A tour of the Museum Island in Berlin

The Museum Island in Berlin is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is truly a remarkable place. It is both a historical landmark and a major tourist destination. A tour of the Museum Island is a must for anyone visiting Berlin.

The island is located in the center of Berlin on the Spree river. It is home to five world-renowned museums: the Pergamon Museum, the Bode Museum, the Old National Gallery, the New National Gallery, and the Alte Pinakothek.

Aerial view of Spree River and Museum Island in Berlin, Germany.
Museum Island

When visiting the Museum Island, there are a few things to keep in mind. First, be sure to purchase a museum pass, as this will give you access to all of the museums on the island. Second, wear comfortable shoes, as there is a lot of walking involved.

Finally, be sure to allow plenty of time to explore each museum, as they are all incredibly fascinating.

The Pergamon Museum

The Pergamon Museum is home to a collection of ancient Greek and Roman art, as well as the famous Ishtar Gate from Babylon. The museum is divided into three sections, each of which covers a different period in history.

Outside view of the Pergamon Museum in Berlin, Germany.
The Pergamon Museum

The Pergamon Altar, which dates back to the 2nd century BC, is one of the most popular exhibits in the museum. The altar was originally built in Pergamon, an ancient Greek city in present-day Turkey. It was later brought to Berlin in the 19th century and reassembled at the Pergamon Museum.

Other notable exhibits in the museum include the Market Gate of Miletus and the Bust of Hadrian.

The Pergamon Museum is a must-see for anyone interested in ancient history or art.

Visit smb.museum for more information.

The Bode Museum

The Bode Museum was built between 1897 and 1904 by the order of Kaiser Wilhelm II. It is named after its first curator, Wilhelm von Bode.

The museum houses a collection of sculptures, Byzantine art, and coins. The museum is particularly known for its collection of Italian Renaissance art, which includes works by Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci, and Raphael.

Outside view of the majestic Bode Museum in Berlin, Germany.
The Bode Museum

In recent years, the Bode Museum has undergone a major renovation and expansion. The newly renovated museum reopened to the public in 2006.

Visit smb.museum for more information.

The Old National Gallery

The Old National Gallery (Alte Nationalgalerie) in Berlin was built between 1843 and 1850 to house the Prussian Royal Family’s art collection. The collection consisted of mainly paintings by Dutch and Flemish masters, as well as some Italian Renaissance paintings. In 1848, the gallery was opened to the public for the first time.

Outside view of the Old National Gallery in Berlin, Germany.
The Old National Gallery

After the unification of Germany in 1871, the gallery was renamed the “National Gallery”. It wasn’t until 1916 that the current name, “the Old National Gallery”, was adopted.

During World War II, many of the gallery’s paintings were moved to safe locations to protect them from damage. However, some paintings were still lost or damaged during the war.

In 1963, a new wing was added to the gallery to house more of the growing collection.

Visit smb.museum for more information.

The New National Gallery

The New National Gallery is housed in a building designed by Mies van der Rohe. The museum features a collection of modern art that includes works by Pablo Picasso, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, and Paul Klee. The gallery also has a section devoted to contemporary art, with holdings that include video installations and mixed-media works.

Outside view of the New National Gallery in Berlin, Germany.
The New National Gallery

In addition to its art collections, the New National Gallery also offers a variety of public programs, such as artist talks, film screenings, and workshops. With its combination of architectural significance and artistic offerings, the gallery is an essential destination for any visitor to Berlin.

Visit smb.museum for more information.

The Alte Pinakothek

The Alte Pinakothek is one of the oldest and most important art museums in the world. Home to a collection of paintings that spans the 14th to 18th centuries, the museum is a veritable who’s who of European art, with works by masters such as Albrecht Dürer, Rembrandt van Rijn, and Diego Velázquez.

The museum’s holdings also include an extensive collection of sculptures, drawings, and prints, making it a must-see for any art lover visiting Berlin.

In addition to its incredible collections, the Alte Pinakothek is also notable for its architecture. The museum was designed by Karl Friedrich Schinkel, one of the most influential 19th-century German architects, and features a neoclassical facade adorned with statues and Corinthian columns. Inside, the museum is just as impressive, with soaring ceilings, marble floors, and walls lined with paintings.

Whether you’re interested in art or architecture, the Alte Pinakothek is sure to impress.

Visit pinakothek.de for more information.

Getting to the Museum Island

The easiest way to reach the Museum Island is by taking the S-Bahn train to Alexanderplatz station. From there, it is a short walk to the island.

If you are coming from the airport, you can take the express train (Flughafen Express) to Alexanderplatz station. If you are driving, there are several parking garages in the area.

The Museum Island is well-signposted, and there are also many English-speaking staff members and volunteers who can help you find your way. With a little planning, it is easy to make your way to this amazing spot in Berlin.