Reichstag Building

Reichstag building facade at night
Reichstag building facade at night

The Reichstag building and its amazing dome are one of Berlin's most famous landmarks, and a must see for anyone visiting the city. Don't let the long lines deter you from going up into the Copula. It really is worth the wait. Not only can you look down into the parliamentary chambers, but you will enjoy superb views of the city which are even more spectacular at night.

Construction started in 1882 on the Reichstag Parliament building. It took twelve years and was completed December 5th 1894. In 1916 “Dem Deutschen Volke” meaning “ to the German People” was added to the main frieze. The letters are 60cm tall, formed from melted down French cannons seized during the Napoleonic wars.

The Reichstag was mysteriously set on fire on February 27th, 1933, nearly destroying the building. Marinus Van der Lubbe, a Dutch communist was convicted of the crime and executed in 1934. Not everyone was convinced of his guilt or that he acted alone. In 2008 Marinus Van der Lubbe was pardoned due to the uncertainty.

During the second world war the building was substantially damaged by allied bombing and West Germany’s Capital was moved to Bonn meaning the ruined structure had no use. This led to a debate as to whether it should be demolished or restored. The restoration side won the debate and restorations were made between 1961-1964 leaving out the distinct design of the copula. Some after effects of the bombings and fire are still apparent.

From 1964-1990 the Reichstag building was mainly used for exhibitions of Germany’s history.

After Germany’s reunification in 1990, the Reichstag building was turned back into the Parliament building.

From 1992-1999 more restorations took place, this time honouring the true design which added the Copula to the top of the building. It’s a symbol to the people that they are above the government. A direct change from the past of National Socialism.

In the spring of 1999 the Reichstag Parliament Building was reopened.

This unique building blends new and historic architecture. The best city views are seen from top of the Copula. Visitors stroll up and down the spiral ramps in a corkscrew pattern where they may view the chamber working and enjoy 360 views. This walk is 230 metres and takes about 20 minutes. Sunlight entering the glass dome reflects off the mirrored cone shape centre, giving it its light. Created to make use of daylight and decreases carbon emissions, the dome is both environmentally friendly and energy efficient.

A small food stand is located on the ground floor of the dome. You may purchase several beverages, plus chips and other snacks.

The dome and rooftop restaurant on the east side display beautiful city views. These require advance registration. Visitors should register online. When entering, there’s security checks similar to those at airports.

If you haven’t made reservations and want to visit the dome, you may register at the service centre near the Reichstag Building, south of ScheidemannstraBe. If free spaces are available, you will be issued a booking confirmation.

Easy to use audioguides in ten different languages are available on the roof terrace when visiting. Audioguides for children and people with disabilities are also available.

Facts For Your Visit

Fee: No, But advanced registration is required to visit the dome

Some attractions may have reduced hours or be closed due to COVID-19. Please verify opening hours with the attraction before visiting.

Open Now

Regular Hours:

  • Monday: 8:00 am - 12:00 am
  • Tuesday: 8:00 am - 12:00 am
  • Wednesday: 8:00 am - 12:00 am
  • Thursday: 8:00 am - 12:00 am
  • Friday: 8:00 am - 12:00 am
  • Saturday: 8:00 am - 12:00 am
  • Sunday: 8:00 am - 12:00 am

Category: Landmarks & Historical Buildings

Address: Platz der Republik 1
11011 Berlin
Germany

Phone: +49 30 2270

Reviews

Yelp Rating:
4.5 out of 5 4.5 Star Rating
Based on 287 Reviews.

See all reviews on Yelp

5 Star Rating The Bundestag is the center of German parliamentary democracy and is open to the public almost every day of the week from early in the morning until late at... Read More

Vincent L. Nov-28-2019

4 Star Rating Berlin's epicenter for parliament and democracy. I wasn't able to get inside the dome and it was closed by the time I visited. Plan ahead reserve online as... Read More

Nicole E. Feb-13-2020

5 Star Rating A seriously cool building a perfect way to start a day in Berlin. It's situated right by the Gates and the Tiergarten. So it is very hard to miss. It has... Read More

Adam H. Oct-16-2019

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Directions

How to get to Reichstag Building by S-Bahn or U-Bahn

Nearest S-Bahn or U-Bahn Line(s): S1, S2, S5, S7, S25, S75, U2, U6. U55, U6, M1
Nearest S-Bahn or U-Bahn Station(s): Berlin Friedrichstraße, Bundestag Station, Mohrenstraße

From Berlin Friedrichstraße Station: go south on Friedrichstraße, right on Dorotheenstraße and continue to the Reichstag Building.

From Bundestag Station: The Reichstag Building is just southeast of the station.

From Mohrenstraße Station: walk north on Wilhelmstrasse, and go left on Unter den Linden to Brandenburg Gate, then right on Ebertstraße.

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Photo Gallery

Video


Video about the history of the Reichstag Building

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