I wanted to get a photo of the Reichstag building, and as I walked past one of the other buildings I noticed a poster advertising a free light show transforming the sides of several of the government buildings into a History of Berlin display. The show would be offered every night at "dusk" from late June to early October.
So I returned near sunset, and after waiting in a small crowd of people for about 45 minutes, the show started.
As promised, the projection show gave a history of the city of Berlin in photos and film. English subtitles were provided, but they were quite small and it may be a good idea to find a lightweight set of binoculars for reading them if you don't understand German.
It can get cold at night, so base your clothing choice on what the temperatures are likely to be later at night rather than daytime temperatures.
I have yet to find a good source of information on this show, but as best as I can tell this is done annually from late summer to early fall. All I can tell you is look for posters in the windows of the buildings near the Reichstag.
Very few historical building have survived hundreds of years in Berlin ... the Reichstag might be one of the oldest and still functioning ....
Home to the German parliament .... The Reichstag is a beautiful building ....
A huge park stands in front of it .. where plenty of people come to protest, picnic, and just to watch the world go by.
We came at sunset and it was pretty full ...
We tried entering but I was not aware that a reservation must be done ... it's not complicated or difficult to obtain ...
A small office across the streets gives out tickets ... You must present an ID to obtain tickets and they are free ... on the side of the ticket office is the available time for entrance. We obtained a 1800 entrance time and it was perfect ...
After going thru security you are lead up the stairs and then an elevator to the roof where you are given a free audio guide ...
The whole process takes about an hour ...
Well worth doing ...
After visiting the tiergarten, we went to the Reichstag.
This building houses the German Parliament. It first opened in 1894. Later in 1933 it was severely damaged in a fire. The Riechstag fell into disuse after World War II as the parliament of the German Democratic Republic met in the Palast der Republik in East Berlin, while the parliament of the Federal Republic of Germany met in the Bundeshaus in Bonn.
After German reunification which took place on the 3rd of October 1990, the Reichstag was rebuilt following plans drawn up by architect Norman Foster. Since 1999 the Reichstag has again been the meeting place of the German parliament.
One of Berlin’s most famous landmarks is the Reichstag.
This iconic building has helped the German Bundestag become the most visited parliament in the world, partly because of its architecture, partly because of its accessibility, but mainly because of its history.
Kaiser Wilhelm II laid the final stone of this neoclassical building in 1894 and it has continued to play a pivotal role in German history ever since. Initially the parliament was really that in name only and the Kaiser was the man who dictated the terms, but in November 1918 Phillip Scheidemann announced from a window here at the Reichstag that the country was now to become a republic and the Weimar Republic was formed.
The republic was just fourteen years old when the Nazis came to power and the dubious Reichstag fire of 1933 helped change the course of history. The events that followed are obviously well documented elsewhere but as the 2nd World War came to its final moments one of the most memorable images of the conflict show the victorious Russian army raising the Soviet flag on top of the Reichstag. Even today it’s still possible to see bullet holes if you care to look for them.
It took another 25 years for the building to be restored but it was when the wall came down that it was decided to bring the Reichstag back in from the cold, so to speak, and make it the new parliament for a united Germany.
€300m were spent bringing the building into the modern world, with the cupola designed by Sir Norman Foster taking centre stage.
To visit the cupola and roof terrace you have to register in advance which can be done at the ticket office nearby, but you can do it online before you even get to Berlin.
Being a parliament building there are so many anomalies about when you can and can’t visit that its much better to check out their website than for me to try and explain it all. Having said that the good news is that the cupola is open to visitors from 08.00 until midnight most of the time (22.00 last entry).
There are also guided tours of the other working parts of the Reichstag which, from what I can see of it, will benefit mostly German or German speaking people, unless there’s a group of you.
Politics and parliaments may not be to everyone’s taste, but The Reichstag has had more than 34 million visitors since the German parliament relocated from Bonn - and if you don’t add to the numbers when you’re in Berlin then you will have undoubtedly missed one of the most influential and important buildings in German history. Even if you haven’t the time to go inside just come here and take a look.
Reichstag is German for “Imperial Diet”. It has been an institution as well as a building.
The term Reichstag has not been used by German parliaments since World War II.
In today's usage, the German word Reichstag (Imperial Diet Building) refers mainly to the building itself, while Bundestag (Federal Diet) refers to the institution.
The building was constructed to house the Imperial Diet of the German Empire.
It was opened in 1894 and housed the Diet until 1933, when it was severely damaged in a fire, a fire that the Nazis blamed on a Communist, and used as an excuse to suspend and eliminate members of opposition from parliament.
The term Reichstag, meaning a diet, dates back to the Holy Roman Empire.
The building was built for the Diet of the German Empire, which was succeeded by the Reichstag of the Weimar Republic.
The main meeting hall of the building (which was unusable after the fire) was used by the Nazis for propaganda presentations and, during World War II, for military purposes.
The building, having never been fully repaired since the fire, was further damaged by air raids.
During the Battle of Berlin in 1945, it became one of the central targets for the Soviet Union's Red Army to capture due to its perceived symbolic significance.
It was used as a psychological weapon when the Red Army put the Soviet Union flag atop the Reichstag building in 1945.
When the Cold War emerged, the building was physically within West Berlin, but only a few metres from the border of East Berlin, which ran around the back of the building.
After the war, the building was essentially a ruin. In addition, there was no real use for it, since the seat of government of West Germany had been established in Bonn in 1949.
Until 1990, the building was used only for occasional representative meetings, and one-off events.
The official German reunification ceremony on 3 October 1990 was held at the Reichstag building.
One day later, the parliament of the united Germany would assemble in an act of symbolism in the Reichstag building..
The reconstruction was completed in 1999, with the Bundestag convening there officially for the first time on 19 April 1999.
A Large impressive building which gives tours up into the impressive glass dome at its peak. Please note: These do however need to be booked in advance.
It housed the main parliament in the run up to 1933 (before the 3rd Reich) of the Weimer republic.
We heard this place is free entrace, so we thought one can just walk in. No way! When we went here, it was once again a loooooong line of people waiting to get the ticket. Yes, the free ticket.
We asked the staff, and they said it might be 3 hours to get in.
So we once again asked if we can book onlibe, and yes. We could, but the place was fully booked online for about 6 to 7 days usually. Luckily we had 7 days left, and had luck. We did get the tickest for our last day.
When we arrived at the day, and went to short line with online tickets (once again at smart phone, not printed) we noticed people takin out their ID:s! We had read the page carefully (or so we thought), but we didn´t see any info about needing to take the ID with us also with pre booked ticket! I allmost paniced, since I really wanted to go there, but it was our last day. Luckily we got a friendly man on desk. He asked if my husband has ID. He had Finnish drivers licence. Then he asked if I would have at least credit card. Luckily I did, even if I don´t usually take it with me if I´m not sure to need it. It was good I had took it now, and they did take me in then. I just needed to ask some questions and tell my birthday and so on. But you should have your ID!
So we got in. The place was nice. First we went by lift to the roof, and then we walked up to the glass ball. It was looking nice, and we liked it. But I´m glad we didn´t stand on line for 3 hours!
There was a cafe at the roof, but we didn´t visit it. At the top of the "ball" there was no cafe or bar.
The Reichstag building was first opened in 1894 and was used as the parliament of the unified Germany. It was set on fire a couple of months after the Nazis came to power, bombed during WW2, fought over by the Soviets and left a ruin until the 1960’s. It was rebuilt minus the dome. When the country was reunited it was decided the new capital would once again be Berlin and the building was given a make over with the new glass dome. The building is worth a visit with good views from the roof and walking up the inside of the dome. This is a popular tourist spot and the Reichstag Building is open between 0800 & midnight. A restaurant is also located in the dome. You now have to register online at least 2 days before an intended visit (there are sometimes visits available with 2 hours notice via the services centre which is close to the building), telephone registration is not allowed. This can be done via the link below which also includes further information about visiting.
Parliament (Reichtag) is one of the most impressive building in Berlin. It was constructed in 1871. In 1933 it is known for a "famous" fire, when probably it was fired by Nazis and made them as one of the most popular party in Germany.
After Second World War it was badly damaged, later was not used by purpose, as the parliament was moved to Boon. Only in 1990 it was remodeled by Norman Foster with its famous solution of cupola. It is probably the most interesting thing for this building. I needed a registration to get there, as everyone guess through security check. Visiting copula is a must in Berlin I think.
In the sixties the building was already restored but only after the reunification of Germany was thoroughly taken to task. The interior was to be fully taken on the shovel though there remained preserved historic details. So you can see graffiti in Russian with lyrics like "Hitler death" and "Sergei and Yuri were here." It was further discovered an underground passage between the Reichstag and the president palace. Suspected that through that corridor Nazis unseen in the building could come to make the fire of 1933 to establish
During the renovation modern elements mounted that combine surprisingly well with the old building the big draw is the new dome on the roof the original Reichstag had a dome, but the new one is much larger from this dome has a magnificent view over Berlin. There are however long queues for the Reichstag, especially in summer it is one of the most popular tourist attractions of the city
"My most intimate experience of the building previous to this, was in Call of Duty's excellent recreation of the Soviet's Storming of the Reichstag, and seeing it in all its restored glory gave me a momentary flashback. Sitting in the enormous Tiergarten, taking a well earned rest from Hanno's concrete jungle safari, my eyes glazed over as I remembered charging bravely through the building's doors, courageously fending off a spirited German defence, before climbing to the roof to heroically plant the Soviet flag for all the world to see. This imagery contrasted markedly from the tranquil scene we experienced, lazing in the unusually warm October sun, almost completely alone in the entire grounds in front of the building. I thought this was quite amazing for such an important national treasure." - from my travelogue
Just on the western side of the Brandenburg Gate is the Reichstag, or Bundestag as it is now officially know. Built in 1894 as the parliament for the German republic, the Reichstag is once again the seat of government for a unified Germany, after the government of the country was split between Bonn and East Berlin for four decades. The building is set in the enormous and peaceful grounds of the Tiergarten (animal garden), wedged right up against what used to be the Berlin wall.
The Reichstag has had a colorful and eventful, if relatively short, history. Most people will have heard of the Burning of the Reichstag, the event of 1933 that Hitler used as a pretext for seizing power. The building was again the stage of huge drama, when 12 years later the Soviets beat the British and Americans to the prize, and finished off the German resistance in the Storming of the Reichstag. After re-unification, the building was subject to a $11 billion refurbishment, by British architect Sir Norman Foster, who included the controversial glass dome on the roof, which has since proved extremely popular.
If you plan to visit the Dome, make sure your information is up todate. Some guide books information is not. Admission is free but you must apply online or by post. I went on line from my home country about 3 weeks before travel, Name is required along with passport number and email address, date and time needed. You will recieve email with vacant times for you to choose, you pick the time and them recieve final email to print out.You are advised to turn up 15 minutes before appointment. On checking in your invite and passport are checked,then you go through security like at an airport. From these one storey buildings you walk to main building for the lift to top. To find out more put in computer search Reichstag Dome Visit. Well worth this trouble. This was April 2013