Housed in the Baroque Zeughaus on Unter den Linden, the Deutsches Historisches Museum (German historical museum) should not be missed. The museum reveals two centuries of German history.
With about 8,000 square meters and 7,000 exhibits you will want to allow plenty of time for your visit. Four hours is not an unreasonable amount of time to spend here and you could easily spend an entire day.
A tour of the Middle Ages to the Current Day
The chronological layout will lead you from the early Middle Ages to the current day.
Follow the conquests of Charlemagne, discover Luther's Theses, study the elements leading to World War II and learn about German reunification.
The items on display cover a broad range from art and everyday items, paintings of historical scenes, armour, a vacuum cleaner to GDR sheet music.
In 1987, Chancellor Helmut Kohl signed the founding document for the Museum on the 750th anniversary of the city. A historic moment changed everything. When the Berlin Wall fell, the still youthful Deutsches Historisches Museum Foundation received all pertinent collections and moved to the Zeughaus. The large permanent exhibition you see today opened in 2006.
"German history in images and artifacts" incorporates nine eras over two floors, filled with art and history. Walk chronologically through the upper floor starting with the Middle Ages. Here you will observe a collection of armour. You'll see filigree embroidered tunics that belonged to princes and knights from approx. 1750. From imperial times you can see two-wheeled penny farthing bikes and the first automobiles.
Descending to the first floor, you will discover photographs and old election signs from the Weimar Republic. The exhibits about in the years following World War II deal with the troublesome period of reparation. Here you will see actual CARE packages sent from the United States and maps of German occupied territories.
The tour then leads you to an actual fragment of the Berlin wall,continuing cronologially toward the nineties. All exhibitions in the museum look at historical developments, revolutionary events, and the people behind them. The exhibits offers insight into the great stories and the people behind them, but also, into the lives of ordinary people.
The museum also contains a 165 seat movie theatre where historical and thematic films are shown
After visiting the permanent exhibition, be sure to check-out the special exhibitions housed in the modern Pei building. The Pei building, which opened in 2003, features a helical staircase and a steel and glass foyer.
The 3.5 meter high Cape cross weapon column, made of stone (1486) painting by Martin Luther by Lucas Cranach the Elder (1529) 22 masks reliefs for dying giants, under the glass roof of the courtyard (Andreas Schlüter, circa 1690) relic from the battle of Waterloo: Napoleon's stitch hat (1815) Personal computer "PC 1715" of the GDR (1989)
Visiting the Deutsches Historisches Museum
Audio tours are available and recommended for the best experience.
Facts For Your Visit
Official Website: German Historical MuseumFee: Yes
Many tourist attractions are temporarily closed due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Please verify any opening hours below with the attraction before visiting.
Phil G. Sep-08-2019
Super important museum if you're interested in understanding...pretty much everything about Germany. Disclaimer: I'm not a museum enthusiast and spent over... Read More
Susan L. Oct-03-2019
We spent about three hours at the museum today and it was well worth visiting. There's a HUGE amount of very detailed information (text) throughout the... Read More
Rima F. Nov-06-2019
I am surprised by my review 3 years ago. This time I found this museum to be very impressive- almost essential to obtaining an understanding of German... Read More
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How to get to German Historical Museum by U-Bahn, S-Bahn
Nearest U-Bahn, S-Bahn Line(s): U6, S3, S5, S7, S9
Nearest U-Bahn, S-Bahn Station(s): U Friedrichstraße, S Hackescher Markt
The Deutsches Historisches Museum is best accessed by public transportation. Hackescher Markt and The Friedrichstraße S-Bahn stops are within a 10-minute walk.
From Hackescher Markt on the S-Bahn, follow the neue promonade west to Burgstraße, bear left (south), cross the bridge to Museum Island and continue right across the island and the next bridge to the museum entrance.
From Friedrichstraße on the U-Bahn, walk south on Friedrichstraße, go left on Dorotheenstraße to the river, go right to the bridge, go right again on Bodestraße (at the bridge) to the museum entrance.
Buses 100, 245, 300 State Opera or Lustgarten stop almost right in front of the entrance.
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