The Green Vault, Dresden
Tel: 49 351 491 42000
Concierge.com's insider take:
The New Green Vault and the Historic Green Vault museums, in the old Residenz palace, have been one of Dresden's biggest draws since their dramatic reopenings in 2004 and 2006, respectively. The New Green Vault, paradoxically, opened first in 2004 on the first floor of the palace and contains room after room of statuary and porcelain collected by Augustus the Strong and his progeny. The Dresden Green Diamond is especially noteworthy, a 41-carat wonder that is among the most valuable jewels in the world. Downstairs is the real draw, however: The Historic Green Vault is a painstakingly reconstructed, largely original-condition series of rooms that house Augustus's collections. It's a dizzying series of treasures, going from the Amber Cabinet through chambers filled with ivory and then porcelain, silver, and gold. Tickets for the Historic Vault are sold out months in advance, as only 100 people are allowed in per hour (and visitors must enter individually through an air-locked entrance that protects the exhibits from humidity and contamination).
Open Wednesdays through Mondays 10 am to 6 pm.