The gardens of Berlin
The gardens of Berlin
A walk through the parks of Berlin
The most beautiful green spaces of Berlin, such as the Gärten der Welt (Gardens of the World) have received international awards. Quite right too …
Kensington Gardens in London, Cannon Hill Park in Birmingham, Cathays Cemetery in Cardiff, the Gardens of the World in Berlin's Marzahn district. The names on this list might not appear to have anything in common, but they do: in May 2010, the Gardens of the World were given an honour previously reserved for English and Welsh gardens and parks – the "Green Flag Award".
Gardens of the World
The Green Flag is the highest accolade that can be awarded to parks and gardens by the British. In all seven categories – from dealing with visitors, cleanliness and environmental protection to sustainability and management – the Gardens of the World achieved the highest scores. However, it shouldn't be a surprise to anyone. After all, the gardens which opened their gates in 1987 have long been a Mecca for garden lovers from all over the world. A place where visitors can find nature, rest and relaxation in the heart of Marzahn – and also take a journey through the cultural history of the gardens. The "Gardens of the World" park includes a Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Balinese and Oriental garden, as well as an Italian Renaissance garden, a herbaceous garden and an English maze. A Christian monastery garden opened last year.
Biesdorf Palace and Park
Naturally, the gardens in Marzahn are not the only award-winning green space in the German capital. Just a few kilometres away are Biesdorf Palace and Park with a wealth of oak and beech trees that are more than 100 years old, a pretty pond with a fountain, and a tea pavilion. Altogether, it is so beautiful that the British have also awarded it the Green Flag.
Other award-winning locations include Britz Garden, which celebrates its 25th anniversary in 2010: a few years ago, it was voted one of Germany's top ten most beautiful gardens. The loveliest time of year in Britz Garden is, of course, spring when the daffodils, crocuses, tulips and grape hyacinths blossom along a route that stretches for around two kilometres. But the 90-hectare park also has plenty of other attractions to offer. At the centre of the gardens lies a large lake with beaches, bays, bridges and reeds. There are cafés, a museum railway, a rose garden with more than 150 species and a physic garden with countless medicinal herbs. However, the undisputed highlight is Britz Mill. Built in 1865, its sails measure twelve metres in length. It is still used to grind flour today.
In complete contrast to Britz Garden is the Schöneberger Südgelände nature reserve. Over the last 50 years, a real jungle has sprung up on the site of the former railway yard at Berlin-Tempelhof in the heart of the city, providing a habitat for a wealth of plants and animals. Experts will be able to identify almost 50 species of bird and close to 100 species of bee. The remnants of the historical railway line are particularly fascinating: a water tower, an old steam locomotive, a turntable, railway tracks, water cranes, the bridge workshop and locomotive hall. By the way, the Schöneberger Südgelände nature reserve has also won an award – it was one of the international projects for EXPO 2000.
Back then, the Gleisdreieck Park had not even been thought of. But yet another new green space in Berlin is currently being created on the site between Anhalter Bahnhof and Yorkstrasse, not far from Potsdamer Platz. The eastern part is finished in 2011, it will offer plenty of space for exercise, recreation and relaxing with friends: at its intercultural scented rose garden and beach cinema. The park project has not yet won award. However, we think it's an award-winning idea!
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