Located in the far east of Berlin, Lichtenberg is a large suburb that is unique in Berlin and is gradually becoming an increasingly attractive and talked about district. Lichtenberg has much more to offer than it is often given credit for. Not only is it a safe and quiet district, but it is also filled with places of historical significance and natural beauty.
One of the Lichtenberg’s best attractions is the Tierpark- the animal park- a former East German ‘socialist zoo’ opened in the mid-50s. With big and open green spaces, the park is great for recreational activities such as running and playing games in the summer. There’s also a fantastic collection of creatures and can be reached in just a few minutes from Alexanderplatz with the U5. Generally the park is off the traditional tourist route, and often forgotten in favour of the ‘Zoologischer Garten’ in the west. You will therefore find more locals in the park, however it is also becoming increasingly recognized by international visitors too.
Karlshorst, a borough which lies right at the southern end of Lichtenberg-, was developed around a ‘garden city’ idea and therefore there are some very attractive, low-rise Altbau-stlye buildings. Karlshorst is also very close to Schönefeld airport and can be reached in just ten minutes. A popular attraction there is the horse racing track, with meetings every other Sunday, providing a very different Berlin experience. There is also the German-Russian museum, which has a fascinating history- this was actually the site at which the German army surrendered to the Red army and visitors can actually go into the room where the surrender document was officially signed.
Another fascinating museum that is a must if you are at all interested in the former DDR is the Stasi museum which is on the site of the former Stasi HQ. There one can explore the way the organization operated, look at artifacts and walk around what is almost like an entire village made up of former various administrative buildings of the organization. Lichtenberg is also home to Friedrichfelde Schloss which lies in the grounds of the Tierpark. It is a beautifully restored house surrounded by fountains and ornamental grounds and makes for a lovely setting to enjoy the animals.
Nearest airports: Tegel and Schoenefeld, with train links to both in under an hour.
City centre: 16 mins with the U-Bahn to Alexanderplatz.