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City Profile: Potsdam

Ambling along the historic palaces and parks of Potsdam, can feel like travelling to a bygone era. Designated as a World Heritage Site, Potsdam’s charming flair arises largely from its cultural uniqueness and its outstanding landscapes. Occasionally, Potsdam is mistaken as part of Berlin due to its close proximity to the German capital.

Sanssouci palace and park

Blick auf Terrassenanlage und Fontäne
Blick auf Terrassenanlage und Fontäne© Stiftung Preussische Schlösser und Gärten Berlin-Brandenburg

The former summer palace of King Frederick II of Prussia, glorious Sanssouci (engl. “worrieless”) palace with its surrounding landscape architecture is a setting to fall in love with. Even today, Potsdam has a Prussian flair. Promoted as the „greatest night of the year”, the Potsdamer Schlössernacht (“Palaces Night”) takes place each summer, turning Sanssouci and other historic sites into seas of lights, boosted with high-class concerts, delicate meals and drinks and a grand display of fireworks.

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The Dutch quarter and the Russian colony Alexandrowka

Hollaendisches Viertel Potsdam
Backsteinhaus, Backsteinhaeuser, Mittelstrasse, Hollaendisches Viertel, Potsdam, Brandenburg, Deutschland / Backsteinh‰user, Holl‰ndisches Viertel© picture-alliance/ Arco Images

The Dutch quarter and the Russian colony Alexandrowka are typical of the cross-cultural influences brought to Potsdam by Prussianism. The Dutch quarter consists of a wide range of eaves and gabled houses and is home to exclusive handicraft boutiques, small art galleries, cozy restaurants and cafés.

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Alexander-Newski-Church in the Russian Colony Alexandrowka
The Alexander-Newski-Church in the Russian Colony Alexandrowka, Potsdam Germany© colourbox

Centrally located Russian colony Alexandrowka was originally built as an accommodation for Russian singers of the First Prussian Regiment of the Guards. Characteristic wooden houses, the picturesque Russian Orthodox Church and the “Museum Alexandrowka” (opened in 2005) attract visitors from all over the world.

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Studio and Filmpark Babelsberg

Babelsberg Film Studio
The entrance to the Babelsberg Film Studio in Potsdam Babelsberg†(Brandenburg), Germany, 03 June 2015. The shooting of the American TV†series 'Homeland' has just begun in Berlin. Photo:†Ralf Hirschberger© picture-alliance/ ZB

Potsdam is also home to the state-of-the-art film studio in Babelsberg, famed for award winning Hollywood productions like Quentin Tarentino’s Inglorious Bastards or Wes Anderson’s The Grand Budapest Hotel. To get close to the action, arrange a visit at the associated Filmpark Babelsberg, which features many attractions, shows and special events.

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Glienicke Bridge

Glienicke Bridge
Glienicke Bridge© colourbox

The Glienicke Bridge across the Havel River connects Berlin with Potsdam and is a testimony of recent German history. During the cold war, half of the Glienicke Bridge was located in the GDR and the other half in the German federal republic. Back then, the bridge was used several times as an exchange point of secret agents of both political systems. Besides that, „the view from the Glienicke Bridge ranks among the most beautiful ones in the whole world”, as the famous German explorer Alexander von Humboldt stated.

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