The impressive Berlin Cathedral, with its magnificent dome, is a landmark in central Berlin. The church sits among the stately museums on Museum Island, with the Spree River flowing nearby. The Berlin Cathedral is the largest Protestant church in the area and is well worth a tour.
A church was first built on this site in the fifteenth century. This was the court church to the Hohenzollern dynasty, the Prussian rulers, and then the German Emperors. Due to fires and restorations that destroyed earlier churches, the baroque-style Berlin Cathedral on the island today dates from 1905. Kaiser Wilhelm II decided to build a cathedral to rival St. Peter’s in Rome and St. Paul’s in London. And he did.
The Kaiser’s church suffered damage from bombing in WWII. It fell behind the Wall in East Germany. Restoration to its present form wasn’t completed until 1993. Today, you can take in the beauty of the sanctuary.
Be sure to include a visit to the crypt in your tour. Here, as well as in the main sanctuary, you will find the burial place of monarchs. Family members who died as children are also buried here, and there are a surprising number. So sad.
IF YOU GO:
Generally open 9:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Check the website for information on times the church is closed for concerts or services.
Admission: 7 Euro entrance fee. An audio guide is also available for 4 Euro if you would like a more in-depth tour. The gift shop carries a wide variety of nice items (better than standard souvenirs).