The Water Museum and Water Workshop is a superb place for children to play and learn. The museum is the garden of a school in Wilmersdorf, south-west of Berlin's city centre. Children up to 10 years old can explore the many play areas and experiment stations, all designed around water. There is also a lot of information about water - what can I use it for? How does the water cycle work? Then you can put theory into practice by testing out how everything actually works.
A waterworks full of pipes, basins, tubs and buckets
The idea for the Water Museum (WasserMuseum and Wasserwerkstatt) came from a non-profit organisation, and in their permanent location in Wilmersdorf, the organisation has created an inventor's workshop and all types of creative game stations for kids. On a structure which looks like the bridge of a warship, you will find a collection of tubes, basins, tubs and watering cans. Everywhere you look, there is running, rippling water. Children can put together water pipes, fill watering cans or carefully pump water into buckets. Hook up a pull cord to a watering can to make an instant shower - very popular on hot summer days. Kids will particularly enjoy the view of the wave machine, a water-filled perspex tube mounted on wooden blocks. Use water soaked sponges to throw at targets, or use water pistols to shoot at tin cans. Over in the Inventors' Workshop, children can cut, drill and customise plastic bottles, wood and cork to make rafts, model ships and other floating crafts. The museum also goes on tour, bringing the watery experience to schools, nurseries, businesses, festivals and more. A dedicated museum team looks after and maintain all the play stations.
Highlights of the WaterMuseum
- Places to experiment with pipes, buckets and lots of water.
- An unusual hand-washing machine.
- Water pistol shooting range.
- Interactive exhibits with push-buttons.
- An Archimedes screw which pumps water upwards.
Other places to learn and have fun with nature
The Naturschutzzentrum Ökowerk Berlin is also about water, but also covers other topics. This place for adventure and learning is about 10km north-west, or 20 minutes by car, at Teufelssee lake in Grunewald. Here you'll find Berlin's oldest waterworks still in existence. There is a large 2.4 hectare site with a visitor centre, laboratory and wildlife centre. Build cities at an interactive station, measure the level of groundwater or try to identify the animal from its sound. Outside, you'll find a rock garden and orchard to explore, and the centre also offers exhibitions, events and courses. Also located in Grunewald is the man-made mountain of Teufelsberg, 120 metres high and made with 26 million cubic metres of debris from the bombings of Berlin. Climb up to the former American listening station at the top for great views over the forested landscape. In the summer, it's a popular place for climbing and mountain biking, and in winter it's great for sledging and snowboarding. Guided tours are also available.
Information about the Berlin Watermuseum
The easiest way of getting to the Water Museum and Water Workshop is by taking underground line U3 to Breitenbachplatz station, which is just a five minute walk away. The museum is open May to September. Family tickets are available, and children under two years old can enter for free. There are also offers for schools and other groups. Booking in advance is essential, booking in winter for the following summer is recommended. The centre also hosts children's birthday parties.