The arrival of cherry blossoms is a clear sign that spring is here, and Berlin has quite a few magical spots where you can enjoy this ephemeral natural spectacle. Native to Japan, the cherry blossom tree is a symbol of transience and beauty because it only appears for a few days each year.
You’re sure to come across many examples of this blossom in many unlikely locations while walking in Berlin, but for a total immersion in their beauty, pay a visit to one of the city’s two ‘Cherry Blossom Avenues’.
Both of these avenues, with their abundance of blossoms, runs along the ‘Mauer Weg’, the path that runs along where the Berlin Wall once stood. That makes for a moving contradiction: that scar of something that used to divide and separate is now overflowing with beautiful flowers.
How did so many cherry blossoms find their way to the streets of Berlin? When the Berlin Wall was torn down, a Japanese television show asked their audience to help raise funds so that they could donate cherry trees to Berlin to celebrate the city’s reunification. Many of the cherry blossoms you see in Berlin today come directly from this fundraising effort. The trees that follow the path of the wall were planted along this route on purpose, to create a new avenue where the concrete use to be. To follow this magical trail of pink and white flowers, either head to Lichterfelde Süd Station or stroll though Bornholmer Straße.
The Japanese Garden in the gorgeous Gärten der Welt is also a wonderful place for Cherry Blossom gazing, and they have their own festival to celebrate the occasion of the hanami, which means ‘looking at blossoms’ in Japanese.