Between Karl-Marx-Straße and Sonnenallee, Berlin feels like a village. This is Rixdorf – the historical area around which the district grew, with Richardplatz at the centre. Rixdorf was founded in the mid-18th century by protestant refugees from Bohemia. The historical buildings give you a good impression of what Berlin once looked like. The winding streets in old Rixdorf with their small shops and courtyards with vegetable and flower beds are more reminiscent of a village than a big city. Along Kirchgasse you can see the remnants of a Bohemian village from the mid-19th century.
Every second weekend in Advent a the popular Christmas market Alt-Rixdorfer Weihnachtsmarkt takes places at Richardplatz.
The Museum des Böhmischen Dorfes tells you about its history, how it was built and the structure of the settlement. It also has exhibits on the traditions, beliefs, art, crafts and lives of its inhabitants back then and today. The Bethlehemskirche is very plain and simple and is a venue for small concerts. On weekdays it is open to visitors in the mornings, when you can find out more about the church. In the middle of Rixdorf is the old village forge, which was first recorded in 1624 and still produces forged items today. Ranging from simple nails and key rings to living accessories, high-quality tools and knives, the most delicate and the most rustic items are all made here. Right next door you’ll find the historical coach house. The 120-year-old yard has always featured in the many festivals around Richardplatz – and you can look at historical coaches here. A gateway with two brick pillars takes you to the pleasant beer garden of the Villa Rixdorf café and restaurant. Its iron-fenced front garden has long been a fixture of the old village square.
Find out more about Berlin’s neighbourhoods with our Berlin app Going Local.