The VIP cemetery in the south of Berlin: many famous Berliners are buried in the Waldfriedhof Zehlendorf.
This quiet cemetery in the middle of a pine forest is the final resting place of around 44,000 Berliners. The graves lie in a gently rolling landscape amongst the lawns and the shady trees of the forest. The cemetery seems to be part of the landscape itself, which means every visit to the Waldfriedhof is also a nature walk.
Graves of honour at the Waldfriedhof
There are currently around 44 graves of honour at the cemetery. Many of the people buried here are still well known for their contribution to Berlin life and the city’s self-image. The former Berlin mayors Ernst Reuter, Otto Suhr and Willy Brandt steered the fate of the city. The theatre directors Götz Friedrich, Ulrich Schamoni, Boleslaw Barlog and Erwin Piscator enriched Berlin’s cultural life. The film director Helmut Käutner made Heinz Rühmann immortal as the Captain of Köpenick. The buildings of the architects Hermann Henselmann and Hans Scharoun such as the Philharmonie shaped Berlin’s cityscape. And every West Berliner knew Edith Hancke and her unmistakable voice. The TV series Praxis Bülowbogen with Günter Pfitzmann showed the unglamorous but authentic Berlin of the 1980s, as did Die Wicherts von nebenan with Ekkehard Fritsch, whose grave is also at the cemetery. Boxer Bubi Scholz gained fame far beyond Berlin. And of course, there’s Hildegard Knef, who once sang of her longing for Kurfürstendamm.
History of the cemetery
The Waldfriedhof was established between 1931 and 1933 and extended in the late 1940s. The architects Sergius Ruegenberg and Wolf von Möllendorf designed the simple ceremonial halls with large window façades that emphasise the transition to nature. 1183 Italian soldiers killed in Berlin were laid to rest in the cemetery of honour which was established in 1953.
9.00 clock until dusk