Zwinger Palace

Zwinger Palace, Dresden

Situated in the heart of the Saxon state capital, the Dresden Zwinger ranks among Germany’s most well-known Baroque buildings of Germany and is, apart from the Church of Our Lady, certainly the most famous building monument in Dresden. It accommodates internationally renowned museums and is a place for staging music and theater performances.

The Zwinger Palace in Dresden was built in 1709. It was originally an open area surrounded by wooden buildings which was used by the Saxon nobility for tournaments and other courtly pursuits. The sandstone palace was built between 1710 and 1719 by Matthäus Daniel Pöppelmann, under Elector Augustus the Strong. Its pavilions and galleries on the side of the ramparts were used as an orangery. The Crown Gate, the most photographed part of the Zwinger, is decorated with gods from Greek mythology. Next to the Rampart Pavilion is the Nymphaeum, one of the finest baroque fountains in Germany.

Gardens of the Zwinger Palace

Unlike many Dresden buildings that were destroyed during World War II, Zwinger Palace was restored to its former state nearly immediately following the war. Wander through the gardens upon arrival to see the courtyards and gardens that once hosted grand festivals. The palace was constructed between 1710 and 1719 and features a number of pavilions, gates and columned structures. Photograph the Crown Gate, a highlight of the palace. Look for the Greek gods that decorate the gate before moving through the gardens to find the Nymphenbad. This courtyard features numerous fountains and statues.

The crown gate

With its world-famous collections, the impressive sandstone scenery harbors true treasures: In the »Old Masters« Picture Gallery, Raphael’s Sistine Madonna casts a spell on visitors. The incredible number of masterpieces of Chinese, Japanese and Meissen porcelain in the Porcelain Collection go back to the collecting mania of Augustus the Strong. The »Royal Cabinet of Mathematical and Physical Instruments«, the oldest museum of the Dresden Zwinger, is one of the world’s most important museums of historical scientific instruments today.


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