Located at Alt-Hermsdorf, this quaint little museum strives to preserve and protect the history of Hermsdorf. Previously home to a school, the museum now showcases exhibits pertaining to the rich history of this district. The museum is housed in a charming historic home, in which each room discusses different eras of the district's history. Rooms such as the hunting parlor and Biedermeier room allow visitors a glimpse into the lives of the bourgeois in 19th Century Germany.
Sixty years after World War II, Berlin unveiled the Holocaust Memorial, known officially as the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe, in memory of victims of those who lost their lives during Holocaust. An international symbol of a gloomy past of World history, this memorial, located next to the Brandenburg Gate and near the buried remains of Hitler's underground bunker, was designed by U.S. architect Peter Eisenman. The memorial's grid of 2711 gray concrete slabs covers a vast area in the heart of the city. The slabs, or stelae, stand at varied heights of up to 4.5 meters (15 feet), creating the sense of a stark concrete forest, through which visitors can wander on uneven cobblestone pathways. The design of the memorial is relatively abstract and has been interpreted in several ways. From oppression, excommunication to confinement, visitors have often observed numerous themes that possibly come strongly from the stelaes. A poignant reminder of German history's dark chapter, the memorial's information center offers detailed archives and stories of those who faced the ill-fate.
Opened in 1904, Rykestrasse synagogue in Berlin was built in a neo-Romanesque style by local architect Johann Hoeniger. This grand structure withstood the test of time and war and still retains much of its ornate interior. In recent years, the synagogue has witnessed a revival of sorts, establishing itself as one of the foremost centers of Jewish learning in central Europe. This unique attraction is popular among architecture and history enthusiasts. Regular tours conducted in both English and German allow a personal discovery of one of the city's most iconic religious sites.
Not much is left of the Gestapo's former headquarters at Wilhelmstrasse. The original buildings were severely damaged by wartime bombing raids, and what little survived was torn down shortly after the end of the War. The Allied authorities wanted all traces of Germany's past to be destroyed as swiftly as possible. Excavations in the early 1980s brought the foundations - a long wall covered with pale white tiles -to light, and a makeshift museum was immediately established on the wasteland close to Hitler's bunker. Soon after a permanent museum building was constructed to shelter the Topography of Terror - an exhibition that chronicles the Nazi Regime. The museum is also home to one of the few remnants of the Berlin Wall. The Topography of Terror stands beside the Jewish Museum and the Holocaust Memorial as one of Berlin's most important memorials to the darkest chapter of German history.
A contemporary space to showcase various from of design, the Appel Design Gallery is definitely worth visiting for art aficionados. Located at Torstraße, it lies in the Mitte district of Berlin city. A small yet appealing gallery, it has temporary exhibitions that showcase design in its best form. To catch their latest exhibition, or to know the upcoming schedule, please have a look at their website.
Though Spreepark closed its doors in 2001, this defunct amusement park still attracts hordes of visitors from all over. When it had opened in 1969, it was East Germany's sole amusement park and a popular spot. Now all you can see are remnants of its glorious days as you get a glimpse of abandoned rides such as the Ferris wheel and water slide, an amphitheater and canal networks. The city offers guided tours at times but thrill seekers who want to explore this place try to sneak in through its fenced border. During summers, the old amphitheater hosts concerts and theater for children and adults alike.
The Rotes Rathaus or "Red City Hall" is how Berliners refer to their town hall. Seat of the Mayor and the Senate since reunification in 1990, the building was also home to East Berlin's local government in the GDR era, although the name actually stems from the reddish color of its walls rather than from the political leanings of the leaders. Built in the 1860s by H. F. Waesemann, the design reflects a strong Tuscan influence. Two years after building was completed, Germany was unified by Kaiser Wilhelm I. Consequently, Berlin became the capital of Germany and its new city hall, the supreme administrative building.
When fashion and photography come together, color, style, angle, design and more are all creatively encapsulated in a single shot. Glamorous models from the fashion world captured on stills by top-notch photographers grab your attention. Temporary exhibitions featuring different artists are held on a regular basis. Viaux is housed within a structure that could pass off as an architectural delight. What an interesting place to spend time admiring beauty!
This old baroque palace has an eventful history and has changed many hands and roles. Truly it deserves to be one of the most respected buildings in Berlin. Replete with grandeur and sophistication it today stands as the epitome of culture in the city. A part of the Kulturprojekte Berlin, it is known for its musical, theater and other cultural events. A prolific location for art and culture, that is what Podewil is now for Berliners.
Built during the 17th Century, the Parochialkirche is a reformed church which is one of the oldest protestant organizations in the city. The famous bell tower of the church was completely destroyed during World War II. The interior of the church was also heavily damaged. Used in the intermediate years as a warehouse for furniture, the church was restored in 1991 and was gradually returned to its former Baroque grandeur.
A beautiful public park in Berlin, the Marx-Engels-Forum is named after Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels and was founded in 1986 by the socialist leaders of Berlin. It houses the statues of both these pioneers of Socialism. The area in which the park is situated used to be a bustling neighborhood which was razed to the ground during World War II and the park was established thereafter under the GDR regime. The park is now visited by many tourists throughout the year and several make use of the opportunity to click a few photos while sitting on Marx's knee.
The Nikolaiviertel not only lies in the very heart of Berlin, it is the place where it all began. The first mention of Berlin in documents from 1251 referred to two settlements which are Berlin and Cölln. These are situated opposite each other on the banks of the River Spree. The settlement known as "Berlin" grew up around the market (now Molkenmarkt in the Nikolaiviertel) and the Nikolaikirche, named after Saint Nicholas, patron saint of merchants and fishermen. Destroyed during the War, many of the historic buildings were reconstructed for Berlin's 750th anniversary celebrations in 1987. Many are faithful reconstructions of the original buildings, while others are cheap concrete replicas. The baroque Knoblauchhaus and Ephraimpalais are classic examples of this sort of compromise which is partly old and partly new.