Cheap flights to Dresden
Full of imperial grace, you’ll be longing to get lost amongst Dresden’s imperial palaces, parklands and riverside walks. Dubbed the ‘Florence of the north’ in the 18th century, the German city of Dresden still retains all the rich and romantic charm of Tuscany’s finest city. Once the home of Saxon kings, this city certainly has a royal flavour to it.
The skyline alone will leave you breathless with its maze of spires and towers, domes, arches and carved angels – fairytale cities don’t come much better than this. You will come across a remarkable array of buildings, palaces, cathedrals and general architectural extravagance just waiting to be explored.
Dresden's grand Semperoper takes centre stage in 2014 as it hosts the 150th anniversary of the birth of Richard Strauss in the opera house where nine of his 15 operas premiered. It also stages the glamorous SemperOpernball on 7 February. If you can't snag a ticket, join thousands at the free Openairball on Theaterplatz, with concerts, music and fireworks. semperoper.de
Housed in the 16th-century Jägerhof on the Neustadt side of the River Elbe, the Museum of Saxon Folk Art has pulled many strings to assemble the exhibition Behind 13 Doors: the Hidden World of the Puppet Theatre Collection. Marionettes, hand and shadow puppets, props and costumes are on display until 2 February (1 Köpckestraße, +351 838 7571).
There's no finer way to take in the city's domes, spires, bridges and castles in summer than aboard one of the paddle steamers that ply the River Elbe. The 90-minute tours depart from the Terrassenufer in the Altstadt. saechsische-dampfschiffahrt.de
Paddle steamers run by the same company also glide further along the Elbe to Schloss Pillnitz, a whimsical baroque summer palace. Explore the chestnut tree-lined avenues, Chinese pavilion and palm house in the fountain-dotted gardens, which are a riot of colour and fragrance in summer. schlosspillnitz.de