On tour through
From the classic city tour to the search after Walter Gropius, we offer diverse opportunities to discover the history of the city of Dessau-Roßlau.
Book your public guided tour directly on site, by phone or via mail and get to know the secrets of Saxony-Anhalt’s third regional center in person for once.
Please note that the public guided tours are held in German.
At a glance: City Tour Downtown / Jewish Life / Bike Tour Bauhaus-Junkers Garden Kingdom / Bauhaus Buildings Bike Tour / Night Guards Tour / Ises Golden Twenties / Romantic Walk / Historic Employment Office / Tower Guard of St. Mary’s / Once Arcadia and Back / Tour with double decker bus / Christmas European Journey
- Saturday 11.00 a. m.
- additional appointment during the Kurt Weill Festival:
25.02. 11.00 a. m.
From April to October
- Monday, Wednesday, Friday 5.00 p. m. *
- Saturday 11.00 a. m.
- Public holidays** 2.00 p. m.
- Saturday 11.00 a. m.
- New Year’s Eve 11.00 a. m.
* no Friday tour on the dates of the Ise Gropius tour and the tower guard tour.
** Easter sunday, Easter monday, 01.05., Ascension, Whitsunday, Whitmonday, 03.10., 31.10.
per person 10 € / reduced 8 €
City tour downtown
Discover the changeful history of the city on a tour. Dessau-Rosslau has a history of eight hundred years, offers four times World Heritage and is a place where the lives of many famous people crossed.
The tour shows how the Bauhaus came to Dessau, what the city has to do with the Basic Law and why some of its children are better known abroad than in their birthplace. The tour brings urban spaces to life and gives contemporary witnesses from a wide variety of epochs a chance to speak, in order to unite the city of Father Franz and Erdmannsdorff, Moses Mendelssohn and Kurt Weill, Max and Wilhelm Müller, Junkers, Gropius, Kandinsky and many others into a picture full of contrasts.
Jewish history in Dessau
More than 350 years have passed from the beginnings of the first settlement of Jewish families in the Principality of Anhalt-Dessau to the present day.
Famous personalities worked in this Jewish community and beyond, enriching the cultural and economic life of our city. With the new synagogue in the historic centre of the Jewish community, Dessau will regain an important religious and cultural place in its city history.
Some historical places of Jewish life at the time of Kurt Weill, Moses Mendelssohn, David Fränkel, Baron Moritz von Cohn and Julie Cohn-Oppenheim are still to be traced. The guided tour along these places goes into the life stories of the city’s Jewish personalities.
Bike Tour Bauhaus – Junkers – Garden Kingdom
With the plants of the Dessau-Wörlitz Garden Kingdom, Prince Franz of Anhalt-Dessau set a reform program in motion that was the basis for the industrial development of the city of Dessau. This early industrialization attracted both Hugo Junkers and Walter Gropius.
All three were united by their belief in progress. Art and technology were to form a unity. Thus, the tour leads to the places where the pioneers worked and shows the close connection that exists between their work.
Bauhaus Buildings Cycling Tour
On a guided bike tour you will explore all the Bauhaus buildings in the city area – from the Kornhaus on the Elbe to the Masters’ Houses, the Bauhaus building and the Historic Labour Office to the Törten estate in the south of the city.
During the tour, you will learn many interesting facts about the history of the art academy, about the architecture of the buildings and many an anecdote about the Bauhäusler.
Night Guards Tour
Follow one of the poorly paid guardians of order and security on his tour of the city and learn about the part of Dessau’s history that takes place in secret: Assassination and forbidden pleasures, secret love affairs and devilishly strange apparitions.
Ise's Golden Twenties
Ise and Walter Gropius have an appointment for a soirée with Mayor Fritz Hesse. But Walter Gropius is not at the appointed place. In search of her husband, Ise Gropius therefore takes the visitors on a journey through nocturnal Dessau in the Golden Twenties.
An exciting guided tour of the city in times gone by.
Experience Dessau in an unusual way – magical music, legends and stories between the palace, Kavalierstraße and the town hall can be heard on this tour of unusual places in the city center. The tour ends with a glass of sparkling wine at Bistro Merci.
Through the City Park to the Historic Employment Office
Starting from the place where the Bauhaus was first discussed in Dessau, the path leads through the former throne heir’s garden, today’s City Park, to Willy-Lohmann-Street / corner of Mariannenstraße. Here the view opens up to the Justice Centre with the Eike von Reppgow monument. At this point, reference is made to the creation of this residential quarter, which is connected to the industrial development of Dessau. The route then leads to the Historic Employment Office, which will be visited inside the one-storey round building as part of the guided tour.
The Historic Employment Office was commissioned by the city of Dessau. It was designed by Walter Gropius, who was director of the Bauhaus in Dessau at the time. The Studio Walter Gropius, which worked very closely with the Bauhaus and Dessau companies, was commissioned with the planning and realisation of the building. The building unites form, functionality and technology of modernism in a very special way.
After the tour, the path leads back to Askanische Straße, past the so-called Atelierhaus with the municipal swimming hall located in the courtyard to the museum intersection.
The tower guard from St. Mary's church
The tower guard is a talkative woman who misses nothing in the city. Dressed in a historical costume, she guides her guests through the old city center. She tells stories about the old Dessau.
The walk ends with a Dessau beer or an apple spritzer at the “boozer board” of the inn brewery “Zum Alten Dessauer”.
Once Arcadia and back
On an educational trip that took him through Italy, France, Holland and England, Prince Franz of Anhalt-Dessau collected impressions and experiences in the mid-18th century, which he implemented in the modernization of his princedom.
On the walk through the Georgengarten you will recreate this grand tour.
Embedded in the extensive idyllic landscape garden, you will see Greek temples, Roman ruins, Celtic tumuli and Egyptian sphinxes.
From May to October every Saturday at 1.00 p. m. and 3.00 p. m.
per person 18 € / Children until 16 years 15 €
Tickets are available at the Tourist Information Dessau and on site at the bus.
approx. 90 – 100 minutes
Bus stop between the main post office and the Bauhaus Museum
Friedrichstraße – corner Kavalierstraße
Tour with double decker bus
From Hobusch, Junkers and Gropius… Dessau in the double-decker bus especially experienced.
But honestly, there is much more to it than the three people mentioned. Learn about Dessau’s history from its beginnings as a residential town, through industrialization to the present day.
In a good 90 minutes we will take you through the city to all the important places that you must have seen.
But don’t worry, it’s not just a dry lecture on dates, various cheerful stories from over 800 years of city history will put a smile on your face.
A Christmas Journey through Europe
Inspired by Prince Franz’s Grand Tour, you will take a walk through the Georgengarten on a journey through Christmas Europe. Franz and his princely tour group were on the road for two and a half years, during which time they visited Italy, France, Holland and England.
After their return, the Dessau-Wörlitz Garden Kingdom was created, in which Prince Franz and his brother Johann Georg recreated their travel impressions in order to offer the common people the possibility of an educational journey through Europe. During a walk through the Garden Kingdom, they were thus able to get to know the buildings, living conditions and customs of other countries.
So you can travel to seven countries in seventy minutes, hear familiar and unfamiliar stories about their Christmas traditions, and learn the origins of many a custom.