Dresden Stollen Festival
Dresden (about 508,000 inhabitants) - the capital of Saxony - is renowned as one of the most beautiful cities in Europe, or even in the world. No one who has ever traced the foodsteps of Elector August the Strong along the „Procession of Princes“ on the north wall of the Royal Mews, or has rested in the shady Nymphenbad will forget the charm of the city. The Semper Opera House, the Zwinger, the Royal Palace and the Cathedral St. Trinitatis (Hofkirche), the Castle Pillnitz, and the Frauenkirche, which is under going reconstruction at present, are perfect examples of a city which absolutely deserves the epithet Elbflorenz.
Dresden is a complete work of art whose character is marked by the diversity of districts and the topography of its landscape. The city has a variety of residental districts, each with its own unique character and wealth of old buildings, and is unmistakable as a landscape city. The romantic slopes and spacious meadows along the river Elbe, the Great Garden park as the green lung of the city, and the environs comprising the Saxon Switzerland, the mountainous Erzgebirge, and the Oberlausitz, which is one of the most striking regions of Germany, make Dresden one of the greenest metropolises in the country, and a city which can hardly be surpassed with regard to quality of life. In the meantime, Dresden adeptly manages the difficult balancing act between a city of arts, high culture and sciences on the one hand, and a city developing into an economic hub and a center of high technology on the other. According to prognoses, Dresden and Leipzig rank among the top cities in Europe concerning economic growth. The careful reconstruction of historical buildings and the courage to realize new ideas make Dresden a city that combines tradition and innovation. High tech. High art. High life. That is Dresden today.
The importance of preserving the historical heritage and traditions is particularly obvious during Christmas time. Then, the city reveals its entire charm. Here, in the birthplace of the famous Stollen (fruit loaf or Christmas cake, a local specialty) and the oldest Christmas fair (Striezelmarkt), Christmas can still be experienced in the traditional way. For years, the Striezelmarkt with its decorated booths and its incomparable scent of mulled wine, sugared almonds, candied apples, and sweets has attracted hundred thousands of visitors from all over the world. On Saturday prior to the second Advent, Dresden`s citizens celebrate the Stollen Festival. The Christmas cake seems to be the most famous export of the city. Not surprisingly, the Stollen Festival has become the highlight of the Striezelmarkt. However, this is not the only attraction; the largest Christmas pyramid in the world, the Advent calendar, a fairy-tale garden, plum mannikin and various stage performances contribute to the cheerful Christmas atmosphere. Other parts of the town also adorn themselves with colorful lights during the time of Advent. In many districts, Christmas fairs and churches invite Dresden’s guests for a visit.
Further information: www.dresden.com