about 15 mins to Dresden Neustadt Station – for our train to Leipzig Hbf.
Leipzig is the largest city in the federal state of Saxony, Germany. With a population of 570,087 inhabitants it is Germany's tenth most populous city. Again lots of itinerary ideas and information can be found here.
We were met by Anna-Sylvia Goldammer who was our Guide for 2 hours in Leipzig. This was a very informative tour.
We left our bags with the Leipzig Tourism office whose offices are on the top floor of the tallest building in Leipzig – the view was amazing.
We met for lunch at the Auerbachs Keller hosted by Leipzig Tourist Board – lunch was amazing. The restaurant itself dates all the way back to 1525, and boasts a wealth of interesting facts and historical information, including one very famous patron - Goethe.
After lunch we were lucky enough to have a personal guided tour of the Mendelssohn House including a private chamber music concert. Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy (1809-1847) is one of the most famous musicians to have lived and worked in Leipzig. The house in Leipzig, 12 Goldschmidt Strasse, has been preserved as his last and sole private residence and is therefore of great historical and cultural importance. On Mendelssohn’s birthday, 3rd February 2014, the newly extended house was reopened in Leipzig with a completely new floor. New interactive features include a video library and an ‘Effektorium’ – a conductor’s podium to conduct a virtual orchestra, I tried this it was fun.
We then had free time to explore the Christmas Markets, which were amazing. We were met by taxi and taken to the airport for our evening flight home. It was a very enjoyable trip.