In Berlin’s south-west, where the most beautiful villas of the city glitter like gemstones, a world of lights comes alive at nightfall so wonderful that it will make the hearts of even dyed-in-the-wool Christmas grouches melt like butter in the sun. At the Botanical Garden in Dahlem, with its wonderful old stands of trees, the Christmas Garden is opening its gates again as a magical, festive alternative to the classic Christmas market.
Chevy Chase sends his regards
A romantic “Merry Christmas” welcomes visitors already in the tree-lined avenue leading to the entrance, where shooting stars appear to be falling as silver-blue fairy lights from the tall row of trees. With over 30 light installations and more than 1.5 million individual lights, light designers Stephan Boelke and his team have transformed the garden into a Christmas wonderland just like in an American holiday movie. Santa Claus, a herd of LED Bambies and an enormous Advent calendar with illuminated numbers await. Playing gently in the background: “Jingle Bells”, “Let it Snow”, “I’m Dreaming of a White Christmas” and classic German Christmas carols.
Bambies and Santa Claus and red noses on the ice
Just follow the scent of punch and mulled wine – available at the well-situated rustic Christmas stalls – and already you’re in the middle of the magic. A two-kilometre trail winds its way through the park. To the left and right, colourfully illuminated trees sway in the breeze of the night, giant light flowers dance in the field, and shimmering archways covered with fairy dust beckon you to pass. For a bit of ice-skating nostalgia, there’s a little ice rink with a gorgeously decorated Christmas tree (skate rental: 3 euros), strategically and perfectly positioned behind the festively decorated pop-up restaurant serving apricot dumplings and other delicious fare.
Daily from 4.30 p.m. to 10.00 p.m. (last admission 9.30 p.m.)
Closed 24 December and 31 December
Tickets and prices: http://christmas-garden.de/tickets
Botanical Museum, Königin-Luise-Str. 6-8, 14195 Berlin
Botanical Garden , Unter den Eichen 5-10, 12203 Berlin