A sea of tulips in spring, full of gorgeous roses in summer, a blaze of dahlias in autumn - since the Bundesgartenschau national horticultural show was held here in 1985 in what was then West Berlin, the 90-hectare Britzer Garten in the south of Berlin has been offering visitors outstanding garden artistry in every season. In 2002 it was chosen as one of Germany’s ten most beautiful gardens.
The modern landscape park – with a ten-hectare lake planned as its “calm centre”, brooks and springs, spacious meadows, groves of trees and colourful flowerbeds – also features many themed gardens. Its diverse range of opportunities for children to learn and play, a comprehensive programme of events including festivals, workshops and concerts, various catering facilities, and the Britzer Park miniature railway make the Britzer Garten a favourite day out for the whole family.
The park, named after the district of Britz, was created for the Bundesgartenschau Berlin in 1985. A landscape planning competition was held for a site in the southwest of what was then a divided city. The aim was to build a recreational park for the inhabitants of the West-Berlin districts of Tempelhof and Neukölln, based on plans by landscape architect Wolfgang Miller and other winners in the competition, and make up for a lack of public green spaces.
Water is a formative element of the Britzer Garten. The ten-hectare lake, surrounded by a hilly landscape, forms its calm heart. Nearby are three smaller lakes, and slender streams and waterfalls traverse the park. In many parts of the lake area the vegetation, including bushes, shrubs and meadows, continues down to the banks and into the water. An interplay of space and small details, light and shade, hill and valley, lakes, springs and brooks gives the interior of the park its characteristic aesthetic. Its many garden attractions and special gardens blend harmoniously into the park landscape.
Another important element of the Britzer Garten are the various playgrounds and learning facilities for children: a unique landscaped playground with a climbing pyramid and the village “Makunaima”, built of mud brick, the plentiful play equipment and spacious water playground make the park an Eldorado for families. In the animal enclosure visitors can meet goats, donkeys, chickens and rabbits and sheep and cows can be observed on alternating meadows all over the park.
The Freilandlabor Britz (Britz open-air laboratory) offers exhibitions, tours and workshops to anyone interested in learning more about the park’s various animals and plants and their habitats.
In the Britzer Mühle (Britz windmill), one of the last two fully functioning windmills in Berlin, you can experience the use of wind power to grind grain into flour.
Grün Berlin GmbH has been carrying out development projects in the Britzer Garten since 2011, modernising its technical infrastructure such as its rainwater management, and building a new environmental education centre to expand the Britzer Garten’s intergenerational educational services and improve its ecological and economic sustainability. Measures are scheduled for completion in 2020.
Dates & Facts
In Berlin’s south, between Neukölln and Mariendorf
|Planning||Overall design and horticultural show concept for the core area: Wolfgang Miller, freelance garden and landscape architect BDLA, SRL,DWB, Stuttgart/Berlin and other firms of landscape architects for themed gardens and planning of different areas.|
|Opened||26th of April 1985, as part of the Bundesgartenschau Berlin|
|Prizes & awards||Voted one of Germany’s ten most beautiful gardens in 2002, sustainability award from the Deutsche Bundesgartenschau Gesellschaft in 2012|