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Glockenspielpavilion, Zwinger, Dresden, Germany

Carillon (Glockenspiel) at Dresden’s Zwinger

Located on the bank of the Elbe river, Dresden is the capital city of the state of Saxony in east-central Germany near the Czech border. The Zwinger Palace in the Old Town is one of the most famous baroque buildings in Germany. Along with the Frauenkirche nearby, the Zwinger is one of many famous landmarks in Dresden.

At the southeast end of Zwinger’s courtyard is the Glockenspielpavilion (Carillon pavilion) with a collection of bells made by the famous Meissen porcelain factory.

Before its present status as the Glockenspielpavilion, the structure was first known as the Stadtpavilion completed in the early 18th-century. The carillon first appeared in 1930 at an exhibition, and subsequently moved to the Stadtpavilion three years later. Large swaths of the city and its landmarks were heavily damaged or destroyed in the Second World War; the ensuing decades have seen the slow process of reconstruction come to fruition.

The carillon plays a melody every quarter-hour; additional longer melodies play at specific times of the day. Depending upon the season, there are special melodies, including pieces by Vivaldi, Mozart, and Bach.

Fighting against darkening skies on an already grey afternoon and against my desire to visit Neustadt on the other side of the Elbe river, I stayed in the Zwinger to the top of the hour, and here’s what I saw and heard …

Carillion (Glockenspiel), Glockenspielpavilion, Zwinger, Dresden, Germany

From Berlin, Dresden can be reached with direct EuroCity (EC) trains in just over two hours’ time. Although EC trains run every two hours, this direct route is the quickest way by rail to Dresden from the German capital.

I made the photos and video on 21 December 2012. This post appears on Fotoeins Fotopress at as

4 Responses to “Carillon (Glockenspiel) at Dresden’s Zwinger”

    • fotoeins

      Hi, Xandré. Because I visited in “dreary” December for a daytrip, the overcast skies made the Zwinger look almost plain! I can imagine how beautiful this city must be under sunlight. Thanks for reading and for your comment!


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