Sunday, 22 July 2012

Gärten der Welt

Plattenbau architecture along Landsberger Allee
A couple of days ago I found out that the style of box-like, post-war architecture so common in Berlin is known as Plattenbau. And just this minute, I stuck that into Google Translate and discovered that that means 'Prefab'. I shouldn't be surprised. There are mixed views on this style of architecture in Berlin. Some people want to see it knocked down, and certainly there are groups of architects who don't even consider this architecture. But there are others who want at least some of it preserved; that it too has it's place in Berlin's history, and should rightly stand shoulder to shoulder with Berlin's many other styles of architecture. Love it or hate it, the best place to see it in all it's glory is along Landsberger Allee which takes you from Mitte out to Marzahn in the east of the city. You really feel like you are in an entirely different city. It's just block after block. It gives you a feeling of travelling through the old east imagining what life was like in the DDR days before the Wall came down. I particularly liked the Russian supermarket (above) advertising caviar.

We headed out along Landsberger Allee on Saturday, making our way to Gärten der Welt. It's one of the places I have most wanted to visit since we moved to Berlin, having read about it in the guidebooks. The time never seemed quite right though. I had thought that the kids would be bored silly and we'd spend about 20 minutes there before having to leave, but now that they are a bit older they were fine. And it is really lovely. So worth going. It's a big park just behind Landsberger Allee which has numerous 'Gardens of the World', hence the name. 

The big draws seem to be the Chinese, Japanese, and Korean gardens (photos below) and certainly from the number of bridal parties walking around, it seems to be the place to go to get your wedding photos taken. There are a few playgrounds for the kids and an excellent maze which takes ages to get in and out of. I just wish I knew more about plants and flowers because I reckon it would be utterly brilliant if you had a little knowledge on plants from around the world. Anyway, we had a great time, and it was definitely worth visiting.

Orla in the Chinese Garden

Japanese Garden

Korean Garden



  1. Will definitely need to head there sometime after I get back from the UK.

    Ps. I like the Plattenbau buildings. Would I like the city to be full of them? No, but they are a real piece of Berlin history and I think they have a certain charm.

    1. How about I treat you to a night in the Holiday Inn on Landsberger Allee for your birthday where the views are Plattenbau-tastic! It's only 30 Euros a night! I know this because this is where we stayed when we came to visit Berlin before we moved here. Pretty views cost extra!


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