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Medieval citadel in Berlin Spandau with moat
Medieval citadel in Berlin Spandau with moat © ©2014 Scholvien


Where the rivers Spree and Havel meet

The park at Lindenufer is the point where Berlin’s most famous rivers merge: the 334-kilometre long Havel and its 400-kilometre long tributary, the Spree.

It is precisely at this important section of the Havel’s green corridor, where the view stretches from Spandau’s historic district to the mouth of the river Spree, that we find the new Lindenufer with its abundant attractions for a pleasant stroll or an outing.

Today’s Lindenufer dates back to 1880 when the first linden trees were planted, and then in 1892 Lange Mauergasse and Garten-Gässchen were added. In summer 2016, the once-lost urban history of important places will be made accessible to wheelchairs along this green boulevard.

The former cobblestones, a deterrent for any cyclist, have now made way for a four-metre wide paved path with plenty of room for walkers, cyclists and skaters. By the way, cycling fans can hop on their bikes and cycle the 380-kilometre long Havel circular which begins at the source of the Havel in Mecklenburg and runs through Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Berlin, Brandenburg and Saxony-Anhalt, ending at the mouth of the river Elbe. But you are unlikely to see that many cyclists at Lindenufer. The promenade is a quiet path that draws visitors from Spandau’s marketplace to »Altstadt-steg« and directly to Lindenufer. A raised vantage point overlooking the Havel is being built at the end of the bridge and offers a view of the mouth  of the Spree. If you look across to the other side of the Havel, you can see Stresow and a number of disused industrial plants that create a rather nostalgic and melancholic atmosphere.

Before Altstadt-Steg reaches the river Havel, it crosses through a pretty playground that looks very much like a river and floodplain landscape. Children have great fun climbing and balancing on the playground elements built to look like fishing nets, fish traps and river mussels. Past the playground, a memorial shaped like a split stone and a bright column commemorates Spandau’s association synagogue that was built close to here in 1895. It was  destroyed by a fire that was deliberately lit in the Night of Broken Glass from 9  to 10 November 1938. Inside the memorial, an eternal flame is lit as a sign of remembrance. Bearing the words »Everyone has a name«, a name wall remembers the Jewish citizens of Spandau who were deported and murdered during Nazi rule.

Next to the memorial is a lawn where visitors can relax and idly watch the water flowing by. Now we move to Juliusturmbrücke; the underpass beneath this bridge has been transformed into an exciting activity trail with different bubble-like hills made of plastic and steel.

At the southern end of Lindenufer, a batardeau, a structure to regulate water levels, dates back to 1842 and is a reminder of the former fortification of Spandau’s historic town district. Just a short distance from here, Lindensteg leads us to Stabholzgarten. This name recalls the salt barrels (previously referred to in German as »stabholz«) which the Royal Salt Office stored here up until 1749. This garden-like park has been welcoming visitors since 2006 with a spacious lawn, shady trees,  roses and other flowering plants as well as many benchese.