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Explore Potsdam’s top attractions

 

Explore the world of German movie history at the Film Museum
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As the former garrison town and residence of Prussian kings, Potsdam looks back on a splendid history that has left an impressive mark especially on the city’s architecture. With a total of 12 palaces, artistically laid out park landscapes, a historic city centre with villas, baroque building and historical districts, Potsdam offers many unforgettable impressions. Surrounded by the Havel River, numerous lakes and nestled in an extensive forest environment, this town also offers a perfect mix for a relaxed city stay.

Between the 17th and 20th century, impressive palaces and gardens were created in Potsdam. The best architects, artisan-craftsmen and landscape designers of their era worked under the command of the Prussian kings. The Sanssouci Palace & Park is still one of the leading examples of German rococo architecture and also Potsdam’s best-know landmark. Built on the plateau of six vineyard terraces, the palace radiates majestic grace. The huge flight of 132 steps leads into the baroque Sanssouci park landscapes. Other architectural treasures such as the New Palace, the Orangery, Roman Baths, the Chinese House and Charlottenhof Palace can be visited here.

Near the Sanssouci Palace, lies the Crown Estate of Bornstedt. This opulent country house, looking more like a Tuscan castle, shows off the Hohenzollern’s predilection for Italian art and architecture. A traditional brewery and distillery, a coffee house and numerous shops with art handicrafts can be visited here.

The historic city centre offers architectural treasures of a different kind. Compared to the majestic baroque buildings elsewhere, the unique Dutch Quarter with its red brick houses imparts a lovely bohemian flair. In the mid-17th century, this quarter was the largest Dutch settlement outside the Netherlands. Back then, Dutch craftsmen who were invited by the “Soldier King” Frederick Wilhelm I lived here. Today, cosy coffee houses and exclusive shops invite the visitors to take a stroll. Also unique is the Russian colony of Alexandrowka. Very close to the Dutch Quarter, this artist’s village was built on the request of Frederick Wilhelm III in memory of his deceased friend Czar Alexander I. Consisting of 12 wooden houses, a royal mansion and a Russian Orthodox chapel, this district was home to Russian artists from 1826 onward.

Potsdam’s museum scene is dominated by the Prussian royal palaces. Besides the House of Brandenburg and Prussian History, located in the historic centre, and the Potsdam Museum in the Dutch Quarter, we recommend visiting the Potsdam Film Museum.