Before providing you with some insights as to what the Görlitzer Park is and my recommendations, let me first give you a snap shot of its history...
The tiny Café Edelweiss would never have had a chance to do business in the grand Görlitzer Bahnhof which once served as the Berlin terminus for rail passengers traveling between Cottbus and Görlitz. Located in the eastern Kreuzberg district adjacent to the Spreewaldplatz, the Görlitzer Bahnhof was a splendid example of mid-19th-century Italian Renaissance architecture.
By the end of the 19th century, the neighborhoods around the Görlitzer Bahnhof had grown so much that an underpass known as the Görlitzer Tunnel leading from Liegnitzer Straße on the west to Oppelner Straße on the east was constructed beneath the railway.
Today what remains of that tunnel can be seen inside a crater at the center of Görlitzer Park, where the two-room Café Eidelweiss serves up to-die-for cheesecake, sun-dried tomato bagels, and great lattes and cocktails. Its proprietor, Fred Jacob, is doing his best to restore Görlitzer Park to the family-friendly place it’s supposed to be.
Görlitzer Park, for all its problems, has its good points. Kids love the goats, ducks, and pigs at the City Farm. They also love the enormous slide, and the stream and waterfalls at the Görlitzer Straße end of the park.
The Bahnhof buildings, which escaped demolition following the fall of the Wall, have been transformed into a pub, where each Monday the Play Bus (Spielmobil) arrives with a load of toys so that kids can entertain themselves while Mom or Dad entertain themselves with alcohol or grass. ;-)
Did you know: The grass smoked in Görlitzer Park is far more popular than the grass growing in it!
The “Görli,” with its impromptu concerts, soccer matches, and baseball games, is a favorite hangout for students. In warm weather the locals turn out in huge numbers, at all hours of the day, to barbecue. They bring plenty of drinks to wash down their meat, and by day’s end the huge rubbish bins are overflowing. They also bring their dogs, with the expected consequences... Watch where you step in Görlitzer Park!
The Park has its share of homeless people, many of whom also have dogs chosen for their protective instincts. It’s best to avoid areas of the park where these animals are running loose, especially if you’re there with kiddies.
Görlitzer Park is great if you’re looking for a multicultural experience and a touch of Berlin’s seamier side. But Britzer Garden, it most definitely isn’t.
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...grab it, relax, enjoy!
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