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Dresden evolved into one of Germany's most beautiful cities after it became the residence of the Wettins, rulers of Saxony for over 800 years. In the 18th century the city was one of Europe's most important cultural centers with grandiose buildings like the Semper Opera House and Zwinger.
After allied fire bombings obliterated the historical center reconstruction of Dresden's magnificent landmarks would drag on for more than sixty years.
Random Dresden Highlights
This oriental style building is the odd one out in Dresden's skyline. The glass domed building is a former tobacco factory, built in 1908 - 1909. Today it houses offices and shops.
The Elbe Valley was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2004 thanks to its diverse architecture (including some beautiful palaces), cultural landscape, and outstanding land use.
The Old Masters Gallery has an excellent collection of 15th to 18th century paintings. Its most famous artwork is the Sistine Madonna by Raphael, best known for its two little cherubs.