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Situated at the Southern edge of the city, Berlin’s Britzer Garten is truly a hidden gem. Perfect for family time or simply a quiet escape from the city, Britzer Garten holds plenty to be discovered. Built in 1985 as a means of providing the people in this part of Berlin with access to nature, Britzer Garten was named after the Britz kiez, which is located in Southern Neukölln.
The park spans across an area of 90 hectares, replete with beautifully maintained flowers and a multitude of intriguing vegetation. In the rose garden, the bushes are heave with voluptuous bulbs, bursting in hues of pink and red. The rhododendron forest features astoundingly enormous thickets of this regal flower in many different shades of purple and fuchsia. Further, there are rows of fruit trees teeming with ripe apples and pears. In the Autumn, be sure to catch the Dahlienfeuer flower show, featuring thousands of blooming dahlias, or the equally abundant tulips to behold in April and May. Truly, this place is like its own Garden of Eden hidden right in the city, making it the perfect getaway for a stroll down one of the many well-manicured paths and a necessary does of fresh air.
The Karl Foester perennial garden allows people to enjoy the plant life in between the dazzling displays of flowers that bloom only once per year. Within a space of 10,000 square meters, more than 35 different flower species can be found, meticulously organized and maintained. Many of the flowerbeds here are arranged by colour, creating a pleasing aesthetic experience. The garden is named after the renowned breeder of perennials who lived from 1874-1970.
There are other themed gardens and outdoor attractions throughout the Britzer Garten, in addition to the splendid vegetation. The Witch Garden, for instance, is built on a stone terrace, intended to be reminiscent of castle ruins. Here, various herbs and spices are grown in historical accordance with those that Charlegmagne himself advised for cultivation, perhaps for a witch’s brew of some sort. Other plants common in castle gardens of medieval times are also present, including white lilies and columbines.
Additionally, there are ‘gardens’ with no plants at all. Britzer Garden incorporates indicators of the cosmic forces at play in dictating the seasons and the behaviours of the plants themselves in the Kalendarplatz. Here, there is a large, functioning astronomical clock and planet walk spanning across 99 meters in diameter with an enormous sundial at the center. Be sure to stop in the nearby Orangery Café afterwards for a cup of tea. Meanwhile, the Geological Garden allows visitors a chance to examine the various geological epochs that have occurred since the earth’s formation 4.5 billion years ago.
The park is home to some more animated creatures as well. For one, there is a large koi pond with enormous fish swimming about, an exciting spectacle for anyone. This is a favourite spot for contemplating and basking in the serene surrounds. Overlooking the lake there is also a restaurant, Britzer Seeterrassen, with an organic, dome-shaped roof that resembles the back of a tortoise shell. Here, patrons can enjoy a phenomenal brunch spread or even a dinner beneath the soft glow of the rotunda, illuminated with lights in the summertime.
If this wasn’t plenty already, Britzer Garden is also home to multiple playgrounds for children, along with many different festivals and events geared toward the little ones. One of the highlights of the park for the kinder are the large, water-themed spielplatz and the Makunaima, a clay village comprised of huts, sculptures and climbing areas. For adult visitors, the park is engaged in many environmental initiatives, including stormwater management and environmental education center, two windmills for generating electricity and a honeybee house.
There is small entrance fee, €2 for adults and €1 for children, though we can attest to the fact that this immersive experience is certainly worth the price.