“They don’t need a license, they just turn up and play.” Gushed Gisa, my guide in Leipzig, as we strolled past another passionate street-busking performance. I think it was the first time in my life I had seen a mini-orchestra performing Bach for spare change, but that seemed to summarise Saxony surprisingly well.
In only four days I had seen classical opera tenors have sing-offs with 21st-century DJs to the backdrops of castles and fireworks, watched the sun set behind the lovingly restored Baroque skyline of Dresden before sauntering off to sink hipster brews in it’s modern, street-art strewn quarter, and spent the morning hiking through towering sandstone rock formations followed by rehydrating in the shade of a vineyard.
Saxony combines old and new in a captivating cocktail that shouldn’t work, but tastes so good you want to order another round. Mother nature’s most beautiful work sits alongside castles and engineering marvels while the streets and squares of its cities were the making points of crucial historical moments in Europe. If you are after a taster, a long-weekend will whet your appetite but be warned; you might want to head back to this part of the ‘Cultural Heart of Germany’ sooner than you expected.