First up is Volkspark Friedrichshain. Like so many parks in Berlin, this one is deceptively large. What looks like a modest park entrance just keeps going and going (apparently, it's the third largest in the city), with pockets of charming playgrounds, a swan pond and quite a history. With original construction hailing back to the 1840s, the park has seen many additions and changes over the years. The charming Märchenbrunnen (Fairy Tale Fountain) with its numerous stone sculptures from German fairy tales, was bittersweetly created for the children of Berlin in the time of rickets and typhoid. During the war, the Nazis made use of it for bunkers and Flak towers - now covered over and creating the natural high points of the park - and as a result, much of the park at that time was destroyed. A few of the park's other updates over the years include an open air theater, a beach volleyball court and a restaurant.
Our recent time at the park was on a beautiful sunny day, just as spring was starting to make it's early mark on the plant life and temperatures. As with many of the massive green spaces this city has to offer, we didn't make into even half the park, but what we did see was inspiration enough to come back once the temperatures reach sunbathing potential and the fountains are filled for the season. Only one city oasis amidst many, Volkspark Friedrichshain is quickly rising to the top of my favorites.
Am Friedrichshain 1
U5 Strausberger Platz | S-bahn at Landsberger Allee