Germany

Nikolaiviertel – the heart of old Berlin

(Last Updated On: 14/03/2017)
My flight to Morocco was departing from Schoenfeld airport after noon so after arriving by the night bus from Warsaw I had couple of hours to kill in Berlin. I had few ideas where I wouldn’t mind going but I somehow found myself on Alexanderplatz – my favourite place in Berlin. I can’t even explain what attracts me so much in that place – maybe a huge tv tower, maybe the fountain with the seal or maybe a long post communist block of flats. I just remember that since my first visit back in 2002 I have a thing for this area.

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Not everyone knows that behind the long block and the red town hall Berlin hides a real gem – Nikolaiviertel. I also wouldn’t have known if not my Berliner friend Jana who took me there few years ago during one of my many visits in her city. Every time when I was there only a very few tourists were walking around, leaving the main roads and hordes of people behind.

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Nikolaiviertel or Nicholas’ district is known as the place in Berlin that was first mentioned in history – back in 1237. The Nikolaikirche (St. Nicholas’ Church) that proudly stands in the middle of the neighbourhood is the oldest building in Berlin that survived all the tempestous centuries and is also the oldest church in the city. The area, together with Coelln across the Spree river got its unified name Berlin in 1432 and was the heart of growning and developing town ever since.

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During the World War II the area was completely destroyed, only Nikolaikirche survived but was left roofless. The ruins remained until 1980s when the restoratons began just in time for its 750th anniversary. Now Nikolaiviertel, even if pretty small, is a lovely area to walk around the cobbled streets or under the arcades of Hanseatic houses and admire beautiful sign-boards that always remind me of German-speaking countries. The area is a real mix of styles! Nikolaiviertel is also known for the good German restaurants and bars so if you’re craving some typical food and famous beer that’s the place to go to.

Have you been to Nikolaiviertel in Berlin? Would you like to go ?


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2 Comments

  • Reply
    Alex from tripsuit
    03/12/2015 at 02:31

    I’ve been to Berlin dozens of times.. but I’ve never visited the Nicolai-Viertel.. thanks for this hint. Oh and: I really love this map style, how did you do that with open street map?

    • Reply
      kami
      07/12/2015 at 23:20

      you really should go there next time, it’s just few steps away from Alexanderplatz!

      I use mapbox for these maps!

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