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Museum Island in Berlin

Bode Museum, Berlin, Germany, View by night

Museum Island in Berlin has received from the UNESCO the World Heritage membership. This island museum was designed to be "a sanctuary of art and science". The five museums, which are included in the Museum Island, are located between the river Spree and Kupfergraben. This extraordinary group of museums was started by King Friedrich Wilhelm III who made possible the construction of the Royal Museum in 1830 - today Altes Museum (Old Museum). The museum was built to allow the public and can see the royal art treasures of Germany.

Nevertheless, the island was not conceived until around 1840, when Fredrich August Stuler made the proposal to create a cultural center on the island, praised the idea and applauded by everyone. In 1859, the New Museum that was completed later in 1876, will be completed and Old National Gallery.

Kaiser Friedrich Museum (today the Bode Museum) was added in 1904 and last museum, the Pergamon Museum was also completed in 1930. Unfortunately, almost 70% of buildings were destroyed during the Second World War and after the war the collections were divided between East Berlin and the West.

At the end of the 20th century, reconstruction and modernization program was initiated and was meant to restore the five museums. Old National Gallery (Alte Nationalgalerie) was reopened in 2001 with great pomp. Here is one of the largest collections of sculptures and paintings from the 19th century in Germany. Tourists will find numerous works by German artist of the century but also several works by French impressionists.

Restored and reopened in 1966, the Old Museum (Altes Museum), houses Greek and Roman exhibits although was originally designed to exhibit artistic treasures of the royal family. Built by the largest city architect, Karl Friedrich Schinkel, the building resembles a Greek Corinthian temple. The museum was closed in 2009 for renovations.

Bode Museum reopened in 2006 after almost 10 years of renovations. This museum exhibits a large collection of sculptures, one of the largest numismatic collections in the world and a selection of paintings from Gemaldegalerie. New Museum (Neues Museum) was opened in 2009 and hosts a collection of Greek and Egyptian art. This museum has to do with Altes Museum. The most famous exhibit of the museum is the bust of Queen Nefertiti. The Pergamon Museum you can admire a collection of Greek and Babylonian antiquities, which include Ishtar Gate from Babylon, but also enormous Pergamon Altar. On the island there are other important buildings. One is the Duomo, the Cathedral of Berlin's Protestant, built in the late 18th century as a replica of St. Peter's Basilica in Rome.

Right near the Cathedral in Berlin, there was Stadtschloss, a huge palace from the 19th century. In 1950, the building, which was considered a symbol of Prussian militarism, was demolished by East Germany in 1976 and was replaced by Palast der Republik, which in 2006 was also demolished. In 2007 a project to rebuild the old palace (Stadtschloss) was approved by Parliament.

Near the former palace, is Marstall, the royal stables. Large baroque building is just a wing of the former resort built in 1669 by Dutch architect Michael Matthias Smids. The building is now used as a library and archive.

Museuminsel Bodestrasse 1
10178 Berlin, Germany

U-Bahn/S-Bahn: Friedrichstrasse
Tram: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 13, 15, or 53