Museum Island is located on the northern half of a historically-significant island in the Spree River that runs through Berlin. The island takes its name from the five Berlin State Museums that reside in the area - the Altes Museum, the Bode Museum, the Alte Nationalgalerie, the Neues Museum, and the Pergamon Museum. Museum Island was designated a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1999. The island's first museum was erected in 1797, and the whole area was designated specifically for art and science by King Frederick William IV of Prussia in 1841. An assemblage of spectacular historical monuments, the Museum Island is a stunning heritage hub.
This museum houses a vast collection of artifacts from the ancient world, the crowning glory being the altar from the Zeus Temple in Pergamon (180-160 BCE), one of the world's most significant archaeological finds. The museum is also home to parts of the magnificent Antique Collection, the East Asian Collection, the Near Eastern Museum and the Islamic Museum. Designed by Ludwig Hoffmann and Alfred Messel, this museum was established in 1910 and is a part of the wonderful Museum Island. Ranked as one of the most visited art museums, not only throughout Germany, but also the world over, Pergamon Museum makes for a truly enriching experience.
Built for the 1936 Olympic Games, the Olympiastadion conjures up memories of excited fans and Jesse Owens sprinting and leaping for four gold medals. Today, the Olympiastadion is home to Berlin's premier soccer club, Hertha BSC, and hosts major sporting events like the ISTAF Athletics Meeting. International performers like Michael Jackson, Beyonce, The Rolling Stones and U2 have taken the crowds by storm with their dazzling concerts here. Designed to impress the world, this monumental multi-purpose arena has done just that since its reopening in 2004. Visitors can wander around the stadium on event-free days, or choose to go on a guided tour of the massive arena. The visitor's center is perfect to learn more about the fascinating history of this monumental structure.
Berlin's most successful musical theater was opened in 1895 deep in the western part of town, hence the name "Theater des Westens". Considered one of the most beautiful theaters in Germany, the building was used by the Berlin Opera in the post-war years. When the Opera moved to a new purpose-built opera house in 1961, the Theater des Westens returned to its roots, running "My Fair Lady" to great popular acclaim. Since then the theater has cemented its reputation as Berlin's best venue for musical entertainment.
Home to the Berlin Symphony and National Symphony Orchestras, the Konzerthaus on Gendarmenmarkt plays host to some of the best in classical music. The original building was constructed at the request of King Friedrich II and later became the National Theater, following renovation by Carl Gotthard Langhans. After it was gutted by a fire, the theater was rebuilt by the Berlin architect, Karl Friedrich Schinkel and renamed Schauspielhaus. The building was badly damaged during World War II but was restored to its former glory and reopened in 1984. The building we see today is a perfect reconstruction of Schinkel's original plan.
One of the largest in the city, this romantic Baroque palace was built in 1695 by King Friedrich Wilhelm I as a summer residence for his beloved wife, Queen Sophie Charlotte. One of the most impressive examples of Baroque and Rococo architecture, the palace and its grounds are a spectacular treasure chest of royal monuments. Hidden away in the lush expanse of the palace gardens are several smaller buildings of the complex. The ornate Rococo Belvedere tea house, contains an impressive collection of porcelain, while the Schinkel-Pavilion which houses drawings, paintings, sculptures, furniture and porcelain by Karl Friedrich Schinkel. The neoclassical Mausoleum housing the tombs of Queen Louise, King Friedrich Wilhelm III, Emperor Wilhelm I and Empress Augusta are also a part of the palatial grounds. A sight to behold as the palace is illuminated at night, the Charlottenburg defines opulence and royalty in Berlin.
Opened in 1929, just three years before Hitler seized power, this art house film theater soon became a place of refuge for anti-Nazi resistance fighters during the Third Reich. A commemorative plaque in the foyer reminds visitors of those dark days. After the War, the Babylon became socialist East Germany's only art house cinema. Even after the fall of the Wall, the cinema has remained true to its tradition and continues to show old silent movies, East German classics and other controversial or arty films, all of which should make any film lover's heart beat a little faster. Besides these, it also hosts concerts, theater, readings, festivals and workshops.
Located in Alexanderplatz in the heart of eastern Berlin, this 1960s structure towers over the whole city. Built during the Communist era, this landmark offers views from the top that are hard to beat. The revolving restaurant situated 207 meters (680 feet) up the tower is a pleasant spot to stop for a coffee or meal and to admire the scenery of the city.
The MeMu Menschen Museum is a unique body art museum which showcases the anatomy of the human body. The exhibits on display here answer many of the mysteries of the human body and visitors can learn more about the structure of the body. There are more than 200 exhibits here which showcase the various anatomical movements of the body and the functions of the organs. A truly unique museum, this place is definitely worth a visit.
CineStar CUBIX am Alexanderplatz is set in a cube-shaped steel and glass building. Spread across four floors, it features nine modern screening halls. It is one of the popular multiplexes in the city for movie-goers. Enjoy the latest Hollywood flicks and German cinema in this stylish theater.
Originally built in 1914, the Volksbühne am Rosa Luxemburg Platz was rebuilt in 1954 after the World War II bombings nearly ravaged it. This venerable theater is known for its experimental productions that not only appeal the masses but also the critics. Their paradoxical shows are always engaging and thought-provoking, making them one of the best contemporary theaters in the nation.
Nestled in the heart of the city and overlooking the St. Mary's Church (Marienkirche), Berliner Fernsehturm (TV Tower) and Neptunbrunnen, Haus ungarn is indeed in an enviable location. It is also near the DDR Museum and Berliner Dom. Set in the former Hungarian cultural center, this modernized event venue offers flexible spaces for a variety of events such as concerts, parties, galas, shoots, product launches, fashion shows, workshops and exhibitions. Their terrace is a much sought after place for its panoramic views.