Tradition meets modernity
The Free State of Saxony is full of diversity and beauty. It’s hard to say what's more lovely: is it the picturesque silhouette of Dresden’s historical centre or the vibrant city of Leipzig? You can enjoy swimming in one of the many lakes or a trip through the mountains of the Erzgebirge. Or would you prefer to watch motor-sport races on Sachsenring, or to have a relaxing evening in the Semperoper in Dresden? The Saxons themselves are as diverse as the Land's landscape.
Innovation in “Silicon Saxony”
Saxons built the first German locomotive and constructed the first steam ship and mechanical looms. It was also in Saxony that coffee filters, tea bags and many other items from our daily lives were invented. The Route of Industrial Heritage leads past museums and production sites from the Industrial Age that are still very much active today.
To this day, the Free State of Saxony stands for innovation. Over the past 20 years, many new IT start‑ups have settled in “Silicon Saxony”, the region surrounding the state capital of Dresden. Saxony is an important microelectronics location in Europe, with 2,300 companies and almost 60,000 employees working in this sector. The future of mobility is also being shaped in Saxony. Volkswagen, for example, manufactures the ID.3 electric car in Zwickau, while Daimler develops and manufactures ultra-modern lithium‑ion batteries in Kamenz.
Traditional craftsmanship is still ingrained in the Free State of Saxony today. Be it the wood art of the Erzgebirge, Meissen porcelain or high‑quality watches from Glashütte, hand‑made products by Saxony’s manufacturers are world famous.
Freedom and democracy
On 9 October 1989, over 70,000 people gathered in front of the Nikolai Church in Leipzig. They marched through the city with banners and shouted: “We are the people!” and “No violence!”. Originating in Saxony’s largest city, the Monday Demonstrations evolved into a nationwide protest movement. The Peaceful Revolution led to the fall of the Berlin Wall within just a few weeks.
After the end of World War I, when the monarchy was abolished in Germany, a workers’ and soldiers’ council proclaimed the “Republic of Saxony” on 10 November. King Friedrich August III abdicated three days later. The term “Republic” did not last long, and the term “Freistaat” (Free State) soon proved to be more popular. After the Peaceful Revolution, with the reintroduction of a state structure in 1990, the democratic tradition of the Free State of Saxony was reinstated.
Nature, culture, music
From the hilly Vogtland in the west to the UNESCO World Heritage Sites in the Erzgebirge/Krušnohoří coal and steel region; from Saxon Switzerland to the flat stretches of Upper Lusatia with its lakes on the border with Poland; Saxony is home to a very wide range of nature, culture, tradition and modernity.
The Free State’s rich cultural heritage also makes it a popular tourist destination. Johann Sebastian Bach, Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy, Richard Wagner, Robert Schumann and many other great composers worked there. To this day, the Free State of Saxony has a varied musical landscape. There are sacred art treasures in churches and monasteries, as well as outstanding buildings from an entire millennium of architectural history. Some well‑known culinary specialities include Saxon wine, Dresdner Christstollen and Pulsnitz gingerbread.
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